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Showing posts from May 8, 2011

MIT Media In Transition 7 Conference

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It's the MIT Media in Transition 7 Conference this weekend, and it's been an interesting experience. I've been to two sessions so far, and while they've been provocative, perhaps the most intriguing thing about them is that they keep turning out to be about things other than what I thought they would be about! Digital Film Production Aymar Jean Christian , Promise and Problems: Independent Production in Periods of Change This talk was about producing and distributing content as web series through YouTube and other services. Daniel Faltesek , Film, Video, Metadata: Time-Axis Manipulation After the Linear Medium A discussion of the history of NLE's and how they have impacted the production of television and movies. Kim Knowles , Analog Obsolescence and the ‘Death of Cinema’ Debate: The Case of Experimental Film A plea for keeping analog (film) as a production medium. I must admit that I wasn't sympathetic to the argument because it seemed to just be an

News From Here & There

Genus Rig with Sony NEX-FS100 Demo Den Lennie from F-Stop Academy does a short video promo for Genus gear with the Sony NEX-FS100 camera. The gear covered includes the GMP-HP Hotplate, the S-SFOC Superior Follow Focus , the G-FG flexible lens gear and the GWMC Matte Box . Vimeo : Den from F-Stop Academy demonstrates Genus Kit on Sony FS100 Editing 3D with EDIUS Grass Valley has published a "White Paper" (really just a short article) abiout the production and editing of Australia's (and possibly the World's) first 3D Wedding Video using the Panasonic AG-3DA1 and EDIUS software: The biggest change to their usual way of shooting was definitely the minimum distance required to obtain an acceptable image. Anything closer than two meters did not work as it would cause the 3D viewers’ eyes to converge unnaturally and become cross-eyed. Shot lifespan was the other big challenge the team needed to tackle. To appreciate the 3D image fully, the viewer needs a littl

Some Quick Links

Movie Draft SE is a Mac Scriptwriting program available at the Mac App Store. It's currently $29.99, though they say the introductory price is ending soon. You can download a non-saving demo from their website Learned from a 48 Hour Film Competition ; Robin Schmidt writes about his experience on the Sci Fi London 48 hour film challenge : While we’re on the subject of mistakes, we were really understaffed for the first day of the challenge and should really have brought more people in to help. We were actually overstaffed on the sunday and yet still missed a proper focus puller and soundman. Nonetheless, we did still manage to get the film in on time . WideOpenCamera : 48 HOUR FILM CHALLENGE: ATMOSPHERIC – THE WRITEUP This is troubling: OWC, a seller of upgrade parts for Macs, reports that there's a problem upgrading the internal hard drives of the latest iMac 's : From our testing, we’ve found that removing this drive from the system, or even from that bay itsel

Blogger is back?

Well, it appears Blogger is back, having been down for the past 24 hours after a maintenance release went wrong, and they had to revert everything. It appears that the posts from Thursday are gone....maybe they will come back, maybe they won't. As I recall a synopsis of them would be: The usual collection of odds and ends in News My review of the Virtual NAB trade show (which wasn't complementary!) Oh well. If Blogger manages to recover them, then great, otherwise I think I will leave them be... Normal service will resume tomorrow (I hope!) For those interested, here's Blogger's official report: Blogger is back [ UPDATE : Added link to Blogger article ]

Canon HF G10 In Stock

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After posting a few days back about all the cameras that weren't available, I guess it's only fair to note that the Canon HF G10 is currently available at B & H for $1,4999: Canon VIXIA HF G10 Flash Memory Camcorder Or if you need XLR inputs, you could wait for the "pro" version, the XA10 , which is Back-ordered....

News From Here & There

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Redrock Micro EVF EVF's are all the rage at the moment, with Zacuto finally shipping samples of theirs. Redrock also showed an EVF back about the time Zacuto first showed their prototype, but Redrock's seems to have run into problems, and wasn't really even talked about at NAB. Now Redrock Micro, on their Facebook page, has announced: Last year Redrock was the first to announce an electronic viewfinder designed for HDSLR cameras. Since then a number of other EVFs have been announced, but at a much higher price points - $750 and even higher. We believe that's too expensive. What's needed is an EVF that maintains our vision of a compact, lightweight, full-featured accessory, but at about half the price of current offerings: our target is $375 or less . With that as our goal, we continue to refine our design and feature set of the microEVF. We do not currently have a release timeframe for the microEVF. If you would like to keep up with progress, please subscribe

News from Here & There

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Tempted By New Gear? Sam Morgan Moore reminds us that it's not always about the gear, and that DSLRs are fine for most things; If I shot lots of buildings I could argue that my cameras were not up to it – but I’m not so I cant. I therefore don’t need a new camera DSLR 4 Real: Spend Spend Spend On the other hand,  Sam Morgan Moore reminds us that there are lots of limitations to DSLRs: When I’m shooting for me a DSLR is great – I use it to its strengths But when I’m shooting for a client often the hairs on my neck start to tingle MoirĂ© short record times and the killer HDMI wobble sweat me out His solution? The Sony NEX-FS100 and PMW-F3 look interesting... DSLR 4 Real :  Pony for a Sony? Notes on the Sony NEX-FS100 Phil Baxter at Creative Video Co got to play with the Sony NEX-FS100 prototype, and offers some impressions, including these notes on the kit lens: I tried out the auto focus on this lens, however the result was useless with the lens perpetually hun

