Friday, May 24, 2013

Quick Links

Colorists Resources Round Up Part 2 | Jonny Elwyn
The last post I did called Colorist Resources was very popular so here is yet another round up of some of the latest tips and tutorials to hit the web.

Upcoming Editing Workshop, and why VFX Matters | The Molecule
Coming up on Saturday, June 8th, Manhattan Edit Workshop presents “Inside the Cutting Room: Sight, Sound, and Story.” The Molecule’s Chris Healer will join Academy Award winner Ross Shain and experts from Gravity World to talk about the importance of Visual Effects to post production.

CARTONI JIBO Lightweight Portable Jib Can Be Assembled In Less Than 2 Minutescinescopophilia
The JIBO‘s innovative unique feature of the 3 easy mounting sections provides fast and easy operational flexibility and can be assembled or disassembled in less than 3 minutes. JIBO adds the benefit of diagonal tracking and elevation to the traditional pan and tilt movement of a standard Fluid Head.

Petrol Bags Deca Camera and Accessories Bag | cinescopophilia
Petrol Bags have introduced the Deca Camera and Accessories Bag, designed for easy transport, superior protection and quick access on the set. Featuring an ultra-wide opening, this new wheeled carrier is ideal for toting a fully equipped camera such as the Sony F65 or ARRI Alexa and is also an easy-to-organize accessories case.

Movie editing techniques – With pretty pictures! | LA VideoFilmMaker
You should generally cut on action, especially if you are cutting from a wide shot of a subject to a tighter shot of the same subject on the same visual axis. Cutting on action means that you cut from one shot to another just as an action is performed, such as an actor taking his hat off.

Writing Takes Discipline | Maria Murnane | CreateSpace
It's the same thing with writing. Even if you have a wonderful idea for a book, writing a book is HARD. In addition to the sheer creative effort, it's not like a regular job where you have to show up or you'll get fired. It's up to you to sit down today and tomorrow and the day after that and just write.

Upping Your Type Game | Jessica Hische
Type designers and web designers have an amazing amount in common, that’s why it’s super wonderful that they’ve been collaborating more lately. Web designers are pumped that they can use more than a handful of fonts on the internet, and type designers are pumped that this new group of people using their fonts actually know how to use computers.

Watch: 55-Minute Oral History Of Stanley Kubrick's 'The Shining' | IndieWire
The history of the film is done via interviews and includes participation by producer Jan Harlan and Kubrick's wife, Christiane, and features reminiscences from key crew on the movie including: Brian Cook - 1st AD; Mick Mason - Camera Technician; Ray Merrin - Post-Production Sound; Doug Milsome - 1st AC and Second Unit Camera; Kelvin Pike - Camera Operator; Ron Punter - Scenic Artist; June Randall - Continuity and Julian Senior - Warner Bros. Publicity.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Quick Links

Canon 5D Re-Revolution? | James Miller | Philip Bloom
The 5D3 now has the ability to record a number of resolutions, limited at the moment by the speed of data written to the CF card. For now on a fast 1000x card I can manage 1920×1080 for a limited number of frames. At 1920×840 I can record until the 4GB file size is reached. 

Canon 1D C vs 5D Mark III Raw (and C300 / GH2 resolution comparison)
| Andrew Reid | EOSHD
The 5D Mark III raw is impressive and compares closely to the C300, but has a few more tricks which elevate it.
The comparison above is shot at 1080p but with an anamorphic lens to correct the 3:2 aspect ratio, the 5D Mark III goes to 1280 lines from a full frame sensor, even higher in 1:1 crop mode. It uses a larger sensor than the C300 and the footage is more gradable because it is raw.

Notes for emerging composers… how to get noticed by producers
| Chris Jones Blog
1. Submit what was requestedWe were pretty clear, we needed MP3 files with the name in a specific but simple naming format. What we got sent to us was links to playlists, WAV files, MIDI files and all manner of other weird stuff. Emails saying ‘hey brother, check out the tunes on my soundcloud…’ Really?

