Education & Inspiration

From Wired magazine: The Good Enough Revolution

From Wired magazine: The Good Enough Revolution

The idea of a production being Good Enough is happening in professional media production today

By Scott Simmons | September 20, 2009

Continuing with the links to other good articles that are great reads for our particular industry comes a link to a Wired article called The Good Enough Revolution: When Cheap and Simple Is Just Fine. That kinds of sums up a lot of what is going on in film and video production today wouldn't you say? That Flip camera footage that comprises a large part of your program would have been flat out rejected on broadcast television at one point in the past but today ... it is good enough. Read More


ex1 ex3 f35 far red filter genesis infrared sony t1 tiffen

Tiffen Goes Into Production on T1 Far Red Filter

If you own an EX1, EX3 or F35 then this is the filter you've been waiting for

By Art Adams | September 18, 2009

As you may have noticed from previous articles, I've done a lot of research on which cameras allow infrared or far red to contaminate dark fabrics and change their color. There hasn't been a satisfactory solution for the Sony EX1, EX3 and F35 cameras--until now. Read More


business philip hodgetts post production production

Surviving in Post, Another Tool to Add to the Arsenal

By Terence Curren | September 15, 2009

Take a rapidly changing market, throw in new "low to no cost" distribution methods, add two lumps of recession and you have our current business environment. And it isn't pretty. Surviving in post has always been a challenge, but now it is a nightmare. Fortunately Philip Hodgetts' new book "The New Now: Grow your production or postproduction business in a changed and changing world" has come along to help navigate these tumultuous times. In spite of the lengthy title, this is an excellent guide full of helpful tips that I would recommend to anyone in our industry. Read More


barber pole clipping exposure false color gamma raw red red one sensor traffic light

The Vertical Bar Graph Raw Exposure Meter

This RED exposure tool just became your best friend.

By Art Adams | September 15, 2009

The vertical bar graph raw exposure meter is the least explained meter in the latest RED manual. It's also one of the most valuable exposure tools the RED ONE offers. Read More


You can refuse to do a freebie edit and not be a dick

You can refuse to do a freebie edit and not be a dick

Or how we can all learn a thing or two from the article I Will Not Read Your Fucking Script

By Scott Simmons | September 13, 2009

There's a great article on the Village Voice blogs by A History of Violence screenwriter Josh Olson titled I Will Not Read Your Fucking Script. It's a must read for any editor who has spent a good portion of their career editing professionally and has an extended group of family and friends who know what he or she does for a living. I say this because if you fall into that aforementioned category then you've been asked, possibly many times, to edit the occasional wedding video, baby video, memorial tribute, work video etc. etc. etc. for a friend and family member or (perhaps worse) some friend of a friend who heard you were an editor. Read More


blue build 20 channel mixer color color science colorimetry improved noise red red one

RED’s Blue Noise: Where It Went, and Other Color Anomalies You Should Know About

What you didn't know you didn't know about color and the RED ONE

By Art Adams | September 10, 2009

RED software build 20 boasts new colorimetry that eliminates blue shadow noise under tungsten light. When asked how they did it, RED only said "We aren't using noise reduction algorithms." I love a challenge, and I think I figured out how they did it. Read More


Editor’s Guild magazine back issues online

Editor’s Guild magazine back issues online

A fantastic web resource

By Scott Simmons | September 05, 2009

Every now and then a web resource comes online and you just have to say WOW! That's exactly what I said after seeing a recent Twitter from Norman Hollyn that said: "For some fantastic articles on editing go to the Editors Guild Magazine site. Interviews, tips and more. " It was followed by this link: That link takes you to the Motion Picture Editors Guild webpage of current and past issues of Editors Guild magazine. There's currently issues going as far back as when the mag was just a newsletter in 1994. Click the cover to get a list of contents and then click the link to read the article, that simple. There's no fee and not even a sign-up process. Read More


10.6 64 64-bit after effects kernel leopard snow leopard

Snow Leopard: Hopes, Misunderstandings, and Gotchas

Here, kitty...please don't bite the nice user...

