Name: Side By Side
Version: Anaglyph (Red/Cyan)
(Note: To view this video, please use red/cyan glasses)
Name: Side By Side
Version: Side by Side
(Note: To view this video, please use a 3D monitor and polarized 3D glasses)
Life in 3D Production Dossier
Short Synopsis of Film:
Once in a while Cupid is forced to think outside the box in order to unite two like souls. In this short film a futuristic Cupid draws two parallel universe together in order to ignite a park between two characters, but it’s far from easy.
Where did the idea come from:
The premise of the film was born from two sources of inspiration from the perspective of sound design we have Alice in Wonderland and from the perspective of the image we have The Lake House.
Originally I pitched an idea to the group that we would have someone be awoken from their sleep by a voice, omnipresent. This voice would then lead this character on a journey through a series of visual spectacles somewhere between dreaming and reality. We took this idea, still partially formed to Rocio our course mentor. We then developed the ideas into a rough script. On close analysis of the script we realised that the series of visual spectacles would be far to complex and time consuming. Rocio advised that we hone down our aspirations to a couple if not one spectacle. Though as a group we found that this would compromise the narrative we knew we wanted to form. This led to the girls to adjust our previous script into something a little simpler more focused on narrative than visual spectacle. Inspired by The Lake House the script tells the story of two characters living in parallel worlds. They inhabit the same space and are being drawn together by some force that wishes to unite them despite their trans-dimensional separation. The original idea of the disembodied voice was preserved in the force that is attempting to unite the two characters. This character exists in the gaps between worlds and has the ability to influence them.
How did we use the 3D:
For our film 3D offered a possibility to play with the space which was an integral theme to the narrative of our script. We have two characters living in the same space as one another, yet in different worlds. So we knew that we wanted to play on the shared aspect of space within the flat. This really helped the idea of these characters being close to one another but too far for either one of them to sense the other.
We had originally toyed with the idea of overlapping the image and adjusting the transparency to make it appear as if they are in the room at the same time but not together. We realised of course that due to the 3d this was unachievable. If there had been one little difference between the two overlapping images it would confuse the image and lead to a sore head for the viewer.
This is where the sound was able to intercept and bring the two worlds together. The strength of sound is that it can paint an image without a visual being necessary. We used sound to install the idea of Cupid and his machine tinkering around between these two worlds. Not visible but yet still present. This is where we were able to utilise the surround channels, by using these to place Cupid and his actions the viewer was aware of this other plane of existence. At times he crosses into the front speakers to interact with the two worlds and communicate with the two characters.
Questions posed ahead of submission two’s development
Is there going to be a narrator, a voice over, is there going to be more than one voice? Who are these voices?
Yes, in a way. The omnipotent character that seems to be tinkering around the scenes is up to something. I think this is were there is a level of unwanted ambiguity as to the nature of the narrative, I had wanted to record a short voice over introduction to play at the beginning in the title sequence. Cupid would explain his existence and purpose drawing ahead of the narrative his intentions and thus the meaning of the film. Unfortunately our actor for Cupid was unavailable.
What sort of visual and aural effects will you need to pursue to achieve a dream-like / surrealist aesthetics?
For the final film the girls drove the narrative away from the surrealist perspective and into a clearer less dreamlike world. Bizarre things are still occurring but they are very much in the real world and not as planned in a dream world as previously discussed.
This move did take some readapting of the aural effects that were to be included in the film. It meant that the prescience of the voice was no longer something that could just be accepted, it needed to be explained. I think this is were is confused some people in the presentation. Who was the voice? Why was he there? Although it became clearer towards the end, I believed it would strengthen the films narrative over all if it was explained at the beginning, hence the intended short voice over at the beginning.
Who are your characters? Are they good performers, and if not what things would they need to rehearse?
We have three characters within the film, Tom (played by himself), Youqing (Played by herself) and Cupid (played by Raphael)
Given that neither me nor Youqing are actors it meant we were limited with the demands we could make. I feel that due to awkwardness the script went from having a romantic intention to a platonic one. The girls had written scenes inspired by the Lake House, a romantic film starring Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock. But with the necessity of having one of the girls acting this changed.
Although I believe that it’s still within the nature of the film, though this is another element the added voiceover would contribute.
Raphael takes part in amateur dramatics, so is reasonably good at taking direction and conveying the demanded qualities within the voice acting required for the role.
How much time would you need them for? What sort of locations they might feel comfortable in?
We used a number of locations for filming, we had my (Tom’s) flat Arthurs seat and the beach. Given that two of our actors were part of the crew we didn’t have to hold them above the rest of the crew. We knew that shooting externally would bring its problems, mainly the weather, this is Scotland after all, though we managed to find a number of days for which the conditions were forecast to be workable within.
How many hours for file conversion and rendering will you need?
Also, the more precise and detailed you are in your script / filming plan the easier / faster / more effective it will be to materialise your sonic and visual ideas. Start filming sketches of your script, and work with them to further define what you are aiming to achieve. Recording, converting files, editing and postproduction will take longer than initially expected, so start working on it as you read this.
