M7 Reflection

Choose one of the videos you watched in Module 7 and, in the comments of this post, explain why you thought it was or wasn’t effective. What do you think the creator of the video was trying to do? Did it do what you think it set out to do? Why or why not?


  1. I’ve decided to write about the Ten Meter Tower video. I didn’t think the time was effective. That story could have been told in five minutes instead of 16:16. However, I loved it. Even more than the video, I loved the concept. The video left much to be desired with the majority of the video being a still camera with plenty of jump cuts. The production quality could have been much better in terms of video. The audio was great and extremely clear.

    The captions were needed considering they spoke in another language. I appreciated that.

    The double box was the highest piece of video production. I loved it. Those two shots together were everything. I loved that clarity of the natural sound. It was impressive. The slo-motion video was great.

    I think the creator was trying to convey the agony involved with making the decision to jump or not and that was done. The time actually helped with that. Some of that would have been lost if it were edited down to move quicker.

    Overall, I loved this video. I think I watched it three times.


  2. I decided to write about the video “The Painter of Jalouzi” because I am an artist on the side, and I found it to be very inspiring to see someone using their talent to bring joy and hope to a slum in Haiti. Honestly, I found very little wrong with the video itself. My only complaint would have to be with the audio quality, but for the entire video to be shot with an iPhone, that is understandable.

    Since we are talking about visual storytelling, however, I want to focus on how powerful this video was. First off, it was genius to start the video in black and white, stripped of all color except for the subtitles. That image paired very well with the theme of the story. Since it is about a painter talking about how color can change the world, it made it that much more inspiring to see the very bright and vivid colors come to life right before our eyes. It basically began by detailing how sad the world would be without color, and as the narrator suggests, it does look quite dreary in black and white. Then, however, the color comes rushing into the video, and it paints this beautiful picture of how majestic a place like Haiti can be. I think many of us take for granted how much beauty is out in the world, especially when thinking of somewhere like Haiti that we tend to associate with famine. Couple all of that with the narrator’s poetic dialogue at the beginning and you have an extremely engaging work of art that I believe almost anyone can sympathize with.

    On the technical side, I was blown away by how great the video quality was to have been shot with an iPhone 6. I know that this specific model can shoot in 4K, but I have never actually shot a video in 4K myself. This video actually inspired me to go outside today and shoot with my own iPhone in 4K, and it was unbelieavable to see the color and contrast pop that much.

    Overall, I think the creator set out to show the world that beauty can be found anywhere, and that all it takes is a little dedication, and a whole lot of color. Watching the kids help paint the wall and the citizen of Haiti paint their own pictures was nothing less than inspiring. Ultimately, I think the creator wanted to convey hope and joy, and he absolutely succeeded.

  3. It was a tough choice between the Painter of Jalouzi & Ten Meter Tower, but I’m going to focus on Ten Meter Tower.

    The fear is so evident without a word being spoken. It completely ropes you in, in the first few seconds of the film. What’s amazing about the filmmaking here is the shot perspective. You know exactly what’s happening, even though you haven’t seen the pool yet. I went back to check the time and it’s nearly 6 minutes in before you even see the pool, but it’s the reactions of the would-be jumpers that you’re locked in on. As the film went on, I kept wondering if I needed them to show me the pool at all. I came to the conclusion that I didn’t, but again the perspective was so interesting.

    It’s not so much about the dive, but the decision to dive. Seeing people grapple with that fear was fascinating. The approach that they chose was also of significant. The hesitations that we saw could’ve left the divers injured. It seemed clear that the longer you waited, the more difficult it was going to be to take the leap. It was fear taking hold. Using dual-perspectives really helped to tell the story. It allowed for the filmmakers to give the viewers some options.

    The other tool that I thought was used really well, was “Slow-Mo.” If you had no idea how far ten meters was, this gave you a crystal clear shot of what the divers were having to think about. I’m happy that early on, when divers were looking down that we didn’t get a shot from their eye perspective. It left something to the imagination and honestly allowed my own phobias about diving from that distance to take hold. So it was able to reach me on multiple levels: 1) The Visual 2) The Mental 3) The Emotional. That’s a hard trick to pull off with only 16 minutes.
    Seeing the 2 friends argue was captivating. Especially, since the first friend came back up to the board to assure his buddy that everything is going to be fine. If you look closely at that sequence, the reluctant friend has his arm locked around the rails, as if to say, he expects his friend to push or pull him into the dive. Seeing that level of fear was mesmerizing.

    I thought they would end with someone walking down from the platform, but my soul was uplifted by their choice to have a triumphant backwards dive finish the piece. I’m not sure if that diver was afraid, but one could argue that the fear is what pushed her to not look before she leapt. I imagine that that was an experienced diver because of how well the final dive was executed, but it was wonderful ride of a film.

  4. I chose 116 Cameras. This was such a captivating and moving short documentary.

    I really liked the opening sequence. It starts with Eva surrounded by all these flashing lights and you can hear the 116 camera shutters closing and opening. I had no idea what was happening, but my curiosity was already piqued.

    She started talking, and I still wasn’t sure what this was about. Then she said, “Why don’t you ask me a question about Auschwitz?” and I understood. She was a Holocaust survivor. The music felt to me kind of mysterious but also solemn, which I thought fit really well.

    One of the things that made this documentary so incredible was that it was about the project, but it really wasn’t. It was really about Eva, and it used the project as a means to tell her story. Even though the project is really amazing, it took a back seat.

    I think that’s what the creator of the video was trying to do: showcase this really cool project, but more importantly, showcase Eva and her life to make it feel much more personal and make people care. If that is what the video was trying to do, then I think it did so very well by focusing on her and what she was saying while showing her inside the “cage” and interacting with the people from the project.

  5. The video I chose to watch was “116 Cameras.” This was such a stimulating short film, both visually and intellectually.

    From an artistic perspective, I found the opening sequence to be particularly effective in drawing in the viewer. As a photographer, I was fascinated by the way they surrounded Eva Slotchz (Schloss?) with all those cameras. It really appreciated the short clip of her eyes reflecting the little dots of light.
    I was already hooked by the aesthetics of the film but the moment she mentioned “Auschwitz,” the New York Times got me glued. Personally, I found this to be most effective in maintaining my interest. My godmother is Jewish and used to share stories about her family’s experience during WWII, so I found this short film to be especially moving. It was a documentary but unlike regular documentaries, this one emitted a sense of intimacy. It felt less like a history lesson and more as though I was hearing it from a relative or a close friend. I think that was the creator’s intention, to create a feeling of intimacy between Eva and the viewer. And if that was the case, it worked.

    Side Note: I liked Calvin’s interpretation of NYT portraying her as if she were inside a “cage.” I’m not sure if it was intentional or became intention after the fact, but it was definitely a deep notion.

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