Week 2: Iconic film stills representing framing and composition – Unit 2


In this task I’ll be comparing my own pictures that I have taken to iconic stills taken from films or from journalism, in order to see the similarities between the shot types and composition. Iconic images are images that are known by a large amount of people and often trigger an emotional impact on a person.


The scene on the left is from “The Dark Knight” and is using both a medium long shot and a wide shot, as the bottom of his legs are cut off, but we can still see the explosions happening in the hospital. My primary research has similar aspects, as it is a medium long shot.

1966 World Cup FinalIMG_1744

The photo on the left is England winning the world cup in 1966, with Bobby Moore holding the World Cup trophy up. It is the only time England has ever won the world cup and it was on home soil, so it was an extra special occasion and this is why it makes the photo iconic. These 2 photos are similar, as they both use Depth of Field to blur the background and draw attention to the subject at the front of the picture.


This shot is from “Children of Men” and uses rule of thirds to separate the troops on each side of the two people and them. In the film this is the first baby to be born in 18 years and so the reactions of the soldiers around them are faces of disbelief and wonder. The still is not particularly iconic in the world, but it is iconic to me, as I think the emotion shown on the characters faces and the soldiers perfectly encapsulates the movie as whole. The shot is a Mid shot and so is similar to the picture I took for my primary research.


This photo is from Vietnam in 1968 and shows a South Vietnamese policeman shooting a suspected Viet Cong member in the head in the streets of Saigon after the Tet offensive. It is one of the most iconic photos from the Vietnam war and was on the front pages of many US newspapers and magazines. It became so iconic, as the photo was taken mere seconds before his death. The Viet Cong member was actually an assassin and the leader of a death squad with the sole purpose to kill troops and policeman. The photo was picked up by anti-war protesters as brutality, but they didn’t know the actual background of the photo and the people in it. The photo on the right is my primary research and uses rule of thirds like the photo on the left. The photo won the Pulitzer award in 1969.


These 2 photos are similar, as they are both using an Extreme Close Up (ECU). The shot on the left is the very first shot from “Lost” the hugely successful TV Drama. The shot type was used in “Lost” as the opening of the eye and it being the first shot symbolized the start of the show and how he didn’t know where he was and neither did the audience. I don’t believe this shot is particularly iconic, however the shot in general of the person opening their eye at the start of a scene is very iconic.

Primary sources are available straight away and I can shape them to look however I want, however secondary sources can offer a much wider range of actors, locations, scenery etc. So each can be useful in different situations depending on what kind of photo/information I need.


I’ve learnt that even tough my images are primary images they’re not in any way special or iconic, as I haven’t come across any kind of artistic luck or used any type of filters or special effects. A lot of money goes into the shots from movies and so of course they’re going to have better production value. However its not impossible for me to take an iconic photo, as long as I am in the right place at the right time then it is possible.

Week 2: Iconic film stills representing framing and composition – Unit 2

One thought on “Week 2: Iconic film stills representing framing and composition – Unit 2

  1. Oct 4 – Jenni B – George, don’t be so hard on yourself! Your post is well structured and clear, you haven’t quite done what was required, but it is only week 1. You needed to compare primary and secondary sources. So you would say something like, primary are instant and controlled by me, and secondary offers a wide range of location, actors etc, but they may not provided me with exactly what I want. Just add to the end of this post. And you must tag as directed – there are 4 x 2.1’s! Will explain this again in class.


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