Exercises – Visulisation

Find a quiet moment or two and try to imagine the situation described below. Think what you would see if you were there. Once you’ve conjured up the images go back to each and sketch out basic impressions of what you see (yay more drawing 🙂 )

You are talking to someone in a shop

The person is facing you talking in an animated way using their hands. 

Knocking on a door

You knock on the door. 

You wait. 

The door is opened.

You are having an illicit affair. 

You are alone having a passionate conversation with your loved one. 

A sudden sound in the background causes you to glance around. 

Consider the following. 

What was left out at the edges?

Note the things you were aware of but did not choose to see.

Why did you leave them out?

Will the viewer be aware that they are there?


To start with I visualised myself in one of my favourite shops, the bookshop in town. I was originally going to draw myself in the little Costa because I love that place so much but decided it didn’t really define itself as a shop.

With this decided I closed my eyes and imagined myself walking through the actions. My Mum gave me some strange looks as I smiled at seemingly no-one and started knocking on a door. I decided to link the three of them and used the same character, Tristan, book loving, enthusiastic and kind but held prisoner by his malicious and twisted wife.

Meeting Tristan Bookshop- ChloeClik.jpg

  1. I chose a mid shot composition of Tristan behind his desk. He has a big grin and is waving his hands enthusiastically describing his favourite books. He looks very at home in the bookstore. The background is mostly made up of books and an occasional business card.

Consider the following. 

What was left out at the edges?

I left out the cash register and a display of bookmarks. Also causal shoppers.

Note the things you were aware of but did not choose to see. I would have been aware of shoppers, but only at the periphery of my vision. And as said above, the cash register.

Why did you leave them out. 

As I like this man my focus would have been soley on him, that’s why I made him more or less central in the frame, as a bullet point composition draws more attention in symmetry.

The till was originally featured but looked a bit strange so I decided to add a pile of books instead. I didn’t feature the bookmarks because I felt there was already a lot of elements in the drawing and it would have unnecessarily cluttered up the frame.

Will the viewer be aware that they are there.  

I think so, it is a bookshop after all and there are always customers milling around. The desk is clear but perhaps, in hindsight, a name badge may have made it clear that he was working there.


You knock on a door.

Meeting Tristan - ChloeClik.jpg

Frame 1 – I decided to ring the doorbell instead so my hand didn’t obscure the name of the door. I made it bright and cheerful to highlight Tristans art loving character.

Frame 2. Usually when I ring a doorbell I feel slightly self conscious and glance at my feet. This also gave scope to add in the welcome mat.

Frame 3. I’ve just been listening to music so glance at my iPhone to pause it. Listening to Lawson, Roads. This may also highlight the characters age.

Frame four. Tristan opens the door, he is thrilled to see me as I am him.

Consider the following. 

What was left out at the edges?

I left out the wall of the house, the door handle,

Note the things you were aware of but did not choose to see.

As above.

Why did you leave them out?

The door was shown by the doorbell and number, a doorhandles would have been unnecessary as I wanted a strong macro shot and switching to a wider shot wouldn’t have been as effective.

Will the viewer be aware that they are there?

Yes because the door is made clear and the fact that the house walls aren’t included aren’t essential as the viewer can tell it’s a house due to the door and welcome mat.


You are having an Illicit affair. For the record I would never do such thing so in this case my boyfriend Tristan is trying to escape his evil wife but she has him in her clutches.

The Affair- ChloeClik.jpg

Frame One.

We are dancing in Tristans house, my arms are on his shoulders. Music is playing and he reassures me his wife is out.

Frame Two. Tristan leans in closer for a kiss telling me he loves me. Just as he does so there is a thump.

Frame three. I look round wildly and see it’s just Pebbles the cat on the window sill looking honest.

Frame four. The shock was too much for Tristan. He sits on the edge of his bed, head in hands scared of what we are doing.

What was left out at the edges?

Details of the room. Though I did include the window to show how he is standing up.

Note the things you were aware of but did not choose to see.

I chose not to see some of the furniture.

Why did you leave them out?

I felt my focus would have been on Tristan not on the surroundings. Also I liked the frame, and if I filled it I would have used a wide aperture to hone in on this

Will the viewer be aware that they are there? 

Yes because the window showing a view outside represents they are inside the house.


I was then asked to look at other students interpretations of this exercise. I was very taken by this blog, the illustrations told the story and the narration very humorous, especially “the cat stealing the milk is also analogous of the illicit affair and it looks guilty too. (not by design I assure you, my drawing is not that good”

This was also good, the powerful images, the romantic passion of the moment and then the shock of the persons wife finding the two of them together! I like her interpretation, everyone else chose something else that disturbed them, a cat, someone falling from a tree. Just shows that lots of different people can create something with the same rules, subject and guideline yet not one of them will be similar. It shows the uniqueness of everyone’s imagination.

I also thought this was a clever sequence on the opening the door, the doormat marked ‘Go away’ was surprising and made you laugh in surprise. Then the creepy person answering the door with the chain still across. I liked the dark colours to show the mood;

The exercise then asked me to answer the following questions.

  • Which sequences are the most effective and why?

Regarding my own drawings, I’d say my favourite sequence was the opening the door. The waiting, who’s behind the door, casual moments of impatience/self consciousness and then the happy face at the door.

From a subjective or objective view, I think both are extremely powerful and offer an insight into the character in both ways. For movies packed full of action or terror, the subjective view is so effective, almost like shoving the viewer right into the movie and nothing is in their control. It’s scarier, and gives the impression of playing high octane video game where you never know what is around the corner. Yet at the same time this can work very well in the objective view, in the movie Shining (which I haven’t watched but it was in one of the top ten movie moments) young Danny is cycling down the long corridors round corner and corner. It’s incredibly tense, the low view point gives a feeling of fear and vunerability. You have no idea what is around the corner, I definitely don’t want to find out either.

  • What makes a convincing subjective sequence.

One which takes advantage of the subjective composition with extreme close ups, honing in on characters faces, even harsh breathing from behind the camera. In an action sequence seeing feet flashing by and the camera being jerky generates great feelings of action and terror.

  • What gives the sequence a sense of atmosphere or tension?

As above, harsh breathing, jerky footage, long sequences where you know there’s something just around the corner but you have no idea. Also when it is filmed on a handheld camcorder, all erratic and hard to grab hold of the action everything is moving so fast. The series Jeopardy was shot partly on camcorders, it made it very hard to watch as the intended effect was they weren’t the most skilled at filming. Camera shake just added to the feeling of drama. I am a big lover of scenes where people are running and in a subjective sequence this would have to focus on feet and blurred imagery but wouldn’t be able to film the main character running, unless however they dropped the camera as they ran out of sight.

  • What information is conveyed in each frame.

It depends what you are filming but in regards to the students work I have highlighted that above.





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