My favourite love stories – short and sweet.

 

This was part of a Search Stories Series  by Google. In just 52 seconds, they manage to tell the whole romance cycle of finding love during a Parisian study abroad. This video is closely followed by Pixar’s 4-minutes life story of Ellie and Carl in Up, beautifully accompanied by Michael Giacchino’s soundtrack:

In written form, my favorite love story is in Shakespeare’s Hamlet:

When I saw you I fell in love, and you smiled because you knew.

The IRON Lady doesn’t feel…she thinks.

My fellow film studies classmate – Gianluca Baroni – sent me this film clip as inspiration today. Thank you GL.

Watch your thoughts, for they become words. Watch your words, for they become actions. Watch your actions, for they become habits. Watch your habits, for they become your character. And watch your character, for it becomes your destiny. What we think, we become. My father always said that. And I think I am fine. 

Margaret Thacher (Character) Movie Quote

Am I able to give career advice? I’m only 22 after all.

I’ve been helping out at my old university – King’s College London – with their careers and employability office. A couple weeks ago, I went in to speak to current undergraduate and masters students at a career festival for the Film Studies program. After graduating in July, I now have 7 months of experience through my full-time job in a media agency. Walking down the all-too-familiar corridors created an interesting sensation:

Here I was in the exact same location and it’s very clear that it’s me who has changed and not the environment. In fact, the architecture, smell, feel, and people looked exactly the same as last year (when I was attending this career fair as a hopeful final year student). But this time, there was a different confident stride in my steps, not one of getting a first, but one of having job security figured out.

Most of the students were there looking for a way into the film industry. In that respect, I was their counter example of someone who veered away from the ‘artistic’ satisfaction of the creative arts for the more corporate world of marketing and advertising. I think speaking to the students was just as informative for me as it was for them. Nevertheless, I stood tall and explained my role and plans for the future in the business world.

Two weeks after the speaking event, the careers office asked me to write a blog post for them. And it finally came out, so I thought I’d share it (which was the point of my whole rant above). Enjoy:

http://blogs.thecareersgroup.co.uk/humanities/a-case-study-in-digital-advertising/

It offers some insights and advice to university students trying to figure out what they want to do after graduating by drawing on my own experiences of job hunting/soul searching.

I obviously still have so much to learn about the world of work: what skills are most employable, how to change jobs, how to progress, how to balance work/life, etc. However, I still feel that I can offer advice and help to university students, especially because the experience of transitioning lifestyles is still so fresh in my memories. It’s important for people to stay in touch with university students as they progress in their careers because, essentially, those students are the future of the work force. Their desires, mentality, and capabilities are a direct reflection of generational changes, economic situations, and cultural values. And it’s very hard to know what the future holds if you don’t understand the people that will be working it because let’s be honest, most business are people-led first and foremost. So an understanding of the younger work generation is ALWAYS key to any company that wants to grow.

CHANEL No. 5 Film #theonethatiwant

I went to see The Imitation Game with Benedict Cumberbatch at the Empire cinema yesterday. As a media gal, I arrived early to watch the pre-roll adverts that are put on by Pearl & Dean (cinema advertiser).

My favourite was, but of course, the Chanel No. 5 Ad with the beautiful Gisele Bündchen. I love the marketing strategy of positioning Chanel No. 5 ads as ‘films’ and thus, correctly placing them on the big screen before a movie. The films, as with the brand, are always decedent, glamorous, and classy and they offer a beginning, middle, and end to the story. All I have to say is… these 3 minutes are filled with the perfect combination of sultry, yet elegant shots to create the perfect cinematography for the brand image of Chanel.

Some quotes by Mademoiselle Chanel: 

  • “Fashion passes, style remains.” 
  • “‘Where should one use perfume?’ a young woman asked. ‘Wherever one wants to be kissed,’ I said.”
  • “Dress shabbily and they remember the dress; dress impeccably and they remember the woman.”

Designing LIFE according to architects Ted Mosby and Frank Gehry.

Designing LIFE according to architects Ted Mosby and Frank Gehry.

HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER QUOTES

“There are a lot of little reasons why the big things in our lives happen.”
– Ted, Season 4, Episode 22

“Look, you can’t design your life like a building. It doesn’t work that way. You just have to live it… and it’ll design itself.”
– Lily, Season 4, Episode 24

THE BUILDING AND ARCHITECT

The image shows one of my favourite architectural structures of the modern era. It’s Frank Gehry’s Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain. (Built 1997)

“The recent work of Frank Gehry epitomises both the folding and complexity theories without explicitly being based on either. Gehry is aware of the writings on both and respects them, but he is led more by his intuitive concerns. Nevertheless, his new Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao characterises the supple, pliant, moving qualities of the one and the notions of self-organising systems and the fractal order of the other.”

Charles Jenks, “Post-Modernism and the Revenge of the Book,” in This is Not Architecture, eds. Kester Rattenbury (London and New York: Routledge, 2002), 191.

Gehry on design teams for architecture: “I collaborate with people on projects because it enriches the mix and gets you somewhere else that you wouldn’t have gotten to otherwise. When it’s really working, it is like holding hands and jumping off a cliff together.”

Barbara Isenberg and Frank Gehry, Conversations with Frank Gehry (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2009), 155.

If you’re interested in Frank Gehry, I would recommend the documentary: Sketches of Frank Gehry (Sydney Pollack, 2006). It’s less than 90 minutes long and provides personal interviews with the architect about his career, creative process, and opinion on life.

