Kellen Playford

NUA [MA] Moving Image and Sound

ASU2: Body of Work

asu2-copy

This module is all about sound creation and perception, and I’ll update this page along the way.

During week one, Liam advised us that our work would be part of a public exhibition at East Gallery at the end of the module. Over the next few weeks we all spoke about what projects we might be working on and what we’d submit. We visited the gallery and realised that because of the solid wall made of glass it might not be the best viewing space for films, however, we all plodded on regardless. In fact, there has been very little actual teaching in this module, and only a fraction more group discussion about out work, so I know what two people are doing, and that’s it. I’ve no idea about anyone else.

Anyway, as the module became more and more independent, I began thinking about what pieces I might want to create. I had one very defined idea in my mind from RIPU last year, which was a documentary about another student and her work, but other than that I wasn’t too sure. I toyed with the idea of creating music from everyday sounds and experiences, and with an idea which centred on building a soundscape to match a set of visuals, and gradually removing and highlighting individual sounds. In the end, I created two pieces:

An experimental, montage documentary called An Exquisite Agony, and

Another slightly experimental documentary called These Are My Confessions.

AN EXQUISITE AGONY

This film was inspired by a number of artistic promo videos I saw online, especially on Vimeo, where the work of an artist was presented in such a cinematic way that it elevated the film from ‘advert’ to ‘film’, in my opinion. I wanted to work with other artists to help promote their work through a similar style of filmmaking.

I believe the film turned out quite well, and relatively close to my initial expectations. I would have liked it to look a little cleaner, but that is down to my ability as a cinematographer and the equipment I chose, so next time I know to try and put together a better crew, rather than working alone.

 


THESE ARE MY CONFESSIONS

This film was based on an idea I had after watching First Kiss (2014) – I just wanted a really simple looking film that played with the relationship between image and sound. The idea was to changed the expected audio so that it didn’t match the image on screen, but see if the audience would still find or assume a connection.

This didn’t turn out quite as expected, mainly because I couldn’t pull a cast together, so instead of five people on screen, it’s just one. While the theory still stands, I think the experiment would provoke more thought and discussion with multiple actors (meaning multiple potential sources for the sounds). I may try making this again with either five people appearing individually on screen, or even a line up type visual, with all appearing at once.


 

Future Work

I’ve been thinking about how this work, along with that from RIPU, will tie in with the rest of my studies, and subsequently what sort of films I’d like to make at NUA.

I think I would still very much like to continue in the documentary genre, and I have two small ideas bubbling under at the minute – a film about the market traders at Norwich Market, and a film about someone/a family suffering from dementia. I think both these films would rely quite heavily on sound, but probably in different way. In the Market doc, the sound would be used to create an environment in which the film is set, whereas in the Dementia doc it would probably be used more as a trigger or technique for stimulating and expressing memories.

As well as that, the idea of continuing the prospect of working with artists to promote their work is an appealing one. I think I might ask 2-3 students at the university if they are will to work with me along that vein. Possibly a photography student, and maybe fashion, or fine art?

I’d also like to expand and do some narrative led shorts, and those will probably include collaborations with others on my course, likely Emmaalouise and Ranieri. I don’t have any ideas or themes in mind yet, but just a couple of short (3-5 minute), well written, well produced films.


 

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