Digital Media Design


Short Form Video – My Ideas for a Short Form Video

Friday 14th January 2011

Gangland by Ian Hunt


Dave, a big balding? tough looking man steps off the bus (Bus Stop) and walks up a darkly lighted street towards a small but brightly lighted Pub he pushes the door open and is immediately assaulted by the noise of people talking loudly and the music from the Juke box (or band) in one corner.

He sees his friends and walks up to the table where a seat has been reserved for him. He sits down and his friend opposite pushes a pint of beer across the table towards him.

While Dave enjoys a pint we cut away to a young man whose face we do not really see because he’s hooded, he has what is obviously a gun which he is cleaning and playing with, finally we see him load the gun and then he conceals it inside a folded newspaper. He stands and with his back to the camera he walks out of the door and onto the dimly lighted street. Mounting his BMX bike putting the folded newspaper with the gun inside his pocket, he then starts to ride on the pavement towards the pub.

Meanwhile Dave finishes his pint and takes his leave and makes his way towards the pub door when his friend calls out and offers to buy him another Pint


He declines and exits the Pub


He turns left and begins walking away from the Pub and meets the hooded guy coming the other way, the hooded guy still seated on his bike raises the hand holding the newspaper, there’s a flash as the gun is fired and Dave clutching his chest drops to the pavement, the hooded guy still on his bike looks down at him there is a second flash and Dave closes his eyes for good. The hooded guy drops the newspaper and turns and rides away up the road. (Final shot of the bikes wheel)

Alternative endings for decisions 1 and 2

1. Dave stays for another pint and we cut away to the Pub entrance where we see the hooded guy appear and look indecisively towards the Pub door until there is a noise (Police Siren) and the hooded guy turns and runs away up the hill.

2. Dave turns right and walks towards home, a car screeches to a halt beside him and 2 men get out they identify themselves as policemen and bundle Dave into the back of the car and they drive off.


For the Short Form Video the interactive element would be dropped and the shooting sequence would be filmed with the opening showing the Bus Stop and ending with the final shot of the bikes wheel.

I’d write a script for the dialogue in the pub which would inform the audience of what the shooting was all about along the lines of the dialogue in Heat and the pub scene in Harry Brown between Caines character and his only friend.


Two films spring to mind Harry Brown and Heat. Harry Brown a gritty British Film starring Michael Caine as a Vigilante seeking revenge against Drug Dealers who killed his only friend and Heat Starring Al Pacino and Robert De Niro for the scene in the Coffee House. Of course in this film the rolls would be reversed with the young wannabe shooting the established drug dealer/villain in an attempt to take over his criminal organisation, drugs market unlike in Harry Brown where it’s the young drug dealers who are taken on by the vigilante character played by Michael Caine.

Coffee House Scene from HEAT
Harry Brown


Short Form Video – The KT Tunstall Project

Wednesday 12th January 2011 updated with final video Tuesday 25th see bottom of Blog

or CLICK HERE and go direct to YouTube

The Task

The class were set the task to produce their own film to represent a music sequence taken from the ‘KT Tunstall music track ‘Black Horse and a Cherry Tree’. With the class divided up into teams of 5 we each had a few lines taken from the lyrics to work with. We approached this task the same as we would be expected to take when producing any film project. That is come up with a Treatment/Synopsis, Storyboard, shot list, call sheet etc. etc. We began by looking at the lyrics and tried out ideas to see what we thought would work and could be achieved with the resources available to us (Synopsis). For example the footage would be produced using Mobile Phones only and of course no budget.

The team. we would be working in for this project would also be the same for the final short form video. So for this current project this allowed the members of the team to assume roles and try them on for size.

Black Horse and a Cherry Tree – Soundtrack swapped for copyright reasons

The Team

For this project the team was made up:-

1. Director – Euan

2. Creative Director – Lee

3. Producer – Alex

4. Camera/Sound – Michael

5. Camera/Sound – Ian

After coming up with a number of ideas we produced a storyboard and shot list, we considered a number of locations and even though the weather was somewhat inclement we decided to film outside.

Thanks to the time spent in planning we knew exactly the shots we required and therefore the actual time spent on filming was short, although we did have additional ideas whilst filming which we then incorporated into the final film. One of these was to produce a short Stop Frame Animation for the chorus. This was produced from the arrangement of a popular snack food (Hula Hoops) to form the words ‘Woo Hoo’ which we lighted using a torch to give a moving shadow under the words.

We also added another shot not in the list showing Alex looking over her shoulder at the horse in the distance, we did this as the horse just happened to be in the right place and so this was too good an opportunity to miss. We also added in the idea that Lee was kneeling as if to propose as this tied in well with the Lyrics.

I think we learn from this that even though it is important to plan everything as much as possible in advance, if opportunity presents itself or a good idea comes up during a shoot, be flexible and include it in the production schedule after all it can always be edited out or not used at all in post production, but if you never made the shot then you do not have the option.

With the footage safely in the Mobile Phone the next task was to import this into a Mac for editing which seemed to be problematic at first as the card reader did not support the Micro SD card but turned out to be easy in the end by using a the phones Bluetooth connection.

Editing was carried out using Adobe Premiere CS5.

Our completed edit was exported as a Quicktime movie and uploaded ready for inclusion into the final edit, where all the individual projects would be edited together to produce the final sequence.

Storyboard and Shot List


Shot List

  1. Alex walking with Lee following and just visible over her right shoulder. (Mid Shot)
  2. Alex half turns to see who follows – Lee takes a step to the left to avoid being seen. (Mid Shot)
  3. A Low level shot just showing the legs of Alex and Lee as they walk past the camera. (Mid Shot)
  4. Shot of the horse in the Field (Wide Shot).
  5. Try and get a shot of the Horse shaking its head (Close Up)
  6. For the Chorus we film each member of the cast and crew shaking their heads that is ‘ No No No’ (Close Up)
  7. Alex turns 180 Degrees away from Lee sitting or kneeling leaving him alone (Wide Shot), Also take from another angle as we need this twice for the sequence

The final task

– including our sequence along with the footage shot by the other groups into a completed edit for the whole song:-

Thanks to Lee for the original edit  – this is my inverted, colourised version

The inverted version


Short Form Video – Introduction

Tuesday 11th January 2011

The start of a new subject ‘Short Form Video’ has many common elements with the previous Viral Video project in that this will be a Video produced primarily for the online video market for sites such as; YouTube, Daily Motion, Current TV, MSN and similar. Typically the runtime of the video is 10 minutes although YouTube will now allow Videos up to 15 minutes in length.

Today began with an introduction to the Film Industry delivered by Tony Chance our Lecturer for this subject covering the typical hierarchy  of a Film Production starting with the role of the Director, the Producer the formation of a separate production company responsible for the entire film process.

We then moved onto the drawing of storyboards a hands on approach where we used a range of drawing techniques to help the non artist amongst us produce simple drawings which would be more than sufficient to inform the production team of the elements involved in each shot. A new idea to me was the use of Maps to  show the what is expected in each scene the positioning of cameras and the type of shot required. In the example shown a single map was used to show the position of 3 camera locations and the shots required. This seemed to be particularly suited for an action scene.

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