Visual Rewrite — GracchusBabeuf

Battle Buddy | Veteran Crisis Prevention :

0:01. The video opens on what may be a farm. The landscape is light brown dotted with greenery, seemingly indicating a hot climate dotted with scraggy plant life. Two older-looking men stand beside what appears to be a fence. One man is white while the other is black. The white man wears a cowboy hat, the black man wears what appears to be a baseball hat. The fence has a section missing, as well as boards leaned against it. A wheelbarrow and a box is in frame near the missing section of fence. The paint on the fence boards is uneven. Some of it appears fresh. Visually, it seems the fence is broken.

0:02. The camera zooms in the old white man. The man’s folds in his chin show he is somewhat overweight. The lines in his forehead and around his mouth visually indicate his age. The other man is there, but he is currently working on the fence alone. He is dragging a wire mesh over the gap between two fence posts. The black man, first on the right of the white man is now on his left. His baseball hat is now clearly visible. It is decorated with gold text. The text cannot be read.

0:04. The camera reverses back to the elderly man in the cowboy hat. His hat is a dark blue or black, and his shirt is blue with a plaid pattern. The first two buttons of his shirt are undone, possibly to make working easier. At the bottom of the frame, his hands are working with the wire and the fence. From the previous shot, we know he is dragging the wire fence from left to right, covering an area in the fence with no wire. It would seem he is repairing a hole.

0:05. The camera now clearly centers on the elderly black man. His black baseball hat clearly reads: “Vietnam Veteran”. From this shot, without ever explicitly saying it, the director shows that the two older men are both Vietnam veterans. We can see clearly his grey beard that indicates his advanced age. His face creases above his eyes and his hand, visible on the fence, has visible lines from aging. The shrubbery in the background is blurred to focus the viewer on the man with the baseball hat.

0:06. The shot returns to the elderly white man. He leans on the fence and grabs it with his hand, seemingly using it to support himself while holding wire section in place. Once again, the background is blurred to focus the viewer on the elderly man in the foreground. He is pointing to the left, presumably at the elderly black man, the only other person who was visible in the first landscape shot.

0:08. The elderly man in the baseball hat looks to the right. His eyes widen and he tilts his head about 15 degrees to the left. Visually, this expressions seem to indicate some degree of concern.

0:11. Now, the shot pans out to center the fence. The elderly black veteran is passing a wooden board, painted white, to the elderly white man. The man in the cowboy hat is carefully lowering the board on the end of the empty section of fence. Some of the trees in the background have come back into focus, pulling the attention away from just one of the men to both of them.

0:13. The camera zooms in once again on the man in the cowboy hat. The man’s face widens and his mouth opens again, showing he is talking to the other man. His head is tilting to the right, communicating that he is listening to the man out of frame. The background blurs once again to focus the viewer on the foreground.

0:17. The man on the left with the baseball hat is once again the only person on screen. the background is still blurred. This jump cut of the camera from one face to the other is a technique often used to demonstrate dialogue between two people. The man’s face contorts slightly and his eyes narrowed. This communicates that he is concerned or pondering something the other man said.

0:19. The shot reverses again to the elderly white man. A dialogue is essentially certain between the two men. Based on their age, it is likely they are both veterans of the Vietnam war. His head is tilted even further to the left. His expression is somewhat exasperated, but he has a much smaller frown in comparison to earlier. The background is still blurred.

0:21. The camera reverses once again to the elderly black man. He is now cracking a small smile, showing teeth. Was it something the other man said? Very likely, considering the only other thing happening is the moving of the fence post. the background is once again blurred, but the camera is not nearly as zoomed in, showing more of the fence and the board the two are holding.

0:22. The shot reverses again to the elderly white man. He is standing up straight, and his face has curved into a wry smile. Evidently, he seems pleased with the other man’s reaction to whatever he said. The man is the only thing in the foreground, and the background is once again blurred to prevent the viewer’s eyes from wandering away from their intended subject.

0:23. The camera pans out to show the two elderly men aligning the unsecured wooden board with the rest of the boards in the fence. The elderly white man, who was initially working alone, is now working in tandem with the other man. In 23 seconds, the film maker has constructed a visual narrative where a man begins work on his fence alone and works with someone, presumably his friend, by the end.

0:24. The camera moves out and down. The two men, now facing each other, move into the background. The elderly white man, positioned on the left, leans on the fence and is standing closer to the other man. He is making a gesture with his hands — possibly a gesture to accompany his talking. The camera focuses on a hammer on a stump in the bottom right of the frame. Reasonably, the hammer is likely nearby for repairing the fence. In large white text, the sentences” <em>Don’t Wait.</em> “and “Reach Out.” is displayed.

0:27. The final scene is an all black background with white text. It reads: “Find resources at VA.GOV/REACH”. This indicates it is an advertisement placed by the department of veterans affair to raise public awareness of some resources available to veterans.

About gracchusbabeuf

French journalist for "Le tribun du peuple".
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1 Response to Visual Rewrite — GracchusBabeuf

  1. davidbdale says:

    Well-described visuals, GB.
    As for the Rhetorical half of the Visual Rhetoric assignment, you could improve your grade by analyzing the creators’ choices and effectiveness at conveying whatever their core message was. I watched the video without sound, and I have to conclude we were missing most of the content by not hearing their voices. You might have to sneak a listen to judge how well or poorly their visuals contributed to the message.


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