2018-2019 NEWSLETTER

08/05/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
A very healthy turnout last night for our final meeting of the season and AGM. I read a report, thanking committee and members for their help, and also the club members for their strong support for the competitions throughout the year. The remainder of the trophies were then presented. I stepped down as Chair, handing over to Oli for his treasurer's report, before he himself stood, and was elected, as the new club Chair. We discussed a few ideas for next season's programme, and after the break enjoyed 5 Film Premiers. The first viewing of "Stagestruck", our group project filmed at the Shinfield Theatre in February (the edit finished today!), was followed by 4 short films based on the same script. Each very entertaining, based on comedy, French (with English subtitles), sci-fi and dark comedy. Finally, a short film by Oli made during our Greenscreen practical evening recently. A great end to our 62nd season. Anne
Leon with the Grosvenor & Fiction trophies Eric with the Abbey  Cup Dave with the Stan Olman Award Chris  with the YouTube award Oli with the Points Award cup Leon with the Comedy trophy

01/05/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
A very lively evening discussing ideas for Summer Project Filming. Oli, Karen, Jordan, Dan, David S, Eric, Anne, David G and Chas all put forward at least one idea.  Experience will tell us that they won't all get made, due to finding the right location, actors availability, and time to make them. But if even half get made, we will have a busy summer of film crews meeting up when time permits. Anne

24/04/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
It was very unfortunate that Oli was personally unable to deliver his presentation on "Comedy" this week, due to illness. Our thanks to Chas for stepping in to show the films which Oli had taken the time to prepare.  It was interesting that a lot of the best humour of the evening (in my opinion) came from some of the old masters of slapstick black and white silent movies, such as Buster Keaton. Some of the biggest laughs of the evening were whilst watching excerpts from 1980's  Airplane Movie with Leslie Neilson. A classic bit of good clean over the top stupidity. Thanks to Oli for the time to put together an entertaining evening. Anne

17/04/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
It was a pleasure to have Dave and Jan Watterson to judge our "Best film of the Year" last night at RFVM. We had previously supplied them with links to all 11 films submitted by members for this award, since they prefer to watch them at home, and have a chance to give a written critique to each film maker. They gave excellent and entertaining verbal feedback too, on each film, after it was screened. We asked them to also present the trophies won so far this year for the other club competitions. A very entertaining evening, and a huge thanks to Dave and Jan for making the 4 hour round trip to RFVM. I was of course  especially delighted that they chose my Documentary "The Longest Village in the Country" as the winning film. Anne
Tony and Sophie helped David Goddard film the Twyford Play Funny Business on Saturday.
Brian takes 2 trophies from Dave and Jan Jim with his trophy Anne with her trophy
Anne wins the night's competition

10/04/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
We had two green screens last night, in two halls. Oli, with 3 actors and crew were filming a short dialogue script, whilst the rest of the club were experimenting in the larger hall with ideas. Tom and Jordan were good sports and got into green morphsuits too, so we could try some ideas with those   A few cameras were filming, so hopefully editors will now take on the editing challenge,  to  find out how well the chroma key works. We will see results at our AGM.  If successful, script writers may feel confident to try something similar in a scripted session. Good fun. Anne
Roger, Andy, Oli David and Jonathan preparing to film a script Roger,  Oli David and Jonathan preparing to film a script
Oli and David using the green screen Jonathan, Oli, Andy and David
Preparing to experiment with a greenscreen Anne pretending to fly on a stick
Chas Tom and Jed levitating Sophie Sophie, guest , Tom and Jed in 'magic' trick

03/04/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
A very enjoyable "members" evening with Eric, Chas and Tony presenting.  Eric kicked off with his 23 mins long "mini feature film" The Carter Sanction, which he wrote and directed. The film crew consisted of a good number of club members, and was shot mostly on weekends, during the first few months of 2018. Eric cast several unpaid actors for most of the roles, with the promise of a copy of the film to use in their portfolios. Crowdfunding paid for location hire and catering. He then told us about some of the problems he encountered with getting such a long film made, but also encouragement to just go for it, do it, or nothing will ever get made.  He learned a lot.  Well done Eric and team! What a great film.
Chas's presentation was about the filming of a Queen Tribute Band, in a Reading Casino last year, with a couple of club members helping. Chas demonstrated the layout of the nightclub, camera positions and  audio challenges using a powerpoint presentation. This was his first multi camera edit, so he too learned a LOT in the process. He then screened one of the songs which was performed. RFVM were paid £150 for the hire of the crew, so we are all grateful for the time Chas in particular put in to his production of the film.
Tony closed the evening with another powerpoint presentation about how he copes with live music events including School band concerts, and Theatre Plays. He showed us the key camera positions including "Conductor Cam" and "Piano Cam", with  a couple of short examples to show how he deals with the multi cam edit. At times in the edit, he has to be creative to cover up the fact that an actor maybe forgot their lines. Tony and team have also contributed a lot of funds to the club over the years from their filming of live concerts which Tony enjoys. Thank you Tony and team. Anne

