The Sole of A Student’s Day

The Sole of A Student’s Day is our final video for the video art, in which we worked in a group to complete, including; Layal, Hadis, Ikrah, Georgia, Romaisa, and myself.

Throughout this project, we came up with a story, filmed, and edited an entire 4 minute video that we were able to proudly present. It was quite refreshing working in such a group as many of these people I had not worked with before (no one except Romaisa). This allowed us to have new and fresh ideas as we worked all together. I also found that we had done things as a group that I would not have necessarily chosen if I was working on my own. This includes the inspiration of Pipolotti Rist and her contradictory work, which we continued through the use of the backing track versus the video itself. I liked the use of a unique theme of feet, as this was a different perspective to view a day of a student. This was very difficult to begin with, however once we got the hang of filming with a broomstick, clamp and camera, it was a very fun and enjoyable experience. Turning corners was still, and still is a challenge we need to overcome.

There was also a downside to working in such a large group as we were not all able to meet at one time through the week, and so messages were often second hand. I also felt like a lot of the work was passed to me, as the majority of the time, I was filming, or being filmed, and I felt responsible for getting the equipment, as no one else within the group was being proactive about it. I also spent around 12-13 hours editing the video, even though two out of our group of six had done the editing tutorial. Communication about the editing was also not done in person but rather through messaging because of the continual problem of not being able to meet up all on the same day. If we had to make the video again I would want to make it’s so that it isn’t as detailed and it was just one main thing, such as the date scene, as this would have allowed us to get some more detailed footage. Either that, or to literally record a pair of feet continually for a whole day, an speed up that one piece of footage (this again would have its complications but would be very fun to watch and complete).

Although there were many complications, I believe that our video came out very well. It was not what I thought we would produce, as initially I believed that we would do a small, cute little video of the sorts. However, it was an experience of where I gained many skills that which I hope to take into other pieces that I will complete throughout my degree.

Update 30/01/17: We showed all of our videos together today and got feedback – our lecturers loved the edit and the way in which the video tricks you at the beginning as though it is going to be a music video, but then shocks you when the Irish dancing comes in, and then you’re not really sure what is going to happen. They also commented that the editing was very seemless and worked well. One of our lecturers also said that they started to look at the feet as though they were an entity of their own and they had become their own character. So overall, a great success!

Extended version:

Other Groups videos:

Editing Films

After filming the majority of the shots that we needed (at the time of writing, we were on day 3 of filming), we had to think about the editing of the film. This is a lot of things as one, because we have to think about the order, the size, how we are going to switch from shot to shot, the sound track and also the effects that we may use. These we all things that a lot of us thought about while filming and through the progression of the editing lecture. We did, however, get stuck on the little things such as the soundtrack that we should use. There were many ideas including the footsteps, having a song, or just background noise. Specifically, we needed a rhythm to the piece, and the most simple way to portray rhythm is with sound and music. For rhythm, we also have to think about the rhythm of the scene changes and for our specific video, the speed in which the feet are going.

For the soundtrack, I initially thought that we were going to record the footsteps in time, in a separate room and then overlay the sound on the final video. However, we were then beginning to look back at the films we each suggested a couple of weeks back when we began the video art project.

After looking at all of these, the music was not quite what we wanted for our piece. We found that it was all a bit too fast, dramatic and thrilling, or too slow, draining and peaceful. We then looked at other films and the way in which they have played around with the music within it or how they have used the music and the image in conjunction with each other. This allowed us to move onto Life Is Strange Episode 5 Max’s Nightmare, a video game in which someone has recorded their game time. In this, the background images go backwards and the music starts to go all ‘funny’, almost as if it is all being slightly trippy. This is something that we wanted to recreate in our movie at the end when she is drugged as it is something new that we could add in, in order to create a more unique video. It also led us to the soundtracks of these sorts of videos and games (see below), however, once again, we found that these were and are not the right tracks for our video art.

Because we couldn’t find the correct soundtrack, we then began to look at other ideas for the soundtrack. We started to look at the more natural sounds that were around us when we were shooting the movie. This led to me showing the rest of the group a website that I have had on my saved tabs for years – This website allows you to have more natural background noise, for example when working, instead of having a film, tv show, or music on in the background. The different noises included rain, thunder, waves, wind, fire, birds, crickets, coffee shop, singing bowl and white noise. To have more natural sounds, we can easily record the sounds from the website, and then overlay the sounds on the video in the apropriate places.

For familiar sounds, we then started thinking about Chopsticks. Although it would be comedic and slightly sarcastic, we believed that it would give a slight Pipilotti Rist feel to the video.

We also discussed the rest of the editing process, and in order to complete the film, we do have to finish filming first. When filming is finished, we have to keep in mind that the majority of the dialogue and sound is added during the editing stage. We also have to keep in mind the rules of editing, six of which Walter Murch created for narrative film; (1) Emotion 51%, (2) Story 23%, (3) Rhythm 10%, (4) Eye trace 7%, (5) 2D place of screen 5%, (6) 3D space 4%. Within these six rules, the key elements have been sound and vision, and these are once again what we have to concentrate on. Other elements that we need to keep in mind while editing are;

  • Trim
  • In/out
  • Jump in/out (e.g. from inside to outside)
  • Cross dissolve
  • Fade in/fade out
  • Split screen
  • Long shot
  • Medium shot
  • Close up
  • Extreme close up
  • One shot/two shot (when having a conversation, the over the shoulder shot)
  • Tracking
  • Linear vs non-linear
  • fps
  • Widescreen (16:9)/4:3
  • Mono/stereo
  • Timecode (00:00:00:00) (hr:min:sec:frame)
  • Media (never changes – source material)


