Five-Shot Sequence



The purpose of this exercise is to apply five sequential shots to a simple story. Good storytelling skills require that you shoot sequences, which are simply a series of shots that can be edited together to show an action as it unfolds.

Instructions
Working on your own, you will conceive and shoot your own assignment, using the other members as on-camera talent if you choose to do that. All assignments must be shot with the equipment assigned to the class unless other arrangements have been made with the instructor.

Come up with a simple story where the action can unfold from beginning to end in five shots. For example, you could do a story that shows one person giving a book to another. Or you can show a person adding cream or sugar to their coffee. 

Make sure to record padding - start recording the video a few seconds before the action and keep recording a few seconds after the action is complete. 

Don't forget to record NATS - even if you decide not to use them, it's good to get in the habit of always recording audio.

Edit the video with pacing and rhythm, making sure that that the editing is seamless. Each individual will edit their own video. You should add music and then export the video with a slate that has your name on it.

Guidelines
At the least you need to use the following shots:
  • One wide shot - this shot shows all the characters in the same shot, known as a Master Shot. This shot provides context to their location and interaction.
  • At least two extreme close-ups - these shots show details, such as what is in the person's hands, or a cutaway to the person's face for a reaction shot.
  • Over-the-shoulder shot - you might end up using at least one of these shots to show characters' proximity to each other.
  • At least one unusual angle that shows viewers something they don't normally see. Put the camera where the eyes don't usually go. Stand on a chair and point the camera down, or get a low-angle shot looking up at the person or object.
  • Use of a tripod is REQUIRED - NO EXCEPTIONS
Review the video below for inspiration, but please don't duplicate the stories. You must come up with your own original story. The video was uploaded by filmmaker Brian Hershall Merrick who teaches film production in Los Angeles.