Filming a Documentary!
everything you never thought
about when making a movie
things to think about:
the 3 S’s
field of view
framing the shot
camera placement
b-roll footage
the three S’s
• straight
• steady
• smooth
• hint: use the tripod at ALL times!!!
field of view
• what is most
– the landscape?
– the artwork?
– the person?
• make the most
important thing the
most visible part of
the shot
framing the shot
• you decide what the
viewer will see—
make sure it’s
• the rule of thirds
– divide shot into thirds
– examples of the rule of
camera placement
• think about your point
of view!
– what does it say about
the role of the viewer?
• vary your camera
placement to make
your film more
the infamous b-roll
• what exactly IS b-roll footage??
– b-roll is the stuff that plays in between the
important parts
– it tells the story through action or while
narration is taking place
• example: the artist at work, in between takes,
panning across a landscape
4 elements of a documentary
• here are some ways to make your film
look professional:
– include interviews with group members
– use cutaway shots (like still photos)
– “chill footage” (kind of like b-roll, just watching
your group members work)
– process footage (behind the scenes)
group tasks
• director
– you will be the group leader for the day
– responsible for making filming decisions
– you will complete a director’s log (make notes of the
day’s progress)
• cinematographer
– with help from the director, you will be in charge of
operating the camera
• artist
– you will be gathering materials, constructing the
piece, interviewing on camera
• what you will be graded on:
– land art
• use of natural materials (must be entirely natural)
• sculptural elements: balance, unity, form, line
• relationship to environment
– documentary
• cinematography (everything in this powerpoint)
• editing (how you put everything together
– collaboration
• how well does your group work together?
• are tasks shared?
good luck, land artists!!!