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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Short Dramedy Scripts  ›  Portrait of a Woman
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  Author    Portrait of a Woman  (currently 188 views)
Don
Posted: February 9th, 2020, 12:43pm Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Portrait of a Woman by Michal Bilski - Short, Dramedy - The inquisitive man tries to find out why Ms. Arty attempted to kill herself.  3 pages - pdf format

Writer interested in feedback on this work



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PrussianMosby
Posted: February 10th, 2020, 10:10am Report to Moderator
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Hey Michal,

I read the script yesterday and thought a damn lot about it.

The topic is genius. Chapeau.

A few things were imprecise format-wise like, f.i., the first slug 'empty room'. However it didn't bother me since it's a three pager - stuff doesn't matter to me...

Also, it could possibly get polished, in a sense of choreographing each word perfectly. Your message deserves that perfection imo.

Since I think to understand the message well, I want to ask you: how much thought went into the vessel of the story -- with that I mean the look of the location and also the look of Ms Art aka The Art.

As is, you give us the blond and thin perfect girl and the completely bland room.
This might be your deliberate choice, and I even think it might be perfect.

Then on the other side I think, maybe there has to be a visual, audible theme that sets the stage for your message and story experience.

But perhaps it'd be just wrong with regards to what you actually are saying re: analyzing art. So, that's complicated for sure.

I really just want to know how/why your choices are as they are.

Wonderful, Michal! What  a success.




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PrussianMosby  -  February 10th, 2020, 11:49am
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Colkurtz8
Posted: February 13th, 2020, 3:20am Report to Moderator
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Michal

There is some eloquent writing here for sure which I enjoyed but i'm a little unsure as to what it's actually about.

Is Mr. Art an embodiment of the artistic process and the "finished product", never able to please everyone, meaning different things to different people, endlessly misinterpreted to suit people's individual perspective?

I didn't get the suicide part in light of that metaphor though. Or the mother connection and the significance (if any) of choosing pills (and the number of pills) as the way to do it  I mean, how does art commit suicide and who or what is art's mother? Maybe I'm being too literal but I couldn't find any thematic meaning. I feel like there is a metaphor within a metaphor there I'm not seeing.

Also, it concludes without much of a resolution or even a punchline. The former isn't really expected for such a short piece and I appreciate that this is operating on a more conceptual level than an actual narrative level. However, it still just ends abruptly and feels unfinished and unsatisfactory.

Anyway, some interesting stuff in here. I'm curious to hear your intentions with it.

Col.


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Michal
Posted: February 17th, 2020, 2:10pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from PrussianMosby
Hey Michal,

I read the script yesterday and thought a damn lot about it.

The topic is genius. Chapeau.

A few things were imprecise format-wise like, f.i., the first slug 'empty room'. However it didn't bother me since it's a three pager - stuff doesn't matter to me...

Also, it could possibly get polished, in a sense of choreographing each word perfectly. Your message deserves that perfection imo.

Since I think to understand the message well, I want to ask you: how much thought went into the vessel of the story -- with that I mean the look of the location and also the look of Ms Art aka The Art.

As is, you give us the blond and thin perfect girl and the completely bland room.
This might be your deliberate choice, and I even think it might be perfect.

Then on the other side I think, maybe there has to be a visual, audible theme that sets the stage for your message and story experience.

But perhaps it'd be just wrong with regards to what you actually are saying re: analyzing art. So, that's complicated for sure.

I really just want to know how/why your choices are as they are.

Wonderful, Michal! What  a success.


Thank you so much for your feedback,

My story certainly needs to be polished and for my defense, I can only say that I am not a native English speaker. Hence, my vocabulary can be just better.

The place where the story takes place did not really matter for me to be honest. I do not see any artistic potential in it, due to the fact that this script is strongly based on the character (Ms. Art) and simple dialogue. I imagined the room to be clean and spacious. I want it to evoke this feeling of "emptiness".
The appearance of Ms. Art, on the other hand, plays a crucial role. She has to be a blond, caucasian, thin girl because that is how I see the embodiment of Art. She is naive, innocent but still witty. More than being deliberated decision this is my personal choice - it just feels right.
Another thing that may seem important is the fact that this story certainly should be portrayed in B&W. Only then it will make viewers focus on "what is said", not on"how the world looks".

"Perhaps it'd be just wrong with regards to what you actually are saying re: analyzing art" - what u said in this line is actually so interesting. Yes, I am totally against "over-analyzing" art and this issue is the source of the conflict in my script. However, at the same time as an author of this story I forced. Art tp have meaning. This work was based (I could say) on the poem written by the Nobel Prize Winner - Wisława Szymborska. It had the same title (Portrait of a Woman) and some parts of the dialogue are direct quotes. Doing that let me show that even though Art wants to stop having meaning she still has it because she loves to. It is something we cannot abolish. So, Ms. Art who tries to "get free" is actually caught in the world where she has to meet many requirements - just like a woman in Szymborska's poem.

(here is the link for it: http://inwardboundpoetry.blogspot.com/2012/02/787-portrait-of-woman-wislawa.html)

If you are keen to know more, email me please: bilskiplus@gmail.com.
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Michal
Posted: February 17th, 2020, 2:28pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Colkurtz8
Michal

There is some eloquent writing here for sure which I enjoyed but i'm a little unsure as to what it's actually about.

Is Mr. Art an embodiment of the artistic process and the "finished product", never able to please everyone, meaning different things to different people, endlessly misinterpreted to suit people's individual perspective?