I think we suffered a little with file conversions for the presentation, we had a few issues with the images. Usually on a production the picture will be locked off and then the sound will be added, although due to the demands of this project and the fact that the technology and it’s processes were still very new to all of us the edit was ongoing. We had a real struggle with deinterlacing the images and trying to reduce the zebra line effects on the image. This did however mean that we learnt a great deal from this process. Given the opportunity to create another film the skills that we acquired within the filming process and editing process will prove highly valuable. The pressure of having had such a lot to achieve in such a condensed period means that we know are aware of how much not only is possible but how much as practioners of 3d film we ourselves are capable of making. I believe this is indicative that given a larger project we would now be competent at planning scheduling and executing a 3d film.
With the process now complete we give our feedback on how we felt the project went, reflections on our individual roles, changes we would make with hindsight and our plans for working in 3d in the future.
Documentary for Life in 3D:
The interaxial of this camera is approximately 4cm. This value is fixed, and it achieves the nearest close-up of about 17.7 inches (45cm) according to the manual and experiment.
Principles of S3D
Binocular Vision, representing the two-eye vision system, is the reason why we can see the real world in 3D . The distance between human eyes is about 65mm, and it makes our eyes see images from slightly different perspectives. Similarly, when we make the film in 3D, the camera with two lenses in parallel will take two shots capturing two eyes’ views at the same time.
The fixed interaxial of the camera means the depth we can catch is limited. However, we change the convergence to keep what we want in different scenes. The shift between two images will be fused by the brain, giving a perception of depth .
There are two versions for our film, anaglyph and side-by-side. The former one is the most common form of S3D, which can be watched with a pair of red/blue anaglyph glasses.
A pair of polarized 3D glasses is used for side-by-side videos. This kind of videos can only be played on specific devices like the 3D TV used in our presentation. It will transform the side-by-side video to be a polarized version as shown below.
Difficulties stepping from 2D to 3D
3D filming brings us to the limitation on distance. Because the interaxial is fixed, we can only control the environment. When we shot in the flat, we tried to calculate the comfortable distance and keep balance among between camera, actor and background with a phone app named RittaCalc3D. It became harder when we moved outside. The reason why we choose Arthur’s seat and Portobello is to minimize the confusion caused by the background. The interaxial problem contains the “cannot focus on an object within 45cm” and “irreparable shift on the far background converging on close object”.
The mountain and the sea gave a relatively clean and still background that may reduce the misunderstanding on the unavoidable shift. We also made use of the sky as background, which worked well.
Since the two images of two eyes were shot in parallel, they were not identical especially on the boundary. A ‘ghost effect’ may take place when we see something only in one eye. This happened several times in the flat scene due to the complexity of the indoor environment. In order to solve this problem, we had to scale up some of the clips to hide the ‘ghost’ part.
The most significant difference between 2D and 3D film is that the latter one needs us working on both eyes. By adjusting the scene convergence in After Effect, each clip will achieve the best performance on 3D effect.
However, it is hard to get a nice performance when the object moves rapidly. A similar challenge has been mentioned in Laya Maheshwari’s article , the convergence cannot be changed quickly considering the varying of depth. That brings another limitation to our editing; quick cuts and long take are both not desirable. When our actor walked through the corridor, we first intended to set the focus following his step, but it finally came out that the constantly changed convergence was really annoying. Therefore, we settled the converging point to a surface between door and table, which makes the actor look like walking out of the screen.
The biggest problem with our 3D film is that we did not use 3D to enhance the storytelling. More attentions have been paid to the story itself and 3D technology; so that sometimes we ignored the basic question that why we use 3D. Audience may not be satisfied by just watching a film with 3D effect. They want to see something with the additional ‘depth’. Nevertheless, the misuse of 3D is a common phenomenon in film industry . What we should do is to go further on the story and be careful about every detail where depth could enhance the watching experience.
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E Leslie, A Quick 3-D Lingo Guide, Multichannel News, Vol.30, Issue 17, p28
B Bruce, (2013) 3D Storytelling: How Stereoscopic 3D Works and How to Use It, Hoboken: Taylor and Francis
Z Ray, (2012) 3-D revolution: the history of modern stereoscopic cinema, Lexington, Ky: University Press of Kentucky
Sonnenchein, David. 2001. Sound Design The Expressive Power of Music, Voice and Sound Effects in Cinema
This is my go to source for any sound design project, a comprehensive look at the creative possibilities and techniques applied to sound.
Chion, Michel. 1990. Audio-Vision: Sound on Screen
(Specifically Chapter 4: The Audiovisual Scene)
This chapter deals with the spacial allocation of sound, it identifies a strength of sound; image has a container the frame whilst sound is in the either and due to this allows to increase, support and transform the space presented by the screen. Chion looks in-depth and the different types of sound Diegetic, Non-digetic, On screen, Off screen. Whilst also introducing some concepts/terminology of his own such as “On the Air Sound”, Chion elaborates on these types of sounds. I considered this in the construction of my sound design, incorporating
This was the first link I looked at whilst taking on the task of mixing to surround.
This was an offering from apple that had good advice for surround mixing.