Video Practice & Theory for New Media – Outcome 1

camera controls and functions

  • Lens: It draws the light into the camera and focuses it on the film plane.
  • Film Advance Lever/Knob: It transports the film from one frame to the next on the roll of film.

  • Viewfinder: The “window” through which you look to frame your picture.
  • Shutter: It open and closes to control the length of time light strikes the film.
  • There are two types of shutters: located between or just behind the lens elements is the leaf shutter and  located in front of the film plane is the focal plane shutter.
  • Shutter Release: The button that releases or “trips” the shutter mechanism.
  • Aperture: It widens and contracts to control the diameter of the hole that the light passes though, to let in more or less light. It’s controlled by the f-stop ring.
  • Film Rewind Knob: Rewinds the film back into the film cassette.
  • Flash Shoe: This is the point at which the flash or flash cube is mounted or attached.
  • The camera Body:  The casing of the camera which holds the encloses the camera pats.
  • Self-Timer: This mechanism trips the shutter after a short delay, allowing everyone to be in the photograph.
  • Shutter Speed Control: This know controls the length of time the shutter remains open.


  • Legs: They support the weight of the camera. They vary in height and weight depending on the camera size. Height range is an important aspect of tripod legs, the legs should be able to rise slightly higher than the normal eye level.
  • Head: Controls the movement of the camera. A good quality tripod head allows smooth movement, the correct tripod head determines the quality of video. Many tripod heads use an inside fluid to help the flow of motion when moving the camera. This is called a fluid head.
  • Quick Release Plate: quick release plates sits between the head and the camera. The camera locks into the quick release plate securely so it stays on the tripod.
  • Bubble Level: The bubble moves in a small frame depending on the level of the camera. When the camera is 100 percent leveled, the bubble sits in the center of the frame.
  • Extensions: Allows the user to raise or lower the tripod. Usually, these extensions are inside the primary legs of the tripod.
  • Adjustment Knob: Allows the tripod to swivel in any direction.

film/video making techniques


  • Wide shot/full shot: The subject takes up the full frame.
  • Mid shot: Shows some part of the subject in more detail while still giving an impression of the whole subject.
  • Long shot: Contains landscape but gives the viewer a more specific idea of setting.
  • Close-up: A certain feature of the subject takes up the full frame.
  • Extreme close up: Really focuses in on a certain feature to reveal more detail.
  • Cut in:  Shows some other part of the subject in detail.
  • Cutaway: A shot of something other than the subject.
  • Over-the-shoulder-shot: A view that looks from behind a person to the subject.
  • Point of view shot: Shows the view from the subjects perspective.


  • Bird’s eye angle: Looks directly down upon a scene.
  • High angle: Looks down upon a subject.
  • Low angle: Looks up to a character from a lower position.
  • Eye-level angle: Places the audience on an equal footing with the character(s).
  • Dutch angle: A slanted angle of the subject.
  • Crane shot: Commonly used to end a sequence. Its a shot where the camera is pulled upwards overlooking a scene or subject.
  • Tracking shot: The camera moves on a track.
  • Dolly shot: The camera moves using a trolley.
  • Panning: Used to give the viewer a panoramic view of a set or setting.
Framing and Composition:
  • Head room: A short space is left above the subject’s head, so it doesn’t look so closed in.
  • Rule of thirds: divides the screen into a grid.
  • Leading lines: A line placed within the shot (such as a road) that draws our attention.

Mise en scène is used to describe the design aspects of a theatre or film production, which essentially means “visual theme” or “telling a story“, both in visually artful ways through storyboarding, stage design and cinematography in artful ways through direction.

Bill Viola

He has shown to have an interest in colour, light, projection and the human figure. Having, otherwise, simple shots of models moving towards the camera but projecting light and shapes onto them to create effects such as water or dissolving.  His liking to the use of colour and shapes is present in his instantiation art video show above. His piece is a wall of colours and patterns, that fade in and out, into each other, expand and wave, fall, rise and move around.

Sam Taylor

Sam Taylor, an English filmmaker, photographer, and visual artist, and the director of the film “Nowhere Boy” created these short films of a decomposing rabbit and a decaying bowl of fruit.

Pipilotti Rist

Generally her work only lasts a few minutes at a time, and use alterations in colors, the speed, and sound. Her works focus of issues related to gender, sexuality and the human body.

Rist’s work is regarded as feminist by some art critics.


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