Section 3 – Shot Composition
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Section 3 – Shot Composition

October 18, 2019


Okay, so we talked about the
tripod and the camera controls. Now let’s talk about framing. And when we talk about
framing, that means the, the image that you’re seeing on
the screen. And there’s three basic formats. You have the wide shot, which is
what we have right now, then you have the medium shot,
which is what this shot is right here, and now you have
the tight shot. So those are the three basics. You have the wide, the medium,
and the tight. And those are going to be your
fundamentals for getting shots when you’re out there in the
field. Okay, so the wide shot is
used as an establishing shot. What that does is it basically
tells people where you are. It gives them a frame of
reference. So typically when I go do a
shoot, the very first thing that I will do is I will get a
wide shot. That sets up this is where we
are and this lets the viewer know what’s going on in the
action. The next thing we’ll do is we’ll
shoot the medium shot. Now the medium shot, what
that does is it’s going to bring people into that action a little
bit more. It’s going to make it feel a
little bit more personal and it’s going to get that viewer
into that so they know what’s going on. If you stay on the wide shot,
that’s going to show where you’re at and what’s going on
that establishing shot, but that’s not going to draw the
viewer into that and it’s not going to put a focus on
where you want it to be. And then the tight shot,
that brings attention to the details. That shows people, okay this is
the place that you need to focus
on. It puts a lot of emphasis on
that. So now that we’ve talked about
these three shots, get to know them; wide, medium,
tight. You need to just go out there
and every time you do a shoot you start with the wide, you go
to the medium, and then you get the tight for
those details. That also gives you options
editing. Because if you just shoot a
bunch of wide shots, you’re going to have a bunch of
jump cuts because it’s going to go from one wide to another. You need to use those wides, the
mediums, and the tights so that you can
mix things up. And there are different reasons
for using the different shots, and each one has a specific
purpose. And on the tight side, you
also have extreme tight, then there’s also extreme wide. Those kind of fall under the
wides and the tights and stuff
but, again, they’re all for extra
emphasis and different reasons for using those. We’ll show you a few of those
shots when you get out there into the field and do
some shots then. And here’s our framing tips to
remember. Remember that wide shots
establish a location and they show relationships. Medium shots focus the viewer’s
attention, and then the tight shots
emphasize emotions and details. And finally, I want to
emphasize here, make sure you shoot all three
types of shots for every single
story. Now if we have the wides, the
mediums, and tights, the next thing we talk about is
shot composition. Now shot composition refers to
the elements that are within
your frame. So instead of just putting
the tripod and the camera real close and having the
subject, what you do is you add in a
little bit of maybe leaves in
the frame, or you have a pole or something. Basically, it’s these different
elements that you have that are subtle. You don’t want those things to
stand out. You don’t want the viewer to
immediately look at that stuff, because then they become the
subject. Composition refers to these
different elements that might be a little bit out of focus or
that establish the shot or where you are that are built
into that frame, and it simply adds to the shot
and gives a much better feel for the viewer than having just
a single shot straight on. So we’ve covered the tripods,
we’ve covered the camera
controls, the wides, the mediums, the
tights. Those things all come together
in the editing. Shot composition, that’s
something that you’re going to work on every single shoot
you go out there. Instead of just taking
that basic shot, what you want to do is you want
to look for elements that you can add in there. And all this stuff, it’s really
hard to learn when you first get out there with the cameras
especially, but I want to encourage you to
continue doing it. It’s a lot like when you first
started driving. It was difficult because you
didn’t know all the controls for
the car, and you had to try and focus on
the road and maintaining that speed limit and everything, but then as you got better at it
you started hitting the windshield wipers without even
looking, and you knew your turn signal
without even looking. The same thing for shooting
camera. You’re going to get to the point
where you don’t even have to look and you know where the
white balance switch is, you’re going to know where the
iris control is, and you’re going to just come
and you’re going to look at those elements like composition,
wides, tights, those things are going to start
coming natural for you. So as we start to look at some
of these different situations
and things, I’ll continue to talk about all
those different elements. Just take it in strike. And when you get out there, you
know, try and hit the basics and carry
on with that and you’ll get it as you go.

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