Week 3

Student name: Matt Hillesheim

Date of post: 8/9/2014

Topic and relevant lecture week: Video Sequence, Compositional Interpretation


Contextual information:

Artist – Vince Gilligan

Title – Crawl Space

Year of creation –2011

Collection/source – Breaking Bad

Technique, material – Film

Genre – Drama

Image URL / originhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cWfK5JyD2bA



A screen capture of several scenes at the end of the Breaking Bad episode ‘Crawl Space’. The scene involves Walter White losing his sanity when it is discovered his wife Skylar had used his money to pay off an associate.

Analysis using Compositional Interpretation

Colour analysis

The saturation through the scene is low with low colour value. The characters are wearing lowly saturated dry coloured outfits as well. This is very deliberate as the context of the scene is very dark and manic and the colouring and editing throughout the scene matches these emotions.


Spatial organization

In the scenes where the two main characters are interacting the camera is angled for the viewer to have the perspective of each character looking up and down. When looking down at Walter in the crawl the camera is quite shaky, whereas when looking up at Skylar the camera is stable. This is to symbolize the franticness of Walter in the context of the situation compared to Skylar t. At the end of the scene when zooming out the focal point is at the centre as the perspective depth becomes deeper. This part is very symbolical and could be taken as a metaphor or foreshadow to Walter’s subjective decay.





There is little perceived lighting as the scene involves heavy shadows deliberately to add to the darkness of the scenario. As seen in the first image there are three light sources. One from above Walter, one behind him and one to our left. The light sources are all shining into Walter’s direction without having an impact on his dark shadowed figure. Also seen in the image 5, light has little effect on the overall colour and saturation with her face concealed in shadow.


Expressive content

The overall atmosphere of the scene is very negative and dark with even positive forms of colour (light sources) unable to rise the value of colour throughout the scene. The feeling is very negative and somewhat frightening once Walt begins laughing with the phone conversation in the background. The way Walter is portrayed at the end in the crawl space with the zooming out camera gives an impression of an ending with loud nonsense music adding to the mania just experience and the uncertain future.



Contextual information:

Artist – Dethklok

Title – The Doomstar Requiem Toki/Skwisgaar Guitar Duel

Year of creation –2013

Collection/source – Metalocalypse

Technique, material – Animation

Genre – Cartoon

Image URL / originhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gBYQAR8fG1w



Several screen captures from an animation depicting a guitar duel battle between two fictional characters

Analysis using Compositional Interpretation

Colour analysis (this is a discussion of the Hue, saturation, value across the image and as applied for emphasis & perspective and requires some annotating)


Saturation and value both change dramatically through the development of the scene. The scene starts with very low saturation and high value with bright white colours. Then as the scene develops the saturation raises and the value drops as the scene gets darker, yet the blue and pink colours become more prominent.


Spatial organization

In each scene cut the camera slowly zooms in to emphasize the building up of the music. In images 2 and 3 the vanishing point is the opposite character in the distance. Perspective lines are drawn from the top and bottom of the closer inwards to the opposite character.



In images 1 and 2 the light comes from behind the eagle and is strongly enhanced because of the high value in colour. In contrast to images 6 to 10 the light comes from the glow of the characters and the lightning strikes. Because of the low colour value and high saturation these light effects are far more prominent by becoming focal points.


Expressive content

The entire scene is designed to build up a crescendo, both musically and visually. Visually this is done through the changes in colour previously explained and adding visual effects such as lightning. This is very similar to the other example where the scene builds up, although different methods are used to empathise the crescendo.


Gillian Rose., (2001). Chapter 4: Semiology. In Gillian Rose., Visual methodologies: an introduction to the interpretation of visual materials, (pp.69 – 99).





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