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Creating an Interesting Frame Part 2

Lesson 19 from: Guerilla Filmmaking

Ryan Connolly

Creating an Interesting Frame Part 2

Lesson 19 from: Guerilla Filmmaking

Ryan Connolly

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Lesson Info

19. Creating an Interesting Frame Part 2


Class Trailer

Day 1


Writing Your Story


Script Breakdowns and Shooting Schedules


Finding Cast and Crew


VFX in Pre-Production


Filming Gear: Audio


Filming Gear: Camera


Filming Gear: Lenses


Lesson Info

Creating an Interesting Frame Part 2

Let's do uh wardrobe so let's go ahead and let's get the cookie let's flip it back around in there just to have it let's go kind of set it up how we already had uh walter you want to help do that let's get the kino working again for us right right there how we had it let's get that to be our backlight again um sam jason guys wanna kind of set that backup is the backlight as we had it and I like to see to be on it let's like that let's do tungsten let's stick with tongue why we sent this up any questions at all? Well I will say that there was a bit of a revolution in the chat room so everyone's wanting josh a smile there obsessed with you josh so josh smile just now a man richard cave said josh needs love but he's scared of ryan so then I was drinking that happen so then the hashtag hashtag started give josh a hug josh needs a hug and now we do agree for chancing it they're chanting in group hug group hug bring it this is why I'm not smiling this is the thing come on stark's not coming ...