An extract from the introduction of my Film Studies Dissertation (King’s College London)…

This dissertation is situates within the growing research around the stylistic use of digital technology and new media in contemporary cinema. My main area of investigation will be the virtual camera in narrative computer-animated films, with a precise interest in musical cinematography. The term ‘musical’ refers to the narrative premise of analysing song or dance sequences, while the term ‘cinematography’ refers to the stylistic and aesthetic form of the camerawork. The musical context provides a point of consistency across the films and sequences chosen for formal analysis, thereby providing a lineage between different production methods and styles. Prince argues that that digital technology builds “on stylistic traditions established by filmmakers in earlier generations … while providing new and more powerful tools to accomplish these ends.”[1] Likewise this dissertation will explore the stylistic developments in computer-animated films in relation to past cinematic traditions.

This investigation is structured around the aim of outlining and testing the term ‘digital cine-mobility,’ as a cinematic style, through comparisons with established stylistic traditions. Chapter One will explore the visual effects of cel-animation and computer-animation in relation to the Walt Disney Animation Studio. Chapter Two will study the moving camera of the American film musical. And finally, Chapter Three will scrutinize the term ‘digital cine-mobility,’ which we will initially define as, the selection of fantastical, playful, and impossible camera movements in computer-animated films. The concept of digital cine-mobility is framed around a lively camera that presents spatially dynamic, effortlessly integrated, and kinetically expressive movements. The aim of this investigation is to progressively examine, and attempt to define, the descriptive terms above.

[1]  Stephen Prince, Digital Visual Effects in Cinema: The Seduction of Reality (New Brunswick, New Jersey, and London: Rutgers University Press, 2012), 4-5.

La Critique d’un Film : La Reine de La Neige (Disney, 2013)

La Critique d'un Film : La Reine de La Neige (Disney, 2013)

L’intrigue : J’ai bien aimé l’histoire de La Reine de La Neige parce que je l’ai trouvée très progressive au niveau du féminisme avec les deux princesse et l’absence de prince et mariage typique. Plus important encore, les personnages féminins sont bien développés et complexes. L’intrigue est autour de deux sœurs et leur aventure après que leurs parents sont morts. Une des deux sœurs a des pouvoirs magiques de glace qu’elle croit être incontrôlables. En général, le film a beaucoup d’action, de musique, et d’aventure dans la tradition Disney.

Le scénario : À mon avis, le scénario est exceptionnel. Il est basé sur un récit européen, mais conçu pour s’adapter au grand public et inclure des chansons. Il y a de bons dialogues et la fin est imprévisible. Et il y a beaucoup des personnages secondaires qui sont formidables comme le bonhomme de neige, le renne, et les rochers mystiques. Alors même s’il y a beaucoup de éléments formatés, il y a aussi beaucoup de scènes originales.

La Mise en Scène : Avec toute la neige, la mise en scène était très belle et extraordinaire – en particulier en relation aux effets spéciaux de princesse Elsa. Et les couleurs dominantes – bleu et blanc – s’inscrivent bien à l’écran. Et l’environnement de la forêt et du château classique crée un monde complet – celui qui est séparé du nôtre. Le plus impressionnant est le château de glace, magnifiquement réalisé. Et chaque image est remplie d’un décor qui vous met dans la magie.

Le Jeu du Personnage: Même si le film est un dessin animé, j’ai pensé que le jeu du personnage animé était convaincant. Techniquement, les mouvements et expressions des acteurs animés étaient vraiment en formes. Le rythme et les expressions du visage étaient très expressifs et bien faits. De plus, il y avait beaucoup des scènes drôles et pétillantes. Spécifiquement, les deux princesses Anna et Elsa qui agissent d’une manière humaine et réelle.

La Bande Son : La bande originale est superbe et pour moi, c’est grâce à la voix d’Idina Menzel qui a joué Elphaba dans la comédie musicale Wicked à Broadway. Son chant est vraiment très puissant et émouvant. Kirsten Bell chante bien aussi, mais pas à un niveau Broadway. Il y a quelques chansons qui seront devenues des classiques instantanément comme « Do You Want To Build A Snow Man ? », « Let It Go » et « Love is An Open Door ». Au total, l’ambiance sonore représente un retour de style classique Disney avec des mélodies jouées par le piano et orchestre.

L’esthétique : J’ai bien aimé l’esthétique de La Reine de La Neige parce que comme tout les autres éléments, c’est une version moderne du style classique Disney. Le film a été fabriqué par l’ordinateur en trois-dimensions contre un film d’animation en cellulo. Le processus numérique a adopté le design traditionnel, comme le prédécesseur Raiponce en 2010. En fait, Disney a fermé la production d’animation en cellulo après l’échec de La Princesse et La Grenouille. C’est-à-dire qu’on voit le début d’une nouvelle tradition d’esthétique dans la boîte de production Disney.

UPA #2 (The Unicorn in the Garden)

UPA #2 (The Unicorn in the Garden)

More than likely, you’ve never heard of the UPA (United Productions of America) … AKA the Animation Studio that opposed the Disney Style from the 1940s to the 1970s. There was an exodus of animators from the Disney Studio in the early 40s that lead to the foundation of UPA. This is a colour storyboard from one of their most famous films, The Unicorn in the Garden (1953).

Some key visual characteristics of UPA:
1. The backgrounds were usually kept plain and minimal.
2. The movements were exaggerated and caricatured.
3. The colour could bled outside the outlines.
4. Every director was allowed to create a different style for their short film.

Click on the picture to watch The Unicorn in the Garden.

Some other ones to watch include:
Rooty-Toot-Toot
Mr. Magoo
The Tell-Tale Heart