Saturday, March 23, 2013

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Review: Blackmagic Design Cinema Camera | ADAM GARSTONE | Definition Magazine
Then, as now, I believed that it would sell very well, though I’m not sure to whom. It’s cheaper than a high-end DSLR, but a very different beast. It isn’t easy to use for fast paced documentary shooting, or events, or anything else you would expect in that £2000 bracket. It’s a cinema camera. Like the Canon 5D MkII, and the RED One, I suspect it will be a game changer.

First Cut Pro is a handy, dandy online review and approval system | Scott Simmons | Pro Video Coalition
The idea is simple: upload your edit to Vimeo, Brightcove or YouTube (those services are supported now but likely more to come), invite your viewers into the custom First Cut Pro viewing room and they can watch and comment on the video. Those comments are listed in the viewing room interface and the editor can then download those comments into an NLE friendly file that can be brought back into the timeline.

In the past I’ve usually had a clipboard with script, shotlists, scene notes and script notes which generally becomes dogeared to the point of failure or simply lost within a couple of hours. Those notes are invaluable and a feature necessarily generates so many of them I felt the iPad could be a hugely helpful tool on set for carrying everything with me. I thought this would simply be in the form of carrying digital notes and a script onto set but it turned out to encompass a whole suite of useful, inexpensive, apps, synced through the cloud that meant I was always on top of what was going on.
...and here's a behind-the-scenes shot on the iPhone for the movie they were shooting:

1 Week In Norfolk | Benedict Spence | Vimeo
A little documentary about a week on a micro budget feature, the repetition, games and dirt drawn spunking cocks.

1 Week In Norfolk from Benedict Spence on Vimeo.

Shoot Slow Motion Action Footage Using a GoPro on a DIY Circular Rig | Michael Zhang | PetaPixel
He used a GoPro HERO3 Black Edition, which can shoot 120 frames per second at 720p. After attached an arm to a “lazy susan,” Kraft mounted the camera to the end of the arm and then spun the camera around while doing something “action packed” in the space where the camera is pointed (shown in the screenshot above).

Avid in danger of delisting from Nasdaq | Patricia Resende | Tech Flash
Avid Technology Inc. received the anticipated letter from the Nasdaq Listing Qualifications Department notifying it that the company is no longer in compliance with Nasdaq rules pertaining to filing of its reports with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Friday, March 22, 2013

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Don't Forget, THIS SATURDAY, the Massachusetts Media Expo :
This day-long event will feature over 50 exhibitors, a distinguished panel of guest speakers including: Doug Trumbull, Dorothy Aufiero, Todd Arnow and Mark Kamine. Directing and Casting Workshops will be held in the afternoon, and in the evening the premiere of Whitey Bulger: The Making of a Monster followed by a Q&A session with the directors and special guests.

‘New’ Canon SL1 / 100D and T5i / 700D fail to excite | Andrew Reid | EOSHD
Though cute  the new entry level 100D (above) offers a 25% reduction in size at the expense of handling and no articulated screen. There’s seemingly no new functionality on this camera either in video mode, not even for stills! Owners of the 4 year old 550D from 2009 could be forgiven for not rushing to upgrade.
Andrew hasn't liked anything Canon has done for years, but it seems others aren't that impressed:

| DSLR News Shooter
The standard video features are similar to those found in previous entry-level models. Both offer MOV H.264 output in 1080p at 30fps, 25fps or 24fps or 720 at 60fps or 50fps. PCM sound comes from either an internal mic (mono for the 100D and stereo for the 700D) or the stereo 3.5mm mic jack and the sound level can be manually controlled in camera. There is however, no headphone out socket on either model, and as far as we can tell from the specs, no clean HDMI out.

Filmmaker Tony Goss Shoots Family Drama 'Welcome to Happy Valley' with AG-AF100 | Creative Planet Network
Tony Goss, writer/director/director of photography on the project, shot the movie with Panasonic’s AG-AF100 large imager HD cinema camcorder on location in Middleburgh, NY, last summer. Welcome to Happy Valley, currently in postproduction, will debut in nearby Cobleskill this spring.

NEW: Denoiser 1.4 | RED GIANT
A FREE speed update for current owners!
Break the speed barrier while getting the reliable noise reduction you are used to. The new Denoiser 1.4 update runs 3-4x faster than Denoiser 1.3, with only a click of the new Use GPU checkbox. Editors and filmmakers will get a terrific speed enhancement on systems and graphic cards that support OpenCL 1.1 (and higher).