yes how's that josh is not working for you I feel like I feel loved so much long nice everyone's happy good job thanks team alright let's truck this guy in I'm gonna say four feet just take a step up and even the cookie as it is right now kind of works because it just looks like ah window of that of that shape behind him I'm actually kind of digging that lets no let's leave it where it is let's get it to get this guy working from the same the same angle is what we're doing with this guy so we're gonna bring it all the way over here let's take it up a bit higher than we've been doing as well as flipped the diffusion back on it which I have the c forty seven four because I said I said c forty seven I said it this time hey for me uh so you actually have an interesting shirt on it's well let's finish this up and then we're going home or that we're going to try to get another shot let's punch into like medium shot see if we can get rid of the stands we're gonna want to stay out of the shadow of that guy and let's billion let's bring this all out so we can try to work with him we're getting a lot more anyways that's working let's go back more good let's take it up uh a foot and a half kind of like it that subtle to look that way just yeah let's keep it that subtle like it ok let's switch you out for bill why don't you jump in so bill's got just a regular plain old shirt on not quite as interesting why don't you jump in frame with him so we could see both? So what you have your actors where is also going to liven up the frame or not? So josh, we have layers happening so we've been talking a lot about layers layers with color layer with light layers with clothing is a big thing to not saying you shouldn't have your actor in a t shirt I do it all the time but thinking in terms of this is a great way of doing it probably my film tell is that this example at least for me I'm doing that every character was wearing something specific and we had them all in layers what colors we put on them meant something different we played with red a lot we played with earth tones a lot depending on what was happening in the scene even the cop we put a black piece of tape over the badge that she had as a foreshadow that you know, she was almost morning herself that was, you know, because they put that on there another officer had not so we put that on there is almost like a very subtle foreshadowing of something that was about to happen nobody probably caught it but I liked it, eh? So what? You were actually matter? Do you have a jacket grab the jacket so we'll put on another layer just so we can look. And this is again small, subtle things you start to add all these together and you get really big things. This is when they call it with what they're talking about. Production value. All these things lead to better production value, and you finding all the little things that you khun bring together to bring your production value up as much as possible because usually we don't have the money or the resources to do the big things that are going to give us really big production value. So it's finding every tiny little thing that you could do to amount to the big one good step in there now, it's been a little more interesting. Good. And just zip it all the way down. Bang and it's. Even a little more interesting now, because we have all those layers alone now he looks like a college kid, which might not be what you want. You could step out. Focal length is another big one. Let's, zoom out oh, our punch all the way in. I mean that's, obviously pretty self explanatory as faras that's a whole lot easier toe light and if you're punching all the way out, right, so punch all the way out and I'm not even talking about what shot we have set up because you know, like we're talking about you want to be very selective when you're doing close up just go on and step back and then that's good that's good and they go ahead and punch in just doing medium close up so this medium close up compared to step up punch out keep stepping up right there this medium close up it's a lot harder to set up for this shot than it is for the other. So sometimes again you're making compromises although you might not want to compress the scene that much maybe you don't have enough light everything we have no way of hiding all your lights thinking about just compressing that world so we're shallowing what we're seeing it's a lot easier the light and especially if you're on a very small crew and you can't go crazy running around choosing that sort of focal length to help you make your day could do a lot for you all right, you could take that down our way on to bulbs air one bulb on this guy to foreground mid ground and background let's get a chair in here let's drop the eye level wei have a lamp you take that off can we fly a lamp in here way get a table for that lamp is well move start moving a little bit faster yeah let's josh, can you you josh can you move back all the way? Let's get us far back as we can before you hit the lava other joschka hadn't sit down let's get the lamp on here. Is this the one we had yesterday? See? See what wattage we have in those other blobs there. This is a sixty. Do we have anything higher than a sixty in sixty? Okay, good. All right, let's, if we got a soft white tungsten bold that's higher than a sixty let's try to grab that. Um sam, can you run a stinger to this guy for me? Please keep that we're going to start going to balance out the frame a little bit with these two things where you keep this guy on the right side of frame uh, and we're going to try to play this guy on the left side of frame no dice. All right, well, let's, just get this guy going there. A light bulb zits now, it's no. Well, let's, keep one out in case we want to use it. Just leave it on the top of that cart so we can get at it quick or later if we want it actually, that works out really nicely let's flip the floor lamp was quite a bit brown or if we needed yeah, but we couldn't dim it and it was given some weird hot spots wasn't loving let's uh relocate this guy too right here so we're gonna play off this lamp for his key can we fly this out so it's not so much in the way of asking a question, right? Yeah she coco wanted to know why do you always cut off the top of the head and give more chin room while framing closer shots so we can talk about your artistic choice of doing that? Um it's just all about balancing the frame, focusing the eye, sending people to look at what you want if I'm looking higher where's my focus he's speaking so my focus is on the mouth and irs so this is my main focus is what I want people to focus in on right here so if I'm gonna close up and I'm shifting here I'm telling them up here is more important so now my focus is up here it's less on where I want them to be so it's a matter of that's also just making it more pleasing the face looks better that way on also it's choice stylistic choice you might wanna frame and say give me an offer him give me a ton of headroom josh and let's frame him a little let's go left frame and give me a bunch of headroom let's talk yeah you might want to do that people have done that there are tons of ads that I really really like the visual style of that do this sort of thing. Wes anderson will use crazy head room often, but he's bouncing the frame with other things so it's always about balancing the frame and going for stylistically what you're trying at that time there's no one set way of doing it which I should repeat a lot more often we talked about a lot in the first day there's no one set way to do it there's certain rules there's very few rules that are hard and fast but even those we break them and for reason could be broken for really great effect but may I have a certain you know, taste toe what I like to do? I'd like to make things a little more dramatic, so I'm usually trying to cut off top the head when we get in tighter I just personally think it's more pleasing to look at let's uh let's put this guy sideways bringing up until it sounds sort of like actually you know what before we do that let's bring it in to here it's a little bit more sidle with it towards me towards me right there great no let's leave it let's leave it there for now let's actually flip the back light kind of feels like to me that the windows over there now also we got a key on the other side which is not to say you always need to have your back light on the opposite side of your key but if I could do it I usually