We decided to do editing on Adobe Premiere Pro CC, which was the recommended software to use by our lecturers. Before beginning to touch our own video, we had to take a self paced tutorial which told us how to change the view of the screen including moving tabs, settings and making things larger and smaller according to how we want to view the programme. We were also taught how to cut clips down, how to chop them into half, how to insert clips into different places, and also how to turn, change the colours, and flip the different clips individually. Through the tutorial, we were also taught all the names of the different areas that we would interact with, within the programme, including; programme window, audio meters, tools palette, clips, timeline, tracks, sequence, media browser, info panel, effects tab, history panel, project panel, effect controls tab, audio mixer and source window. Through the process of creating a tutorial video, we learnt how to interact with all of these and how to create our first video. Going through the tutorial, I remembered the specific parts that I knew we would need later, such as the time speed of the clips.

Ikrah and I ran through the tutorial, so then at least if we wanted to do some editing, the group would need one out of two people, instead of only one person. During the first day of editing, Hadis and Layal sat down and chose all the clips that we would need to use during the video. (The benefit of this was that when editing, I didn’t have to spend hours choosing the clips out of the 80+ that we had shot). Romaisa also helped with choosing some of the scenes as she specifically wanted some of the shower and walking in heels scenes that were shot only a few days before. During picking out the scenes, we also realised that we would not be able to use any of the clips that Hadis and Layal shot, as they were wearing different shoes to the bulk of the views, which contained my shoes. It is for this reason that we decided to use the shots that included my shoes instead of having loads of different clips with different shoes. Lastly, sadly, the group work did not quite work out as much of the group went home during Friday, the main day of editing, and I ended up piecing the video together. Romaisa helped to finalise the order on Friday. These are the clips that we decided that we wanted in the video;

  • 15 – Shoes beginning
  • 18-17 – Getting into bed – cut a bit out of the beginning
  • 20 – Getting into bed – lights off
  •  – Walking on concrete Charlotte
  •  – Charlotte walking on grass
  •  – Charlotte walking on ice puddle
  •  – Charlotte walking on mud
  • 38 – Charlotte boots walking studio
  • 41 – Walking out of department
  • 42 – Walking out of department
  • 43 – Walking with friend
  • 45
  • 46 – Walking on bridge
  • 47
  • 48 (2) – Cute moment with boy
  • 50 – Walking into puddle
  • 52
  • 54 – Skateboarding
  • 55
  • 56 – (or) skateboarding to door
  • 61 – Another skateboard/door scene
  • 63 – Getting on bed and taking shoes off
  • 121 – Shower scene 1 – cut a bit off of ending
  • 126 – Stairs
  • 129 – Heels walking
  • 130 – Green walking
  • 131 – Barefoot
  • 132 – Crawling barefoot
  • 133 – Putting shoes on before night out
  • 134 – Tap dancing
  • 137 – Dancing club

The order of the video happened as such;

  • 15 – (00:00:00:00)
  • 121 – (00:00:34:10)
  • 61 – (00:04:23:18)
  • 56 – (00:04:42:20)
  • 134 – (00:05:28:02)
  • 38 – (00:05:28:02)
  • 41 – (00:05:40:01)
  • 42 – (00:06:21:07)
  • 45 – (00:07:41:04)
  • 46 – (00:08:26:21)
  • 44 – (00:09:00:04)
  • 47 – (00:09:16:00)
  • 50 – (00:09:36:02)
  • 53 – (00:09:48:10)
  • 46 – (00:09:59:20)
  • 49 – (00:10:10:07)
  • 65 – (00:11:40:09 – 00:11:57:01) cross fade
  • 133 – (00:11:56:33)
  • 126 – (00:13:26:05)
  • 130 – (00:13:36:15) we also swapped clip 137 and 130 around so there is a little bit of walking before shoe goes clubbing
  • 137 – (00:14:08:05)
  • 129 – (00:15:24:08)
  • 131 – (00:15:50:12)
  • 132 – (00:16:21:05 – 00:16:35:23)
  • 20 – (00:16:36:01)
  • End – (00:17:04:10)

The total time, which is shown in the time frame codes, came to 00:17:04:10 (extended time code is shown). This had to be shortened to 4 minutes or under, which will be somewhat a challenge. First, however, I decided to do the credits, as I needed some help to sort out who is under what title, and more specifically, who the extras were that we used within the film. We had to decide for the beginning credits who was going to be under and over what shoe, and found the list of;

  • Georgia – Red shoes
  • Romaisa – Rough boots
  • Charlotte (Me) – Nice boots
  • Hadis – Slippers
  • Ikrah – Flats
  • Layal – Trainers

We then found the list of all the people that we needed to credit, and compared them against the list of roles that we could have. Romaisa was helping me with this and I had some question as to why we were including casting director and costume designer to the credits, as these were roles that the whole group was involved with. (As this is being written, the credits haven’t been finished, however I believe that there is not time either in order to fit this particular thing in, unless we list everyone as some roles, which are the ones we were all involved in.) Our full list was;

  • Group – Charlotte Abraham, Layal Abdullah, Ikrah Amjad, Haids Azarain, Georgia Wyldbore, Romaisa Bhatti
  • Lead Cast – Charlotte Abraham, Georgia Wyldbore, Siobhan Pryke, Lilly Godden
  • Supporting Cast – Will Fowler, Rachel Glover, Timur O’Mahony, Caitin Feehely, Harry Sullivan, Benjamin Thrussell, Alex Clothier
  • Casting Director – Romaisa Bhatti
  • Costume Designer – Layal Abdullah
  • Camera – Romaisa Bhatti, Layal Adbullah, Hadis Azarain, Charlotte Abraham
  • Editor – Charlotte Abraham, Ikrah Amjad, layal Abdullah, Hadis Azarain, Romaisa Bhatti
  • Sound –
  • Lighting – Benjamin Thrussell, Alex Clothier