27/03/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
Our programme included an evening shooting films with the same script, but each team Director, would decide on the Genre. The script needed 2 Actors per team. We had enough ideas and crew for 4 films, and styles ranged from Comedy, Tragedy, Sci-fi and a French Film.  All shot behind closed doors, so it will be interesting to view the results at our AGM in May. Well done to Daniel for suggesting the idea and coming up with a suitable script. Anne
One of 4 groups filming the same short script Pete and Jonathan discussing camera angles
On Friday Anne and Tony attended the Interclub competition at Staines where 9 clubs had entered a film. Six were documentaries giving an overdose of history, including one which included footage with Chris Eden-Green in and steam trains. A coincidence after his visit to us on 13 March! The other entries were drama/fiction films. The evening was filled with some overlong films and the judges critique on each one made it a long evening with the travelling involved. Our entry was not placed in the top three.

20/03/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
Our thanks to the filmmakers who supported our annual Fiction Trophy competition last night, with 5 entries taking us through the first half of the evening. We had  a mix of mystery, and comedy, with the locations ranging from inside a pub, someone's home, and even to New York. Congratulations to Leon who won with his 2 min film based around a Matchbox toy car which magically grew to normal size. Great fun, and all shot by Leon himself, as the car owner/driver. In 2nd place, a summer project getting it's first airing, Oli's "Frank Cupid's Agency", and 3rd place went to the RFVM Group project from last season, "Second Chance", with it's final edit from Tom. Well done to everyone. Anne
Summary stills are available.
Leon accepts the mini shield from Anne

13/03/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
A full house tonight including 5 guests who came along to listen to Chris Eden-Green present on his filmmaking.  Chris gave a very slick presentation including a short comedy film, and explained about his planning and production of his YouTube series Steam Locos in Profile. Steam trains are without doubt a passion, however no one could fault his film making skills with beautifully shot footage, excellent commentary.  Chris even writes and performs his own music. An interesting evening even for us NON-train enthusiasts! Anne
Chris chatting in the tea break

06/03/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
This week was our annual 60 second Film Competition, for the Caversham Cup.  It's always one of the toughest films to make. The 7 entries were all very well made and equally entertaining. 5 were also nominated as contenders for the Laurie Joyce Comedy Trophy, and Chris included a dedication to Laurie in his end credits.   Oli's comedy short "Cupboard"  was voted 3rd, Anne's "The Hedgerow" came 2nd, and Brian took the trophy with his creative film based on a poem about all the uses of a smartphone, "How Smart are You?".
Andy and Roger gave their critiques and also nominated "The Hedgerow", as a contender for the Stan Olman Trophy for technical excellence and also creativity. The film, shot in close up is about making a cocktail called The Hedgerow.
Tonight was also our Burke Trophy Competition, for a 10 min (max) film made by a member who has not previously won a competition. This sadly had no entries. Or is that a positive, that everyone has won a competition?  ! On another positive note, this meant that we had some spare time, and  each film maker talked for a few minutes about their film idea and how they made it, which was really interesting. We don't always have time for this, and we really enjoyed hearing about the back stories to each film.  We also found out that 3 of tonight's films were shot using greenscreen techniques for all or part of the content.  A good evening. Anne
Summary stills are available.
Anne presents Brian with the mini shield

27/02/2019 Rebecca gave a comprehensive talk on directing actors. Comments from the audience explained that scene sequence for filming was often different from that in theatre rehearsals.
Rebecca talking to Karen, Jonathan and Pete in tea break

20/02/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
Our meeting this week was not official on the programme so a few weeks ago members voted to have a kit evening. Several members brought along their kit to allow others to take a closer look and try it out for themselves.  This included cameras, microphones, dolly tracks, steadicams and a mini jib crane. Others brought VR glasses and a software demo to make animations come alive. A nice informal evening and a bit of fun. Anne
Leon with steady cam, Krzys,Mark, Sophie and Brian Anne and Oli with a mini crane

On Thursday and Friday Richard, Brian, Tony, Sophie and David Goddard filmed two performances of the Reading School collaboration with Queen Anne's girls school of Les Miserable.
2 cameras ready to film the cast as they do warm-up singing

