Friday, March 15, 2013

Quick Links

Why Apple Must Fear Roku | Andrew Wallenstein | Variety
And yet as passable as the Roku-TW Cable deal is, it highlights a vulnerability to Apple: The longer iTV takes to get to market, the higher the risk someone is going to crack this market wide open before Apple even gets a chance.

A Colour Grading Round Up For Virgin & Veteran Colourists | Jonny Elwyn | Blog
If you’re a young colourist in the making then this 6 tip post from Reel Life Television will give you a decent structure to think about what you need to be learning; ranging from what apps and hardware to be investing in to the importance of taking breaks.

Celebrating Ford and Wayne's Classic Western 'The Searchers' | Ryan Lattanzio
| Indiewire
"First, apart from being an American epic, 'The Searchers' also is a John Wayne Western; for many, even at this late date in film history, that's still an excuse to ignore it. Secondly, it doesn't go down quite as easily as the pictures mentioned above. Like all great works of art, it's uncomfortable. The core of the movie is deeply painful."

Film Lighting Tutorial: Qualities of Light | Zacuto | Vimeo
The understanding of light is the most fundamental skill in cinematography. In this 3 minute film lighting tutorial video, watch and learn about the two basic types of light used in filmmaking and photography; hard and soft. Hard light creates a sharp solid shadow; while soft light creates a rounded gradient shadow. We break down these concepts and show you how to harness their power to improve your lighting.

Step Behind the Scenes at Laika, the Stop Motion Animation Company Behind 'ParaNorman' | Mar Belle | No Film School
Here are a few of the BTS videos which, although promo pieces at heart, provide quite a bit of insight into the vastly labor intensive production process behind animated feature work:

Photographing with Remote Helis & World Class Athletes in Crazy Locations — Behind-the-Scenes in Aspen | Chase Jarvis | Blog
Remember last year’s Aspen campaign? Well, we’re back at it again this year with even better conditions. We’ve been up before dawn and burning the midnight oil. Out the door right now – but stay tuned via social channels to follow along. In the meantime here’s a gallery of behind-the-scenes photos. Enjoy.

XDCAM Essentials Episode 6 - Recording Four Channels of Audio | Sony | YouTube
Four channel recording with the Sony PMW-200, PMW-160 and PMW-100:
Doug Jensen dispels some common myths and misconceptions of what recording four channel audio really means. He demonstrates several ways to configure the four channels using various audio sources including external microphones and mixing boards. Doug also explains the differences between channels 1 and 2 and channels 3 and 4 and how to use them to your advantage.

Christopher Doyle Interview Part 2: “Life of Pi” Oscar is an Insult to Cinematography | Sam Gaskin | Artinfo
I can't remember when I last saw this much swearing in an interview...
But what it says to the real world is it’s all about us, we have the money, we put the money in, and we control the image. [...] That’s not cinematography. That’s control of the image by the powers that be, by the people that want to control the whole system because they’re all accounts. You’ve lost cinema. This is not cinema and it’s not cinematography. It’s not cinematography.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Quick Links

Adobe to cut off boxed sales of Creative Suite, Acrobat | Electronista
"As Adobe continues to focus on delivering world-class innovation through Creative Cloud and digital fulfillment, we will be phasing out shrink-wrapped, boxed versions of Creative Suite and Acrobat products,"

Blackmagic UltraStudio Mini Monitor Review | Daniel Freytag | Blog
The big deal about this pocket-sized box is that it actually provides an SDI and HDMI output with 10 bit 4:2:2 video. It works with a wide range of software such as Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro 7 & X and of course DaVinci Resolve. It's a really nice option if you need to show a preview on an external display. The UltraStudio is only $145 ($137.75 B&H), which makes it a really nice solution for broadcast quality outputs.

