Well, here it is! My adventure into all the ways in which dance can exist continues with a stab at a dance for camera film, featuring the lovely Maddie Leonard-Rose.
This film was shot on my iPhone in Orton Hall, one of the oldest buildings here on campus, and then edited in Final Cut Pro. Initially, I shot some footage in a studio but didn’t like the lighting and felt uninspired conceptually by the inaneness of the space. Maddie suggested Orton Hall as a distinctly character-FUL building, and once I found out there were dinosaur fossils inside, I was sold. The phrase that I have Maddie repeat in the film is a variation on an accumulation practice that I made in Comp class. To make it more suitable for the space and shots I had in mind, I trimmed down on the amount that it moved laterally and focused on the verticality of it.
Having nailed down a locale and some choreo, actually shooting the takes was step 2. We moved around to different spots in the library where I could most easily frame Maddie interestingly or execute a moving camera shot, and had her do the short phrase. Sometimes my idea was successful–often times it was not, a lot of trial and error. And that was before I realized I had shot half the takes in a portrait orientation (impossible to edit).
Next came the part by which I was most intimidated: editing. Having never really even used iMovie, (the less sophisticated version of Final Cut Pro, in the way that Garageband exists in relation to Logic) the program and all of it’s tools and features were definitely overwhelming. Watching dance films both in and out of class before editing to get ideas about the best physical movements to utilize for cuts was helpful, but having a thought about how you want something to look and actually having to make it happen are two different things. Still yet coordinating the Garageband-made soundtrack with the film edits was tough as well.
Overall, I’m proud of the film as my first try and thanks again to my exquisite (and understanding) dancer, Maddie Leonard-Rose.