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-   -   Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding? (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/techniques-independent-production/537015-frameforge-worth-buying-storyboarding.html)

Paul R Johnson November 7th, 2019 01:01 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
That's great - Get some work under your belt, and a few credits for audio and see where it takes you. Don't run before you can walk. Develop your skills, get good and get confident.

Pete Cofrancesco November 7th, 2019 01:02 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ryan Elder (Post 1954626)
Oh ok well i thought i was good at sound recording and boom op work.

On your say so? Even if that’s true that doesn’t mean there is demand in your area. I mean clients willing to pay you a livable wage, not passion films with no budget.

Josh Bass November 7th, 2019 02:17 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
thats true. Being able to focus on one thing may be a big city thing...many people that survive in this biz (and keep in mind I dont really mean filmmaking but rather “filmmaking-adjacent” areas of video production like coporate, weddings, commercials, training videos, events, etc. ) are basically one-person production companies that do everything from developing in the concept/script to the editing, hiring other crew as needed per project.

So the thing is you have to be good at a thing AND able to make a sustainable living at it.

Ryan Elder November 7th, 2019 02:40 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Sure, thanks, that's a good idea.

John Nantz November 7th, 2019 11:54 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
I have to chime in with what Josh Bass said in the post above with "the big city thing."

Going on-line one can find a huge amount of resources in the Los Angeles area for anything video related. Compared to small areas, even like our Seattle area, the LA area has a huge amount of resources. People with specialities, equipment, you name it and they've pretty much got it covered. By comparison, smaller urban or metro areas are really limited and while the Seattle-Tacoma area is large it doesn't hold a candle to LA area.

Ryan - I admire your spunk and your effort to try and get it right. Being in the area you're in means you're far removed from resources so it has to be extremely difficult to get answers to your concerns.

Ryan Elder November 8th, 2019 06:52 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Pete Cofrancesco (Post 1954629)
On your say so? Even if that’s true that doesn’t mean there is demand in your area. I mean clients willing to pay you a livable wage, not passion films with no budget.

Yeah not a lot of people are hiring for audio only it seems. They want video too. But I find it difficult to do both, and do a much better job if I am audio only. Perhaps I need to look for elsewhere for the right people who do not mind a separate person recording the sound entirely, compared to the camera work.

But I was also told that people that if I don't make my first feature I am just going to keep on regretting it, so I have to do push forward and do it, or at least they say. I've been doing filmmaking work for other people for about ten years now, and I figure it's just time to take the plunge, like everyone else I know who has.

Brian Drysdale November 8th, 2019 07:26 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Many, if not most drama directors have never made a feature film, they get their work on TV series. It really depends on what you want to get out of this feature film. The odds are that you'll lose your investment, so is the feature film to show case your directing skills or something on a bucket list?

If you succeed progressing with the directing, you'll probably have to move away from where you're currently living in order to find work.

Outside of the larger production centres the chances are that you'll need to be multi skilled and carry out all the tasks in a one or two person business,

Josh Bass November 8th, 2019 08:13 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
You were TOLD you would regret it. Do YOU want to make a feature? Seems silly to spend $20000 cause someone else told you how you would theoretically feel.

As for audio work...would you be willing to uproot your life and relocate to a bigger city? Especially considering you dont know if youre actually good at or suited to this work and you only have your own judgment —which has been called into question many times here— to go on?

Again, the reality in a small area is that often to get work video production people have to basically handle every aspect of a project in regards to development, producing and post ( hiring others to fill out crew on shoot days).

Sorry...started this and took so long to post I didnt see Brian essentially post the same info

Ryan Elder November 8th, 2019 10:11 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
I do regret not doing it now, I was just told i would regret it more, if I don't. I dont think anyone is going to give me a shot at directing an episode of a tv series though. Unless I am wrong? This is why I thought I would take the approach of doing my own independent feature to market, like others have.