The NEW JVC GY-HM70 with some interesting features | Philip Johnston
| HD Warrior
The camera records on two SDHC or SDXC memory cards in the AVCHD Progressive format at 28Mbps. And its unique dual battery system keeps you recording for hours and hours since the batteries may be hot swapped during recording. Never before has this much performance been packed into an affordable, professional shoulder supported camcorder

The Pumpkin Massacre Shot at 700fps | Cinescopophilia
Oh, this is a little more expensive than I realized ($33,579)
When he first laid eyes on the lightweight, compact VFC-7000 camera at a Toronto tradeshow last summer, Von Wong was impressed with the camera’s slow motion capabilities. He capitalized on the camera’s ability to capture high-speed HD recordings when he later used it to shoot a creative video that focused on his long hair.

Two Years On: Matt Allard revisits the scene of Japan's Tsunami | Matt Allard
| DSLR News Shooter
I find when filming heartfelt interviews in situations like this it is a good idea to shoot them on a long lens and to also resist the temptation to use reflectors or lights. The reasoning for this is to try and make the person feel as comfortable as possible. Having a bright light or reflector in your face doesn’t make anybody feel comfortable. All the Interviews and shots were done with available light except the Interview with the government spokesman.

Smashing the Mirror: Gender Inequality in Film | Briony Hanson | movieScope
There are a couple of very basic questions here, starting at the very beginning: why, for example, are film schools chock-full of female talent in the lead creative fields? Across both UK and US film schools the number of female production, direction and screenwriting students is almost level—if not slightly edging above—the number of male counterparts. Yet the minute school’s out the stats drop off dramatically and the number of women translating that experience into feature films barely even registers

How to interview a difficult subject (like Dick Cheney difficult) | MINA HOCHBERG
BE PATIENTI was advised wisely that the most important thing would be to be patient, that he would only come around slowly. And in fact that was the right advice because it took him seven months [to reply]. I sent him a letter and I heard back from his camp about seven months later. He invited me to come have lunch at his home in the Washington D.C. area. He thought it over for several days, but then I heard back that he was open to participating.

George Lucas Is Opening An Illustration, Comic and Animation Art Museum
| Amid Amidi | Cartoon Brew
George Lucas’s next big project is thrilling: a museum dedicated to the popular arts such as illustration, comics, film design and animation. According to an interview with CBS, he initially plans to rotate his personal art collection which numbers thousands of pieces, and includes works by Maxfield Parrish, N. C. Wyeth, and Norman Rockwell.

First impressions shooting with Sony F65 cameras | Affonso Beato | Blog
The F65s have an incredible Dynamic Range (14 stops), but it's 16bit digital processing, give us a much richer color information which makes a big difference on this case. Our visual impression is that it has 16 stops instead, case that was checked recently when I brought 20 min of different shots to be tested on Sony Color Works ACES workflow.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Massachusetts Media Expo : Tickets Now On Sale

If you're in Boston on Saturday, March 23rd, this should be an event worth attending:

Exhibition Hall (Calderwood Studio) 12:30 – 4:30 PM
Showcasing the most complete range of film and media companies in Massachusetts. Exhibitors will include the Commonwealth’s top production companies, post-production and VFX houses, production suppliers, innovative products and media support organizations.
Keynote Panel (Yawkey Theatre) 1:30 PM
Doug Trumbull     .Visual Effects and Immersive Media Pioneer
Dorothy Aufiero     Producer: The Fighter
Todd Arnow         .UPM: SurrogatesBattleshipFurry Vengeance
Mark Kamine        UPM: Silver Linings PlaybookTedShutter Island
Moderated by: Lisa Strout, MA Film Office Director

More Information

Quick Links

Vimeo's announcement today at SXSW that the company is launching a self-distribution service has the potential to be a major tool for independent filmmakers. Vimeo On Demand will allow any members of Vimeo PRO (a $199 a year service) offer up their work for rent or download, taking a 10% cut after credit card and Paypal fees.

MEETING: Visual Storytellers February 21stBOSCPUG
Blackmagic Cinema Camera on set of HERO PUNK LEARN MORE ABOUT HERO PUNK In this presentation, Kanen will discuss the workflow around Scruffy.TV -- a collaborative, distributed company with editors, post, audio, color, compositors and VFX artists from around the world. He will discuss the workflow constraints, use of Dropbox and other tools for collaboration, his work on The Scruffy Show, HERO PUNK and other online content.
Join Steve for an engaging "Part One" conversation on how Steve has been using Adobe Story since first released as the scriptwriting program on Steve's feature documentary. Steve will show you how he uses it and introduce you to this amazing software.