TMB Presents: The Art of the Video Interview with Philip Bloom | The Music Bed
1. Choose a good story to tell, but not necessarily a familiar one.Ask yourself, “Am I interested in the story?” For people who are new to doing interviews, the temptation is to do a documentary or a story on something you know. That’s fine for practice. And that’s actually a very good thing to do because you’ll probably mess it up at first, and then you’ll watch it and learn from it. 

DVTV: How to Avoid Adobe Creative Cloud | NextWaveDV
In this episode of DVTV, we follow up on the Adobe Creative Cloud debate and share ways to avoid having to subscribe to Creative Cloud. Casual users may find all the features they need by purchasing software like Adobe Photoshop or Premiere Elements or HitFilm.

How to Turn your iPhone into a Professional Video Camera in One Easy Step
| Ken Kobre | Mastering Photo
One significant challenge for any amateur shooting video is not to induce seasickness with images that jiggle from camera movement. Many recent smart phone models, however, even include a built-in stabilization feature to help solve that problem! However, even though this clever piece of software does help to settle down a wobbly image, I still recommend putting the phone on a small tripod, especially when shooting an interview.

When A Lack of Color is the Perfect Answer | Kent DuFault | Light Stalking
Has this question ever crossed your mind? I wonder if I should shoot this in black & white? We think every photographer has been faced with this decision. And many folks today, in this digital world, would just tell themselves, “I can always convert it later”. But the truth is that sometimes it will help you in your visualization of the final photograph to image it in black and white right on the spot.

The BitterScriptReader tackles the age old question of what to do with your screenplay once it’s done.

It began in 1973, with the release of a low-budget science-fiction film, Michael Crichton’s “Westworld.” The movie’s use of a digital effect for a total of two minutes—a now-routine process called pixelization, commonly deployed on Gordon Ramsay cooking shows to obscure a contestant’s cursing mouth—was the unlikely launching point of this revolution.

Flickr Acknowledges That There are Pro Photographers, Mayer Apologizes
| The Phoblographer
Yesterday, Marissa Mayer opened up a giant can of worms when she stated that there really is no such thing as a professional photographer anymore–which we’re sure that someone at Flickr perhaps facepalmed very hard. And according to a report from Petapixel, she is apologizing and stating that she worded her statement all wrong.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Quick Links

The Cost of 4K: From Acquisition to Archiving | Juliet McNally | AbelCine
The 4K footage will take up 3TB of space and the 1080 footage will take up 690GB of space (these figures are rounded up slightly for safety). For a multi-day 4K job you’ll want a 6TB housing with two 3TB modular shuttle drives (one master and one backup), while both your DIT and dailies colorist will have housings which already come with the drives, so you’ll have four drives in rotation from the start.

Red Giant BulletProof (Beta)- Download it now for FREE! | Red Giant
BulletProof is free as beta software until the products full release (and we’re aiming for this summer). This version is Mac only, but we fully intend to support windows as the product further develops.

I miss digitizing footage from video tape | Scott Simmons | ProVideoCoalition
There’s something to be said for sitting back and watching a clip play out in real time: You might see a subtle emotion from an actor’s face or get a look from a by-stander that you never would have seen scrubbing through the footage. You might not notice a camera shake or moment of defocus that is skipped right over when skimming.

A good aerial rig is the cross section of many factors but most importantly it’s a battle between weight and flight time. In theory, many rigs could handle the weight of a Red Epic, but lifting a heavy camera means nothing if your flight time is only a minute long. Creating rigs that can support heavier cameras while still getting a 4-5 minute flight time makes all the difference in getting that second take or capturing a magic moment as it unfolds in front of you.

How To Bring a Cinematic Look to a Small Budget Commercial, part 3 | Ryan E. Walters | Zacuto
When it comes to pre-production, my preference is to location scout prior to story-boarding  I put scouting first, because, as a visually oriented person, I will come up with ideas, and compositions based off of what the location provides. When I put story-boarding first, I come up with ideas that are impractical at the location, or I try to force an idea to work when there is a more compelling option provided by the location.