Brian Drysdale November 8th, 2019 10:34 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
No one is going to stop you, just be aware that the odds of getting a return on your investment in a feature film are very small. It should therefore be regarded more as a training exercise than a commercial operation and as such you should have the script for the next project ready to go, so that you can attract possible backers.

Josh Bass November 8th, 2019 10:39 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
BUT also keep in mind that feature will be your “resume” to show your skills to those backers so you want it as perfect as it can be.

Paul R Johnson November 8th, 2019 10:51 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
so we're back to you directing again? Why would you put your money into a project where you know you're actually not that effective, or have ideas you can realise?

I don't get it.

Pete Cofrancesco November 8th, 2019 12:06 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
I think this feature film project is unlikely to help you career wise to become a director.

First, you don't seem to have the leadership and communication skills that are essential to be a director. You also struggle with the technical aspects of visual storytelling. You've even brought in someone else to take on directing the actors. This won't fly in the professional film making.

Second, a low budget movie like this is most likely going to yield bad to mediocre results that won't win a film festival award or make a compelling reel.

Third, even if you grow into a good director and the movie is a success, you'd have to be willing to move out of the area.

In the end you will have spent a lot of money to full fill your desire to make a feature film. Beyond that I think it will be just another chapter in your 10 year journey in film making.

John Nantz November 8th, 2019 11:36 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Last year there was a long-time member here, also from Canada, who decided to throw in the towel and get out of the business. Don’t remember who that was but it might be interesting to read the thread about what his thoughts and dreams were and how he finally decided to leave. Perhaps someone can remember who that was?

Ryan Elder November 9th, 2019 02:26 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Pete Cofrancesco (Post 1954660)
I think this feature film project is unlikely to help you career wise to become a director.

First, you don't seem to have the leadership and communication skills that are essential to be a director. You also struggle with the technical aspects of visual storytelling. You've even brought in someone else to take on directing the actors. This won't fly in the professional film making.

Second, a low budget movie like this is most likely going to yield bad to mediocre results that won't win a film festival award or make a compelling reel.

Third, even if you grow into a good director and the movie is a success, you'd have to be willing to move out of the area.

In the end you will have spent a lot of money to full fill your desire to make a feature film. Beyond that I think it will be just another chapter in your 10 year journey in film making.

Oh okay, well I thought I could improve on those areas in the next project for sure. Could I do better with visual storytelling if I had the right DP do you think?

I've helped others make their features but they said it was worth it for their careers to make theirs, and one of them even got distribution, so they aren't regretting it, so I feel I wouldn't either therefore.

I can move out of the area, I just need to get a job that can pay well enough to live in such a costly city. But I can start looking again. Should I make the feature in a different city, or move before making it do you think?

Brian Drysdale November 9th, 2019 03:02 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Visual story telling comes from the script and the director, not the DP, they can only work with what they're given. If you've got a dialogue heavy script, a tight schedule and limited resources there is just so much a DP can do in making a film visual. They can only work with what they've got.

How well any film will progress your career depends very much on you, your own talents as a film maker and how much networking you're willing to do outside your group. Quite a few people have had successful careers and they've never directed a feature film, but they're good at networking.

Have any of your short films been shown at film festivals? These are the early stages of networking and seeing how well audiences (who don't know you) react to your films. That's quite apart from you seemingly not having picked up some of the basic stuff that film students I've assisted on their graduation films know.

As for moving, didn't you ask about this in another thread?

Regarding making a first feature film. I would throw away any thriller cliches, root it in the area where you live, so it has a sense of place with interesting characters. They may be exaggerated but "Fargo", "Insomnia" is where you should be aiming or "Trapped" a Nordic noir set in Iceland. Audiences will forgive a lot if you take them somewhere they haven't been before.

Pete Cofrancesco November 9th, 2019 08:04 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ryan Elder (Post 1954663)
Oh okay, well I thought I could improve on those areas in the next project for sure. Could I do better with visual storytelling if I had the right DP do you think?