I didn't get the suicide part in light of that metaphor though. Or the mother connection and the significance (if any) of choosing pills (and the number of pills) as the way to do it  I mean, how does art commit suicide and who or what is art's mother? Maybe I'm being too literal but I couldn't find any thematic meaning. I feel like there is a metaphor within a metaphor there I'm not seeing.

Also, it concludes without much of a resolution or even a punchline. The former isn't really expected for such a short piece and I appreciate that this is operating on a more conceptual level than an actual narrative level. However, it still just ends abruptly and feels unfinished and unsatisfactory.

Anyway, some interesting stuff in here. I'm curious to hear your intentions with it.

Col.


Thanks for the feedback.

I wouldn't call The Art "product". It seems respectless. My script is a try to embody arty which is an elusive spirit. Yes, she is "never able to please everyone, meaning different things to different people, endlessly misinterpreted to suit people's individual perspective" but simultaneously she is a human being (in my world obviously). Hence, I just want to conduct a discussion - IS MEANING STILL THAT MEANINGFUL?

The suicide motif is much more complex. It has personal value for me but at the same time it is Ms. Art's scream - she is begging for attention. Suicide may be interpreted as committing "an art piece" (in the form of art performance) but I do not want to say that is the one and the only way to interpret that. What she does is mainly expression of regret.

The fact that u asked about mother is so funny. My friends also were keen to know what did I meant by that. After all, who could be mother of Ms. Art?
During the creative process, I really did not think about it. The mother here is just a symbol of someone important in our human lives. And if Ms. Art is a human being she must have a mother.
Maybe her mother is CREATIVITY? Maybe it is RELIGION? It might be worth further investigation.

About the ending, I can only say what I have mentioned in the above answer - "This work was based (I could say) on the poem written by the Nobel Prize Winner - Wisłaawa Szymborska. It had the same title (Portrait of a Woman) and some parts of the dialogue are direct quotes. Doing that let me show that even though Art wants to stop having meaning she still has it because she loves to. It is something we cannot abolish. So, Ms. Art who tries to "get free" is actually caught in the world where she has to meet many requirements - just like a woman in Szymborska's poem."
The ending lines "For better, for worse and for heaven's sake" are the best conclusion possible. It refers to the poem and perfectly cooperates with my message and idea. It is like final "AMEN" - I am saying (through character's mouth) it is like that: Art loves to have meaning and we can't do anything about it. I just support my thesis. Moreover, I wanted this script to have a simple composition and be "straight to the point".
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Colkurtz8
Posted: February 20th, 2020, 6:10am Report to Moderator
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Michal


Quoted from Michal
I wouldn't call The Art "product". It seems respectless.


Either would I but that is what the more cynical among would. That is why I wrote it in "quotation marks"


Quoted from Michal
My script is a try to embody arty which is an elusive spirit. Yes, she is "never able to please everyone, meaning different things to different people, endlessly misinterpreted to suit people's individual perspective" but simultaneously she is a human being (in my world obviously). Hence, I just want to conduct a discussion - IS MEANING STILL THAT MEANINGFUL?


Yeah I got all that, an interesting theme to explore for sure. Just curious, was there any significance in the choice of making art female?

Having read your response in the previous post though I saw this line:

"She has to be a blond, caucasian, thin girl because that is how I see the embodiment of Art".

It still doesn't answer my question though. Actually, it just raises more questions haha. Why does that particular type of person embody art for you?


Quoted from Michal
The suicide motif is much more complex. It has personal value for me but at the same time it is Ms. Art's scream - she is begging for attention. Suicide may be interpreted as committing "an art piece" (in the form of art performance) but I do not want to say that is the one and the only way to interpret that. What she does is mainly expression of regret.

The fact that u asked about mother is so funny. My friends also were keen to know what did I meant by that. After all, who could be mother of Ms. Art?
During the creative process, I really did not think about it. The mother here is just a symbol of someone important in our human lives. And if Ms. Art is a human being she must have a mother.
Maybe her mother is CREATIVITY? Maybe it is RELIGION? It might be worth further investigation.


Yeah, I like the idea of suicide being the art's scream for attention and the mother as a symbol of creativity. I guess what threw me was the specificity of the suicide. It all became too literal so I got bogged down and preoccupied with that. I kind of lost sight of the broader metaphorical resonance.


Quoted from Michal
About the ending, I can only say what I have mentioned in the above answer - "This work was based (I could say) on the poem written by the Nobel Prize Winner - Wisłaawa Szymborska. It had the same title (Portrait of a Woman) and some parts of the dialogue are direct quotes. Doing that let me show that even though Art wants to stop having meaning she still has it because she loves to. It is something we cannot abolish. So, Ms. Art who tries to "get free" is actually caught in the world where she has to meet many requirements - just like a woman in Szymborska's poem."
The ending lines "For better, for worse and for heaven's sake" are the best conclusion possible. It refers to the poem and perfectly cooperates with my message and idea. It is like final "AMEN" - I am saying (through character's mouth) it is like that: Art loves to have meaning and we can't do anything about it. I just support my thesis. Moreover, I wanted this script to have a simple composition and be "straight to the point".


I see, interesting. I wasn't familiar with that poem. I like seeing how the two translations differed. "Change so that nothing will change" is a great line.

Anyway, I think Art just needs to chill out, give less of a fuck, lose the narcissism and enjoy whatever attention she gets. She's sounding very generation Z

Col.


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