Inspired by the framing and narrative style of Across still water, I have story boarded some desired shot I intend to capture throughout my filming. Across still water primarily consists of the alternation between naturalistic interview shots and transitional shots which signify places and objects of importance to the interviewee. For example footage of the lake in which he fishes in and the estate he lives in, whilst also capturing close up of his pet dog and his white cane. Furthermore I intend to work off a similar framework, as these shots visually aids the audience with a clearer insight and understanding of the subjects lives.
Shooting in Dubai
Deserts have traditionally been associated with Middle Eastern landscape, although this may seem slightly stereotypical, In my documentary I think that it is quite important to include some scenes of deserts, as I feel it does connote the difference in cultures. With these shots, I aim for the audience to view the desert as a complete contrast from London life, highlighting the differences in society and culture. Futhermore demonstrating the cultural journey and adjustments the family have had to endure and adapt to since leaving Iran.
These transitional shots will be used specifically for the section in my documentary when I interview my family in Dubai, as I do not want to confuse the audience of where my family are based. To clarify where each family member lives, I have decided to also capture shots of their front doors and their road, as factors such as the weather, cars, plants all exhibit the difference in location. As the film must be maximum 8 minutes, I aim to extract as much information from the interviews therefore during these transitional shots, I think that it will be beneficial to overlay some interview responses in order for the interview to flow into the actual footage of the interview.
Here are some shots of objects and decor in my families house in Dubai, which all contribute to the idea of cultural preservation:
Generally I have found it quite difficult to capture routinely practices of my family, as during my time there many were preoccupied with work demands. Therefore it was very rare that they were all together in the same room at one time. This led to an alteration in the style of my interviews, as initially I had intended to spark conversation during times which showed the family participating household actives such as eating dinner, cooking, watching television. However this proved to be too difficult as everyone had their own priorities, meaning the interviews had to be filmed during the evening. Furthermore the interviews now look slightly more constructed- consisting of the family sitting on the sofa discussing their responses to the questions I had asked them.
I used two different angles to capture all the families participation in the conversation. During post production, I have realised that simply alternating between the two angles throughout the interview can look quite bland and repetitive. As a result, I have decided to split up these shots by aligning some of the speech with certain transitional shots in which they apply to. Continual interview footage may lead the viewers to become uninterested as there is not much variation or diversity, despite the interesting information within the framing- linking to emotional rhythm of the film. As I have previously mentioned, this film will not be edited in a linear way, in order to achieve the emotion of surprise within the audience. However since the post-production process, I am not aware that this element of surprise or shock does not solely lie within the narrative, but it must also translate within the visuals to hold the interest of the audience. Although the transitional footage is nothing extremely surprising, in fact if anything quite mundane, it enables the viewer to explore ulterior views and elements which contribute the view-points of the family. As an artist, my uncle has painted many painting which explore post-revolutionary Iran which, I think will add to the conversational topic and provide the audience with how the family have comprehended the revolution. His painting are in each family members house. These paintings signify the potential lives they could have been living, had stayed in Iran, furthermore demonstrating the split of cultures- embracing it as a part of their culture that they no longer live under. This all contributes between the cultural preservation within each family member, comparing how they maintain their Iranian-selves, and how it can be exercised within an outside society.