Films at the palm of your hand

Photo: Ashleigh Tullis
Photo: Ashleigh Tullis

You don’t need a lot of cameras and equipment to make a film.

All you need is a smart phone.

Glenfield film maker Melissa Brattoni said she had always wanted to make a short film.

After seeing SF3’s SmartFone Flick Fest on social media she decided to try filming on a smartphone.

“Smartphones are accessible, most people own one and it’s yours so there is no need to hire or buy an expensive camera,” Ms Brattoni said.

“I thought if I can make a decent film on my phone then I have a good eye for stepping it up and involving more people and fancier equipment next time, if I choose to do so.”

While you may not see Michael Bay filming the next Transformers movie on his smart phone.

Director Sean Baker made waves at Sundance Film Festival this year with the movie Tangerine which was filmed using his iPhone.

Ms Brattoni said using a smart phone was an enjoyable film making style.

“You don't know what it's like to shoot a film until you get out there and do it – it's such a rewarding process,” she said.

“Planning is important, know what you want to film and that eases the production process and saves time.”

One of the biggest challenges of using a smartphone is securing the device for still shots.

“I had a tripod but didn't have a mount for my phone so I DIY’d it by using clamps and bits of foam,” Ms Brattoni said.

“In a lot of cases recording sound from your phone alone won't cut it, that's probably one of the biggest challenges with smartphone film making.”

Ms Brattoni said there were a lot of phone applications people could use for editing.

“I did mine externally with computer software,” she said.

“I made a short homage to an experimental film made in the 1940s.

“The old film by Maya Deren shows a woman having vivid surreal dreams and a mysterious hooded figure with lots of repetitive objects and sequences being shown.

“Amazing for its time.”

Ms Brattoni said people with stories to tell should go out and tell them.

“Go for making is such a powerful form of communication,” she said.

“Smartphone owners have access to a device that is truly remarkable in its capability.

“Use it, play around and experiment.”

SF3 will host a series of smartphone masterclass workshops at the Casula Powerhouse from Saturday, October 15.

“We have held successful workshops in the past, teaming up with industry professionals to help guide, inform and inspire future smartphone filmmakers,” Ms Brattoni said.