BOOKS :

Grammar of the Shot

Grammar of the Shot

Grammar of the Edit

Grammar of the Edit

Books by Christopher J. Bowen

I was fortunate enough to be asked by my publishers at Focal Press to revise two of their classic instructional film books for beginners. The late Roy Thompson penned the two first editions and I have put on the mantle and rebuilt them both from the ground up for the second editions.

Please take a look at the brief descriptions below and click on the links to read more about the books. If you wish to purchase the books, please click on the images to the left.

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GRAMMAR OF THE SHOT (2nd. Edition, Focal Press 2009) -

Description

People 'read' pictures as they do words, and pictures, like sentences, have their own grammar. A picture maker must be able to use the grammar correctly so that the visual story to be told will be clear and easily understood by all the audience. Grammar of the Shot is a manual for novice shooters (or anyone who needs a refresher) on the basic principles of putting together a coherent film or video piece, shot by shot. This book describes in no uncertain terms what absolutely must be in every shot--so that the successful film-maker can build a story that flows smoothly. It's designed as an easy-to-use reference, with each topic covered succinctly and accompanied by clear photographs and diagrams.

Simple, elegant, and easy to use, Grammar of the Shot is a staple of the filmmaker's library.

Contents

Chapter 1 THE SHOT AND HOW TO FRAME IT
Chapter 2 THE ART OF COMPOSITION
Chapter 3 COMPOSITION – BEYOND THE BASICS
Chapter 4 PUTTING YOUR SHOTS TOGETHER: PRE-THINKING THE EDITING PROCESS
Chapter 5 DYNAMIC SHOTS – TALENT AND CAMERA IN MOTION
Chapter 6 WORKING PRACTICES AND GENERAL GUIDELINES
Chapter 7 IN CONCLUSION

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GRAMMAR OF THE EDIT (2nd Edition, Focal Press 2009) -

Description
If you want to get to grips with film & video editing, this book sets down, in a simple, uncomplicated way, the fundamental knowledge you will need to make a good edit between two shots. Regardless of what you are editing, the problem of learning how to be a good editor remains the same. This book concentrates on where and how an edit is made and teaches you how to answer the simple question: 'What do I need to do in order to make a good edit between two shots?' Simple, elegant, and easy to use, Grammar of the Edit is a staple of the filmmaker's library.

Audience
Novice filmmakers or videographers who want a distilled guide to the principles of editing

Contents
I. Introduction II. What is Editing? III. What is an Edit? Transitions Between Shots A. What Types of Edits are there? i. The Cut ii. The Dissolve iii. The Fade iv. The Wipe IV. When to make the Cut? For reasons of: A. Motivation B. Information C. Composition D. Sound E. Camera Angle F. Continuity G. Pacing V. The Five Most Common Edit Categories A. The Action Edit (continuity) B. Screen Position Edit (screen direction, directing the eye) C. Form Edit (match cut or match dissolve) D. Concept Edit (use of symbolism/themes to underline action/meaning) E. Combined Edit (several categories combined in one transition) VI. The Editor's Challenge: How to Handle Difficult Footage. A. Scenarios where Film Language and Shooting-For-Editing got mixed up during production and how the editor might save the day in post

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