Posts Tagged ‘hd’

Closing Spaces

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I finally was able to close the books on Spaces this week. We had originally planned for the series to go 5 episodes, but, due to a backlog last semester and some severe looming budget cuts for our department, we had to settle for a 4 episode run. Regardless, I think that the story arc remains conclusive as nearly all of the loose ends from the first three episodes are tied up in the fourth installment. We did begin production on the fifth episode and I may include the opening scene as an extra on the series DVD that we release later this year.

In terms of the production schedule, this episode trumped all others in terms of multiple shoots as we had to find a way to coordinate 8 volunteer actors to occupy the same space at the same time. This kind of logistical nightmare doesn’t always work, but, in this instance, we were able to work around their schedule limitations and do multiple shoots that incorporated as many actors as we could at a time while avoiding any wide shots that would require digitally adding actors in.

As to the visual effects elements for this episode, I really didn’t find the need to add too much outside of the reveal shot of Charlotte’s paintings and a few hand-held shots that required some stabilization in post. Everything else was fairly well planned out so the need to add extras here and there were minimal. I had originally intended to include one more videophone shot where Charlotte calls Sheldon & Steve to check on the status of the doctors as they ran down the stairwell and have them running across the street in the background as Ward and Mason pull up. However, scheduling limitations dictated that I junk those shots in favor of a more easily filmed transition.

Anyway, as to the credits. The episode was produced by ETSU Online and Parking Services with special thanks to the Mary B. Martin School of the Arts and Karlota Contreras-Koterbay for being so gracious to provide us access to the Slocumb Galleries on multiple occasions. The episode, once again, stars Everett Tarlton and Danielle Tucker with returning guest stars Zach Starnes, Josh Holley, Bobby Funk, and Carolina Hurtado. Also appearing in this episode were Caroline Abercrombie, David Currie, and Rob Nelson as the doctors. I co-wrote the script for this episode with David Currie of the ETSU Office of eLearning who , along with Zion Madden of ETSU Online, served as assistant camera and audio technician. I served as Director, D.P., and Editor. All post-production was completed with Final Cut, Premiere Pro, Photoshop, Mocha, and After Effects.

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Compositing Reel 2013

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Just finished my new compositing reel for 2013 and was able to work in some never before seen shots from Choices along the way! Check it out below…

ETSU’s Reliquaries

Bill Bledsoe's Reliquaries

Recently, I was given another project to assemble a series of episodic vignettes about a series of paintings created by local artist and ETSU alum Bill Bledsoe that captured a series of memorable scenes from around the campus for a promotional sub-site on the university’s webpage. Bledsoe provides commentary on each piece to give a little background on his vision and method.

Videography and on-location sound provided by Jason Jones, Zion Madden, and David Currie of ETSU Online and talent provided by artist Bill Bledsoe. I performed all editing and post-production duties utilizing Final Cut, Audition, Photoshop, Illustrator, and After Effects.

Back to Spaces

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Episode 3 of Spaces is now officially in the books. It took a little longer to wrap production on this episode due to the inevitable scattering of acting talent that so often happens at the end of the semester, but, ultimately, I’m really happy with how everything came together. Episode 3 introduces us to Dr. Ward Rothschild, Charlotte’s father, who is played masterfully by ETSU Theatre professor Bobby Funk. Intellectually overbearing and strangely aloof, Ward presents himself as the next hurdle for Mason to clear in his pursuit of Charlotte’s affections.

From a technical perspective, we once again relied on a combination of a Canon 60D, a pair of Sony HXR-NX5Us, and a GoPro Hero III and we also went with the boom mic a little more often with this episode when an operator was available. Once again, I chose to return to the Facetime/Skype style video chat app to drive anther chaotic moment between Mason and his buddies. Additionally, when we were filming inside the cafeteria, we were short on cameras so I utilized the GoPro to capture the action as Steve and Sheldon frantically scribble notes to Mason during his meeting with Ward. I was pleasantly surprised with the flexibility of the GoPro footage captured with the cinetune style enabled. There really was a lot more latitude available during color correction and Mocha was able to track the tablet screen rather easily with only minor tweaks here and there.

Episode 4 presents several potential production nightmares with several actors being present for at least one scene so I have my fingers crossed that we’ll be able to wrap up production on that episode later this month! Anyway, now for the credits…

The third episode was produced by ETSU Online and ETSU Parking Services and starring ETSU students Danielle Tucker and Everett Tarlton. Guest stars include Zach Starnes, Josh Holley, and Bobby Funk. I co-wrote the script for this episode with David Currie of the ETSU Office of eLearning who , along with Zion Madden of ETSU Online, served as assistant camera and audio technician. I served as Director, D.P., and Editor. All post-production was completed with Final Cut, Premiere Pro, Photoshop, Mocha, and After Effects. Enjoy!

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Spaces – Episode 2

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We’re deep into the production schedule for the Spaces series with filming for episode 3 nearly complete. The series has taken a sort of life of it’s own at this point as the scripts have grown exponentially as we’ve sought to develop the existing characters to a greater degree. In episode 2, I added a few more visual effects elements by incorporating a simulated Facetime or Skype style app to Mason’s phone so we could utilize a couple different locations and characters at the same time to add to the elevated sense of tension that Charlotte feels as her secret is revealed. I co-wrote the script for episode 2 with David Currie but, with certain sections, we encouraged the actors do a little improv here and there and they did a fantastic job of breathing more life into their expanded roles.

