Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Term 2: Portfolio // Hitchcock Research

After looking at the work of Gregory Crewdson and Alex Prager I wanted to go back to one of their shared influences, Alfred Hitchcock. They both point to him as someone whose style they've used in their work. Crewdson seems more to take Hitchcock's dark themes of suburban loneliness and unknown demons, while Prager is more overt using similar wardrobe styling and even includes many birds in her pieces. Both take influence from his carefully choreographed images and thoughtful lighting.

So what have I learnt about Hitchcock himself.

Hitchcock started making films before talkies became the norm and was trained in telling a story in pictures using very limited dialogue.  He was also an artist that got better with age as he honed his style and techniques. He loved to take his audience on a journey, surprise then and tantalise them. He also very clearly celebrated beautiful women in film after film, using them as his muse. He played with people's fears of the unknown and turned it into entertainment in a very artful way.

Here's a couple of things that straight away I want to use during my portfolio shoot:

Female in centre of frame

Chiaroscuro & 2nd Figure in side of frame

Mixed use of vantage point

This filmic editing technique was used by Hitchcock, particularly during his action sequences to show enough of what was going on for the audience to understand but not so much that they get bored. This idea came from what Hitchcock described as what people actually see or remember during a fast sequence of events like a fight. You don't see everything that's happening but you understand.

For my series I want to use this technique of not showing everything but showing enough that the viewer can make up their own mind about the journey of the girl in 5 images.

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