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Combining Mediums

Catherine | September 28th, 2010

Until recently, I did not like the idea of combining photography, video, and audio into one multimedia piece. I have seen several great projects that utilize still photographs and audio and successful projects combining video and audio. But it’s very difficult to combine both still photography and video without breaking the narrative flow.

It’s also difficult to use all three mediums in the field. Not only are you dealing with the challenges of interviewing and getting visuals, but trying to stay out of your partner’s way, maneuvering a lot of equipment, and trying not to overwhelm the people in the story.

One piece that utilizes all of these mediums really well is Maisie Crow’s “Hungry: Living With Prader-Willi Syndrome”.

http://www.maisiecrow.com/pages/5/MULTIMEDIA/MULTIMEDIA/

In this piece Crow uses many more photographs than video. The pacing of the photographs goes really well with the audio. In the beginning of the piece, when the audio is fast and repetitive, images move quickly. When there is a powerful moment in the audio, we rest on one photo so that the audio narrative has more impact. The best example of this is when we see Max sitting at a school desk by himself, we look at a very simple, clean image and we hear his dad say something extremely powerful about his son. In fact, I did not realize when Crow started using video because her scenes start out as still images, but it’s almost a surprise when there is movement. Check out the scene with the clock. The piece is entirely in black and white which helps to create a unity with all three mediums, there is no obvious lighting changes and the tone of all scenes are similar.

For my first WV Uncovered piece, I am not so sure that I am ready to combine all still photography and video into one multimedia. Paul and I have been working in tight spaces and it has been a real challenge for us to get the visuals we need. But I do think Crow’s piece is inspiring and I plan to utilize some of those methods in the future? maybe for the second piece.

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