Tracking shot/travelling shot/dollying shot

Terms used for a shotwhen the camera is being moved by means of wheels:

  • on a dolly (a low tracking shot)
  • in a car
  • or even a train.

The movement is normally quite fluid (except perhaps in some of the wider car chases) and the tracking can be either fast or slow. Depending on the speed, this shot has different connotations, eg:

  • like a dream or trance if excessively slow
  • bewildering and frightening if excessively frenetic

A tracking shot can go

  • backwards
  • left to right
  • right to left

The way in which a person is framed in that shot has a specific meaning, (for example, if the camera holds a person in the frame but that person is at one extreme or other of the frame, this could suggest a sense of imprisonment).