Taking our ideas from the last meeting, we’ve decided to take off by sketching out a storyboard with our concept.
Basis of the concept:
Two squares framing two different scenes within one rectangle boundary of black space. A relationship blooms from stranger to close friends while simultaneously showing each brush stroke drawn for every time they become closer. Each brush stroke would be in a certain colour; starting off with pale grey, to navy blue to bright yellow as the result of a closer relationship formed.
Within the first few scenes, these strangers react to each other with awkward gestures through the use of close up shots. As their relationship grows, actions become more intimate. We wanted to communicate that as strangers, we all share spaces, whether visible or invisible – through relationships and interactions between people to minimise the barriers of invisible space.
Producing this storyboard lead onto another storyboard that explored the aspect of awkwardness within a relationship closely. We wanted to create a more minimal, intimate atmosphere where it makes the viewers experience discomfort while watching the film.
We worked on this film by asking two people to join us in the studio and have them interacting with themselves, the space and the cube. We wanted to show that the cube was symbolic to something that was physically there but isn’t – an invisible barrier between these two people. Through lots of experimental gestures and interactions, we came up with our film that aims to make the viewer feel discomfort from watching. We used Clark Beaumont’s Coexisting as one of our strongest influences to create our film. Very similar, two people are ‘trapped’ within this small cube for a long period of time.
Figure 1 – Clark Beaumont’s Coexisiting
From the discussion after storyboarding and shooting the film, it was suggested we could take on a more comical approach to the film since the class found it a little comedic when watching our first draft of the film. We were to also consider sound because we all we had was silence and to remove a few scenes such as the shoelace scene and replace it with something else. And finally, to finalise our research question and have it answered.
From then on, we re-framed our research question and responded to it:
How can lacuna be visually explored and represented in the context of public human interaction? Gathering stimulation from the film, sound and comedic techniques of 20th century satirists, depict the empty space we see in the learned tension of societal communication.
Inspired by the works of Charlie Chaplin and Jaques Tati, we’ve decided to use a blank studio space and simplistic props to convey the cautious and stunted nature of strangers interacting. Minimalistic sound and colour, along with static camera angles and no dialogue force the viewer to engage in the awkwardness of the situation. We developed our ideas by viewing human interaction and then choreographing one of our own, dramatising the rigidity and anxiety seen in our actors’ body language. The box is symbolic of the unspoken gaps between strangers; neither party address, but both are aware it is there.
Two of our main influences, Charlie Chaplin and Jaques Tati and their films have both comedic sense to them. Charlie Chaplin’s The Lion’s Cage (See Fig. 2) especially, looked more into building on tension between the protagonist and the lion – in turn making the viewer feel the same level of nervousness. While Tati, on the other hand, focused more on the relationship between the protagonist and various objects he touches in the film Kitchen Scene from Mon Oncle (See Fig. 3). This explores the invisible space that is represented in the thought process of how he sees the affordance of these objects. While we noticed, we wanted to incorporate these strong aspects from the films into our final production as a way to enhance our concept of invisible space between people and their interactions.
Figure 2 – Charlie Chaplin’s The Lion Cage
Figure 3 – Jaques Tati’s Kitchen Scene from Mon Oncle
Beaumont, C. 2013, Coexisting (2013) Video Compilation, video recording, Youtube, viewed 12 June 2017, <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rDQGKBmdJWU >
Chaplin, C. 2007, Charlie Chaplin – The Lion’s Cage, video recording, Youtube, viewed 12 June 2017, <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=79i84xYelZI >
Tati, J. 2007, Jaques Tati – Mon Oncle (Kitchen Scene), video recording, Youtube, viewed 12 June 2017, <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LE9t98Gox60 >