I've helped others make their features but they said it was worth it for their careers to make theirs, and one of them even got distribution, so they aren't regretting it, so I feel I wouldn't either therefore.

I can move out of the area, I just need to get a job that can pay well enough to live in such a costly city. But I can start looking again. Should I make the feature in a different city, or move before making it do you think?

The whole point of doing this film is to showcase your skills as a director. Since I doubt your area is a hot bed of professional cinema there probably aren’t many if any paid movie director position you could apply for. That means you have to move to wherever director jobs are available. I’d imagine the most common approach is move, get a minimum wage job to support yourself while you’re applying. This process could take a very long time.

If I were to guess your plan is: make a movie, win a film festival award, distribute it, and then investors will be knocking on your door to back your next project.

I don’t think you’ve spent much time thinking about the realities of pursuing a career as a director, the steps you have to take along with what it would take to land such a job. This is why we keep stressing get an unbiased professional to evaluate you and your work before going down this road.

Ryan Elder November 9th, 2019 04:39 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Oh yeah I could move to a city like Vancouver where there is a lot more film work, and get another job while applying for directing jobs. However, Vancouver is so costly to live in that minimum wage would not be near enough to live off of. I would need a really well paying job to have in the mean time, and haven't found one yet, but I've been looking.

I thought if I had a feature under my belt though, that I could apply for directing jobs more successfully compared to not having one at all. I didn't think investors would be knocking on my door, but I thought that having a feature out there, would definitely help when I applied for jobs myself.

Josh Bass November 9th, 2019 05:44 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Thing is, I don't think there are really directing jobs out there to apply for. It's not like applying for a regular job on Monster or Indeed (or whatever). That goes for most freelance/video production/film work. Almost everything in the professional tiers, i.e. where you can make a decent living, is a bunch of people who know each other, giving recommendations and word of mouth referrals.

Even if you go to film commission websites with ads seeking, most of the ads are placed BY the director or producer, they're probably looking for everything BUT a director.

Maybe I'm wrong...there are some higher end website with pro project postings that MIGHT have something like that, MAYBE. Those sites usually require a paid membership, and they would probably want verifiable credits of past things you'd worked on, and your own project won't count. They'll want to see you were good enough to be hired by someone else.

Of course there may be writers out there looking to have their scripts directed/produced, but then you'd basically be working at the same tier you are now and make next to nothing and be worked to death for the privilege of doing so.

Ryan Elder November 9th, 2019 06:51 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Yeah that's what I was thinking too, is that you don't apply for it. So I thought I would do what other directors have done and just produce and direct my own and see if it does well. Then if so, I produce and direct another, etc.

But it was said on here before, that I should move to another city to seek out directing jobs, unless I misunderstood that.

Brian Drysdale November 10th, 2019 02:04 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
What are you going to do as you produce, getting the funding in place? It can take years to get a film off the ground. No/micro budget features are more practice/personal pieces, they have the same budgets as shorts had when they were being shot on film. A couple of my short films had bigger budgets than your feature film project.

The entrance level in production companies is something like runner or researcher or you may get one of the lower grades on location management. You then work your way up as people get to know you. I know one A list executive producer on major feature films who started that way.

You can then make your own films with the advantage of good contacts and the possibility of "mates rates".

The odds are low of getting film directing jobs unless your film does extremely well on the festival circuit and you are relentless in finding and having good scripts ready to go before your film is finished. That's called development hell for good reasons,

Most of the paying directing work will be in TV or higher end corporate work, where they have budgets for crews, however, you do need to be able to think on your feet, although, commonly the DP does all the shots with the director involved in the overview and production aspects,

There's a reasonable number of people who have directed one feature film, but getting the second and third feature film is much harder.

Paul R Johnson November 10th, 2019 02:22 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Since 2004 when I quit teaching and went back to doing I have never once applied for a job. My younger colleagues might apply for crew roles on the big productions from adverts in the trade press, online and via the various agencies, but more experienced people tend to just be in the loop, and the various opportunities get passed along. I get the emails and phone calls and now pass many on to people I trust. I have never seen anyone advertise for a director, certainly not over here!