Digital Bolex seen at SXSW: first hand report | Red Shark News
But from what I understand the image from the sensor to the recorded image on the drive isn't quite what they want just yet. Elle also explained that while their part of the team is at the show the rest of the team is hard at work making those final modifications. Joe or Elle please correct me if I'm mistaken in my paraphrasing but the camera is, very, very close to being done. Joe assured me there would be a working camera and software at NAB next month. I'll let them cover the rest of the details so I don't misspeak.

Quick Note: Technicolor Color Assist now supports Apple’s Final Cut X
| Vincent Laforet | Blog
A quick note to say that the Technicolor Color Assist software which is a wonderful way to quickly set a look (or color grade/correction) on the set right there on the spot (on a shoot large or small) before those drives get shipped off into never never land… is now supported by Final Cut Pro X.

Black and White isn’t so “Black and White" | RON DAWSON | Dare Dreamer
All kidding aside, there was a time when you would  never think the topic of making a video black and white would be one worth blogging about. If you wanted a colorless video, you would just do what I said above. But lately I’ve discovered the beauty of playing with black and white in the various color levels. So it turns out, that making videos “black and white” isn’t so, well, black and white.

| Nathan Mauger | DSLR News Shooter
For The People’s Republic of Love I shot everything handheld, except interviews (because we had 45 of them!), and I shot it in a very-stripped down way. First, I took off the LCD/XLR module. You don’t really need this unless you’re doing an interview or need to synch the sound. The C300 has a great viewfinder, and the LCD isn’t necessary when working handheld. When the camera’s right up against your eye, it’s also more stable.

The Current State of Mac Pro GPUs-- before the next "shoe" drops | Bare Feats
Since the first Power Mac and Mac Pro were introduced, the factory and retail GPU offerings have been lagging behind those offered to Windows PC users. They were neither leading edge nor cutting edge. They were more like blunt or trailing edge. Almost immediately a GPU underground movement began to flash "PC only" GPUs to work in the Mac towers. In early 2006 we reported on some impressive examples such as the GeForce 7800 GTX for the Quad-Core G5 Power Mac.

RotoRig Sneak Peak - Camera Jib and Shoulder Rig in ONE! | krotoflik | YouTube
RotoRig, its a camera jib and shoulder rig in one! Ultra portable, weighs between 4 to 5 lbs and will cost approximately $50 to build. Be sure to subscribe so you don't miss the DIY build of this unit! 

Adobe MAX is the creativity conference | Adobe
Adobe MAX is all about creativity and expressiveness. If you create, you won’t want to miss MAX. Designers, developers, strategists, video professionals, photographers, and more all come to MAX to exchange ideas and inspiration. Together with industry pros and visionaries, you’ll learn about the latest technologies, techniques, and strategies for delivering your best creative work. Come to MAX and explore how creativity is changing the world and what part you have to play in that change. And every full conference MAX pass includes a one year membership to Adobe Creative Cloud*

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Quick Links

How to Raise Seven Grand in Seven Days on Kickstarter | Sara Kaye Larson
| Filmmaker Magazine
By now it’s common crowdfunding lore that you should aim to raise 25% of your funds within the first couple weeks from people that you know. We were pretty much on target with that goal. But given that we ran a long campaign, our numbers were stagnant for days, even weeks, at a time, and we were left with the task of raising 50% of our goal in final seven days.

In depth blog post with video BTS on new music video “Bitten by the frost” shot on the 1DC | Philip Bloom
With a no-budget music video, you don’t have the luxury of a location scout or production manager. My main roles were Director, DP and Editor, but I also acted as script supervisor and  production manager. Rachel, Olly’s wife volunteered her mother’s house for bed scenes and the front door scene. My house was the bathroom, kitchen and TV location. Olly and Rachel’s local pub was the Cinema, Exotic Dancing place, Men’s room, Coffee shop, Restaurant and of course pub.

