This semester I had video production 2 and we were advised that this semester would be different than the rest. Similar to the other digital media classes although it’s not my strong suit I was going into the class with an open mind. Along with that in all my digital media classes it was a way for me to express my creativity. For this project we were going to reenact a scene from the book Zoot Suit, while being trained by an acting coach, something we’ve never done. We were told to choose between two scenes, switching off from actors to camera operators. Although I wasn’t a camera operator I was able to see how they communicated with the director and how they had to think quickly to be able to get the right shots needed to make the video work.
Zoot Suits is a play written by Luis Valdez in 1978 about a murder trial and the zoot suit riots during the 1940s. Before choosing the scenes we read parts of the book to see which scenes we were interested in along with what characters we connected with and liked overall. We read the “Interrogation” and “People’s Lawyer” scenes along with others before ultimately choosing those two scenes. After that we were casted as different characters which we gave a slight resemblance to, to bring the character to life. I was casted as Pachuco in both scenes to keep a sense of continuity. With an acting coach we were taught how to deliver lines along with how to use our body language to make it seem more real and less scripted. This was kind of hard for us because we weren’t really strong actors and still were kind of shy to the idea of acting. Before we got to practicing the lines we did multiple different activities to get us warmed up to act and to get more comfortable acting off camera before being put in front of a camera. One of the activities we did we were told to write a personal story to share with the class. We were told to put ourselves out there to be 100% comfortable with our classmates and to get rid of the shyness. I would say that after everyone read their stories and kind of let our emotional side come out we not only became more comfortable with each other but we started to trust each other and became, what I can call, really good friends. Because we taught by doing I can say that I learned the skills relatively fast although I didn’t master them because acting was still not my strong suit.
Like the other digital media classes I think the SLO’s I demonstrated strongly was being able to communicate effectively with the camera operators to get the best shot of every scene. The other SLO would have to be thinking critically and creatively, because with having the camera rolling we would have to think on the spot to have the carry on the scene. Those two artifacts I’ve always strongly showed in digital media, because these digital media classes I’ve always been able to strongly demonstrate. With creating two videos we also had to edit the one we didn’t act in (or whichever one we wanted), at first I thought it was going to be easy because it seemed like we were just following a bunch of lines and matching the best video from it but it turned out to be a little more complicated than that. Continuity was something that I had to quickly ditch because often times it was difficult to find a continuing line with the actors still in the same place as the previous line. I tried to hide my cuts between the actions in order to allow them to be less harsh and seem a little more professionally done.
I would say the most important things I have learned in this class was how to be patient and like the other classes also express myself creatively. Expressing myself was a little different this time because although I did have creative control on how to deliver each line I still had to remain between the lines of my character. Patience is an asset that can be valued in each career because at one point in time you will be put in a situation where your patience might be tested.