Blocking Operation and Control

Respect Your Elders 2

Creative Commons image Respect Your Elders 2 by Pete Considine at Flickr


In this project, we took our screenplay and created a short film out of it. We read articles about strong and weak blocking, and incorporated it into our conversation. Then we positioned the cameras, and filmed the conversation. We also filmed another group’s conversation. Then we edited the shots by ourselves and added the audio to create a short film.

Terms and Concepts


  1. Block – determining where the actors will be on the set and the first camera position
  2. Light – what is lighting and how does it add to the scene- time for the DOP to light the set and position the camera for the first shot
  3. Rehearse – camera rehearsal of the first set-up with the actors and crew (practice).
  4. Adjustments – changes- making lighting and other adjustments
  5. Shoot – video scenes- shooting the first scene (then repeat the process)
  • Tips
    • Have shot list
      • Shot list- Document that lists and describes shots
    • Watch actors’ ideas first so you can base it off them when you suggest something
    • Place camera based on what’s important in the scene
    • Directors should keep working at blocking till it works (puzzle)
    • Speed is essential in tv or low-budget films
      • Action should take place in one direction (to avoid turning the camera around for reverses).
        • Reverses= actors facing opposite, usually aren’t both in screen at the same time, so like in a conversation.
    • Important:
      • Strong vs Weak acting
    • Strong acting
      • Confident
      • Controlled
      • Relaxed
    • Weak acting
      • Slouching
      • Uncertain
      • Hesitant




  1. Day 1
    • Finish plans
    • Finish storyboard
  2. Day 2
    • Set up equipment
    • Be filmed
    • Film a team
  3. Day 3
    • Upload to Premiere Pro
    • Begin editing
  4. Day 4
    • Finish editing
    • Export to YouTube
    • Embed in blog post
  5. Day 5
    • Finish editing blog post
  6. Day 6
    • Check over blog
    • Publish post


Project Skills Evidence




Images from Alaina8’s Flickr account

This is our conversation that we recorded. As you can see, we chose to have Alaina’s blocking be full of strong movements, like leaning forward and not being hesitant. My blocking, on the other hand, was weaker. I chose to be more closed off to add a power differential to the scene. Lily was more neutral in her blocking. She had some strong movements, like leaning forward when she asked a question, but some weaker, like having her hands in her pockets. Meanwhile, my blocking was weakest with my arms crossed and my posture shrinking back. Since Alaina was dominating the conversation, we chose her blocking to be strong, with arms moving and relaxed posture rather than stiff, which would have been weaker blocking.

What I Learned

In this project, I learned about strong and weak blocking, and how to apply it to shooting a scene. I learned that your posture and movement can help people tell what attitude your character has. Weak movement is much different than strong movement. I also learned in this project how to do a multi-cam on Premiere Pro. I started out having trouble, because I didn’t know what to do. Then my computer quit and I lost my editing. I solved this problem by starting over, this time with the Premiere Gal video to help me. When I was having trouble, I asked my neighbor. In this way, I was able to finish the video and export it in one class period. It was a lot easier when I had someone giving me advice. The skills I learned in the project will help me in life because if I ever go into film, I need to know how to do a multi-cam. I also need to know how to solve problems and not give up when something doesn’t work. These are skills I learned in this project.

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