Resolve Tips: Accidental Clipping in DaVinci Resolve v9 | Gray Marshall | Vimeo
A short "rant" on where Resolve v9.1 likes to clip your image pipeline, usually unintentionally.I have to apologize that I sound like I drank 3 cups of espresso and am being chased by a rabid badger. I'll try to slow it down for the next one.

Glen Mulcahy's -VJ Technology Blog | Blog
Not really a review, so much as a 'I picked it up at an event and this is what I thought' report:
I have tested lots, and I mean LOTS,  of iPhone audio accessories, Tascam, IKMultimedia, Fostex, etc etc but I have never picked up a product and immediatley went – Oh Damn this feels good – not until the iXY. The brushed aluminium is beautifully finished, the weight suggests a quality product and the clever accessories (Windshield and Pocketpack) are all of really great quality.

NAB 2013 News “JVC GY-HM650 now with live streaming” | Philip Johnston
| HD Warrior
When equipped with a Verizon 4G LTE modem connected to the back of the camera via USB, the GY-HM650 2.0 upgrade leverages the camera’s unique dual codec technology to stream live video transmissions in the background while shooters continue to record footage. The camera already records HD or SD footage in multiple file formats – including native XDCAM EX™ (.MP4), Final Cut Pro™ (.MOV), and AVCHD – and is capable of uploading recorded clips to an FTP server.

Free Creative Cloud Memberships Exceed 2 Million | Adobe
"Reaching the half-million subscription milestone in less than one year..."
Adobe Systems Incorporated (Nasdaq:ADBE) today announced that Adobe® Creative Cloud™ has exceeded 500,000 paid individual members. The company also reported that free and trial memberships have exceeded 2 million. Free subscriptions are a proven on-ramp for customers to move to a paid Creative Cloud membership.

Too damn many movies | Marshall Fine | Hollywood & Fine
I used to wonder: What happens to all the films that don’t get into the festivals? And all the ones that get into the festivals but never make it to theaters? The answer used to be: nothing. That was it. Those filmmakers chalked the movie up to experience, apologized to their investors (or paid them back) and moved on with their lives.

Coming soon: The Touch for iPad and Trackpad control of FCPX and Lightroom
When we broke the news about ColorTouchX it created quite a stir. The demo video was in French, but everybody could see the potential of the application in the control of Final Cut Pro X and especially the direct manipulation of the colorboard through gestures.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Quick Links

Wacom Cintiq 13HD 13.3" Interactive Pen Display | B & H
Wacom has unveiled a new pen display which has a 1920 x 1080 resolution and costs just under $1,000. You can't order it yet:

  • 11.75 x 6.75" Active Area
  • 13.3" Widescreen Display with HDMI Port
  • Full HD 1920 x 1080 Native Resolution
  • 250 cd/m² Brightness
  • 2048 Levels of Pressure Sensitivity

Another innovation in Camera Stabilizers? | Planet5D
A camera stabilizer with an electronic mechanism:
Another kickstarter project for the day  – this is an interesting take on the handheld steadicam – the The Supraflux Video Camera Stabilizer – which is unique because it has an electronic ‘brake’ to help control the motion without you needing to touch the device while filming (which of course can cause unwanted movement without tons of practice).

UPDATED: GoPro Issued DMCA Notice to DigitalRev | F|Stoppers
GoPro issues a DMCA, but it turns out it's at a site reselling their cameras:
The letter that was posted next to the review on DigitalRev was not sent in response to the review. Obviously, we welcome editorial reviews of our products. This letter was sent because DigitalRev is not an authorized reseller of GoPro products and they were using images and had incorrect branding and representation of our product in their online commerce store. As part of our program – we ask merchants who are selling our product to use authorized images. That is why DigitalRev was contacted. But – our letter did not clearly communicate this and that is something we will correct.

Panasonic Introduces AVC-Ultra Plug-ins for Avid | TV Technology
Avid and Panasonic have been collaborating since 2004 to achieve seamless file-based workflows encompassing the evolution of the P2 format. The latest Avid software development kit facilitates comprehensive workflow tools for the AVC-Ultra codec family, including AVC-Proxy, AVC-Intra and AVC-LongG.

Video: Canon Cinema EOS C100 – Things You Should Know | FilmTools
Unlike the C300 and C500, the Canon Cinema EOS C100 is only available with the EF mount, which makes it directly compatible with over 70 zoom and prime lenses of Canon’s EF, EFS, & EF Cinema lines. It’s 15% smaller than the C300, but it still packs the same sensor that is in the C300 & C500, capturing individual R, G, and B channels for each full HD 1920 x 1080 frame.

