They say there’s beauty in the breakdown – and boy, did I breakdown. All weekend long I was worried about this video essay assignment and all the criterions we had to fulfill. Like most areas in life, I went into overthinking mode and couldn’t think of an idea or topic that I thought would be the most interesting and that would hit all the requirements.
As it was Valentine’s Day weekend, I went to Chicago. And while in Chicago, I thought about filming a billiards hall with its pool tables, bar, food and comedy shows. Pressure Billiards & Cafe was awarded Best Billiards in Chicago Reader’s Best of 2013 guide, and I thought that hit the points of uniqueness and prominence. Unfortunately, the videos had poor lighting. Plan B was to think of something back on campus, and Monday’s snowy weather proved to be an opportunity.
I was at work around 9 or 10 am when I noticed the intense snow fall through the windows. That would look so beautiful on camera, I thought. Students are always complaining about the weather and snow. And on Monday, students were especially talking about the unexpected thundersnow that hit Urbana-Champaign and other central Illinois areas. But again, I ran into two more problems. Every time I was in class or at a meeting, the snow fall would start. And when I was back outside ready to film, the snow fall would stop. Problem number two came when my camera’s batteries died not even half way through filming. Next time, I’ll be sure to check my battery level before heading out to film.
My final plan was to film a walk around and on the quad and to show how the main area looks in the winter and what kinds of sights one would expect. The quad is one of the University of Illinois’ great defining features, and as a result, I think it’s not only unique (because of the structure and size), but it also hits proximity. Filming in the winter and snow also hits the category of weather. I was also able to capture a few humorous moments: someone wearing a bear suit, someone randomly running across the quad and someone waving at the camera. I think these moments captured a taste of the quirky things you might see. I wanted to bring the video together with music in the background, and through my boyfriend’s suggestion, I was able to find an instrumental that put the finishing touch on the video essay.
Overall, I think this assignment turned out better than I expected. But, if I could, I think I would do this assignment over again.
Check out my fourth assignment here!