During editing, I cut out all the sound except that of the Irish dancing within the middle of the video, as we all felt like this was powerful audio. We then discovered that we had no clue what the soundtrack would be for the rest of the video and that we also needed to think of a title. I messaged everyone on our group chat and left them to that challenge. We also came up with plenty of ideas for the title, however we couldn’t pick exactly one. This is the rough list we came up with, along with help from others;

  • At the Foot of Society
  • Don’t Let University Defeet You – The Shoe Must Go On!
  • The Hangover Won’t Last Long – You Will Heel!
  • Walking a Mile in Someone Else’s Shoes
  • The Shoe is on the Other Foot
  • Student Life feeturing…
  • The Sole of a Student’s Day

These are things I’m letting the group decide while editing the video, especially speeding up each clip and getting it under the 4 minute mark.


The second day of editing very much consisted of adding effects, adding titles and credits, adding music, and speeding everything up from 17 minutes to 4 minutes. The first things I did were the credits to ensure that these were okay and my first plan was to have them all up, and then as they rolled over, or under, the corresponding shoes, then they would disappear. This did, however, leave six random names floating at the beginning of the video, which made them look out of place and against what we envisioned it would be like. The next idea, as Layal suggested, was that the names could come up as them came and went from the shoe. This worked much better and allowed the names to appear for a brief, but substantial, one second, as the camera spun to look at the first shot. The credits I had mainly sorted out during the first part of editing, however I was finalising the lists and ensuring that all of the credits were aligned.

The main challenges involved the fact that I was the only one in the computer suite that was editing the video, and so I had to message the group every time I needed the group decision on. This sometimes took quite a while, which is a bit annoying. However, we managed to pick a title out of all the ones suggested:

The Sole of A Student’s Day

We could not choose a title which did not have a pun as it allows the view to start off on a light and cheerful foot, before it goes more serious throughout the video. The music was also chosen, and then provided by Romaisa. We ended up choosing two tracks to represent the normal day activities (Syd Matters – To All Of You (Official Music Video)) and the night club, where it has a heavier base (Life is Strange Soundtrack- Got Well Soon by Breton). I have to admit, I am a little confused as to why the group decided on the To All Of You track, as although it has a wonderful guitar accompaniment, the lyrics had pretty much nothing to do with what our video is about – feet. We had searched for quite a while, and this was the only video that we all agreed that we liked, and so we used this. The second video, used for the nightclub scene, we cut out the instrumental and repeated this through the scene, making a somewhat eery and disorganised, possibly drugged sensation.

We also had to look through all of the effects on Adobe Premiere Pro in order to determine the ones that we wanted to have a look at an possibly use. Unfortunately, I didn’t have much help in this and so had to take the executive decision about all the effects that we needed to add for the duration of the drugged scenes. We ended up whittling it down to colour change, in order to change the colour every few seconds to create disorientation, a corner bender to alter the curvature of the video, wave warp, and turbulent displace, again to create the sensation of disorientation within the video, for the viewer.

I had tested other effects such as lens distortion, however this one in particular was hard to control and I was unsure as to what settings did exactly what on the video. There was also lens flare that was suggested, however, this created a completed different look to the one that we were hoping for – it looked somewhat childish and unprofessional. I added the desired effects and also added the colour change, where I also had to snip the clips, in order to gain several colour changes in one filmed scene.

Lastly, came speeding everything up (note: I put the music on after speeding everything up to the desired speed). I started off the clips at 100%, which is normal playing speed. This was the speed at the beginning and end of the video as then the viewer can get a small hold of what the normal speed is, before I sped it up to a maximum of 600%. The new speed often depended on how fast the feet were moving in the initial, original clip. If the feet were originally moving very slowly, there was a higher speed percentage. If the feet were initially slower, the final clip wasn’t sped up too much. Speeding everything up also altered the transactions between the videos, particularly between the change of my feet to Georgia’s feet. I manage to get the to at decent speeds in order to gain the best transaction between the clips. Speeding up, I also found that certain clips didn’t work, and I had to delete 53 which was the hopscotch clip. When sped up, it looked very funny, however it simply was not in keeping with the rest of the video. This was the final order of clips and the time frames of which they now stand (time code signifies the beginning of the clip);

  • 15 – (00:00:00:00)
  • 121 – (00:00:10:11)
  • 61 – (00:01:03:06)
  • 56 – (00:01:05:16)
  • 134 – (00:01:09:15)
  • 38 – (00:01:35:12)
  • 41 – (00:01:37:12)
  • 42 – (00:01:45:18)
  • 45 – (00:01:59:01)
  • 46 – (00:02:06:04)
  • 44 – (00:02:17:00)
  • 47 – (00:02:20:04)
  • 50 – (00:02:24:04)
  • 53 – cut this clip out
  • 46 – (00:02:26:16)
  • 49 – (00:02:28:18)
  • 65 – (00:02:54:12 – 00:02:58:16)
  • 133 – (00:02:58:13)
  • 126 – (00:03:14:13)
  • 130 – (00:03:17:02)
  • 137 – (00:03:21:07)
  • 129 – (00:03:54:11)
  • 131 – (00:04:04:12)
  • 132 – (00:04:14:17 – 00:04:20:13)
  • 20 – (00:04:20:12)
  • End – (00:04:20:12)

The credit time frames were;