Michele’s NAB Survival Guide | Michele Yamazaki | ToolFarm
Pack some snacks! If your schedule is as jam-packed as mine tends to get, there sometimes isn't time to grab a quick bite to eat, or nothing but a bag of Spicy Cheetos, which it may be better to just eat nothing than Spicy Cheetos. Cafeteria lines are long at lunchtime. It's over priced too, under whelming or could even be sold out by the time you get to the front of the line. I've been there. I speak the truth.

You’re Never Too Old to Start a New Career | Brian Russell | Dare Dreamer
In October of 2009, my wife and I were in our local camera shop and they had a Canon 7D on the shelf. I had heard they shot really cool video, and I had seen one of Philip Bloom‘s early “People” videos online. For some reason my wife told me to buy it. I hadn’t taken a still photo in 17 years, and my only previous video experience was the HandyCam and iMovieHD.

PTC005: Terry White — Worldwide  Design Evangelist for Adobe
| Power To Create
In this episode you’ll understand why sometimes it’s good to be paranoid about backing up data. Also, how the inconsistent yet always changing world of digital media has kept Terry on top of his game and excited about teaching others to keep up and embrace digital media.

Crossing the ‘uncanny valley’: Nvidia’s Faceworks renders realistic human faces
| VentureBeat
Nvidia has nearly crossed the uncanny valley. The graphics computing giant debuted a technology today that showed how its graphics chips can render a human face with nearly flawless realism.

Black Magic Cinema Camera Test - Dibside | Dan Buck Joyce - OFILMS | Vimeo
Filmed with Black Magic Cinema Camera in ProRes 25fps Dynamic Range set to film - ungraded.Edited with Premier Pro CS6.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Quick Links

RED Epic - HDRx Tests (in 4K) | Neumannfilms | YouTube
Shot in 5K on the RED Epic
Lenses used: Tokina 11-16 and Nikkor Ai-s 50mm f 1.2.
Graded using Neumann Films Presets (The Blockbuster Presets) and 4K Film Grain.
Exported at 4096x2304 in After Effects.

Greenwich Market - Sony PMW F5 | Don McVey | Vimeo
Nice little short documentary shot on the PMW-F5, though personally, I don't like the way everyone is creating things that look flat:
Short documentary highlighting some of the people and products of Greenwich Market. Shot on Sony F5.

Magic Lantern Users Complain of Overheating on Canon DSLRs | James DeRuvo | Doddle
Well, all good things are about to have a crack in their armor from time to time, and it looks like the latest version of Magic Lantern is no different. Users of the popular third-party firmware for Canon cameras  have taken to the Magic Lantern forums and on Facebook have begun to complain about their batteries overheating on the Canon T3i/600D. Is this normal? It just may be.

Rode Reporter Omnidirectional Handheld Interview Microphone | ChessyCam
Rode continues to expand their mic line, now with an ENG mic, the Rode Reporter ($199):
The Rode Reporter uses an Omnidirectional pickup pattern for fairly balanced sound levels whether the microphone is pointing towards the subject or slightly away. There are other microphones that offer an Omnidirectional pickup pattern, but need to be very close to the source.

A Comparison: Latitude and Color Correcting the Canon C300, 5D MkIII, Sony FS100 | Bobby Marko | Vimeo
You've heard me talk about using the Canon C300 as a great choice for shooting a documentary film. Now see why the C300 is a great choice from a post stand point. I show you examples of the same scene, similar shots but three different cameras rolling. See not only why color correcting the C300 footage is much easier but using some scope tools, why the information captured by the C300 will make your editor and colorist much happier to work with your footage.

After Effects and CINEMA 4D | Steve Forde | Adobe
Adobe announces a working alliance with Maxon, though are a little vague on the actual details:
The alliance between Adobe and MAXON allows us to be very creative in how After Effects and CINEMA 4D work together now and in the future. Both MAXON and Adobe care very deeply about our respective users and see great opportunities in terms of workflow, time savings and creative flexibility.

Premiere CS6: Broadcast Colors Filter | Larry Jordan | Blog
Now that we know how to read scopes, there’s still a basic problem: today’s digital cameras shoot video that is fine for the web, but the white levels they record are too hot for broadcast, cable, or DVD.
In addition, programs like Photoshop allow us to create colors that are fine for the web, but excessively over-saturated for broadcast, cable, or DVD.

