Flash Frame Visuals Academy of Film & Television

Flash Frame Visuals Academy of Film & Television
Flash Frame Visuals Academy, Bangalore, India

Saturday, 6 April 2013

Artistry of Art Direction

Flash Frame Visuals Academy of Film & Television
Bangalore, India
Twitter ID : flshfrms


And am back….with film shoot over and post production work going on all hand in hand…wo!! Just miss the madness on sets, even though little bit of it still exists. Yes, I truly stick to the fact still that madness is very much important and certainly cinema doesn’t belong to sane set of people. So happy am being insane and am sure most of the people in film fraternity would consent to it.

In my previous article, I had mentioned about diverse departments in filmmaking, how we went about forming our team, so on and so forth. In next few write ups, I want to portray in length what each department comprises of and how do they go about their work in cinema. To start with it, let me first introduce my readers to the ART DEPARTMENT.

Sometimes called as Production Design, this is one of the department which is liable for the overall look of the film...well almost if not fully. Each and every scene that you see on screen is a result of eternal brainstorming sessions between the Director, the Cinematographer, the and Costume Designer, to name a few. Which all locations we see in movie, might be real, might be set or nothing but an empty block. But how to convince the viewers and make it look exactly like a real one is the challenge of an art director. From house to restaurant, to mall to police station to temple, any thing and everything can be the result of art department’s visual artistry.
Cinema is nothing but to make the impossible possible. So even the art department has to think on its toes and be ready for any kind of unpredictable situation that might arise any minute.

Set assistants working for Interview room setup. On-set of Tamil film Oru Modhal Oru Kadhal (OMOK)

Knowledge of the script, requirement of the Director & Cinematographer, visualization, framing of shots are few of the qualities, which an Art Director or an art assistant should have. You need to be is an excellent observer. What kind of properties (read objects/things) that we use in our daily lives… what kind of things would be required to make a room look like a study room or what wall colors can be used to make it look like kids room.  Similarly for instance in any periodic film, we are showing 1960s time, it’s the art department that would be responsible to bring the look of that era. So the art and costume department will have a very close call on many things.

And of course little extra common sense would anyways never do any harm!

Most of the Institutes/colleges don’t provide a Course in Art direction alone. Yet, a Diploma or certified course in Fine arts, Production Design or Filmmaking would definitely help you to get an entry as an Art assistant to an reputed Art Director.

Set of a house 

Open restaurant setup for the movie OMOK

The foremost thing that an art director needs to possess is having the child in him alive. The way kids get excited looking at colors and various other art material, same kind of excitement and the thrill should be there in you if you want to explore this department further. Leave all your consciousness behind and once again fall in love with properties and colors. How a glass painting will look, how a nicely painted pot can beautify a frame further. Be an explorer in the world of art.

One word that would reveal the attribute your artwork and skill set is research. As an art director you need to do hell lot of research. What kind of ethnicity we are showing, what mood of the film is being showcased, what place is being shown, how people live there and the kind of properties (called as "Props" in the shooting spots) they use, which time era is being shown and various other expected questions should be answered in the movie. And so as to get these answers you should have ample research material and references in order to substantiate your facts.

Before starting your journey as an art director, its always recommendable to work as assistant before and gain ample experience in your kitty. More than what you need to do, always observe what you should not be doing on sets and learn from others mistakes. More the experience, better would be your thinking and application skills.

To conclude, only thing I would say is in order to make and work in films, watch films. Watch any and every kind of film. Watch good films, bad films, short films; whatever you can get hold of. More you brush yourself with variety of movies, more kind of ideas you would be able to think of. So happy watching and happy reading!

Written by
Aditi KK
Head - Academics 
Flash Frame Visuals Academy of Film & Television
Bangalore, India
email : aditi@ffvacademy.com


  1. This is great to know about this academy doing nice in the field of film and television and counted in Top Film Making Colleges in India . Thanks for sharing information about this academy.