Finding Happiness | Experimental Short Film | Dubai

Happiness is quite a subjective emotion. It refers to the state of well-being which can be defined by pleasant emotions ranging from contentment to feelings of intense joy. Each person has a unique way of seeking and achieving this state of well-being. The final state is quite the same for most us. But our search for happiness is subject to our personal beliefs, tastes, feelings, opinions and individual state of mind. A mind that is influenced by our close ones. Every journey is beautifully unique and intensely personal.

Here’s the story of a person who has been unhappy most of his life and has left everything behind in search of happiness. Travelling thousands of miles looking, searching and seeking happiness, only to discover that this state of mind was always within himself. An unforeseen revelation that dawned upon him on the last steps of his journey, that the happiness he sought, was always around and within his reach. Making his long journey seemingly pointless. That’s the irony of life, a bitter lesson it teaches us that the things that seem simple and most pointless could have the hold the most value.

The long journey one must face to succeed in his endeavors is inevitable; a learning curve through which we pick up valuable life lessons.

Persistence of vision states that the human eye and brain retains the visual impression of an image for 1/10th of a second. As a result, our eye cannot distinguish changes in an image if it is moving at a faster rate of 24 frames per second i.e. depicts as motion. This is usually the frame rate most video sequences are shot in nowadays. However, what if we have 24 pictures depicting a motion laid out on the ground surface right next to each other like a flipbook or a zoetrope? If we were able to move fast enough, will the laid-out images depict a motion? This was the principal behind the running sequence towards the end of the one-minute short film.

A lot of factors come into play when trying to achieve such an effect. The size of each individual image, the speed of the moving person, the distances between each individual image and the amount of light available are namely a few. The entire film was shot on a low budget with the help of a few volunteers.

The main camera was a Sony SLT-A58. A few other shots were taken using the GoPro Hero 5 and the DJI Phantom 4. The running sequences were shot using a Samsung S8+ as it was the only equipment in our arsenal that helped reach shutter speeds of 1/8000 to 1/12000.

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