01 a peculiar point of view - at least a partial vision advertisement for The American Meat Institute October 1950 10 x 12cms.

02 A favourite POV in the imagery of America in the Twenties and Thirties , the depiction of the oil derrick from above or beneath - here an advertisement for The National Supply Company (the makers of SPANG pipes) March 1944 12 x 20cms. Look at similar depictions in the early photographic work of Margaret Bourke White and the paintings of Charles Sheeler.

 
03 "Oven's Eye View of the world's best cook" Owens-Korning Fibreglas April 1951 22 x 27cms

04 the view from the Cockpit,Ivanatoff 1938
 
05 The Tele's vision of its own audience offers a new opportunity for the image maker, Crosley's Family of Televisions gives you "Full Room Vision", undated image, c1950. It is traditional for objects of a certain kind to have a point of view. List them.

06 The American as seen by the Non-American

07 the typical bird's eye view

08 TWA advert October 1951 20 x 23cms

09 Illustration by Austin Briggs to a story in the Saturday Evening Post May 1953 and study in pencil for the illustration below

10 Wilfed Bronson's Polywiggle's Progress ,Macmillan, c1936; and an unusual POV underwater, following the Tadpole's progress with the stork above. I do think the illustrator has overreached himself, with shaky control of perspective and a treatment of the water surface that makes the bird look to be wearing exotic trousers. He has even tried to show a reverse reflection.
There is a successful filmic version of this shot in Terrence Malick's film, Days of Heaven when the camera is lingering with a glass underwater looking up at Richard Gere.

11. Francis Barlow, illustration to Aesop's Fables
 
12. Goya print, The Sleep of Reason begets Monsters, from Los Caprichos. Goya's compositional devices very often use a simple planar approach where the drawn subjects are viewed head on against a backdrop - the very frontality and directness of which increases the impact of the scenes of warfare and human folly. The Point of View in The Sleep of Reason is nearer the eye level of the sleeping figure than that of a standing figure.
 
In the 1930's camera operators employed by Louis de Rougemont, boss of The March of Time newsreels were instructed to film the great events of the day - assassination reconstructions, Nazi rallies, mobs of looters - from three feet above the ground - the POV of the average movie goer in a cinema seat. This has given a curiously furtive feeling to much of the footage.

The Point of View Designers and Illustrators. Lecture Notes


The tradition of the single viewer before the single vanishing point. The page design as window or stream. The influence of film and the cinematic imagination on the twentieth century illustrator and designer.


Point of View (POV) "a shot in which the camera assumes the spatial position of one of the characters within the narrative in order to show us what s/he sees." Cook below p.244.


Angle of View ;
Dutch, an unusual angle.
Eye Level, 5' to 6' above the ground, undramatic.
High, or down shot.
Low angle.
Reverse, the camera is positioned exactly opposite another camera recording the same scene. Used in conversations.
Side angle, between 30% to 90% from the front of the subject.
For perspective and depth. Subjective, the camera is positioned where it is the viewpoint of a specific character in the film.
Variants of lenses, Telephoto, Short Focus, Long Focus, Wide Angle, Haze Lens, Zoom.
from Assen Jordanoff's Your Wings , Funk and Wagnell, New York, 1940 (1936) with illustrations by Fred Meagher, Frank Carlson and Eric Sloane. A handy and visually immediate guide we could all learn from when thinking about drawing objects moving through space.  
It can also entail one individual or group seeing the same entity in different ways


 
 
BASIC TECHNIQUES; Examples Discussed
1. BA advert , film space and narrative at its limits. 2. TAG beer advert, the perils of POV.
3. March of Time , two clips where the spectator takes part by implication. The view from the cinema seat.
4. The classical movement through space, the camera on the dolly, illustrated by Max Ophuls, Caught (US 1948 88 mins).
5. Eli's Killer Crane. The Stunt Man , directed by Richard Rush, 1978. A film about film making, private moments are deliberately confused public events in film making. The director, Peter Toole intrudes in the seat of the Crane.
6. Steadicam ( remember from Shining ) Gerrit Brown using the camera mounted to the operator's body and gyroscopically controlled.
7. The Steadicam at work, Exorcist II , John Boorman, 1977, the POV of the giant insect, Richard Burton as a priest in an electronic headband. Falling through space, the view down..
8. Tex Avery, Bugs Bunny , what animation can add to the downward view.
9. Animation to "And She Was", Talking Heads.
10. The impact of the aerial view on the twentieth century mind. Isle of Wight.
11. The privileged aerial viewpoint, The Birds, 1963 the celebrated burning garage scene viewed by Tippi Hedron ( her 3 take) and the gathering gulls.

NOW, the narratives
 
1. Barry Lyndon , Kubrick, 1975 the retreat of the camera, focussing back to add distance to the emotive power of the relationships revealed.
2. The classic slow dolly take, Orson Welles' The Touch of Evil , 1958. No cuts, a fluid flow through fixed space and time.
3. The camera recedes from the drama, the power of understatement and not looking. After the first horrific murder, Hitchcock takes us to another only to silently remove the camera and leave the rest to the imagination. Frenzy, Hitchcock, 1972.
4. After Hours , the dislocation of time, slowing down and cutting the falling bunch of keys, to unsettle the viewer.
5. Split screen narratives, slow motion emotion, Carrie, directed by Brian de Palma, 1976.
6. Two different time systems in the same frame, Easter Parade, 1948, Fred Astaire dancing in two speeds.
7. The capacity of film to be the vision of one character, the Father's vision of the pig from Amiel's The Queen of Hearts , 1989.
8. The highly subjective camera, fear and anxiety in Hitchcock's camera, The Wrong Man, 1957. Henry Fonda as the innocent man arrested on charges of robbery with assault.
 

THE LADY IN THE LAKE


 
BOOKLIST
 Laurence Wright, Perspective on Perspective, RKP London 1983;
John White, The Birth and Rebirth of Pictorial Space , Faber London 1972.
Pam Cook (ed) The Cinema Book, BFI London 1985.
Edward Branigan "Formal Permutations of the Point of View shot", Screen , Autumn 1975
Bordwell and Thompson, Film Art, pp 242,3; point of view analysis of a Hitchcock film.
 
 

THE BIRD'S EYE VIEW

PERSPECTIVE

the cinema screen