34 Film (Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema)

360 Essentials: A Beginner’s Guide to Immersive Video Storytelling

Authors: Joshua Cameron, Gary Gould, and Adrian Ma

Description: Have you ever found yourself looking at an amazing photograph that truly takes your breath away and wished you could just step inside for a moment? Or have you ever been watching an interesting video but wanted to know what was on the other side of the lens?

We definitely have. And by we, we mean the team that have put together this handbook you’re reading right now. Collectively, we are Dr. Gary Gould (PhD in Film and Television), journalism professor Adrian Ma, designer and researcher Joshua Cameron, and project assistants Adam Chen and Stephanie Liu. Hi! Nice to meet you.

We are multimedia instructors, researchers and content producers based at Ryerson University in Toronto. We couldn’t help but notice that interest in 360 video and virtual reality has really skyrocketed in recent years and some amazing content is being created. We have been exploring and experimenting with 360-degree video, photography and spatial audio recording, and figuring out how these elements can be used to create incredible, immersive experiences. From capturing special events that give you the best seat in the house to producing virtual reality documentaries that make you feel like you’re actually there, creating 360 video and virtual reality (VR) content can be an exciting and uniquely engaging form of storytelling.

There are so many potential applications for 360 video and VR, including for journalism and documentary content, exciting marketing content, engaging educational experiences or just to simply capture the world around you. And thanks to rapid innovations in technology, creating this stuff is easier and cheaper than you may think.

Our objective with this resource is to walk you through the essential steps in creating compelling and engaging 360 video experiences. While some prior experience with photography or videography can help, the technology available now gives anybody the ability to produce this type of amazing content.

The Birth of a Nation: The Cinematic Past in the Present

Author: Michael T. Martin

Description: More than one hundred years since it premiered on cinema screens, D. W. Griffith’s controversial photoplay, The Birth of a Nation, continues to influence American film production and to have relevance for race relations in the United States. While lauded at the time of its release for its visual and narrative innovations and a box office hit with film audiences, it provoked African American protest in 1915 for racially offensive content. In this collection of essays, contributors explore Griffith’s film as text, artifact, and cultural legacy and place it into both the historical and transnational contexts of the first half of the 1900s and its resonances with current events in America, such as #BlackLivesMatter, #HollywoodSoWhite, and #OscarsSoWhite movements. Through studies of the film’s reception, formal innovations in visual storytelling, and comparisons with contemporary movies, this work challenges the idea the United States has moved beyond racial problems and highlights the role of film and representation in the continued struggle for equality.

Exploring Movie Construction and Production

Description: Exploring Movie Construction and Production contains eight chapters of the major areas of film construction and production. The discussion covers theme, genre, narrative structure, character portrayal, story, plot, directing style, cinematography, and editing. Important terminology is defined and types of analysis are discussed and demonstrated. An extended example of how a movie description reflects the setting, narrative structure, or directing style is used throughout the book to illustrate building blocks of each theme. This approach to film instruction and analysis has proved beneficial to increasing students’ learning, while enhancing the creativity and critical thinking of the student.

Exploring Movie Construction and Production: What’s so Exciting about Movies?

This open textbook contains eight chapters of the major areas of film construction and production, including: theme; genre; narrative structure’ character portrayal; story; plot; directing style; cinematography; and editing.

Includes: instructor resources, production and cinematography assignments.

Moving Pictures: An Introduction to Cinema

This textbook is an introduction to the art and science of moving pictures. It explores the tools and techniques of mise-en-scene, narrative form, cinematography, editing, sound and acting, how each has contributed to the evolution of cinematic language,  and how that evolution implicates critical issues of representation in mass media.




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