My thoughts of the recent fantastical short production - 'Love The Bomb' (LTB)
Updated: Oct 16
It has almost been a year since I was back from New York in Nov last year, and the COVID has messed up most people's career plannings, including mine. I had some hard times hunting jobs especially I was at my time recovering from my serious infection last December. One day Michael, the film director and one of my dearest friends, caught up with me with some of our life struggles - he has been working at the biggest TV company in Hong Kong for more than a year and is struggling for his future, and we decided to be nurtured with a production experience, and here it comes the day of finishing this amazing project - 'How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb' (almost - I'm still coloring it). It had been more than a year since I shot formally, which was my graduation short 'Roundabout' in 2019, and it feels totally different to be on set again especially I shift my role from DP to colorist. I miss my time being on set, and all fun moments here with my friends.
Some color-balanced stills here for a quick idea
I have the synopsis here:
"What's in her box?" he wonders. As a girl gets on the minibus with a mysterious box, he can't stop his imagination from running wild. A beautiful, intense yet paradoxical journey unfolds in the mundane city, thriving from the box and beyond.
So, I have two major roles here in this project - Director of Photography (DP) and colorist. It was an exciting experience as I get to practice what I learnt interning as a color assistant in the States, and how I get to learn things thoroughly in two perspectives of role. Put it simple, I get to fix all problems I produced on-set - it sounds pathetic but it is a quick way to boost my knowledge!
Speaking of gears, this is my second time using a film camera - BMPCC 4K, which my mind was totally BLOWN AWAY by the BRAW's capacity of holding the information - the camera is definitely a beast containing very very much information in a really efficient manner, and how impressive it is comparing to ProRes when it comes to details recovery. I feel like I am in a fragile place now that someone can easily convince me to get this camera. Okay, we will see and as long as I'm taking a stable amount of jobs, I will get one as my workhorse.
Some of you may notice the balloon shot is more muted in color, and yes it was filmed by Fujifilm's X-T3. We had some fun time playing around it, but when it comes to color-balancing, it's pretty tricky as the camera remaps the color in different hues, which is less ideal for matching colors among cameras - but it still comes with a better starting point than any Sony mirrorless cameras, I would say FS7 is decent in reproducing the colors.
I'm not sure but this is one of the chaotic clapboard I've seen. It is pretty self-explanatory - how much work we were shooting and I could still recall some scenes here reading the shot numbers.
I'm not sure if you have any idea how limited the minibus was to contain 10+ people for a shoot. The sunlight was constantly changing so we had really hard time exposing the shot ... don't forget the bus was travelling between shades and skies! Well this is how we learnt and grow. Black cloth is always a nice option to have for giving some negative fills, and Michael was here to hold the lights. A point for #teamspirit!
Yes this is how we created and shot the mysterious phone-call with a piece of silk paper. We assume the details of the view was clipped and create a sense of mystery here. It sounds cliché but this is always a true saying - thinking out of the box! And we don't always have to make sense for every single shot!
You can tell the color difference between the film and BTS stills! It is less punchy as how digital renders.
So much to learn on set, soak yourself in and be inspired. Everyone deserved some applauses for the roles. We aren't professional but we do try the best for delivering our ideas. #Respect
Always a nice way to wrap up the shoot - taking a selfie!
I have my respects to all film crews for wearing masks and shooting at the same time - it is extremely stuffy with no AC or fan and being on-set can be physically demanding. I hope COVID is getting over soon and everyone stays safe!
Last but not least, here's the color test I did with the proxy footage earlier. Check this out!
Okay here's the fact - I am out of clue what I should be writing, but I want to get myself engaged in some practices, especially being a professional now I have the need to follow my good routines, so I'll try keeping myself writing something from time to time as to follow this good habit. So far I am about to write a review of 'Roundabout' later to talk about the ideas behind the story - yes it is personal.
As what I wished in my birthday this year, I am working on my own to be self-fulfilling and appreciative of anything near me or qualities deep inside me - I'm happy to have good friends, and the most amazing thing is how this piece of work transforms us into better persons - learning filmmaking in different aspects, leading a solid friendship, and being more intellectually cultivated! I wish we will have more times for this, although it can be challenging since everyone will be (and should be) back to work! Hope COVID can stop affecting everyone and leave us in peace!
Stay tuned! More to be announced later! Leave your comments below for your ideas!