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THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE: BASIC TERMS FOR CAMERA WORK IN TELEVISION

Shot-Making with a Camera

Camera shots help you tell a story visually and they contribute towards mood and atmosphere.
They often build up to close-ups and then back to half-shots and total shots and scenes reach a level of dramatic intensity and they fall away.You could perhaps have an establishing shot, two total shots, four mid shots, six close-ups and then back to four mid shots followed by two totalshots.It is like composing music.

establishing shot: this shot locates time and place. For example if the action switches to an airport, the camera shows us shots of planes landing to tell us that the scene is now at an airport.
long shot or total shot: this shows the whole body and lets you know who is important, e.g. in an advert or commercial.
mid shot: this shows the chest and shoulders. It shows who is talking and who is significant in a scene.
close-up: this is an expressive shot for the director.It can show emotion of all kinds. Extreme close-ups might show only a mouth, for example.
pan shot: the camera swivels from one thing to another.
pull focus: the depth of field or background changes from one character or part of a set to another.
point of view: camera shot from the point of view of a character. This camera shows what a character would see. In other words, the camera substitutes for the character.
high-angle shot: these shots tend to look down on someone or a scene. They show power for the viewer and vulnerability for the person looked upon. They can be related to the point of view - and thus power - of anoher character.. The effect is similar with a low-angle shot in which a character seems powerless, having to look up at someone above them.

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