A new mother tongue

March 17, 2017
By Tooba Ghani

My friend inspired me to try my hands at photo editing, and now I feel it in my bones that I should experiment with videos. It would sound like a tall claim if I say I would make films in the future.

My friend inspired me to try my hands at photo editing, and now I feel it in my bones that I should experiment with videos. It would sound like a tall claim if I say I would make films in the future. With no formal education in filmmaking, how can I do that? Remember Madeeha Raza from Women Film Festival who learned filming after graduating in business administration?

Then, why should I hold back my desire of making films? There are institutes where I can catch up on the short courses and workshops to learn filmmaking.

My interest in filmmaking took me to International Design Conference Karachi held at Indus Valley School (IVS). Speaking in moving pictures and sounds was one of the workshops that caught my attention. Initially, I thought the workshop was for professional filmmakers only and I should not be attending it. While I listened to the workshop instructor, Babar Sheikh, filmmaker and audiovisual installation artist, I realized the workshop was quite interactive and beginner-friendly.

Not a big deal

If you are waiting for that perfect day when you will have enough money to buy a DSLR - or you will get it as a gift, believe me that day will take a long time to come. So right now, stick to what you have at hand. Yes, we do make a big deal out of life. Specialized cameras and filming equipment are super duper expensive; if you sale your master prime lenses kit, you could buy a bungalow!

‘Film capture technology’ has changed for the better. With just few smartphone apps you can make ordinary pictures look extraordinary and with video editing apps and basic sound devices, you can tweak videos and develop great content.

The exciting world of filmmaking

We would all agree that sound and sights attract a large number of people. Have you ever noticed the number of likes and comments you get on video and picture uploads? Whenever, I post a link of an article or share an opinion, it hardly gets a like - even my best friends ignore it!

Films are now becoming one of the fastest and most effective ways of reaching out to the people. The recent mobile cinema project “Dekh Magar Pyaar Se” is also an effort to take films to every corner of the country.

We all indulge in our fantasies; individuals usually think they would travel to interesting locations with fantastic equipment and shoot freely. This doesn’t happen in the beginning; always begin with the basics. Try making a ‘video installation’ first!  Or just go around collecting sounds, tweak them and turn them into something special.

We know how music makes horror movies scary. The magic is in the pairing of sounds and sights; the more artistically a filmmaker transposes sounds into pictures, the more impact a film has. If you get a chance to listen to Zara Paracha’s mesmerizing Sounds of Sehwan, you would realize how creatively she has juxtaposed randomly picked sounds from the shrine with Abida Parveen’s qawali.

Old is gold

Some movies from the 90’s were a source of inspiration for Babar. He would take home tapes of foreign films from the International Film Club at Indus Valley School and watch it on weekends. Beginners are highly recommended to familiarize themselves with old masterpieces. Unfortunately, we find them boring and outdated! The instructor shared a 10-minute clip of the movie Wings of Desire. This Franco-German movie, shot in the 70’s, won his director several international awards; the movie is about invisible angels who populate Berlin and listen to the thoughts of the human inhabitants and comfort those who are in distress. Through these movies, one could dramatically enrich their knowledge of filmmaking.