One other thing to bear in mind when using this setup is that there is no way to monitor the audio when it is on your subject. Make sure your levels are set correctly and that there is no clothing rustle or excess wind noise before you start recording.

Ten Lessons on Filmmaking from James Franco | Filmmaker Magazine
3. Surround yourself with people that push you to be better.
And I learned that on just doing short films at NYU. I used this poem called “Herbert White” by Frank Bidart. And Frank became a friend of mine. And the fact that he allowed me to use his poem and then that Michael Shannon acted in it, I had these two giants in my world who were doing my project. So I didn’t want to let them down. 

Lighting Day Exteriors | Shane Hurlbut | Hurlblog
Back Light
I would always try to look for a back light orientation for your scene. This enables you to shoot for a good amount of time without the light changing. As the light gains its height in the sky, I just slightly rotate my actors to match that rotation, always keeping them back lit. The reason for this is that frontal sunlight can be very harsh at times. 

10 Filmmaking Sites You Should Be Reading | PremiumBeats
We’ve rounded up some of the leading video production and filmmaking sites! Check out these terrific online resources to learn about the latest industry developments, get reviews on professional film/video equipment and improve your real-world production skills.

Green screens were necessary to film 'half' of new 'Arrested Development' season | The Verge
He cites one example to illustrate the challenges show runners faced: an on-screen conversation between Michael (Jason Bateman) and Lindsay (Portia de Rossi) required the actors to film their lines four months apart.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Mass Production Coalition: May 22nd Spring MPC Meeting at Coolidge Corner Theatre

Coolidge Corner Theatre: 290 Harvard Street, Brookline MA
6:00 – 7:30 pm Cocktails, Food, & Networking.
7:30 – 9:00 pm Presentations.

Film Development & Financing Panel
Co-Presented with Women in Film Video New England (WIFVNE)

Join us for a discussion on development and financing with Boston-based feature film producers Paul Bernon, Sam Slater and Blythe Robertson, moderated by journalist and WIFVNE Board Member Shannon Mullen.

Paul Bernon and Sam Slater founded BURN LATER Productions in 2012 to produce and finance films, television, and web content. The company is currently in development on feature films, a television series, web content and is actively looking to produce additional content. Their film DRINKING BUDDIES, starring Olivia Wilde, Jake M. Johnson, and Anna Kendrick premiered at SXSW and was acquired by Magnolia Pictures for a August 2013 theatrical release.

RSVP & More Info: May 22nd Spring MPC Meeting at Coolidge Corner Theatre

Quick Links

Outlining As You Write | Stu Maschwitz | Slugline
While sort of an advertisement for this script writing tool, a lot of the article is about writing, not the tool:
I'm working on an outline for a feature, and I thought I'd share my process. The document I've started in Slugline will evolve from notes and ideas, to a rough treatment, to a complete outline, to a scriptment, to a completed screenplay. Throughout this evolution, I'll use various Slugline features to support my workflow.

The “Frankenstein” Steadicam | Evan Luzi | The Black and Blue
Interesting article about making do with what you have (and the budget you have), rather than the 'right' way to do it:
I’m even more proud of the fact that we completely dismantled the RED battery mount and found a way to gaff tape it to the bottom of the Steadicam rig. Then we used the cable to juice the RED with its own batteries. This had a two fold effect: it gave us more power and it gave a greater counter weight to the RED’s heavy body.

