Final Project: Video Essay

Assignment: using any combination of techniques you learned this semester, create an experimental video piece based on a short text.

The text must not be a story in the conventional sense. We are trying to avoid narrative filmmaking (which we haven’t covered) and use video as tool for artistic research and experimentation.

The text can be written by you, somebody you know, or quoted/borrowed from any source.

Some examples of text:
a monologue
a manifesto
a guide
a diary entry
an interview
a letter
an essay
a poem
an excerpt from a non-fiction book
a computer generated text
a cut-up/mashup of different texts
a journalistic article

The text can be delivered through voice or words on screen.

The video should complement the text and not merely illustrate it in a redundant way.
Think of resonances, contrasts, and counterpoints, not just literal representations.

Think about a key image that anchors the piece. Imagine it as a thumbnail on youtube, the poster of the short, or a promotional still. If you can’t come up with anything visually distinctive your text may not be appropriate for such a video treatment.

The duration of the piece should be between 1 and 5 minutes, so the text has to be short. Try to read it very slowly keeping track of the time and see how much footage do you need to cover it.

You can work in teams of maximum 2.


Tuesday April 5
Screenings – assignment introduced

Thursday April 7
Spring carnival – think about the assignment while partying hard

Tuesday April 12
Bring 2 or 3 possible texts to class, with some related visual ideas (the key image, the process, the techniques…)
In class you discuss the ideas with the teachers. We’ll choose the most promising and viable one.

Thursday April 14
The idea is developed and storyboarded (if it applies) integrating feedback.
The week by week production goals are negotiated in class on a project-by-project basis.
Work day.

Tuesday April 19
Work day, deliverables on a project-by-project basis

Thursday April 21
Work day deliverables on a project-by-project basis

Tuesday April 26
Work day deliverables on a project-by-project basis
Post production

Tuesday April 28
Due date and crits. It can be postponed to finals week if the majority agrees.