ARTC 4440 / 5440, Spring 2014
Advanced Digital Video Art
Heather Elliott-Famularo

Final Project Guidelines
DUE: Wednesday, May 7, 3:30pm
rendered and copied to HW folder for critique time

This final represents the culmination of a semester's exploration in video and VFX. Make this an opportunity to create something film-festival worthy, a short film that is stunning, thoughtful, exciting! you have six weeks to creating this piece, so the expectations are HIGH.

Our goal is to go through the entire process from ideation through post-production, and to create a film that is ready for festival submission.

Create a 5-7 minute video, content of your own choice. You may choose to experiment with form, content / concept, or hopefully both. You may make an experimental piece, a narrative, or a documentary. You may also create a video installation. The only RULES are that it must be technically well-done, professionally shot, and you CANNOT use any copyrighted sound, unless doing a parody. The following are NOT PERMITTED: MTV-style music video, commercial video.

NOTE: If you have trouble coming up with ideas, meet with me individually and I will help you get started!

Things to Consider:

The content of the video is of your choice! My hope is that technical exercises sparked some excitement and generated some ideas. But if you need a starting point, consider these approaches:

GRADING: The following aspects of the production process will be graded on professionalism, thoroughness, and meeting deadlines:

GRADING: The following aspects of the piece will be graded:

Reading #3: (Due Monday 3/31):
Chapter 1: Interpretation & Treatment and Chapter 2: Ideas (pgs 1-29) from The Art of Technique: An Aesthetic Approach to Film & Video Production by Douglass and Harnden.
        Download HERE: Reading3.pdf

PART 1: Professional Proposal: (Due Monday 3/31): Based on Reading #3, you must write a professional, well-written Project Proposal. This is a first draft heading toward your TREATMENT and must include a THOROUGH PARAGRAPH for each of the following:

  1. Clearly state your concept (what is the piece about, what happens, the story?) What is your THEME?
  2. What GENRE does your piece fall into?
  3. What is your TECHNIQUE - type of shots and camera work will you incorporate in the piece, and how does that support the concept? What camera are you using?
  4. What is the location(s) of your piece - where you intend to shoot, if you don't know, what TYPE of place are you looking for.
  5. Give some information on the actors / characters (if you know who you will use, describe them. If not, what type of person are you looking for?
  6. What is your PURPOSE (intention) for the piece (what you want the audience to think while watching?)
  7. List some details about the sound track - what types of foley and music you will need
  8. List some details about editing style, timing, and pacing of the piece.
  9. What types of effects (if any) will you incorporate and HOW they will support your concept?

**It must be in paragraph form, spell checked, grammar checked, and typed. Bring a PRINTED COPY to class and email it to before the next class (Monday 3/31). In class you will "pitch" your idea, and we will give you feedback to help you toward your treatment and storyboard.

PART 2: TREATMENT: (Due Monday 4/7):

Per Wikipedia: A film treatment (or treatment) is a piece of prose, typically the step between scene cards (index cards) and the first draft of a screenplay for a motion picture, television program, or radio play. It is generally longer and more detailed than an outline (or one-page synopsis), and it may include details of directorial style that an outline omits. Treatments read like a short story, except they are told in the present tense and describe events as they happen.[1]

Writing Treatments That Sell

How to Write a Film Treatment

The Terminator - original film treatment example

Write the treatment for your film. Be as thorough as you can in the story. Use Reading #3 and the links above to help get you started. Use the Writing Center if you are not confident in your writing.

**It must be in paragraph form, spell checked, grammar checked, and typed. Bring a PRINTED COPY to class and Email it to by (Monday 4/7). In class we will pair up, share treatments, and give you feedback to help you toward your storyboard.

IF YOU ARE PROPOSING A VIDEO INSTALLATION: You must submit a diagram with your treatment.

PART 3a: SCRIPT and/or SHOT LIST (Due Wednesday 4/9):
Your script/shotlist should describe in detail each shot (every camera movement), any audio / dialogue, and effects. It can be in outline form as a list. Please make it PROFESSIONAL, following a standard example. Create a free Adobe Story account, and export your script (project) as an "Adobe Story Interchange Format" file (.astx) and email it to me: Also print the script / shot list and bring to class. (Watch the intro to Adobe Story help movies when you log in to get started), and see this 4-part series for more help. (and click on sidebar links for intro to scriptwriting)

Part 3b: STORYBOARD REQUIREMENTS (Due Wednesday 4/9):
Your storyboard must contain the following:

  1. A Sketch of the shot (include effects if used)
  2. Description of plot / action of story
  3. Transitions (dissolves, wipes, cuts, fades)
  4. Description of Camera work (i.e. close-up, pan, track, midshot, etc.)
  5. Soundtrack (description of narration, sound effects, non-diegetic sounds, etc.)
  6. TIMECODE: length of shot, overall time (min:seconds)
Download a blank, printable storyboard: HD 16:9 format or SD 4:3 format

Hand in original or can and email it to on Wednesday, 4/9.

Mon, March 31: Professional Proposal for Final Project (typed) DUE; Present to class
Mon, April 7: Treatment DUE; Pair up for feedback.
Wed, April 9: Storyboard & Final Script DUE; Present to class - CRITIQUE.
Wed, April 16: Production DONE: All footage shot!
Wed, April 23: Rough Cuts DUE: Individual In-Progress Critiques
Wed, April 30: Last In-Progress critique GRADES GIVEN; Videos due, copied to HW folder by 2:30pm
Wed, May 7: FINAL CRITIQUE! (3:30-5:30pm) Videos due, copied to HW folder by 3:15pm
Fri, May 9: Final Reel DVDs due 1pm SHARP in box outside my door
Extra Credit due 1pm SHARP in box outside my door

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