By Chris and Trish Meyer | September 01, 2009

Snow Leopard (aka OS 10.6) looks like a great system update for Mac users: better performance, smaller hard drive footprint, cheap price (if you've been keeping up with your OS updates). That said, we personally are always cautious about upgrading to the "x.x.0" version of anything: Call it old age, but quite often we prefer to let the serial early adopters (you know who you are) find where the gotchas are, while we get work done in the meantime with "old" technology. Here's a brief collection of some of the issues (some real, some illusionary) that we've heard of so far; please feel free to add your own in the Comments below: Read More


avid editing tips techniques modifiers steve hullfish gems

Avid Gems 11

Modified behaviors with modifier keys

By Steve Hullfish | August 26, 2009

So, it's been a while since I've started writing this series, so I should probably point out that the point here is to simply locate those cool tips and techniques that are easily found in the user manual - if you actually chose to read it. But this is much easier - at least for you - because I've sifted out most of the "duh" stuff and just delivered the tips that you might have not heard before.The theme of this specific column was inspired by a reader who commented on Avid Gems #10. They wanted to know all of the different ways the alt key on Windows or the option key on Mac altered the behavior of various keystrokes and mouse movements, so that's what I'm serving up today. Read More


Video storage space calculators round-up

Video storage space calculators round-up

These handy utilities can never be more than a click or tap away

By Scott Simmons | August 24, 2009

It's one of the questions I get asked more often than most: How much drive space do I need to hold [insert media format and time here]? At one point I tried to keep some rough numbers in my head, as in way back when DV25 was about the only format and resolution to worry about, but these days with all of the different resolutions and frame rates it's way more information than I care to remember. But fear not as there's many different places in which to find video storage space calculators. Web based, widget based and iPhone based ... read on for a round-up. Read More


inspiration google stumbleupon social network social networking resources creative web muse

Inspiration from the anti-Google

Using StumbleUpon for creative inspiration and resources

By Steve Hullfish | August 23, 2009

More and more production professionals are living in a kind of social vacuum as production and post moves from larger companies to small 1 or 2 man boutiques. So for a little inspiration and a feeling that you're part of a greater whole, I'd suggest checking out StumbleUpon. I know that many of you have probably already become addicted to the steady stream of interesting content provided by StumbleUpon, but for those who have yet to discover the joys of Stumbling, let me introduce you. Read More


3d after effects tutorial

The Centrica Carnivale part 3

The final of the three-part video series on advanced 3D animation using After Effects

By ChrisZwar | August 20, 2009


In part 2 we looked at the creation and animation of the "racing waiters" scene... one award done but five more to go!

In the final of the three-part series we look at all the other scenes in the animation and then conclude with a few notes on delivery. Read More


3d after effects tutorial

The Centrica Carnivale part 2

Part two of the three-part series looking at advanced 3D animation using After Effects

By ChrisZwar | August 20, 2009


In Part 1 we looked at the initial client brief, the pitch animation, and ended up creating some flashing lights in After Effects.

In Part 2 we dive right into advanced 3D - beginning with an examination of the "magic star", then a comprehensive demonstration of the Knoll Light Factory, before concluding with a complete analysis of the "racing waiters" scene. Read More


3d after effects tutorial

Introducing the Centrica Carnivale

A 3-part video tutorial looking at advanced 3D animation in After Effects

By ChrisZwar | August 19, 2009


3D or AE? How about 3D using AE!