How to Fund Your Documentary: an IFP Masterclass with Louise Rosen
| Oakley Anderson-Moore | No Film School
IFP has uploaded an entire masterclass from 25-year-plus media executive Louise Rosen for us to watch, and we don’t have to pay a dime. What Louise outlines right off the bat is that the documentary funding landscape is in flux. Today, doc filmmakers have to get more creative, and Louise outlines just how to go about getting started on raising your budget incrementally in the video below

6D Review + Comparison Video | Orange Wedding Films | Vimeo
Canon EOS 6D vs 5D mk2 vs 7D vs 60D
6. all the comparison video was shot on Zeiss 50mm 1.4. EVF segment and sample shot (and wedding clips) were shot on Sigma 24-70 2.8. My dog footage was shot on 6D with Zeiss 35mm 2.0.
7. no color grading was done in any clips in this video. imported as DSLR footage to Premiere Pro CS5.5, exported to H.264 1080 24P, 7Mbps.

Audio for DSLR: How to Get Good Sound with DSLR Video Cameras!
| SourceDistributionTV | YouTube
Most interested that the audio was recorded using the RODE SmartLav:
If you are new to audio recording and struggling to get crisp and useable audio from your DSLR camera, this talk from Alex from Source Distribution gives some practical insight, tips, and info on the techniques and products which will help you do just that.
All audio in this presentation was recorded with a RØDE smartLav, going into an Apple iPhone using the RØDE Rec App. A little UAD LA2A, Little Labs VOG and Neve 1073 processing was used to even out the dynamics and sweeten the recording

Inspired by Sony NEX gear: HitRECord's "Flickering Lights" | Sony | YouTube
Interesting lighting effects...
This past fall, we partnered with Joseph Gordon Levitt's HitRECord, an online hub where creative minds come together to make art, videos, music and anything else they can imagine. Since technology plays a large role in the production process, we provided the community with the latest Sony Alpha NEX gear to inspire content focused on the theme of Flickering Lights.

Estimate Crop Factors With RED Cameras Use this tool to preview how a given focal length will appear depending on resolution setting and sensor type. Illustration depicts viewable area relative to a traditional 35 mm stills photography sensor.

Sony F55 - Choo Train Ungraded | Nigel Akam | Vimeo
I'm a sucker for trains....and the graded version is here.
Here's a copy of the sequence ungraded. Shot on the Sony F55, Slog2, S-Gamut, with Zeiss ZF 28,50,100 mm lenses with MTF Nikon adapter

BMCC - Canon Lens Testing | A Couple Of Night Owls | Vimeo
This is an informal 'test' to get a feel for our different lenses we have on the BMCC, mostly interested to see how they look 'wide open'. The glaring gap in our range so far is the canon 24/1.4L which we don't have yet.
• Canon 14/2.8L 0:00
• Canon 35/1.4L 0:06
• Canon 50/1.2L 0:27
• Canon 50/1.4 0:54
• Canon 100/2.8L 1:18
• Canon 135/2L 1:31
• Canon 70-200/2.8L IS (@200mm) 1:47
• Canon 70-200/2.8L IS (@70mm) 2:01

'Elements Club' Uses Litepanels to Shoot in Historical Museum Location
| Creative Planet Network
Producer/writer Kys Realm and cinematographer Emily Perez carefully planned the production of “Lord of Lingering Shadows,” the first of 11 episodes, knowing that it would set an entirely new look and feel for the historical romance. “Our camera choice for the series was the Canon 5D with Canon 16-35mm lens,” says Realm. “But our saving grace was a variety of Litepanels LED lights. We simply could not have shot this first episode without them.”

Sony introduces new 3D system to expand choice for its 4K Digital Cinema customers | Sony
Sony Digital Cinema today announced it is expanding the choice of 3D technology in European countries by introducing a new 3D offering for the cinema industry.
The new solution, now available across Europe, will mean exhibitors can show 3D content on two of Sony DCI-compliant 4K projectors: the SRX-R320SP and the SRX-R515P. Each of the projectors will work alongside a polarising filter system (the LKRA-005) and Sony’s unique 3D dual lenses. The 3D format together with the 4K projection will ensure an unparalleled picture quality, allowing exhibitors and cinema owners to deliver a fully immersive entertainment experience.