like to feels more balanced to nice on and let's get that aimed at him and sam you want to man the dimmer for me real quick uh much right there for this for the backlight let's take it up five percent take it up just a touch more it's another five good stop alright and actually bring here so now we got our foreground mid ground background although our background is kind of a plain white wall let's lie and one more lamp and let's get let's see if we can get you to stand right here and start going should come over here too let me bring you into frame just a bit stark one should be where I just was sort of face him a little bit. I'll see do we have anything that we could put this on? We have an extra chair lying around that we could mess with let's grab that just leave that all frame for now we'll just going to use it in just a second silly that day but let's get a stinger ready for that guy alright and you guys were just talking to each other. You can use your hands a little bit, don't go crazy and go ahead and roll on this now we're messing around with foreground, mid ground and background, the backgrounds not too distracting for me, maybe he's at a restaurant of some kind isn't at a party at a house talking to somebody on the other side, but we're creating a lot more interest because we're playing with foreground mid ground background it's not a flat frame it's a two d medium all right, so we're in two dimensions, really? But we're trying to make it feel three dimensional, so we gotta create all those layers and keep talking about it. Every bit of what we've been talking about is building to that sort of idea talked about the lighting we talked about the color we talked about wardrobe now foreground, mid ground background, michael bay love him or hate him is like the king of foreground mid ground background. If you watch his films like him or not turned the sound off, don't pay attention to that look how he's, always using foreground made gone backward. I personally don't like how he's always moving the camera sometimes it's, gorgeous, sometimes it's wise, he moving the camera right now, but, uh, do it always using foreground mid ground background, which is why his shots just every like stark says every shot in a michael bay film looks like it could be a poster. So that's a really, really great thing. Always be playing with foreground mid ground background. I always try to at least have foreground mid ground and then, you know, do what I can with the background shooting in a forest like with proximity made it super easy. Just find something that blocked the frame just a little bit. And then you have background for days. Let's, come way at the top of the lens there. Oh, go ahead and cut. Where you rolling that entire time? Well, they're gonna have a really long clip to do whatever they want with you at the top of lindsay. All right, let's, get a little tighter. Let's, come this way. Let's still get this lamp in there. Fairmount, let's, drop down. How low can you go, let's? Come on. Let's. Let's, go about four inches towards me. Too much, I think. Split the difference. Good start. Can I have you step this way? A little more? A little less good and, uh, too much, too much right there, turn your body more towards walter cool, all right. Even using things like really tight where you have no idea what this thing is I love doing that it's really interesting especially when you could blow it out a lot even getting it super super tight to camera where it's just something that's basically boca filling your frame a little bit without it and then with it it just adds a lot of interests totally changes your frame to something really really simple to completely change what things they're looking like let's go plug back in you guys can jump out start can you grab that white sheet for me just put that to the side there so we can get at it when we need it gonna pop out right here and we're gonna turn it on let's punch out of touch and let's actually move back let's move back of foot good let's go that way just a little bit punch out a bit more let's move that chair off it's also flip it to the back of the chair is over here so we could try to get it out of frame cool let's frame up a little bit so we're not seeing the chair yeah d'oh let's go a little bit more this way so go camera right uh let's truck the whole thing about four inches josh can get you to move camera right just a touch actually a pretty fairmount let's go about like five more inches two inches good and let's kick some light on them somehow wears the can light scrabble can lights let's let's get it on this right here so we're kind of hitting them as sort of a back light and let's move this back jason I want to move this back a bit. This is well so we can kind of get it on them a little bit more so we're going to take this guy back straight towards you as far as you can get it cool once we got that bill you wanna come over here? Sam marine you guys both want to come over here courtney and you want to stand right there and I'm gonna have you guys cross so you're gonna be right here and on cue you're just gonna okay cute each of you you guys are just gonna go right across. Why don't you come over here going across the otherway stark take a half step towards walter good let's give him just a slight less of a haircut take it up just a bit a little bit more. Just kiss the top of his head there. So sweet is going to sleep. We love him. All right, so let's roll on it and action courtney bill marine sam one more time stood a bit tighter cut let's go again reset backto one which we'll talk about that uh a little bit later all right, let's, don't we get you guys in into this? Well, don't you're going to cross from there as well and your going across from here? So you come on over here and it's just creating you come over here and you'll go right here with courtney, you come over here with me, you're gonna start here and there on my cue to start there and with courtney on my cue alright roll and action courtney sam marine jason bill and axl and now he's at a party cut with very few amount of people you just do a lot of crossing you're creating a lot of interest a lot of action in your frame just by creating that sort of blocking in that movement he's at a party we had some music we had some wall in the background which is the crowd sound of a knot of crowd or whatever group in the room and we're now in a party that simple and we only have a handful of people right? So let's move this off to the side for now let's bring here let's go actually stay there. Go right here and what is that? Is that the one of five of the seventy five we're good we're at seventy let's go to the top of the frame let's get like right here bill, you want help with that and we'll just stay with this lighting set up so we could move passes on to the next segment when we set this one up, are there any questions? I have questions? One of the questions that came up was this is from murphy, who wanted to know, is it possible to cover some wide shot or general seen lighting like in hitchcock's rope? I'm not even sure what that means over time, the question was, can you cover someone wide shot or general seen lighting like in hitchcock's rope? We really can't, because we don't have a set toe light, so if we were to go fully wide and try to light a white wall it's just going to be a boring white wall, so a lot of the stuff that we're doing now goes right along with what you would do with a wider shot. You're just taking all these pieces and starting to build them out, so you'll be lighting the set the same as you like the subject, right? So a cz were lighting the subject with the back light in the film, lighting the key like you kind of use that same idea. If you're hitting a bookshelf, you hit the bookshelf with some kind of accent light just to kind of bring that out, make it pop and sort of create that three d environment like I talked about before filling up the room and then creating accents for your actors to then walk through. But in the room that we're in right now would be really difficult to try to light something like that. It would just remain boring because we just have white walls to play with. Okay, cool. A lot of people are enjoying watching you direct and astra joe said, do you usually do all your own cinematography? Or have you also had projects in which you've only directed the actors? I have had maybe one project where I was just the director beyond that, I've always