Awareness of the axis helps you to make your scenes cut smoothly together. The illustration at the left shows the axis as a red line that intersects a scene with two actors A and B. This particular axis has been established by camera 1 which shows the first shot in this scene. Notice that the the axis is perpendicular to the position of camera 1 at the end of its shot. Actor A is Looking camera right and actor B is looking camera left. Camera positions 2 and 3 are on the same side of the axis as camera position 1 in order to maintain the direction each actor is facing in their close-ups.
It is important to avoid cutting to a camera positioned in the grey zone, but it is possible to cross the axis if you move your camera while recording your shot. This establishes a new axis which requires the same attention as the first one. So be very mindful of how you break your scene into individual shot positions.
Showing the Story | Brevity | Continuity | Axis | Framing