News From Here & There

Image Control This iPad app from Gamma & Density , is designed to let someone create color correction values on-set, and then send them to the post-production team. Might be worth using for the pro's, though at $400, I won't be getting it! (the app is not yet released) Hand Held Hollywood : Image Control For IPad Does On-Set Color Correction Crowd Sourcing Tim Clague at Projector Films  offers some tips for those considering crowd sourcing, and how to appeal to your target investors emotions: Whatever approach your film takes, I think it is wise to consider the emotional reasons why people would invest. What are the deep reasons why they would help you to make your film? Are you giving them the right things back to meet those emotional needs? ProjectorFilms : Why people will invest in your film. Working with DSLR Footage in Premiere Pro Mark Christiansen walks though the steps involved in working with DSLR footage in Premiere Pro , from Preview and Ingesting

YouTube offers more movie rentals

YouTube has announced it has partnered with Universal Pictures , Sony Pictures , Warner Brothers , Lionsgate Films , Starz , The Weinstein Company , and Magnolia Pictures , among others, to offer 3,000 new and catalog releases for rent. Most new releases start at $3.99 and library videos start at $2.99 and are viewable via PC or Google TV . For most movies, viewers will have 30 days to begin watching their rental, and once they start watching the movie they will typically have 24 hours to finish. Interestingly, you can embed movies on other sites. If a user who has not rented the movie views the embedded video, the embedded player will show the movie's trailer along with an overlay that users can click on to rent the full movie. ( Let's see if it works below.. ) As to quality, in their press release YouTube says that they support video in up to 4k resolution, however, " it is up to our partners to specify what video quality they provide. " They go on to note t

Why I'm wary of GPU's

One of the things about getting older is you start to notice patterns; it seems like some ideas just keep coming around: I might have missed the 3D movies of the 50's, but I did see the horror that was Jaws 3D in the 80's. The new Push Pop Press interactive book is impressive with HD video, faster effects and it's touch screen interactivity, but it really doesn't add any new ideas that didn't exist in interactive books that were produced in the mid 90's. And flying cars , well they keep coming around too... So sometimes it's hard to get excited about an idea that looks like something you've seen before... When Adobe CS5 came out, I was intrigued by the Mercury Playback Engine and it's support of GPU acceleration . But the one thing that made me hesitate about diving into GPU's is good old Moore's Law . That and the fact that I remember back in the late 80's there was a period where there was a variety of add-on acceleration

News From Here & There

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Depth of Field Israel Hyman at IzzyVideo explains why he thinks control of depth-of-field is a major part of "the film look"; It directs the viewer’s attention. When we strategically place things out of focus, the viewer doesn’t pay attention to them. Viewers focus on the part of the image that’s in focus. And explains how to accomplish it with different cameras. IzzyVideo : Depth of Field in Your Video: Why and How to Use It via The Tao Colorist Panasonic GH2 Zoom Mode Luminous Landscape explains how the Digital Zoom EX Tele Conv mode crops the cameras 4608 x 3456 sensor to 1920X1080, which means: This has significant implications, almost all of them positive. Firstly, no line skipping, binning, or digital interpolation are needed. It's as if the sensor was only 2MP rather than 18MP. As a consequence the image recorded has a crop factor of 2.6X over the full Micro Four Thirds format. The best way to think of this is being akin to the crop factor of APS-C ov

Grading ARRI Alexa Footage

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Finishing Artist and VFX Supervisor Dermot Shane dropped me an email about this short interview piece that he recently graded.  The piece itself is an interview with  Scott Duncan  talking about his passion for visual imagery and working with the Arri Alexa, but it was also shot with the Alexa, and Dermot reports that he really likes grading footage from the Alexa.  Dermot offers some impressions on working with Alexa footage below. Scott Duncan & Arri Alexa / in the moment from Michael Haldane on Vimeo . Why I Like Working With ARRI Alexa Footage - First the workflow is simple and clean, assembly took maybe one minute all up and I had a full resolution timeline that matched the off-line perfectly, so a good start to a session for sure. - Second it was a joy to have the clean blacks, the lack of noise makes secondaries very easy to use, I can isolate color with precision, and without artifacts - Third the skin tones feel "real" straight out of the box, j

News From Here & There

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GoPro Interview Film and Digital Times interviews  Brad Schmidt , head of the Media Department at GoPro and Rick Loughery , Director of Communications at GoPro about the history of the company. Interestingly, they came to digital comparatively recently: RICK LOUGHERY : Nick started with a 35 millimeter film still camera that was worn on your wrist. And that grew into digital. It was through his own building and selling cameras. But the first cameras you wore on your wrist to take pictures of your buddy surfing. BRAD SCHMIDT : It was almost like a Kodak disposable one, and we’d load up 35mm slide film into it. And the pictures came out great. And then the next generation was one that only recorded for ten seconds, and it looks kind of like old super 8. And that was only four, five years ago? FDTimes : GoPro Amazon : GoPro HD Helmet HERO Camera Thinking of getting an iMac There's been times I've thought of getting an iMac , but one of the things that turns me off is the