At the beginning of 2006 I created a conference opener for Centrica that looked like it had been made with a 3D animation package, however practically everything was created using only After Effects. This is part one of a three-part series that looks back at the Centrica Carnivale animation and demonstrates the techniques that were used to create the distinctive 3D look. While not intended to be a detailed step-by-step tutorial, the series looks at all aspects of the project- from the initial client brief through to final delivery and gives insight into the "real life" stages of an After Effects project. Read More


build 20 camera color colorimetry crossover exposure latitude red test

RED Build 20 Torture Tests

Exposure latitude tests reveal perhaps too much about the RED ONE

By Art Adams | August 15, 2009

I've learned more about how cameras work by learning what the RED doesn't do. But, with every software build, it does more. Build 20 looks to be the best yet... but it's not perfect. Read More


Monsterpod: Stick Your (small) Camera Almost Anywhere

Monsterpod: Stick Your (small) Camera Almost Anywhere

...and get it back in one piece

By Bruce A Johnson | August 08, 2009

I love gadgets, especially useful ones. That love is doubled when the device is reasonably priced. And gadgets that are useful, reasonably priced and related to video put me over the top. So you can imagine my interest when a fellow member of a video discussion list turned me on to the MonsterPod, which fills all three categories well.At first glance, the MonsterPod looks like an orange and black nylon-mesh suction cup, with a 1/4" tripod screw mounted in the middle. It's once you flip it over that you find the magic ingredient - a large blob of what looks like orange Silly Putty, what the MonsterPod makers call "PodGoo." You wouldn't think something this seemingly simple could stick to just about any surface - but you would be wrong. Basically, applying the MonsterPod involves shaping and bending the cup and PodGoo to conform to the rough contours of the surface you want to stick your camera to. And the list isn't limited to just flat surfaces - the MonsterPod sticks to poles, rocks, dashboards, cement, you name it. As long as the surface isn't wet, made of fabric, too greasy or too dirty, it's a good bet that MonsterPod will adhere to it, at least for a while. A good firm press - even on vertical surfaces or upside down - will fasten the MonsterPod in place. The makers recommend a maximum 10 minutes of attachment at a time, but as long as it isn't overloaded I can see the hold lasting longer. Read More


Busy Person’s Guide to Color Correcting the Canon 5D

Busy Person’s Guide to Color Correcting the Canon 5D

In which I take some pretty footage and make it a lot prettier

By Art Adams | August 06, 2009

The 5D is fast and portable, but it's not a professional camera--so know going in that you're going to have to color correct whatever you shoot. Read More


hp invent stop motion viral

Stop Motion Redux

Another stop motion viral commercial. Business opportunity?

By Chris and Trish Meyer | August 05, 2009

If you haven't noticed, stop motion animation is hip right now (see previous posts by Richard Harrington and Matt Jeppsen). This example, sponsored by HP, extends the concept by adding the extra time dimension of capturing a set of printers outputting graphics for the video. I also like the fact that you get to see the handlers tweaking the equipment during some of the shots. It's a modestly amusing way to kill a couple of minutes.More importantly, whenever I see a trend emerge, I have to ask if there is a business opportunity here. We're clearly seeing some companies jumping on the stop motion bandwagon as an alternate way of subliminally promoting their products. If you're looking for an angle to scare up some new work from old clients (or foster new ones), you might want to play around with learning stop motion yourself, and pitch the idea to your Rolodex. If you make a cool one, and are willing to share how you made it, let me know and we'll post it! Read More


5d abel cine arri canon donut mark ii mattebox new

Abel Cine offers New Mattebox System for Canon 5D Mark II

Not just for cops anymore, custom donuts are mandatory for the Canon 5D

By Art Adams | August 05, 2009

On a recent shoot with the Canon 5D Mark II I lamented the lack of properly-sized donuts. Now, thanks to Abel Cine, I lament no more. Read More


5d camera canon color correction dslr hd leica magic bullet red tiffen dfx

My First Shoot with the Canon 5D

For a still camera it shoots pretty nice HD

By Art Adams | August 04, 2009

The Canon 5D is a cinematic nightmare. In movie mode it's hard to see focus, difficult to set exposure, and it doesn't show you exactly what you're getting. It records to heavily compressed 8-bit H.264, and the only frame rate available is 30fps. Not 29.97--exactly 30p. It's a complete pain to use.And I love it. Read More