Let's face it ryan, a wonderful product says lots about you, but do you have anything that's positive? Why would anyone give you a directing job when you have no track record of even assistant directing, or even as a runner? Let's say somebody wanted a person lower on the pyramid than director. They want a cv/resume with your experience on it. Do you have one? They want to know the name of the last movie you worked on, what your role was and what scale of production it was. For a director, the questions get harder.

Ryan Elder November 10th, 2019 12:19 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Oh I have a resume of other people's films I worked on as a PA, boom operator and actor. I have references from those filmmakers on the resume, and they keep on using me for their features and shorts, so I figured they must like me enough to keep asking me to come on board. Would that be enough of a track record to get a job other than director?

As for getting a job as a director, or something lower, it seems like some think that the challenge is not worth pursuing, unless the pieces are all conveniently already lined up and ready to go for me. But I think I have to do the challenge, and cannot have everything else going for me, or don't do it at all, if that makes sense.

Brian Drysdale November 10th, 2019 01:47 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Nothing is going to be "conveniently already lined up" no one is suggesting it will be. If you really want to do it, no one can stop you, however, I would seriously consider upgrading your skills because currently they're about the same as many of the trainees in the industry.

Josh Bass November 10th, 2019 02:10 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
I agree.

How bout this...I know you've said you've worked on quite a few movie projects, some even budgeted. They don't seem to be teaching you much.

So, are there any video production companies in your area? People who works on commercials, corporate, whatever? Like bona fide production companies with paying clients? If so, what if you applied to those places at a bottom level position (no offense)? Intern, production assistant, whatever. They could get you out on some real shoots, though they aren't "films", get you learning proper set methods from real professionals. This stuff would translate at least somewhat to the things you want to do, give you real experience with how projects come together, a set should flow, etc.

Ryan Elder November 10th, 2019 02:32 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
I haven't been applying to video production companies, but independent filmmakers, who were making their own films so far. They have their own companies, if that counts? And I applied for positions they had available. The last feature I worked on as a PA, early this year. I'm currently doing a corporate type video for a client as well, but I haven't seen anyone asking for hiring on corporate videos. People I know who do corporate videos are a one man band and haven't been putting out calls for hiring anyone in my experience.

As for how much I am learning on those shoots, well my style of directing is different than their styles. For example, they only light once, and do the multi-camera thing so far, where as I use a single camera so far, so my approach is different from those I worked under on features. Their shot set ups are also different too. I want to learn how to direct actors better, but I feel like they do a lot with the actors in rehearsals, which I do not get to be a part of as a PA, or boom op, so I've been having trouble learning in that area.

As for the things I have acted on, I didn't get much direction I felt, accept for basic instructions in what to do, just before shooting.

For upgrading my skills, I felt that if I listened to other people who's critiques were to get a much better DP, and camera and lighting crew, and much better actors and do not settle for anything less, that that would really help. Unless it very likely won't?

Brian Drysdale November 10th, 2019 03:11 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
There are one week workshops in North America for people in the film industry, you should invest in some training.

https://professionalprograms.tft.ucla.edu/

Track 2: Film Production - UCLA School of TFTUCLA School of TFT

There are others that are attended by working professionals.

Josh Bass November 10th, 2019 03:32 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
I do not mean indie filmmakers, I mean production companies that make money from paying clients in the realm of corporate, commercial, etc.

Maybe there simply aren't any in your area. I would start by googling "video production companies Saskatoon" or something similar and see what pops up, then start cold calling. Say you're interested in being a PA, intern, grip, something like that. They probably won't put out ads because almost no one does that in the real production world. Even if it was a one man operation, surely sometimes that person needs a grip or PA, where could freelance for them.

Almost anything would be better than the limbo you seem to be in where you get a lot of questionable advice.