  • Georgia – (00:00:00:20 – 00:00:01:20)
  • Romaisa – (00:00:01:20 – 00:00:02:20)
  • Layal – (00:00:02:20 – 00:00:03:20)
  • Charlotte – (00:00:03:20 – 00:00:04:20)
  • Hadis – (00:00:04:20 – 00:00:05:20)
  • Ikrah – (00:00:05:20 – 00:00:06:20)
  • Title – (00:00:11:14 – 00:00:18:02) and changed to (00:00:11:14 – 00:00:16:15)

After some last, small alterations, the video was ready. While uploading it to YouTube, I found that I had forgotten to render the video, and had to go back to the original edit in order to render the workplace, to then upload them once again to YouTube – my mistake entirely.

screen-shot-2017-01-29-at-16-56-58screen-shot-2017-01-29-at-16-25-41screen-shot-2017-01-29-at-16-21-56screen-shot-2017-01-29-at-15-34-33screen-shot-2017-01-29-at-14-54-31Screen Shot 2017-01-29 at 17.09.45.png

See the last six videos for experiments in Adobe Premiere Pro CC.

Simon Bedwell

We’re back in the new year and new artist talks are in progress. This week’s was Simon Bedwell, who has worked closely with a lecturer in the art department. Once again, we had an email about the artist in question with a bit of detail about him;

Simon Bedwell lives and works in London and was a founder member of the art group BANK (1991 – 2003), who made a series of sprawling installations involving their own work and others’ in independent gallery spaces including DOG and Gallerie Poo Poo, and in a mode which today might be called curation (it wasn’t, it was art). Since the group folded he has shown work ranging from altered found posters, through to installations of furniture, painting and décor made and found, through to large scale ceramics; the areas of concern have moved from pseudo-politics, through gender issues and more recently towards an interest in long-discredited ideas around originality, form and autonomy.

Simon Bedwell has had solo shows in White Columns, New York; Rental, Los Angeles; Ha Gamle, Stavanger, Norway; and Piccadilly underground concourse. He has been included in group shows in Temple Bar, Dublin; Saatchi gallery, London; Orchard, New York; CCA, Glasgow; and ICA London. His most recent shows include solo show No at Piper Keys, London and group show In A Dream I Saw A Way To Survive And I Was Full Of Joy at Whitworth, Manchester.


Review: Simon Bedwell at Studio Voltaire, London, UK, Frieze, 2009

Simon Bedwell, Asphalt World, at Studio Voltaire, London, 2009

Simon Bedwell at White Columns, New York, 2007

Simon Bedwell/Saatchi site:

He began the talk by mentioning that everything that has happened in the world within the past six months has changed the way that a lot of people look and interpret his artwork. It has given his work a different temper and tempo. This was almost a warning as if to say that we should think about the past, before the past six months, as if to look at the artwork in the intended purposes. It also shows that some of the jokes aren’t funny any more and so the artwork comes and goes, just like the jokes do.

In 1987 elections, Simon lived in a posh part of town where they got flyers about one of the candidates names ‘Burns’. At night, he went around and cut out the ‘s’ to stick it back on to the end of the word ‘conservative’. He told us that no one knew that it was him because he did it at night and also this was one of the first artistic publicity stunts that he has done.

Simon Bedwell was also part of the group named Bank who found knackered old building and put up art galleries and shows inside. It initially started off as a way of not sitting around and not doing anything and for art galleries to come to them, not them go to the gallery. Simon commented that making things as a group and putting it in a show, was better than making a group show. This makes us ask, what is the point of a group show? Bank did everything to do with the show including publicity and advertising. They also labelled this as artwork. Later on in their shows, they used old artworks and new students works and gave them weird names to sort of laugh at the irony of the group show. Simon commented that the 90’s helped the progression of the Bank group as it was heightened time when Britpac exploded into action. The spirit and the sprawl of the work that Bank created has always been strong, but the artwork grew, and kept growing.

As part of the shows, the mailing list and invitations were important as more often than not, more people would get these through their door than come to the show. They created their own tabloid to match these, however they got a lot of stick for it in the art world as it offended many in the art world. This cast a shadow over the Bank group. Bank also started to correct press releases by writing over them and giving them a score out of ten. The catch it that they faxed it back to the galleries, for which they did hundred and showed the galleries that there was so much crap talked about in the press releases. They got some rude replies telling them to pretty much shut up and go away with their idiotic opinions.

Bank unfortunately got their funding cut and so the last show they did only lasted for 3 days. This show presented all the press releases that they had drawn all over.

Simon then moved on by himself to look at drawing and painting on top of posters that were found in charity shops and left on walls. These posters often had one liner jokes on them in a somewhat sarcastic manner. Simon used spray paint on the posters which created a gloopy texture on top of the smooth surface. At the same time as this, he was creating paintings that originated from clip art. These turned out like the posters and also had the gloopy effect. All of these were in a somewhat parallel ‘universe’ as people have these posters normally on their walls, while Simon is painting all over them.

On a brief note, there was a mention that he completed work on the Piccadilly Circus Underground in London – a block colour, bad to read style posters.

50 Platform was the next project on the list, which was a traditional gentleman’s club where women were not allowed in, and the rest of the rules were put in place. Simon did apply to go against the sexual discrimination act for this artwork, but unfortunately, this was rejected half way through the showings. In the window, there was a painting in order to block out the view of the rest of the gentleman’s club. This was a painting of a photo of a woman in her pants and bra. This was inspired of a painting, or photo, that was looking through a window and a lady was looking down at herself getting changed while a gentleman was looking past her staring at a lady in her underwear on the wall.