done my own sin, which isn't preferred for me, it's not what I want to do. I really love visuals. I love cinematography, but I'm not a cinematographer riel cinematographers are amazing at what they do we gotta project coming up, which I'll be working with cinematographer very soon, and we'll show that stuff on film right on that dynamic as well. This is from baiju, who said, does it take? Does it take this long to set up a shot? What is the average time for setting for set up time for a scene shot? There is no average time it depends on a ton of things how much crude you have, how much? How many knowledgeable people do you have? Are you the director and the cinematographer? And how difficult is the scene? Are the actors moving around a lot? Is it a still shot like josh sitting at the table right here just sitting at the table right here we could have lit in about five minutes ah scene where characters walking through the entire house and we have to set up and also hide lights you could be, you know, anywhere from thirty minutes to over an hour it just really depends on all those things. So you got a kind of got ah, you know, test those out that's what I'm saying test test test if your new doing test lighting setups you'll know how fast or how slow you work to kind of dilute in because definitely knew people are setting and then figuring it out there, finding the light where exactly they want the light to be that might take you a little longer than somebody who's been doing it for a while they look at the room and they know exactly what they want to do immediately so get you to step here in the back to get you guys kind of gather won't you come in once you come over here uh why don't you step back there with them as well it's turning into a band photo shoot on my part a let's actually way need another light of that let's get this guy here let's move them over here if we couldn't wait can kind of get it right here pull that focus all right I'm gonna kind of squish you guys together a little bit but sort of feeling like so won't you stand here you come here backto us front to him you're gonna be right here sam so you're going to come here and you gonna be kind of talking to sam there you guys are gonna kind of like ticket turning each other you're talking to almost no one at all you come in facing off camera way as tight as we can get yeah let's let's move in and let's go even a touch higher okay uh bill you want to help him raise up raise up cup raise it raise the roof one time did you need this if you push the leg and it'll give you more height why don't you take that charge for now that's fine and we'll put the charger back are back on when you need me do we have a dimmer on that? What do we have dimmers on axl we've got a number on this guy that there's not a day so we've got a dimmer on here and on there okay let's leave it uh for that for now no dimmer just stand up straight frame that up I got okay, I could probably pull out just a touch all right, so we're gonna layer this a bit axl you want to get behind and in between uh stark great wear definitely gonna need a demo on that. All right? So let's take the dimmer off of the can light or this guy and let's move it over here. How bored are you josh? How bored? You know, I'm I'm busy don't talk to me you're talking to your ear piece okay? That's fine swapping numerous I'm also gonna pan because we're getting a lot of bleed on josh and I don't want to spend time to set up a flag somebody paying this light off just a little bit because I just want to get their level up a touch all right let's also pan that light off and if we're spotted let's flooded out and let's paint it off a bit um you know what let's tilt it actually till down do have gloves awesome. What? Your eyes fierce, chiseled, stark good good right there. Uh see what we got actually that's perfect let's leave it right there I'm actually just going to use this lamp well, maybe I'm just using this lamp to bring up our background a bit unit josh look forward and we're getting a kick on josh which is a happy accident that I really like so you could see what the lamp is doing on the side of josh's face it's really nice kick actually just want to get it office knows a little bit look forward josh and you're actually going to be looking a little more to your right josh okay that's actually working perfect joss it's the axle me let's go ahead and leave that as is that's fine um let's get you over there as well right next to walter waiting a lot from this. Okay, uh, bill, you want to come right here and just cross frame and go ahead and just talk to each other on action rolling action and bill great cut. So now josh is in a crowded room and we pan out and it looks really ridiculous right? What? We frame it up as we plan tio and now he's out of parties at a club whatever it is you guys to be dancing around like crazy you know what we're rolling on that all right great cool let's break that let's bring the table back in here let's move this back again let's just do one question before we go to break because a lot of people have been asking especially isaiah about light meters I don't know if we touched on that I don't use them I like buy I that's the great thing about what you know when you're shooting film in you know I only shot film in film school but when we're shooting film in film school you had to have a meter because what you're seeing on the monitor is not actually what you're getting you know it's just a reference that's it so you really need to know exactly what light is doing to the actual emotion emotion of your film and that's where light meter comes into play another time of light meter's really helpful when I have used it green screen making sure it's a very, very flat across the green screen will get a green screen later but that's a great thing to use light meters for and just knowing your grade when especially when you're doing c log they have things on monitors now though that'll correct for sea log so it's not looking so flat it will throw that sea log into a seven no nine color space and sort of put a basic grade on it. You could even put your own great on the monitor to do that for you so they're not mandatory although they are really great because you can go and look at your contrast ratio that easily pop it on tells me that this is a two eight over here it's a five six that's too much I need to you know go somewhere in between, so light meters are great, but they're very expensive and not necessarily a mandatory, especially on the grill ical maker level. All right, ryan there's a lot of young people like new filmmakers, they're washing, and this is just an incredible thing to watch all of these moving pieces, all of these people, this gear and watching you in action. I'm just wondering, when you first started in your filmmaking career, what would you have thought about watching a workshop like this? What would you have gotten? I would have loved life, actually, yeah, when I know we talked about films go a little bit, and when I went to film school, which made it sound old and I'm not, I'm youthful, very young, but shut up just when I went damn youth, when I went to film school, there wasn't any info like this out there, everything felt very close to the chest for some reason, people didn't want to share or just didn't have an avenue sheriff. Sure, there were plenty of people who I wanted to, but now of how the internet is, and the sort of lands gave that it's become there's so much info out there that I would have killed for, like, something like this being able to be on set, which is a great stuff like this where you feel like you're on set and seeing how people operate that's the scariest part when you're starting out even as much as five years ago for me not knowing what a real set really it was like I was only ever on one at the time, about five years ago. It's really intimidating to get hired and go onto a set and not know any of the terminology like we've been talking about today, not know any of the gear what the gear is called, how to set it up, what the director might call or act like what it might be like it's just all very mysterious and terrifying, and it might hold you back. But stuff like this being able to see that and also the process of oh that's, how I get a party scene that easily. Oh, that's, where I put the light to make it more interesting. I think all this stuff isn't valuable and it's all over the internet now, which is what's so great.

