Once students have mastered the basics of directing films, they often turn their attention to visual style. The problem is, visual style is such a broad topic. Where should one start in devising a “look” that’s specific and, more importantly, supportive of their story. The best book I’ve ever read on the subject is Bruce Block’s, “The Visual Story.” Bruce breaks the image into 8 categories common to all images, and instructs the reader on how to match visual intensity with dramatic intensity. I highly recommend it.
By Claude Kerven, Chair of The New York Film Academy Filmmaking Program