He did lots of little works after this including that of The Researchers. In academia, you have to call it research/ers, not art/ists. He did this in two sections – one of this was a lobby where it was all shabby and nonprofessional, and the second part looked at the researchers themselves and how Simon though that they would look. This includes cut outs of magazine people scrambling naked in the beach, as though they were looking for something.

Next up was looking at decor and art and whether there was a difference between them both. In this, he was inspired by Sorlin Green to create a calming room and atmosphere by using screen printing, pots and posters.

Zerox books were little books that Simon created that looked at different artworks and exhibitions by using pictures and found quotes. These would often accompany exhibitions and galleries would sell them to the customers coming through the door. There was also The MOT and The Receivers which were follow-on’s from his New York show.

He then began to look at metal work, ceramics and painted scenes. Simon created the caricature of a male space and decided to look at the difference between the aesthetics of a male space and other spaces. Within one of these spaces, The Painter of a Hole, Simon placed yellow gel over the windows in order to create a sickly yellow glow throughout the exhibition space. The Hole, which linked to this, was his own gallery space that was made out of a garage like space. Katrina Palmer showed her work here. This space was created in order to have a purist space in which only one artist could exhibit at a time. He talked a lot about the moment and the event in the moment of time so the Hole was a pure space. You could not overwhelm this space.

After The Hole was shut down, Simon moved on to ceramics. He mentioned that he didn’t know why he did it but it was more or less the fact that it was the best of a list of things that he didn’t want to do. He used the real basics of clay – “the romantic bullshit about clay” including the way that it feels, and moves. Simon always creates pots so that there is some sort of functionality to them, and he is not just creating something random. Some of the pots double back at the bottom so when looking down, it has a double neck and you can see the floor through the neck. A lot of the pots don’t survive the firing process. Now, Simon is looking more at balancing, weight and matter in a slow and impractical materials in the embarrassing side of portraiture.

He does not want to be contemporary – his one-liner manifesto. Simon also mentioned that he found it weird and strange that 35 years ago the did paintings of the things like the sculpture work he is doing now. Certain things just stick with you when doing artwork, even though 35 years.

Source: saatchigallery

Source: saatchigallery

Source: covepark

Source: annoukthys

Source: tfeanda×600-FFFFFF.jpg

Source: studiovoltaire…)_jpg.jpg


Source: artfacts


Battleship Potempkin contains a scene commonly known as Odessa Steps scene, in which the local people are chased down the flights of stairs in order to get away from the guards. The scene is shot from multiple directions and in multiple ways in order to gain shots from the feet running down to a mother looking in shock as people run over her young boy who has just been shot down. The sudden change in dramatic music adds to the rush and hurry of the scene and creates a faster and higher tension rhythm. This sudden change is something that I would like to have a look at exploring when editing our film. The different shots of feet also, inspired me to look at this film.


This film is about the parents throwing a birthday party and the children planned to reveal one of the largest family secrets. Within this film, the use of light is natural only. This is something that we wish to recreate in our film in order for the series of events to be natural – the only fake light would be in the bathroom and when the feet go to bed, and the side lamp gets switched off at night.

The use of minimalism within this film is also something that we wanted to recreate as we did not want a massively complicated film – just the story of a girl on a normal Saturday of going on a date and then going out for the night.

FESTEN’s minimalism has been a refreshing variation in a year that has seen the release of a dozen films, which have no life outside of their special effects. Evidently, international film festival juries agree; in addition to success as an official entry at the Toronto and New York festivals, FESTEN was co-winner of the Jury Prize at Cannes.

Source: albany

Filming Video Art

We had several days of filming as we were unable to get the correct shots first time round. I preferred taking several shots as this means that we could pick the best of the bunch when we come to editing. This did, however, take up too much time, and so we had to spread the filming out quite a lot.

Day 1 of filming:

We managed to get a fair few indoors shots done today which was really useful as we were able to get used to filming with the broom. I was the one that filmed a lot of the scenes at this point as the technician, Dave, and I, tested it out earlier in the daytime. The use of the broom and the clamp allowed us to easily film at floor level, which is where we needed a smooth run. Occasionally, I did kick the broom or accidentally hit it against the floor which caused it to jolt around unexpectedly, however the camera held its position even though the shot itself was slightly off. We also had to do quite a few shots because I held the camera and broom wonky a fair few times.

Also, due to the difficulty in using the broom in the bedroom, we had to alter the perspective and how we wished to film the bedroom shots. We ended up using a friends bedroom as it was more convenient with how we wanted to film. The space we found to be quite cramped, however by putting the camera at different angles on the clamp on the broom allowed us to continue filming. This brings up the change of the bedroom and the bathroom scenes. due to convenience and accessibility, we used the university halls to film the scenes that day. As a group, we decided that if we really did not like the use of these shots then we would be able to use the apartment and shoot it next week.

Day 2 of filming:

Unfortunately I was unable to be there for the second day of filming however filming was still done. Hadis and Layal were there to film walking over different surfaces where they braved stepping in icy puddles and in mud. When we picked the camera I did have to teach them how to attach the camera to the broom and how we filmed yesterday using it. I showed this to them as it made sense to film in the same way in order to get the same sort of motion and image as we captured yesterday. They also had to do filming of their feet because in the end Georgia was feeling unwell and we needed simple walking feet shots for the transaction scenes.

Day 3 of filming:

Today was supposed to be a full day of filming and once again, things didn’t go quite to plan. Georgia was once again ill, and Hadis, Layal and Ikrah were unable to come due to lectures and personal issues. This is where it was just Romaisa and I all day to do as much filming as we could, which turned out to be quite a lot. We had a look at all of the scenes we had left to do, and organised which ones we could do with my shoes and no risk of seeing my ankle (as Georgia has a tattoo on one of her feet), and which ones we had to have Georgia for. (Underlined ones are the ones we could do without Georgia and her feet).

