Sparks Arts Olney: Filming With Dolly Shots

This week at Sparks Arts Olney, our creative young movie makers tried their hand at creating Alfred Hitchcock-style shots using a dolly. If you don't know, a dolly is basically a wheeled cart, which runs on rail tracks ...

The camera is then mounted onto the cart and the cart is moved towards and away from the main subject to get a range of shots that gives depth and effects, which add new layers to a scene. Because the camera moves along a rail the movement is always smooth and controlled.

"The effect was created by Irmin Roberts, working on Alfred Hitchcock's film Vertigo in 1958!"

The dolly shot is a common filmmaking technique and has been used in a huge range of films, including Jaws, Lord of the Rings and Sceptre. These shots are fantastic for drawing in your audience, and character realisations, for example when a character realises something key to the film and the shot zooms into the actor's face, revealing places and locations and a lot more.

Filmmakers can get very creative with the different types of equipment that can be used as a dolly such as vehicles, roller skates and drones, but we are focussing on the more traditional apparatus to begin with! Our film crew had great fun trying to get this concept to work for their film.

As it was such a lovely day, they decided to film outside. The ground was uneven and bumpy so filming with a dolly did have its challenges. It did mean they had to rethink how they were going to continue. Being able to adapt and be flexible during the process is what it is all about.

"Next week is our last session before we break for half term!"

We will be discussing the film that our film crew will be making when we return on 6th November. If you want to join us and get hands-on with filmmaking then now is the time to do it. We meet every Sunday at East Street Community Centre from 10am until 12pm and we'd love to have some new team members join us.

To find out more about Sparks Arts Olney and to sign up for our filmmaking course, please visit the Sparks Olney website today.


If you'd like to find out more about anything I've written here, call me on 01234 241357 or leave a comment below and I'll be in touch.