Ep. 46 - "It's All News"NeedCreative Podcast
  • Adobe force charges a subscription - our thoughts on Creative Cloud
  • Apple - the direction of the company, and their changing view on Pros
  • FCPX as it currently stands, as compared to Premiere.
  • The Canon 5D3 now with raw 14-bit recording. 
  • and more

$200 off Bower 24mm f1.4 lens | B & H Photovideo
This Samyang / Bower / Rokinon is available under different badges, with different mounts and in a Cine model as well as a "regular" version. But at $499 for the Bower model until May 31st, this is about as cheap as you can get it. It's available in Canon, Nikon, Sony A mount, Olympus 4/3rds and Samsung NX mounts. Sure, it isn't as good as the Canon 24mm, but it's $1,000 cheaper, and for video use it has manual aperture settings.
The Cine model adds geared focus and aperture rings, and step-less aperture, but the mechanics are still the same, so it's debatable whether it's worth spending over $200 more for that.

Stratastencil Animation, Dance, and Poetry Take Flight in 'The Me Bird' | No Film School
Take a poem written by Nobel Prize-winning Chilean poet Pablo Neruda, combine it with transfixing stratastencil animation, throw in a strong piano score from Conrado Kempers and Pedro Carneiro, and have Brazilian design and motion graphics studio 18bis blend it all together.

Using Magic Lantern RAW on Your Canon – Is It Worth It? | James DeRuvo | Doodle
Primarily a response to one Canon RAW naysayer:
Weber goes on to say that using hacked cameras while there are proficient RAW options out there shows what he calls an “inherent lack of professionalism.”  Oh please.  Frankly, I think he has a better argument on the reliability side of the issue.  “CF cards are being capped out with the data rate on raw and dropped frames or corruption is far more likely to happen as a result of offloading the buffer. Just unnecessary risks all around.”

Andys Free Region Tool Plugin for FCP, Premiere Pro, Motion and AE | Noise Industries
Andy’s Free Region Tool plugin allows you to apply effects only to the part of the image that needs it. Compatible with Final Cut Pro, Motion, After Effects and Premiere Pro.

Understanding planar tracking in mocha HitFilm | FXhomeHitFilm | YouTube
HitFilm 2 Ultimate includes mocha HitFilm for planar tracking and camera solving. In today's tutorial we introduce the concept of planar tracking and explain some of its quirks.

CoreMelt SliceX brings mocha planar tracking to Final Cut Pro X | iT Enquirer
CoreMelt's SliceX originally was a keyframe based tracker. This meant that with every move of the shape you're trying to rotoscope or turn into a mask, you needed to create a keyframe. Powerful, but tedious. SliceX "powered by mocha" now makes SliceX the best since — heh — sliced bread. You get the tracking power from mocha with the SliceX preset shapes. You also get the ability to create shapes in freeform manner, just like what you're used to in mocha Pro.

ALEXA metadata for Lincoln MKZ campaign | ARRI News
The team utilized ALEXA’s in-camera HTML webpage to create the lens data table for the lenses used on the job. This built-in application is easily connected from the camera via Ethernet to a laptop running a web browser. Lenses with built-in Lens Data System (LDS) like the ARRI/ZEISS Master Primes, can communicate data directly to the camera through the PL mount data contacts. Lenses that are not LDS-enabled need only a lens table to be created and installed in the camera prior to shooting.

LockCircle Professional LockPort USB Port Saver | Cinescopophilia
The LockPort USB is a new product developed to help avoid damaging your 5D Mark2 and Mark3 mini USB camera port. The LockPort USB protects the fragile output on your camera from tough production abuse with a rock solid innovative ultra-thin clamp and a smart “mini to full-size” USB adapter.

Storytelling Mistakes from Star Trek Into Darkness | Tony Reale | NextWaveDV
I didn't actually read this as I am going to see the movie in the next day or so:
Big, massive, epic SPOILERS ahead! We will be talking about a few major plot revealers so if you haven’t seen the movie and want to be surprised, read no further. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Quick Links

How to “sort of” give your Blackmagic Cinema Camera a Super 35mm sensor! | Philip Bloom
So does it work? Absolutely. You can see clearly from the image below. It’s the same shot. Same camera, same light, same position just one is a passive flange distance adaptor the other the speedbooster. The full image is the speedbooster one which is clearly brighter, guesstimating it as about a stop brighter.

