Narrative 1


The Narrative Unit at freestyle is all about being able to translate your skills as an artist to tell a story. In each of our classes we go more in depth as to what that means with each skill (in English, we write, in Film we create short narrative films, and in digital media we create audio files of our English short stories) Over the course of the Unit, I definitely grew a lot as a writer, and as a film maker. I learned how useful the planning stage was when you make films. The key problem with the things I produced was that I didn’t have a clear plan and the product came out poorly because of my lack of vision, and often a mix of procrastination or being rushed on time. Even though my film didn’t come out as well as I hoped, I’m still proud of the final product I’m showing, because it took a lot of time and work, and quite honestly the final product isn’t actually as bad as I thought it was. 


Our assignment in English was to create a short story without using dialogue. This was supposed to help us increase our proficiency in describing things we want to tell our viewer, instead of just directly telling them through character speech. This is important because good visual language helps engage the reader in writing. My inspiration for my story was based on the immense pressure that students face as they get ready for college. Their entire life is spent inside of the little bubble that is their community, and in the timespan of just a few years they are forced to compete with the entire country for the chance at a good education.I produced the audio version of my story by using the freestyle studio to record, and then putting together audio files in Adobe Audition to make the final product.The value of having an audio version of the short story instead of a written one is shown through the use of separate sound effects and ambient noise that we use. Audio can provoke a lot of emotions, and can also help the listener engage with the story.

Washed Out

The bright light is harsh. Every day I wake up to the mechanical hum of the phosphorus lights, and the blank slate of the white walls. I know that today is the day that I’ve been waiting for for so long. Even that knowledge can’t stop my heart from pounding against my chest. I’ve looked into every other alternative, I’ve tried to see what life would be like without the procedure. As I’m waking up, I roll over to see the empty plate lying next to me. I had just managed to shove a ration down my throat the night before. Remembering the texture and taste of it causes me to gag at the thought. I break myself away from my daydreaming, suddenly I’m in the Classroom. Every day is the same, every moment, every experience blurs into one image. The same routine. Men dressed in white, long clothing, pens in the neatly ironed shirt pocket break my thoughts as they enter through the sliding door. The door must have once been new, but ever since I could remember it’s always been squeaky and lightly stained with a red pigment. They call themselves my parents. In every way they are identical to each other. They all seem to want the same thing from me. My life has and always was a competition among others for knowledge credits. I never got to see them, however, just numbers next to a score. My number, the name my parents called me, was Seven. A hand slams against the table.The white doors quickly whiz open, two parents come out. They quickly move over to me. The anticipation is killing me, they wait as if wanting an answer. It seems they had done this many times, acting in a robotic precision, as if they were cogs in a clock. My entire life had been building me up to this moment. Everyone else I had ever seen had seemed to be conditioned, a blank stare and no voice. It was as if they had been reduced to nothing. Usually I use my imagination to escape from the white, blank interior, but now there is nowhere left to run. Nowhere to hide my thoughts, my life. The promise of a future, a flavorful life is what pushes me forward. I know that the procedure is the only way to attain that. I nod my head, they lift me, and blindfold me. Through the rugged blindfold, I can see the lights go by on the ceiling, the many parents speaking. I feel my lungs starting to pull in more air, my pulse suddenly kicks into gear. Even though I had forgotten I now suddenly remember. Everything comes back into memory, pouring through at the rate of a waterfall. Even though I had done this many times, every time is a first for me. The arms holding me up suddenly release, and I feel myself drop onto harsh frigid metal table beneath me. Suddenly, I feel the piercing pain in my arm, the thin aluminum body digging deep into my veins. I hear the squeezing of the tip like a lemon, and the pain is gone. What was so dark suddenly turned so vivid and wild. My vision was the sun, my body was the a great vine shooting up to the sky. I could feel the burning all over, lava flowing into the crevices of my brain. Lightning. Knife. I felt the sensation of being crushed by the sun. Hurricane. Trampled. Drowning. Emotions, sensations, pain rushed by while I stood completely still. I felt the heat simmer over the horizon. The explosion of colors and experience and life and death quickly burned out, colors being quickly wiped out into a universal white. The bright light is harsh. Everyday I wake up to the mechanical hum of the phosphorus lights, and the blank slate of the white walls. As I’m waking up, I roll over to see the empty plate lying next to me. I get a feeling that I’m missing something. I can still see the memory of the ration going down my mouth. I want to go back to sleep. Just like the walls, I somehow feel white. Washed out.


Illustrations go here

Narrative Film

In Film, we were challenged to create a cohesive, short story.  From scratch. And then convince someone else to drop their idea in favor of yours. In the beginning, my idea sold really well, mostly because of my presentation skills which made up for my more than shoddy “drawing” skills.  My idea started out simple – boy needs to get from one place to another. I put this idea to brainstorm, and the responses I got complicated the story. Why does he need to get there – incentive.  What’s actually stopping him? How is this going to be a 4-5 minute film?

My simple idea turned into a complex web of a story that I need to sift through to create something understandable. There were flaws in a lot of my shots, I had to coordinate with busy actors and other people to get the shot locations I needed, and without an adequate storyboard (note back to those shoddy drawing skills), I didn’t have my core vision to draw back on when I needed it most, under stress. However, even through all the adversity, I managed to create a view-able product, and it’s not half bad.

Special thanks to Kate, who always drove us around and was super flexible with schedule changes. Thanks so much. Also to my broadcasting teacher, Mrs. Beare, who let us use her classroom several times while she was off work. 

  Creating a mask of the car, and inserting it into the shot using key frames