  • Morning shower
  • Drying off and getting dressed (painting toenails?) – HAS to wear black jeans
  • Rush outside – cat/slug – skateboard off
  • Society – putting on tights and shoes?
  • Locked door
  • Steps in puddle
  • Steps in gum
  • Coffee date (coming in, footsies, nervous tapping)
  • Spills coffee
  • Gets changed
  • Dropping bag
  • Walking down stairs
  • Clubbing
  • Falling over
  • Being followed by guy out of club
  • Pushed by guy
  • Shower and blood

Splitting the list made our task easier so then we were just able to film, and that is what we did. We started off over at art doing some walking scenes and splashing in puddles, before heading over to main campus and doing the ‘date’ scene. For some of the walking scenes and the date scene, we were able to use some of our friends who art not in our film group – Rachel and Will. We agreed that because we used them in our film, we would be happy to participate in theirs (as they genuinely need extras in one of their scenes in their video art). The date scene in particular was hilarious to film as it was all a bit awkward being picked up and playing footsies with a friend. The nervousness, however, allowed the film to look more realistic, as if we had first date jitters. The coffee being dropped did have to be perfected though, and the second time shooting that, I managed to get it all over my glasses, hair and coat, but we did get the perfect shot.


Once that challenge was out of the way, we had to conquer the challenge of the skateboard. We knew someone who owned one, and we were planning to borrow it. We didn’t keep in mind, however, that I have never been on a skateboard before, and so it would create a very unprofessional look to the video. For this reason, we asked Lily, of whom the skateboard belongs to, and who was coincidentally wearing black jeans when we came to collect the skateboard, if she wouldn’t mind being in our film in order to do the two very short transition scenes that included the skateboard. Thanks to Lily for being able to use her skateboard in the same shoes as we had been using all day, we were able to get some really nice clean cut shots to use for the film with the skateboard.

We then had to work out the transition of when I could take off the shoes and Georgia’s feet appeared. We initially thought that this could be done behind a wardrobe door and a pile of clothes, but then found out that this was too difficult with the room that we needed to work in. Romaisa and I then decided that I could sit on the bed, and bring my feet up as I take off the shoes and socks. With the top of the bed being out of the shot, this allows in editing, for us to get Georgia to bring her feet down, and proceed with the rest of the scenes. The rest of the scenes that we have to do include:

  • Morning shower
  • Drying off and getting dressed (painting toenails?) – HAS to wear black jeans
  • Society – putting on tights and shoes?
  • Gets changed
  • Dropping bag
  • Walking down stairs
  • Clubbing
  • Falling over
  • Being followed by guy out of club
  • Pushed by guy
  • Shower and blood


For the clubbing, falling over and being followed scenes, we were thinking as a group that we could do them next week with everyone from the art group that wanted to participate (no faces, only feet) and filming it in the AV studio, where then we could easily overlay flashing lights and the dark atmosphere of a club. We also had the camera for the weekend, and so hopefully most of the scenes will be completed! However, Romaisa and I were pretty happy with what we were able to complete with only one day.

Update: We were unable to film over the weekend, however we have two weeks of editing time and so we would be able to film in this time too.

Further update on day 4 of filming:

We finally managed to get the camera back in order for (mainly) Romaisa and Georgia could finish the filming of the last scenes, which had her feet in. It was important that we used Georgia’s feet as she has an ankle tattoo – something that no one else had. The final scenes were shot, including;

  • Morning shower
  • Drying off and getting dressed (painting toenails?) – HAS to wear black jeans
  • Society – putting on tights and shoes?
  • Gets changed
  • Dropping bag
  • Walking down stairs
  • Clubbing
  • Falling over
  • Being followed by guy out of club
  • Pushed by guy
  • Shower and blood

While filming, they found that the use of the ‘blood’ (in our case it was just paint as Layal, our props person, was unable to find any fake blood while collecting all the props together) was not working and it was coming out lumpy and just not how blood ran. In this case, we decided to cut the evening shower scene out of the video. We also wanted some really cool feet actions for the society, and found some people who do Irish dancing, and decided to include that in the video. We also decided to leave out being followed by a guy out of the club, and instead made it as though she was leaving because of him and walking home. We still intend to use the effects when editing to make it seem as though she is on drugs.

Next step: editing.

All the filming clips that we did over the days of filming (YouTube playlist):



This scene in Lasso is very moving in terms of the music, the visuals, and both put together. The visuals of this scene are slowed in places, creating a very dramatical image of the rope coming violently down to the floor in such a graceful manner. The music mixed with these images creates a more powerful moment that the viewer, and the second character, feels like they are intruding on.  I would like elements of our video to portray a powerful image and moment such as ones as this.

Sound and Vision: The Music Video Reader

When initially thinking about the video art, we were thinking about doing something along the lines of a music video or a trailer for a film. Looking at this, the concept of the music and the video as separate entities is somewhat strange. This led me to the book of Sound and Vision: The Music Video Reader and chapter 2, Sound, Image and Social Space: Music Video and Media Reconstruction.

In watching a video, the visual plane tends to dominate our attention right away, simply by arresting our eyes, by being (on) television. Television seems to absorb the musical matrix effortlessly and irrevocably into its visual field, to confirm the now commonplace knowledge that music television has reshaped the music industry irrevocably. Yet that which video seems so easily to dominate and to transform – the 3-minute musical single – remains the video’s raison d’être, its unalterable foundation, its one unconditional ingredient. A single can exist (technically, at least) without the video, but the reverse is not the cases. As if in evidence of this, music videos, almost without exception, do not make so much as a single incision in the sound or structure of the song. However bizarre or disruptive videos appear, they never challenge or emancipate themselves from their musical foundation, without which their charismatic indulgences would never reach our eyes.