13/02/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
We had a healthy 5 entries for last night's Gear Trophy, Documentary competition. Stories ranged from the history of the fishing at Leigh on Sea, an Interview with Leon talking about the backstory to a comedy he made, A day out at a car meeting at Beaulieu , A meeting of Ventriloquists, and a story of people who live on the Kennet and Avon Canal. Andy and Chas were the critiques and although high praise for the quality of the films, none were nominated as contenders for the Stan Olman Trophy. The winning film was "The Longest Village in the Country", my own film made over last summer over several visits to the Kennet and Avon Canal and interviews with the boat owners.
I also gave notice that I will be stepping down from my position on the committee and as Chair of the club from the end of this season. Time for a new face and fresh ideas to move the club forward. Anne
Summary Stills are available.
Anne wins the competition, Andy & Chas did the critique

06/02/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
With just 2 scenes left to shoot, to complete our filming of "Stage Struck" which ran over from Saturday, it was still a rush to get it all done last night at our club. But we did it by 10.00 on the dot. The club was transformed into the "cafe" scene and actors Andy, Leon, Gillian and Mike did a fantastic job of delivering their lines, word perfect, from several angles. Several members turned out to watch the action which was also able to be viewed from a large TV size monitor. Leon will now work on the edit, and we all look forward to seeing the finished film,  hopefully in time for our Fiction Competition on March 19th! Anne
Actors & crew in Shinfield Theatre Actors & crew in Shinfield Theatre

Actors & crew in Shinfield Theatre Actors & crew in Shinfield Theatre

Mike and Gillian in the cafe scene

30/01/2019 Thanks to the members who ignored the snow forecast last night and drove to our meeting on perfectly clear roads. Around 12 of us enjoyed a less formal evening, breaking with tradition and starting with a cuppa tea to warm us up! We discussed some fun ideas for our greenscreen evening next week, before watching 5 short films from online sources, some fictional, some technical tips for consideration for future use in practical challenges. Anne
On Saturday Tony and Anne filmed the Datchet matinee pantomime Aladdin.
The audience before the start Anne preparing her camera

23/01/2019 Eleven members braved the wintry conditions to watch Dave project Leon's selection of inspirational/tutorial films. Chas had a favourite time lapse film which had helped his interest in filming. Others included some clever green screen techniques, blinking and blocking, slider variants and a Philip Bloom tutorial on framing and lens choices. Tom showed two versions of Second Chance and the subtle difference between the two were discussed.

16/01/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
We enjoyed 5 entries for the Ward Trophy, our annual Holiday/Day out Competition yesterday evening. We travelled from Cornwall to Australia, Italy to Peru and also a more local torch-lit Christmas Carol evening at Goring, filmed by Chris for the Goring News.  Tom and Jordan offered critique and also nominated Brian's winning film about the Incas for the Stan Olman trophy. Well done to all the filmmakers for an enjoyable evening. Anne
Summary stills are available.
Brian wins the Holiday competition

09/01/2019 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
Our first evening after our Christmas break and we were straight into rehearsals for our club project coming up next month. Oli, who has written and will also direct, had put a  great amount of time into planning the positions for blocking of actors positions, and ran through the script. David G meanwhile assigned roles to non acting parts ie camera, sound, clapperboard, continuity, editor making-of filming etc,  so that hopefully everyone who wants to get involved has  a role they are happy with. All this prepanning will mean that on the filming day, we will save a lot of time and hope to get it all finished in one day (unlike last years project!). Anne
Oli discussing aspects of script with actors & crew

19/12/2018 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
A fun end to the first half of the season with Quiz Masters Oli, Chas and Leon. My thanks to them for planning the questions, so well presented. Much food was also consumed throughout the evening ...... as is expected at this time of year!  25 or so turned out on a miserable wet night, so 4 teams made for a fun competitive evening. Anne

12/12/2018 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
A very entertaining evening presented by Tom Hardwick. Tom's Variety Show covered a range of topics starting with the birth and death of 3D. We discussed 4K TV's, cameras and why sensor size matters when making your choice of camera. Tom also showed a few short films demonstrating the use of his gimbal as well as his action camera which cost under £30.  Very nice to meet Tom and his wife Celia who are also BIAFF judges. Anne
Celia and Tom talking to Alan from Meetup group

