Tag Archive - Stationary Camera Shots

Using Montages to Create Powerful Imagery

Now that we’ve literally covered the “distance” with a look at the stationary camera shots that are set at certain distances from the action, we’re going to explore some other stationary shots. You may recall I noted that there are two kinds of camera shots: stationary and moving. All stationary shots imply the camera is “locked” in a fixed position for that segment of shooting, whereas moving shots are just what’s implied—moving while the scene is being filmed.

Although there are numerous stationary shots we could look at, I’ve chosen a handful of ones I feel transfer over well in novels, and which are also highly useful for achieving certain desired effects. The purpose of this year-long course is to see how writers can borrow from great screenwriting technique—not in how to structure story or plot but how to visually convey their scenes in a way to supercharge their novels. Using a Montage Shot is one great way to do this. Continue Reading…

Long Shots—Too Far to Really Tell

We’ve been looking at the three basic stationary distance shots and have covered Close-Ups (Close Shots) and Full Shots (Medium Shots). Now we’re going to consider Long Shots, which have very specific and useful purposes in both films and novels.

Long Shots in novels are not often used. Why? Well, when you are a half mile away from something, you really can’t see all that much. But that is exactly why and when you want to use this particular shot. We looked at the use of Long Shots for Establishing Shots, but they can be used in other ways. Continue Reading…

Focusing the Camera on What Your Character Notices

While we’re looking at Full Shots (or Medium Shots), I’d like to share a great example in Leif Enger’s beautiful novel Peace like a River. Here we see eleven-year-old Reuben Land describe what happens in the bedroom he shares with his older brother, Davy. It’s late and the brothers are in bed, but trouble is brewing and has been for a while. Reuben startles at the sound of the floorboards creaking downstairs and trembles as he hears someone approaching their room. He realizes he’s waited too long to wake his brother. And then . . . Continue Reading…

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