Again, I know this isn't "filmmaking" per se but the idea is to learn the basics, properly, from people who do this for a living. A bigger commercial is basically like ultra short film shoot.

Ryan Elder November 10th, 2019 04:15 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Oh ok, well I've done that too, and they say if something comes up, they will call me but they haven't. I can apply again.

Brian Drysdale November 10th, 2019 05:07 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
You always need to keep calling in, going in once doesn't mean a thing, it's the repeat visits that count in the end.

Josh Bass November 10th, 2019 05:15 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Yes. I would keep calling maybe once a month with all those places and ask if they have any projects coming up they could use you on.

The idea is to call often enough to be remembered/thought of as persistent, but not so often as to be annoying. I think once a month is a good neighborhood. Some of my clients tell me they frequently get calls from people like you and the callers often don't follow up. Be the guy who follows up.

Ryan Elder November 10th, 2019 06:07 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Okay thanks, I'll do that.

But do you think if I follow others advice, to get a much better DP, crew and cast, to make the feature with, that it would definitely help my chances a lot on it being good, or no?

Brian Drysdale November 11th, 2019 02:49 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
80% of how good a film is going to be is decided before a single frame is shot.

Ryan Elder November 11th, 2019 02:57 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Yep that makes sense. But out of that 80 percent would be the DP, crew and cast though, right?

Brian Drysdale November 11th, 2019 03:28 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Selecting those key people is part of the 80%.

Ryan Elder November 11th, 2019 11:47 AM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Okay thanks. I was also told by another filmmaker that I have collaborated before, that I should stop applying for other positions, because my problem is that I am trying to be a jack of all trades, and that I should spend my time on directing only, if I want to be a director. Do you think that's true, and that I should only take on directing projects only, even if they are my own, as oppose to other people's projects?

Brian Drysdale November 11th, 2019 12:38 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
It depends on if you're earning a living from these other projects. You will have to get work as a director working for other producers and you need to work on more than just drama. If they're your own feature films you may find it's a single project every one or two years (if you're lucky). Actually shooting a feature film is a small percentage time wise compared to that spent developing the script and getting funding in place.

As a professional director, you need fast turnaround work for many producers. If you're also the producer, you need a range of clients, as they say, it's show BUSINESS.

Ryan Elder November 11th, 2019 01:03 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
Oh okay. This next question has nothing to do with filmmaking but more of a career question.

I shopped the script of mine around that I am working on and have gotten feedback from filmmakers I have worked with before. They said that they are really uncomfortable with helping me make this script cause they said the material is too dark and controversial.

They said if I am to direct my first feature, they would be much more comfortable doing this other script I wrote before, which is not near as controversial and more safe for distribution. But the other script is way more high budget, and I wrote it as more of an exercise, or more food for thought to develop my writing. I thought maybe if I was successful in the future, I could have it ready to go then. Which is why I wrote this much lower budget feature, albeit with more controversial content.

However, they say that I should just throw away the script to that one, and just try harder to get the money for the higher budget one. But I don't think that's going to happen, and I think for my first feature, even if I do get external funding, they are probably more comfortable funding a lower budget movie, even if controversial compared to a high budget, safe movie?

What do you think?

Josh Bass November 11th, 2019 01:17 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
what is so controversial? at this point shows and movies about every taboo topic under the sun are out there. What could possibly be so controversial about yours? This might be one of those things that says more about the people youre asking than your script. You ask a bunch of devout Christians to help you on your Hitler/Satan buddy comedy (for instance) its probably not gonna work out.

Ryan Elder November 11th, 2019 01:21 PM

Re: Is FrameForge worth buying for storyboarding?
 
That's just it, I don't know, what is so much about mine. It's about a group of serial rapist/killers going around committing crimes, and one of the victims wants revenge, and investigates to find out more about the mystery villain, but this has been kind of controversy has been done before, and I didn't think I was going too over the top with it at all.


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