Wednesday, March 26, 2008

line of sight, the reaction shot

That site is a vertitable treasure trove - quickly took a bunch of reaction shots, as in multiple character dialogue, it's often underlooked. We all have that tendency to stiffly pose a character with the intent of getting to it later.

I wanted to mention 2 key things to think about.
Head tilt.

You can do a lot with these, especially when you have more than one character in a scene next to each other. Sometimes it's just a bit of subtlety that really makes it. Look at the Jean Reno shot...he's just standing slightly left of the center, but his tilted head, heavy expression, and the way in which he focusses offscreen really show a lot of character. I love the staging of the Robin Williams shot. His slightly hunched look really places him strongly in the scene in a very defensive way.
The other thing is how the gaze of the character leads you around the rectangle. I like the bottom shot, as they two characters are fundamentally a unit but your eye starts back at the far guy, pulling to the front, and zipping offscreen, then back again to the first guy...

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