The musical single may still seem more ‘real’ because it came first, in literal terms, and because we think of it as the commodity advertised by video. Many critics have argued that the song’s power to connect us with something (even with itself) is diminished by rhetoric of the video, which by acting as promotion for a song, suggests that the song is nothing but an object to be promoted. The commercial relation is one obvious reason for the changes brought about by the televisualization of pop music, and for the evolved metalanguage of visual plenitude and semantic cynicism with both confirms and disguises that circulation. Yet the commercial circulation or records and tapes tells us everything and nothing about the ‘use’ of popular songs by television. Everything in the world of pop music is a commodity, whether sound, image, word or act (just as this book it) – that tells us both everything and nothing about how it works.

Music video draws our attention simulatenously to the song and away from it, positioning itself in the place of what it represents. As a genre, its formal structure is based on a paradox, which is unravelled here through the trope of the guitar.

Source: Google Books

This made me, in a separate time and place, want to explore the relationship between the music and its video, and whether a video could be entirely single and without audio, especially for a music video.

What drew me to the book, however, was a small quote about Blackboard Jungle, in which

implicit connections between rock music, small-town culture, teenage rebellion, fun, anger and fashion were made explicit.

The kids are putting on the Senior’s Hop and somehow they get all these great rock’n’roll stars to appear from out of nowhere to play for them for nothing [oh sure, yeah] but the parents and the school commitee won’t let them put it on because it’s bad or something and somehow the big crisis is resolved and near the end Bill Haley or somebody is playing and the kids are all bopping away and the parents are standing around, watch, supervising, and the camera shifts to the parents’ feet and their toes are tapping, you know, and they’re snapping their fingers and their heads are bopping back and forth, looking at each other and saying, ‘Gee this music ain’t so bad after all is it? Kinda catchy.’

(Mike Daley, cited in Marcus 1976)

Source: Google Books

This once again made me want to explore what would happen if we did part of the video looking at the feet, so you grow a more intimate connection with the character as a whole. However, thinking about this side idea, [and during filming] I found that you could grow an intimate connection with the feet, as they are the character and you are going through the story with them, rather than the person as a whole.

Planning Films

During our art lecture we saw several different types of video art including ones using green screen and others using 16mm film on a hand held camera. These were all intended to inspire us, however I soon found that it cemented the fact that I liked our ideas about the video that we were aiming to create. The group as a whole also found that the longer videos that we saw were more boring and complex, something that we did not want to incorporate into our video art.

We began to quickly throw ideas up in the air and suddenly began to understand that we needed to choose some, and soon, to make up our final story board in order to know what exactly we were filming.

Georgia, Romaisa and Hadis draw out several images that were the majority of our ideas, specifically the ones that worked well with our themes of feet following and the day in the life of a university student. These included everything from the beginning credits to stepping on a slug to skateboarding down the road.

As many of us had not worked together before, many of us had not worked in a group so large, and pretty much all of us had not created a film before, there were some consequences. Admittedly, there was some tension when deciding the final, or partially final, story board, as of course, when working in a group, different people have different opinions about certain aspects. For example, some of us were determined to have the skateboarding as part of the film, but others could not see where it would fit in. There was a long, and heated, discussion about this, where ideas were repeated time and time again. Misunderstanding was part of the reason, but also imagination and a little too much of it could also be to blame for the ‘over-heatedness’. We did however, then come together as a group, and compromised about the situation and the scene, in order for the skateboard to fit in. There was another discussion about where we should film the bedroom and bathroom scenes – this was between Halls of Residence in the university or a flat that which on of the group members is renting out. This was a difficult decision as we wanted the ‘homely’ look to the video, which leads us to the lovely apartment, but convenience screamed at us to go to the Halls as we do not have much filming time. We decided at that time to go with the apartment, however I had a feeling that this might change.

Our initial order began as:

  1. Opening credits
  2. Feet coming down off of bed (moving title out of the way)
  3. Stretch, wiggle toes in the rug
  4. Shower
  5. Dry off, put slippers on
  6. Get dressed and knock something off the side e.g. bag and dropping things on the floor
  7. Walking down the stairs and saying hello to flatmates/neighbours
  8. Walk out and greet a cat which twirls around legs OR steps on a slug
  9. Runs in a puddle because she is late (to a date)
  10. Steps in chewing gum
  11. Coffee date

This order, as I began to very usefully write it down, very non-usefully, changed, because as a group we did not like the order that it was in. The story board changed several times more, and the use of the individual pieces of paper for each scene allowed us to change it with ease. This was until we found our final story board (which, as you will find out, changed again).

