Let’s get visual!

Show, Don't Tell

Today, we’re going to take you through some cool tips and tricks on how to incorporate colour into your short film through the creative use of costumes and props.

We also go in depth on visual storytelling in episode 4 of Nextwave Online – check it out!

If you’re looking for a leg up on the competition, Nextwave Online is here to help, and is available fully subsidised to schools and individuals in the Northern Rivers and Mid North Coast regions of NSW for the next two years.  Click the button below to learn more! 

Colour Theory, Kokoda Cadzow-Jones, NYFA’22

The secret language of colour

Did you know that colour has been used in the film industry for years as a way to convey certain aspects of a character’s personality? For instance, if you are writing a character who is very angry or irritated all the time, you might dress them in red or have be associated with a red prop to personify that aspect of their personality to your audience.

The 2023 competition guidelines state that you need to include a torch and the theme of strength throughout the film. Try having a brainstorm session around strength. Does strength have a colour to you? What colour would you use to represent strength? These are just suggestions, and by no means do you need to include a colour consistently throughout your film, but it might just give you a helpful jumping off point

Try experimenting with colour in different ways in your short film. Colour can completely change the tone and feel of your scene, thus conveying a different idea and message to your audience! 

Props! What are they good for? (Lots of things!)

Every Piano App Ad Ever, Brianna Jones, NYFA’22

Props, like colour, can be used to convey a character’s motivation and personality. Props can also be used to further the development of your story as well as represent the end goal for your film.

You may have heard of Chekhov’s Gun – a storytelling principle that can help you remember to keep any elements you introduce into the story relevant. Chekov said don’t introduce a gun that doesn’t go off – we say don’t introduce a piano that a dog doesn’t play.

In other words – less is more.

It’s good to keep in mind that one or two well used props can propel your plot further in a shorter amount of time than dialogue, so get creative with it and have fun!

Did you find these tips helpful? Want to hear more about costumes and props? We delve into all that and more in Episode IV of the Nextwave Online workshop episodes! Fill out the form below and a member of our team will be in touch to find the best subscription option for you! 

Happy filmmaking!

Want to get a leg up on the competition and bring the Nextwave online filmmaking workshops to your school? Register your interest below!

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