A thing regarded as representative or symbolic of something else”


Here at the SDF/SAS we believe in the power of the image.

Film, unlike almost any other medium, has the ability to take an idea and express it visually. This is called visual storytelling.

This can come across in the composition of a frame or in cutting between two different images that tell us something.

This allows a film to communicate a message to us on a visual and almost subconscious level.

In an interview with Denis Villeneuve, director of Enemy and Sicario, he said that he did not use the best shot he had ever filmed in Prisoners because it did not serve the story they were telling.

What ever you do with framing and compositions it must build to the story you are telling, not just be cool visuals for cool visual sake.

Lets look at how others use visual language.

Here’s how some of the films of 2015 used composition:

Here is a bit of the history of composition in cinema and how its used:

Here is how film can use subtle metaphors and references, such as in Children of Men:

Now it’s your turn.

What will you do with film? How will you communicate using visual metaphors?

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