SISE group project evaluation

The aim for our group project was to come together, bringing all our ideas together to create a two minute sound image and sensory experience. As all of our ideas roughly went along the ‘creepy urban night time’ theme, we decided to take that further to create an abstract view of the Bearpit in which the sounds and visuals are intended to create a certain sense of unease and insecurity in the viewer.

Our initial outlook was simply to create a portrait of the Bearpit – we didn’t have much of an underlying theme or driving idea but this came to us later on when during a feedback session, peers and tutors mentioned that they found the lack of people interesting. We feel now that the combination of the vibrant visuals and vibrant soundtrack contrast well with the absence of people and I feel that this adds to the eeriness.

We really wanted to resonate with our audience by enhancing the acoustics of the place. This is why Frank used large amounts of reverb not only to replicate the echoing of the subways but to create the sense of the sounds staying with you after you walk through. We used a variety of different perspectives when filming, looking up, down and using canted angles to give the impression of POV, using handheld shots helped with this too. A few classmates mentioned that they felt as though this connoted the drunk or stoned walk home at the end of the night and this fits well because one of the main attributes of the theme of paranoia. 

The overall response from the feedback at the SISE festival was positive, definitely more so than with our media futures documentary which I feel we have developed a lot since. People commented on it calling it, trippy, weird and unsettling which was the desired effect. Unfortunately, the editor wouldn’t use many of the stills I had taken (which received positive feedback previously) and the only negative feedback we got was down to the lack of stills. I am still unaware of why they weren’t used as I tried and tried – I feel nervous that this will mean we haven’t fulfilled the brief.

The negatives I found in the final edit include the lack of stills but there also a couple of shots in the edit that don’t fit well – there’s a strange shot of the Debenhams sign which seems out of place and also the last shot of the Premier Inn seems unnecessary and I think the film should have simply ended with the shot leaving the Bearpit as it begins with one entering it, I feel as though this disrupts the narrative of the piece.

Our project is very different from our buddy group’s work as they have approached theirs as a historical vs. present day piece of a church before and after the WW2 Bristol blitz. I really liked their exploration of this location and I enjoyed the visuals and sound as well as the informative side of it. I was impressed with their research into the place, they visited the records office to collect information on the victims and this showed in their finished piece.

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