4K Video Workflow: Hype or Reality Larry Jordan at #BVE2013 | Larry Jordan
| YouTube
What is 4K? What's the workflow? Is it hype or reality? Here's Larry's presentation at Broadcast Video Expo 2013 in London to help you decide..

Monday, March 11, 2013

Quick Links

Building a Computer: Part 1 - Choosing Your Components | Brandon Vincent
| Vimeo
Brandon is doing a series on building a custom box that could run OS X. This is part 1:
This is Part 1 of a 3 Part series of videos explaining how to build a custom computer. This part goes over the process of choosing your components, and what I've chosen for this particular build.

The Power of a Short and Sweet Demo Reel | Shane Hurlbut | Hurlblog
KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid). Try not to over-complicate a reel. Too much flash and quick cuts will make it seem like you are trying to hide something. Treat your reel like telling the story of what makes you tick. Convey your personality, your expression as an artist. This is so important to make it your own, so that your style comes across.

Watch: Robert McIntosh's Aerial GoPro Footage is Absolutely Breathtaking
| Joe Marine | No Film School
Many people were a bit baffled why anyone would mod a GoPro to allow more manual controls and C-mount lenses like the Radiant Images/View Factor Novo, but this is one of those situations where a camera with a less distorted lens and manual controls would give even more precise control over the footage.

Ep. 37 - "Hurlbut Returns" (with Shane Hurlbut, ASC) | NeedCreative Podcast
In this very special 37th episode of the NeedCreative Podcast, your host Paul Antico is joined again by Shane Hurbut, ASC. We have a great talk about the art and science of cinematography, and the second half of this episode Shane provides a workshop of sorts, taking you into some story scenarios and how he might light & lense them. It's a great show.

A video-based interface for hand-driven stop motion animation production
| Hongbo Fu | YouTube
Interesting tool that takes out your hands after you animate the objects:
Demo for our paper to be published at IEEE Computer Graphics and Applications. 

Ikonoskop A-cam dll versus Blackmagic Cinema Camera | Andrew Reid | EOSHD
It seems they had problems with IR contamination with the Ikonoskop, or a problem with Resolve:
I feel the Blackmagic Cinema Camera is easier to just get on and shoot with without any special tricks and easier to handle in post – at least in my limited experience of the Ikonoskop. Certainly out the box the BMCC is more ready. But maybe the Ikonoskop – to my eye at least – looks more cinematic? You can judge the test footage and draw your own conclusions!

Advanced Spill Suppression Methods | Daniel Broadway | TutsPlus
Extensive After Effects tutorial:
This tutorial shows how to use sophisticated channel operations to achieve a more accurate spill suppression result than is attainable with AE’s default plug-ins.

Video: Steadicam progress – the career of Paul Thomas Anderson in five shots
| Kevin B. Lee | British Film Institute
Some more Steadicam material, this time an in-depth breakdown of five shots:
Thinking on what sets The Master apart from Paul Thomas Anderson’s earlier films, what strikes me most vividly is a marked difference in camera movement and staging. I wouldn’t be surprised if a proper cinemetric analysis found that up to half of the film’s running time consists of close-ups with little to no camera movement.

The Introvert's Guide to a Successful SXSW | Dorie Clark | Forbes
Create a connection goal. You could make infinite connections at SXSW, and stay out all night doing so. If you’re an introvert, spare yourself the grief. Set the number of connections you’d like to make – let’s say three – and then consider anything else a bonus.

Aurora Borealis. The Northern Lights in 4K, UHDTV Ultra High Definition
| Alister Chapman | YouTube
Here is a compilation of clips from my recent photography and video workshop in Norway where I teach people to photograph and video the Northern Lights. This version was shot using still frames taken with a Sony NEX5 and Alpha A99. Then edited together to produce a time-lapse 4K video clip. Check out my web site if you want to join me on one of these tours. They run in December and Jan/Feb each year.