05/12/2018 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
My thanks to the  many filmmakers who shared their variety of work with us this week. 6 entries for the "Shared footage challenge", compiling a "Story" from a random selection of footage. They ranged from documentary style, to poetry and music. A few favourite clips appeared in several films, but used for different purpose, which was part of the challenge.
The other films shown last night were a mix of films made in one night at recent meetings, some Halloween themed with various body parts missing, and dodgy pizza delivery men! Then a mixture of films made by members including Fiction, Music video, Commandos, Model Railways, local Theatre group, Live Band, and one film with an important message about Helping to Save Swans. Anne

28/11/2018 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
The evening began with a presentation to Leon, Sophie and Buster by John Simpson, visiting from Weymouth. John handed over the Mermaid Trophy for their winning film Dog Days. Our Summer project competion followed with 3 films. Woodley carnival by Dave and team, Voicemail by Anne and team and Crime Confessions by Leon and Team. Congratulations to Leon in first place and to Dave in second place. Dave also had a Stan Olman nomination by Jim. Oli was tonight's other critique. Our evening was rounded off with 3 script ideas for our Shinfield Theatre shoot. Oli, Sophie and David New pitched their plots, and Oli won the most popular vote.  A busy evening. Anne
Summary still are available
John Simpson, Leon, Sophie and Buster with Mermaid trophy Leon  and team win the Grosvenor competition
Oli and friends read through his script

21/11/2018 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
Our thanks to RFVM member Jim for an excellent presentation last night on the subject of editing. An editor with a wealth of experience, Jim shared his tips on looking at every frame in detail when editing, to access when and if to cut, indeed if even to use. Removal of a few frames in a clip, whilst slowing down others in the same clip, can make a poor but essential clip into a very watchable one, were a top tip to get the best from any footage used. J cuts and L cuts for audio were well demonstrated, to prevent jarring of audio which a straight cut often does. Short extracts from many films were played to show how the edit had emphasised an important message, or feeling..... how to tell the story.  Other pointers are cutting on action ie a arm movement, a breath, a particularly powerful word. Lots of useful tips for beginners, and reminders for the more experienced.

14/11/2018 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
Our first competition of the season, the 4 min film, attracted 7 entries. Being an open subject, the films ranged from comedies to documentary and even a marketing advert.  Brian and Ryszard offered critique. Jim won overall with an amusing film featuring his grandson with a vacuum cleaner. (you had to be there!). Jim's second entry, an AV about 100 years of war,  was nominated for the Stan Olman trophy. Anne and team came 2nd with "A Thorny Encounter", and Ian 3rd with a holiday/documentary film.  We had a few minutes spare, so each film author was invited to speak for a couple of minutes about the backstory to their films. An interesting evening. Well done to all the film makers. Anne
Some summary stills are available
Jim accepts the Gateway trophy from Anne Jim wins the Currie competition

07/11/2018 Oli led the session which outlined half a dozen scripts for consideration for the Shinfield filming event. Chas took the minutes and audience votes for each of the possible scripts. Footage of a quick walk through of the theatre facilities was screened at the end.

05/11/2018 Brian and Tony travelled to Bourne End for the Gateway competition against Staines and Bourne End, which Reading won. The judges marks were not displayed, simply the winners in each category and overall winner were announced.

READING The Picture
STAINES The Miracle on the Mantlepiece
STAINES Blaentrophy Meadows
BOURNE END Cookham Flooding
OPEN STAINES The Start of the Big Day
BOURNE END Train of Thought        
READING Sudden Death
JUDGES   Brian Hibbitt
Tony Colvile

Brian receives the trophy at Bourne End

31/10/2018 Four teams were fully occupied filming their different scripts, one finishing off last weeks efforts. Not too many halloween props in evidence, but BLOOD and VAMPIRE was in some dialogue,
Dave, Kiri, Oli and Chris involved in their script Dave, Kiri, Oli and Chris involved in their script

24/10/2018 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT.
Putting in to practice what we learned last week, about shooting dialogue, a fun evening last night  with 3 crews recording short scripts written by David S, Oli and Len.   What everyone learned is just how quickly time goes, when you only have 2 hours to shoot a 2 page script!  We look forward to seeing the results either at our first competition night coming up  soon, or at a non- competitive evening in early December. Well done to everyone who took part. Anne
Chas filming two Sophies Chas filming two Sophies
Jonathan and Harpreet filming Jordan and Pete Len and Gillian filmed by Kiri with Ryszard holding boom mic

