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Friday, May 16, 2008

Who is Bruce Block and why is he drawing pictures of me?


Over the weekend I went (with fellow Bournemouth film maker Andy Marsh) to a talk by Bruce Block.

One does not always relish getting up at 6am on Saturday but new ideas have to be sought out as one learnt recently.

Bruce does a talk on visual structure. More details on his ideas to follow. Generally I come out in favour of recommending his lecture and he also has a book. But boiled down he is challenging film makers and directors to apply and consider an over riding arc of visual techniques that runs through the whole film, just as scriptwriters have narrative structures and character arcs that run through the whole story.

The reason? So that just as writers, once they have a solid structure, always know where they are going - so directors will now always know where to place the camera and what it should be focusing on.

As I said more to come. For now, a prologue, Bruce's career. He teaches as USC, he lectures around the world and he also producers and advises on films. He was producer on 'The Holiday' but also helped on Stuart Little, Father of the Bride and What Women Want.

For those that say they are too busy teaching to make their own films I say look at Bruce.
For those that are working and say that they are too busy to mentor others I say look at Bruce.

He is a theory guy and a practical guy. In fact he warns of the dangers of over analysing and too much theory with a killer line - dissecting something nearly always kills it. So be life givers, keep writing new things.

Image of discarded acetate sheets - he ploughs through them - this is after 1 hour.
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