Wide Open Camera Combat Cage For The GoPro Hero 3 | Jared Abrams | KickStarter
Putting together a cage for the Hero 3 - cost is ~$120 with shipping:
We have tried using the current GoPro mounting hardware and it just simply does not hold up to professional motion picture standards. The  plastic 1/4-20" tripod mount is not stable for car mounts or any type of real abuse. No safety options, only one point of contact. Not good

Five Different Routes to a Web Series | David Licata | Filmmaker Magazine
The Unreleased Feature Film Repurposed into a Web Series
Benjamin Piety likes to tread the line between narrative and experimental film. In 2006, his daring short film The Lonely Lights. The Color of Lemons was awarded SXSW’s Special Jury Prize for Best Experimental Short. Piety’s next project went even further. 2 28 is based on the entries of a blog he kept, beginning on February 28, 2008, when he tested positive for HIV.

Photographers Becoming Filmmakers: Editing the Shopbop Video Ad
| Vashi Nedomansky | Blog
I like to look for variety in the size of shots, camera movement (or lack of), variance in amount of light and shadow and other elements when picking my “A” takes. The goal is to amass a large pool of approved shots that help tell the story while also being visually stimulating when strung together in an interesting way.

30 Minutes with Lincoln Screenwriter Tony Kushner | FilmmakerIQ
DP/30 sits down with Tony Kushner who adapted “Team of Rivals” into a theatrical glimpse of the political manuevering for Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Quick Links

Production Design on a Budget | Michael Murie | Filmmaker Magazine
On small budget productions, coming up with locations can be a challenge – especially if you need something a bit unusual. An upcoming music video for the band Run 8 Rider required that a single location represent three different time periods to tell its story. Using a borrowed house as the location, director Sean Meehan turned to production designer Riley Fearon to supervise the transformation of the location.

Why I Am Grateful for Kickstarter (It’s Not Just for the Money) | Lanre Olabisi
| Filmmaker Magazine
So, why am I so grateful to Kickstarter? The Masterpiece Theater answer would probably sound something like this: Kickstarter is a great community that allows people to support great projects in coming to life. While this is true – that’s not what does it for me.

How to Make Your First Film Halfway Across the World with No Money and Get Picked Up by Oscilloscope | Oakley Anderson-Moore
It’s the stuff of dreams. Omar Mullick and Bassam Tariq started out on a no-budget journey to make their first film about one man, a non-proselytizing humanitarian in Pakistan named Edhi. After nearly 3 years of filming, following children in a Karachi orphanage, playing dead in the back of ambulances through dangerous territory, and telling ‘little white lies to save your ass,’ the project shifted into an ethereal, lyrical journey of a world where we get unprecedented access.

My First Lighting Class; or How I Learned to Light | Art Adams | DV Info
One of the worst lessons I learned in film school was three-point lighting.
I understand why it’s taught. It’s a very simple way to teach students that they need to think about the light that models the scene, how bright or dark the shadows are, and how to separate people and objects from the background to create depth

How can award-winning multimedia journalist Tracey Shelton upgrade her 7D kit on a tight budget? | Dan Chung | DSLR News Shooter
She’s just back from Aleppo and says she needs to pack light and small, working for “anything up to a month in Syria… My full kit, laptop and clothes need to fit into a bag light enough to run away from bullets with.“ For that reason she is insistent on having just one camera that shoots both stills and video. “It’s also easier to have the one camera than juggling two…The 7D has been fine, could be better of course, but it’s done ok until now.”

Rise of the Multicopter for AP part two – “Choosing the right Multicopter”
| TJ Diaz | Planet 5D
If you’re interested in flying for entertainment purposes, or you’re using a Multicopter for purposes other than aerial photography, your needs might be somewhat different. However, if you’re using a Multicopter for aerial photography (AP), you’re going to have some very specific needs. You’ll need to know how to choose the right Multicopter to ensure your images turn out crisp and clear. Here are a few purchase considerations you should consider when selecting a Multicopter for AP

Rarity – Kubrick on tape | EOSHD
In a 77 minute interview recorded over chess between takes on 2001: A Space Odyssey in the mid 1960′s Kubrick describes selling his first photograph, his first short and making his first feature. Ah that quaint idea of selling something you’ve made!

The Five Ws | CHARLES KIPPS | Script Mag
Anyone who has ever written for a newspaper knows the Five Ws well. Editors use the Five Ws as a mantra. Readers can inherently sense it if the Five Ws are missing.Not a clue what the Five Ws are? Don’t worry. You’re about to find out.