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

1080p Screen Insert
2.40 Aspect Wide Screen Template
Rule of Thirds
Storyboard Template
Storyboard Template
Class Footage - 1
Class Footage - 2
Class Footage - 3
Class Keynotes
Stark Assets
Guerilla Filmmaking Outline
Gear Guide

Ratings and Reviews

Samuel Befekadu

I bet this class will be awesome. the course is given by Ryan Connolly!! I have been watching this guy for more that 5 years. I just wasn't serous about film making then. but now since i love film making why not try to be one of them by learning form the best in the field like Rayn. he has been inspiration for a lot of film maker from his YouTube channel Film Riot. his way of teaching so funny and entertaining . I bought this course to learn Ryan Connolly's killer skill. Thanks creative live and Ryan Connolly!

Will Green

Great class! It starts at a very simplistic level and covers the full spectrum of filmmaking. I would not necessarily buy this course for advanced film students, however it is an amazing review for beginner students to intermediate students. I would love to see a BTS of a short film from start to finish. I've seen all of Ryan's BTS shorts and I would greatly enjoy a much more intricate play by play of the short. THAT"S SOMETHING I WOULD PAY A LOT TO SEE. An 18 hour compilation of prepro - post of a short would be awesome.

Jonathan Beresford

Love Ryan and everyone at Film Riot. Excellent course of the excellent quality I've come to expect from them. I just wIsh he'd act more. So funny.

Student Work