  1. Opening credits – shoes that we are wearing or our favourite pair of shoes – names displayed above and below each pair of shoes
  2. Get out of bed, follow the feet – title get swiped out of the way from the feet
  3. Stretch out – hands stretch down to stretch the body? – Stretch the toes and wiggle them (in a fluffy rug)
  4. Shower – shave?
  5. Dry off feet/legs and put feet into slippers
  6. Get dressed
  7. Drop bag/object off of a sideboard/bed in the room and things fall out of the bag onto the floor – shocking objects such as bullets or drugs
  8. Rush outside where greeted by a cat who brushes around the legs, then put the skateboard down and scares the cat off, and head off OR rush outside and step on a slug or a snail, shake the foot to get it off, give up, put the skateboard down and head off
  9. Society
  10. Go outside to leave and run back because forgotten about the skateboard. Doors are locked (see door shaking) and so have to walk to the date.
  11. Steps/runs in puddle (gets quite wet).
  12. Steps in gum (Layal found video to make some?)
  13. Coffee date – tippie toe for a kiss/hug (do not see what is happening knees above so anything could be happening – suspense and suspicion) – guy comes in on the bike?
  14. Tries continuously to get the gum off of the bottom of the shoe. Successful – footsies with guy and nervous tapping from both sets of feet or legs
  15. Goes to leave and through the door and trips in doorway and so spills the drink all over herself
  16. Goes back through the door – transition (use green screen) to the bedroom
  17. Gets changed ready for a night out (and also because she spilt coffee all over herself)
  18. Walking down the stairs, saying hello to flatmates/neighbours, stopping, dodging etc (busy because everyone was heading out) – only one with shoes on walking down the stairs? Or not wearing her shoes because she puts them on at the bottom of the stairs?
  19. Clubbing!
  20. Falls over (beginning of hallucinations and ‘trippy’ sensation) and takes her shoes off
  21. Trippy: spiders climbing up leg/around legs
  22. Trippy: Shooting someone who has the same shoes as the guy on the date. Dropping of a bullet after shooting. Kick the body?
  23. Transition, trippy (less): step over the body and camera follows through into the body – sweeps into darkness and into another room (bedroom or bathroom)
  24. Shower – blood dripping down – hers or from the murder scene?
  25. Get back into bed and follow the feet up into bed
  26. Pan up to a moon/light reflection and end credits – include music, sound, feet credits – ‘The End’ written on the balls of the feet?

During the decision process of the story board, we also came up with several things that we needed to take into consideration when filming and editing the video clips. This included (see spider diagram at the bottom of the post for an alternative view):

  • Blooper Reel – Extra video? All the little bits that we mess up/testers
  • Colour or black and white? – Colour for normal and black and white for the hallucination part of the film? – slowly add in colour? – distorting or colourful
  • Music – ‘everyday’ noise – none – weird and whacky – a song – just the footsteps
  • Hallucinations? Or just a really clumsy person?
  • Which camera to use? Go-Pro, Phone or Digital?
  • Speed – double speed for normal everyday – get slower/psychedelic when hallucinating/drunk
  • Opening credits – shoes with names above and below – use favourite shoes/shoes we are wearing on the day of filming? Or shoes that we use in the video?
  • SHOES! Trainers, heels, dancing shoes, boots, slippers – clothes and outfits; tights, jeans, odd socks, shorts/skirts

I highlighted a couple of key elements including that of hallucinations and which camera to use. These were very crucial elements of our video. For the camera dilemma, we had the choice between a GoPro, our phones, of which most are iPhone, or a digital camcorder. First to be illuminated was the phones as we all wanted a higher quality image that which the GoPro and the digital camcorder could provide. We found videos online showing that the GoPro produces a fish-eye look to the video captured, as it round off the edges and makes everything a little wider (see video below). This was not the particular style of image that we were looking for, and so decided to scrap the idea of using the GoPro, and decided on the digital camcorder. Our second problem within this camera dilemma was how we were going to record the whole thing at floor, or ankle level. This was quickly solved by our technician who had the idea of using a floor-level trolley. We found one in the art department but soon found that it has the mind of its own and only ran smoothly on smooth floor surfaces. We opted for a broom and a clamp in order to get the video at a constant height and for it to be easily transported inside, outside and also down the stairs, which is what one of our scenes required.

Source: YouTube

Our second problem was the hallucinations. We all preferred the idea of the use of drugs, as these are somewhat common in university and women can often be subject to drugs such as roofies. We then talked to those who we know who have taken drugs and there were some mixed reactions to the way in which we wanted the hallucinations, as no one had ones such as these. One of the lecturers spoke to us about this and asked whether it was convenience or coincidence that we used women’s feet. Honestly, it was initially convenience as we are a group of six girls, however, he also pointed out that the events that we have described often happen to women, and how we are somewhat pointing out the vulnerability of the gender, and of the feet themselves. It is for these reasons that we decided for her to still take drugs, but something more recreational, and instead of shooting someone, the night goes horribly wrong, and a guy follows her out of the club and tries to do things that she does not agree to. We all found this to be a better idea as it was more truthful and more likely to happen, and also, a murder was a bit jumpy to have at the end of the more-or-less normal day.

The next step, is to film.


Initial drawings by Romaisa and Georgia.


One of the first story boards, featuring drawings from Romaisa, Georgia and Hadis


More alterations to the story board, featuring drawings from Romaisa, Georgia and Hadis


(What we thought was) The final story board, featuring drawings from Romaisa, Georgia and Hadis (the story board changed since this photo was taken).


Rough notes Georgia made during the selection process of the story board, including things we needed to think about during filming and editing.


A mind map of the things we needed to consider during filming and editing, and the initial order of the story board


Our almost final order of the story board for our video art



Rachel Maclean

Rachel Maclean is a bit of a whacky artist that was suggested for me, for reasons I cannot quite remember. Her website shows this from the start and particularly in the video Germs. This was the video that was pointed out to me, and honestly, while watching it, I was somewhat scared, however it pointed out some very valid points to me – commercialisation. Commercialisation seems to be everywhere we go and it is strange to think that we have to submit to this every day, and without realisation. I think the only way to really get this is to watch the video yourself (the link is above).×655.jpg

Source: whitechapelgallery

I’m not sure whether I can say that I like or dislike her work as I feel a little uncomfortable, however,, the pointing out of commercialism in such a way makes me like this particular piece of work. I am still undecided as a whole.