Why do we take photos?

Being on exchange has brought about the companionship of my camera, but also an absence of a smartphone, resulting in a new collection of pictures, with a new goal in mind during their creation. You no longer take social photos on a digital compact – it’s not an SLR, so it doesn’t elicit a pose, nor is it an iphone. What I’ve found is that we pose differently depending on what kind of camera we are facing. The quick, quiet, unobtrusive snap of the iphone leaves no-one the wiser and lets us get away quickly with posing – if it didn’t work…too bad so sad, if it did…we can lol about it after.

I don’t have a smartphone here. I miss snapchat, I miss instagram. Or even simply, mobile uploads, where the selfie is validated because of the device it was taken on. We can pull faces, be idiots, because the mobile-phone camera does not hold an underlying history of preparation for a photo, of the one-off, the value of the exposure (and cost!). Mobile photography is designed to be quick, to be multiple, to be unobtrusive.

We don’t mind the SLR at the odd party or event. It gives the occasion some formality, and of course gives the one standing behind it a certain level of credibility.

I don’t quite know where my camera fits, the Powershot G1X. It’s really great, with full manual functions and a DSLR sized sensor, but it still gets in the way of the social photo; it takes it’s time to focus, it is kind of bulky and bigger then your average digital camera.
People have started saying, wow what a great camera, that takes really good photos. Soon I will reply, it’s not all down to the camera…

My photos are only on flickr or on this blog, I don’t want no Facebook owning my work! ha.

Mum asked for photos of my surroundings which has inspired a collection of grunge-type street photography, aimed at capturing spirit and life in Montpellier (yet still not really featuring any true Montpellier-ins ….) we’ll work on that.

Lightning Storm

I was fortunate enough to spend the weekend with an extraordinary Australian woman who works in Montpellier. She is an absolute delight, even more so, she took pleasure in hosting me, cooking delicious food for me and engaging in conversation with this somewhat-lost-and-midly-frazzled-twenty-year-old.

Thank-you Karen!

On Saturday night, we drove out to the little village of St Juste to see a play put on by an amateur theatre group. Les Belles-Soeurs, is about a dinner hosted by a couple for his brothers and their wives. The sisters-in-law not wanting to be there, things quickly unravel… and relationships become strained.

On the drive back, there was lightning, but not like I’ve ever experienced before. There was no thunder, no rain, no noise. Just these great sheets of lightning.
So I filmed it.
The appearance and disappearance of light. My obsession.

“it’s all about us”

Last week’s guest lecture looked at the relationship between the actor and the director.
The reading for last week was titled The Director and the Actor.
And finally something hit home.

We have been going through this whole production phase so very focused on us. On the makers, and on the making. Yes, our task is to make, and we came to university to learn how to do that, but this semester I believe I have forgotten (if only partially  that we make texts for an audience. Year Twelve Media (yeah, going all the way back to the industrial system of a high-school education) was so very focused on selecting an appropriate audience, and working to those constraints. I suppose that helped guide us, to an extent. But there really hasn’t been much mention of audience (for FilmTV, or Integrated Media). Maybe we were meant to figure it out ourselves and I just missed the boat….

Even then, the creation of our films so far has revolved around the crew. Learning to be a crew and learning how to crew. So, the lecture was very pertinent  As much as this kind of tunnel vision has enabled us to hone in on what we need to do, there is still a great deal more then just us and our work that makes a film come together.
When we filmed our Lenny III, I got some friends to come in and help out and act for us. No, I twisted their arms and bribed them with food until they agreed. My words to my non-actor, camera-shy friends were, “It’s really not even about you, it’s about us” I told them we need to practice our roles behind the camera, and we need someone infront so that we know when we are stuffing it up completely.

But it’s not.
The actors want it to be about them. The make-up will want it to be about them (to an extent).

The actors will want to use this, they’ll want it to be great (just as much as we do – I hope!).
And we need to remember that.
Sure, it’s about us learning. But there is more then one party involved in the process.