I know that sooner or later I will be shooting RAW much more often – but that might still be a few years away for most real world shooters (commercial shooters are getting there much sooner, it seems). Before then, recording, storage and post-production options need to improve and get cheaper. Right now I will only shoot RAW if I need the best possible image quality or need the extra latitude for a specific shot that would be hard to expose for any other way.

Why you MUST have 4K and raw and why you absolutely DON’T need it *
| Philip Bloom
Raw is brilliant. 4K is sexy as hell…BUT they both come with a number of quite severe headaches for the vast majority of people (including myself) who are clamouring for it. If those headaches were not there, then I would tell everyone to go for it, but as I am in somewhat of a position where people listen to me (still an utterly bewildering thing to me) and take what I do or advice I give as verbatim

Which Compact Flash cards for 5D Mark III raw video? | Andrew Reid | EOSHD
There are a lot of 1000x compact flash cards out there, with big variance in performance and price. Personally I have had the best results with the KomputerBay 64GB 1000x card, which only cost me 89 Euros on Amazon. Some KomputerBay and Lexar cards have been able to achieve 120MB/s sustained write speeds in Magic Lantern’s benchmark test, in theory enough for a Blackmagic Cinema Camera rivalling 2.5K 2560 x 1152 which requires 118.1MB/s at 24fps.

Turning the Internet Green: The FX Protest | Michael Murie
| Filmmaker Magazine
Over the past few months it’s been hard to miss the green icons showing up on Twitter and other social media in support of the FX Protest, an event that happened at this year’s Oscar ceremony to protest ongoing problems in the VFX industry.  While movies continue to make great use of visual effects, the companies that create these effects are being financially stressed and are going out of business.

The State of the VFX Industry and where do we go from here | Rick Young | Vimeo
Presentation by Scott Ross and Scott Squires live at the NAB SuperMeet, April 9, 2013This is an important presentation - for those who don't know, the VFX industry is in crisis with many facilities either struggling to make a living or going bankrupt. This is a world-wide industry problem, highlighted by the movie, Life of Pi, which brought in a tremendous profit, yet the VFX company which made the movie possible is now out of business.

Where is the best place to sit in a 4K UltraHD cinema? |  Aframe
In their words “Some have suggested that 4K is only meaningful for very large cinema screens. In fact, screen size isn’t the true measure of an audience member’s ability to pick out detail. The true measure is the relative distance from that person to the screen, the viewing distance. On paper, 4K is obviously the superior solution. But what about the real world? Will the ticket buying public actually be able to perceive the benefits of 4K resolution in actual theaters?”

Unlocking the Hidden Costs of Video Production | Chris Leydon
Video production isn't scalable, not really. There are some ways to make efficient use of crew time, with cramming as much into one shoot as possible, but that doesn't make up for the vast amount of pre and post-production time that's needed for a big project. The bigger the shoot, the longer it stays in post production.

Adobe's Creative Cloud Controversy | Red Shark
The current Adobe flap reminds me of the rancor two years ago at the introduction of Final Cut Pro X and the accompanying suspension of Final Cut Studio development. It is like the world erupted in fiery rage and I certainly counted myself among those who felt both a sense of betrayal as well as an instant dislike to the software.

Editing with FCPX – Part Two “long form” | Philip Johnston | HD Warrior
I am so glad I choose FCPX after a lot of deliberation and soul searching…version 10.0.08 is a great editing tool and the inbuilt chroma key is second to none, DON’T buy any 3rd party chroma key as they can’t compete with Apples own version, I tried one claiming better keying of finer detail and it was not a patch on the Apple version.

Dark Knight to rise for next James Bond? Christopher Nolan approached to direct next 007 film | Daily Mail
Nolan, who made the Batman trilogy Batman Begins, The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises — and had time for Inception in between — would be a cool choice after Sam Mendes decided not to shoot Bond 24.