In this week’s module, we have one assigned reading—Some Final Words page in The Bare Bones Camera Course for Film and Video by Tom Schroeppel. The image below is a cover of the book. We are asked to reflect on our learning experiences and to find videos that utilize J and L cuts well. In this module, we also started production and post-production for our final project – mini documentary/biography/news story.
Reading & Writing:
I can’t believe this is the final module. Time really flies. I started this course with a little bit of experience in audio editing and pretty much no experience of video filming and editing. But now, I am definitely much more confident in my audio editing skills and more comfortable with video filming and editing. Although I still don’t think my filming and editing skills are great yet, I will definitely continue using and honing the skills I learned from this class. It’ll be nice to be able to go to a place and record my memories there with a video.
I have truly learned a lot from this course. I am able to utilize Audacity much better than I did before. I am also able to use Adobe Premiere Pro effectively to add text, graphics and other effects to my video. I have learned various techniques to edit my video as well. However, I think one of the most useful things I learned from this course are the guidelines for visual composition. I believe those guidelines are crucial to producing great and attractive videos.
Although learning how to use Adobe Premiere Pro was a little difficult since there are so many effects and utilities one can use in it, it was still really fun to learn about it. However, I do feel that it will be nice to learn a bit more about one or two other software just to help us compare and figure out which software we like to use for video editing.
Research to Inform:
The following are two videos I found that uses J and L cuts well:
- Thor Ragnarok (2017) – Loki’s funny theater scene with Thor
This is one part of Thor: Ragnarok that I really like. It also has great examples of J and L cuts. At 0:25 is a good example of a J cut. We see Thor approaching the crowd, but we hear the sounds from the play, which is shown in the next scene. This is a good use of J cut because it not only informs the audience that Thor had walked up and came close to the stage, but also helps with transitioning to the play on the stage.
This video also contains some good examples of a L cut. At 3:21, we see that while Thor is still speaking, the video cuts to the next scene already. This is a good use of a L cut because the audience can see the expressions of Loki, who is disguised as Odin, to Thor’s words. At 4:24, there is another L cut, but this time, instead of showing Loki’s reaction to Thor’s words, the video is showing Thor’s expressions to Loki’s words.
- Lifting Thor’s Hammer | Avengers Age of Ultron (2015) Movie Clip
This video also has some great examples of L and J cuts. Between 0:05 and 0:13 is a great example of a L cut. Dr. Banner is still speaking when the scene cuts to Natasha. The use of a L cut here allows us to see Natasha’s reaction to Dr. Banner’s question. At 1:13, there is a good use of a J cut. We hear Steve speaking to Dr. Banner while still seeing Dr. Banner on the screen. The use of a J cut not only helps create the sense that Dr. Banner is startled, but also allows for a more natural transition to the next scenes, which are focusing on Steve and Dr. Banner’s conversations.
Here is my mini-documentary/biography/news story project:
Background music from zapsplat.com.
This video is definitely much harder for me to produce than the previous ones because there are a lot of things to consider, especially with which b-rolls I want to incorporate in my video. At first I also struggled with how to incorporate J and L cuts in my video, but as I was editing, I slowly got more comfortable with them. On the other hand, I got to play with more effects, such as the Ken Burns effect, that I didn’t get to use before. Overall, it’s a great experience and gave me a sense of accomplishment when I finished making it.