Ken Burns: “All Story is Manipulation” | Photography Bay
“All story is manipulation.” I love this quote from Ken Burns.
Jean-Luc Godard said “Photography is truth, and cinema is truth 24 times per second.” Ken Burns turns that on its head with his perspective on storytelling, along with his personal inspiration in the stories he chooses to tell.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Quick Link

Ep. 38 - "Filmmaking is Awesome" (with Jonathan Yi) | NeedCreative Podcast
In this special 38th episode of the NeedCreative Podcast, your co-hosts Paul Antico and guest Michael Murie are joined again by Director/DP Jonathan Yi. 

  • Jon's background, how he got to working for HBO, making commercials, and being a professor at NYU
  • Advice about making a Demo Reel and how producers may choose you
  • Working on the Canon team as a consultant to provide feedback on the launch of the C300, the history behind "Cinema EOS"

How Colorists Will Thrive in 2013 – Google Hangout Interview with Patrick Inhofer | Tom Parish
Patrick is a seasoned senior colorist and editor with more than 20 years’ experience in broadcast, cable, and (more recently) indie post-production.  He publishes an amazing newsletter every Sunday morning for fellow colorists. It’s the first thing I read on Sunday with my first cup of  coffee.

Did Veronica Mars Ruin Kickstarter? | Sam Adams | Slate
But is it the dawning of a new day or the end of an era? Will Veronica Mars be looked at as a watershed in demonstrating the power of fans to move a corporation’s will, one more step on the long road from Comic-Con? Or will it be seen as the moment Hollywood got wise and realized they no longer needed to wait until a movie or a TV show or an album actually exists to soak fans with an overpriced deluxe package?

@SXSW: Digital Bolex and New Beyond the Bolex Documentary | Scott Macaulay
| Filmmaker Magazine
Sharing a booth at the SXSW trade show were the teams behind the forthcoming Digital Bolex RAW-file camera and Beyond the Bolex, a new documentary film by Alyssa Bolsey, whose great grandfather invented the celebrated and influential camera. I stopped by the booth on the last day of the conference, and spoke very briefly to one of its inventors, Joe Rubinstein, above.

HyColour Pro for FCPX “A mini user review” $45 | Philip Johnston | HD Warrior
This is a still from a video I am producing about diabetes and shows the Green cast removal tool at it’s best. Although I had white balanced using my LED lighting the small magnifier light behind the podiatrist is casting a green cast via the fluorescent tubes, I was not aware of this at the time of filming but as you can see, HyColour is removing the cast giving an all over more pleasing result.

Canon EOS 100D Detailed Specs Appear | CanonRumors
The following spec list has appeared on a major retailers web site, we are keeping that internal for as long as possible. These specifications could possibly be placeholder specs, though they appear about as legit as they come.

Building a Movie Language in Layers | Dennis Lam  | New York Times
Mr. Carruth, 40, a former engineer and self-taught filmmaker, made “Primer,” a deadpan time-travel fantasy, for a reported $7,000, taking on the roles of director, writer, producer, actor, cinematographer, editor and composer. A feat of DIY enterprise and polymathic ingenuity, the film lent itself to repeat viewings and endless theorizing about its laws of physics and metaphysics, which ensured a robust afterlife in home video and on message boards.

First Look Aluminum Prototype Combat Cage For The GoPro Hero 3
| Jared Abrams | WideOpenCamera
Here is a first look at the Aluminum prototype Combat Cage for the GoPro Hero 3 from Wide Open Camera. The finished version will be anodized flat black. This is just the first prototype for real world testing. A HUGE thanks to Dave Aldrich from D focus for helping us out with this project. We will be taking this bad boy out for a spin to shoot our kickstarter video this week. Stay tuned for final specifications, pricing and availability.

Hobbit files released | Lloyd Burr | 3 News
“In the end, it’s not about Actor’s Equity, nor is it about The Hobbit – it is about an Australian trade union making a blatant play to take a controlling hand in the NZ film industry for their own political and financial gain.”

Flare Factory 58 (DSLR Mount) | DogSchidtOptics | Etsy
Interesting modified lenses:
Vintage 58mm f2 lens based on a classic 1960's Zeiss optical design.
We hand machine each lens and apply various cool modifications to add extra character to your pictures or movies. The lenses are available in various styles. Please see our online video samples and our PDF, then choose your style! If unsure just let us know what video sample you like best and we will send you the right configuration :-