The closer I get to the full formation of my project, or at least to creating a finished script/shooting schedule/budget, etc., naturally the more I am forced to think about the actual feasibility of creating a period piece. As this is the case, I have been looking for inspiration in other period films/television shows. I have been looking for projects made recently, as I believe that researchers have uncovered more historical evidence and artifacts from specific time periods, thus helping to make modern shows more historically accurate. I'm not necessarily worried about unable to be historically accurate. I enjoy research and I enjoy incorporating this research into performances or experiments. What does worry me is that it will be obvious that I have no budget and therefore must resort to experimental ways of showing things or implying things, instead of being able to create the types of shots that I hoped for. I know that this is a realistic fear or burden for most filmmakers - the actual product not living up to what they imagined.
The way I have tried to combat this fear is through leaning a little too heavily on voiceover in my work. I've noticed that I'm uncertain (or worried, rather) about whether or not my images will be able to successfully convey the story. I just don't know if the images uphold the "show, don't tell" rule.
However, I believe I have come up with a way to solve the problem. In my next experiment I will:
1.) Use more shots - the piecing together of multiple shorter images was effective, and allows me to lead the viewer through a narrative more easily. When using long takes previously, the audience took a more passive role instead of needed to piece together what they were seeing.
2.) Not use voiceover - Seems simple enough. Again, the absence of the voiceover or dialogue will force the viewer to actively search for a narrative within the pieces they are watching.
3.) Utilize close ups - If I set an action in front of a background of stone, or wood, it would be fairly easy to give the illusion of a specific environment. For example, if we are seeing a pair of dirty, manacled hands writing a letter on a slab of wood, with stone walls in the background, the viewer would assume that whoever is writing the letter is in captivity (more than likely in a prison). Instead of making the entire environment historically accurate, I would have a few smaller items that would more easily transformed and much more affordable. Here are some helpful examples (*The last one is a bit gory - apologies!):