17/10/2018 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT. Week 5 of our course, and Daniel covered the technicalities of setting up for a fictional script. Tom played a surveillance detective and myself a lady whose husband was cheating on her.  We sat on opposite sides of a table, lit appropriately with 3 point lighting, whilst Dave held the boom mic just out of shot, rotating it between the actors.  Leon filmed and Daniel directed. We ran through the script 6 times, doing our best to repeat the words exactly the same (hard!), covering the wide shot, over shoulder shots x2, then close up x2. Daniel explained the importance of doing ALL the shots in one direction first, before moving the lights to the other side, otherwise to it would be difficult to replicate the lighting successfully and it may show up in the edit. Finally close ups of a couple of props as useful cutaways. Daniel will share the footage for those who want to try to do the edit. Next week, the end of our course, we will do a similar exercise with other short scripts in teams. Anne
Master shot with camera view projected Dan describing the setup for two people talking shots

10/10/2018 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT. My thanks to past member Gabi who returned to present an evening based on Composition. It seems that the "rule of thirds" is just the start, and rules are made to be broken...... if for good reason. Gabi demonstrated composition techniques using many examples of film clips not only on position, but also depth of field, colour, angle and light, all used creatively to draw attention to the main subject in each frame. Anne

03/10/2018 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT. My thanks for a very entertaining evening from Windsor based film Director/Producer Gulliver (Gully) Moore. For such a young filmmaker he has done loads! Gully shared some of his short pieces made for commercial TV as well as online adverts. He stressed the importance of collaboration with good people to get the best results, and gave a few tips getting the shots he wanted. Amongst his "celebrity" talents for commercials, were top footballers and The Stig. Lots of questions came from the audience. After the break, we watched 3 short comedy films, some written by Gully, others directed by Gully. We were all particularly amused to see Brian Blessed making a loud appearance towards the end of one film "The Dragon". Asked how he managed to get Brian to take part, Gully replied "I sent the script to his agent, and just asked. He loved it and said yes!".
Two more new members joined us again tonight, including another lady.  The ladies are taking over! I asked Tony to take a photo of us all together.
Gully talking to Tom in tea break Ladies in the club with Gully Ladies in the club

26/09/2018 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT. My thanks to Daniel for another very well prepared and interesting presentation last night, continuing our Introduction to FIlmMaking. He covered camera basics, and also "What makes a good shot?". Things to consider are Focus, Exposure, Stability, Composition, and of course, does the shot "tell the story?"  A few more 60 second Introductions from another 4 of our new members, confirms that we have a lot of talent joining the club, many scriptwriters amongst them. I am especially pleased to welcome another female last night, that makes 3 new ladies. Fab.
Leon, Sophie and Oli were also presented trophies and certificates from the recent IAC Southern  Counties Dolphin and Baby Dolphin competitions. Well done guys! A great result for Reading. Anne
Oli with 2nd prize certificate in IAC SoCo Dolphin competition Sophie and Leon with Baby Dolphin and Dolphin IAC SoCo trophies/certs

19/09/2018 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT. A fabulous start to our new season last night. It was wonderful to see so many returning members after our long summer break, and a special welcome to our NINE new members who joined us for the start of the 6 week "Film Making" course. A mix of experience and talent, with script writers, documentary makers and others just getting started. A huge thanks to member Daniel Brant who talked us through a really interesting presentation with some excellent hand drawn storyboarding graphics too. Free storyboard software is available. Daniel covered The Production Process ie script planning to shot list planning, then live recording of a few short clips with David New as his "talent", projected for all to see on our large screen. After the break, Daniel then demonstrated the edit process, and by the end of the evening a short film was complete.  Looking forward to part 2 next week. Anne, CHAIR
There was a good turnout of members and ex-members at Laurie's funeral today. Anne read a poem and Brian a tribute.
Dan explaining aspects of editing

02/09/2018 CHAIRMAN'S CHAT. It is with great sadness that I share the news of the death of longstanding RFVM member, and past Chair, LAURIE JOYCE. On behalf of the membership I offer condolences to Laurie's family. Whilst so many film clubs around the country struggle to maintain a healthy membership, Laurie helped grow the club from around 12 members, when he joined, to around 40. Many of the members, including myself, joined the club via Laurie's  "6 Week Introduction to Film Making Course", then stayed on to become full members, continually adding to our knowledge of the craft of filmmaking. Due to illness, Laurie was delighted that RFVM member Daniel Brant was willing to take over the running of this excellent course last year, and Daniel will continue with a further course this year, starting 18th September. Laurie will be missed by so many, and his legacy will be his kindness, and encouragement to share his passion for filmmaking. He will be remembered often with happy memories,  as members compete to have their name engraved on a new trophy which Laurie presented to our club at the AGM in May. The Laurie Joyce Comedy Trophy. Anne Massey, Chair