To make the video chat sequence more interesting, we utilized the GoPro Hero III to a far greater degree in the production pipeline with very positive results. In all, during the cafeteria side of the exchange, we were running the GoPro, 2 Sony HXR-NX5u Cameras, and my Canon 60D simultaneously so we could incorporate several cutaways from the chat session to develop a little personal history from Mason’s friends, Steve and Sheldon.  Surprisingly enough, we still managed to get all our shots over the course of two afternoons and incorporate a new character, Valentina, into our little burgeoning drama. Luckily, we were able to run with a 3 person crew consisting of myself, David Currie and Zion Madden for most of the second day where we filmed the exterior, car shots, and the museum. We also again opted for the lavalier mics for the bulk of both shoots with sometimes mixed results (rustling clothing and a little feedback here and there), however, they really came in handy for the cafeteria shoot as a boom mic would have definitely caught ambient audio from the festival going on just outside the glass doors. Going forward with filming for episode 4, I do intend to rely a lot more heavily on the boom mic since we will be filming in more controlled environments where one camera can be locked down.

I edited the the footage with Final Cut and Premiere, cleaned and graded the footage with After Effects, utilized Mocha and After Effects to handle the visual effects shots, and processed the audio with Audition. You can check out the results below and check back for part 3!

Creating Spaces

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I’ve been working on a new kind of project this year that’s a little off the beaten path for a typical promotional video for the university. A few months back our department was approached by the head of parking services at ETSU to create a series of videos that underscored most of the common issues with parking violations on campus while “softening” their image on campus. Our department director suggested that going with a narrative web series that featured the violations driven by a larger storyline might draw more viewers and broaden the comprehension while not sounding too preachy – thus Spaces was born.

By allowing our department to have a little creative freedom with the project, we decided to create a comedic series that focused on an awkward yet endearing online student named Mason who is tentatively pursuing traditional student Charlotte by offering to give her a ride to class. After holding auditions with ETSU theater students, we settled on the leads and the winner of the part of Mason suggested that he had a couple of friends who would be glad to participate – and the parts of Mason’s geeky friends Steve and Sheldon were created.

The first episode consisted of a two man crew featuring myself with my Canon 60D and our director, David Currie, with a Sony HXR-NX5u filming our leads played by Everett Tarlton (Mason) and Danielle Tucker (Charlotte) as well as guest stars Zach Starnes (Sheldon) and Josh Holley (Steve) in three different locations across campus one Friday afternoon based on a script by David Currie. Due to being shorthanded, we ran most of the production with lavalier mics except when we could afford to lock one camera down to use a boom mic.

I edited the resulting footage with Final Cut and Premiere, cleaned and graded the footage with After Effects, utilized Mocha and After Effects to handle the visual effects shots, and processed the audio with Audition. You can check out the results below and check back for parts 2-4!

Looking Skywards with Got Aerial LLC

Just finished a motion graphics project for rc aerial photography & cinematography company Got Aerial last week. This was my first project working with the Element 3D plugin for After Effects from VideoCopilot.

First impressions working with the plugin are definitely promising. The biggest issues I ran into depend on what 3d tracker you employ to work with Element. I had some solid tracks with the 3D Camera Tracker plugin that ships with AE CS6, but, too often, the shots proved to be a little too much for the tracker to deliver anything solid due to the constant changes in perspective. Ultimately, I relied on The Foundry’s CameraTracker for most of the shots with very reliable results. The reel title mountain ridge flyover, however, proved to be too much for either the 3D Camera Tracker or the Foundry CameraTracker. For this particular case, I found the best results with PfTrack which provided me with a rock-solid track that I was able to use for both the Element 3D Text and the main title “The Art of Flying” which I created in Cinema 4D. Originally, I had created the title with the Element plugin, but, due to some strange artifacting, I switched to C4D to solve the issue. Overall, it was a fun and challenging project and an excellent opportunity to log my first project run with Element & AE CS6!

Check out the final results below. All footage by Got Aerial LLC and music by Krewella.

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Motion Graphics for ETSU College of Education

Just finished a series of videos for the Educational Leadership & Policy Analysis doctoral program at ETSU’s College of Education. All videography was provided by Jason Jones and Zion Madden of the ETSU Office of eLearning and talent by Dr. Bethany Flora, Dr. Don Good, and ETSU president Dr. Brian Noland. I performed all post-production duties with Final Cut, Audition, and After Effects.

More from the Carter Railroad Museum

Just finished another pair of documentary vids for the George L. Carter Railroad Museum at ETSU. These videos give a quick tour of the construction of the upcoming Tweetsie Railroad exhibit led by museum director Dr. Fred Alsop.

See this movie!

I just watched The Human Centipede 2 the other day and was blown away. Maybe I’m just a sucker for a well done, dark noir thriller, but every element of this film stood out to me in so many ways. Martin , the title character played by Laurence Harvey, was truly visceral and believable as the central character who barely speaks but captivates as a modern day Peter Lorre. Really amazing cinematography as well! I felt like I was watching Fritz Lang’s M on steroids. So, if you have the stomach it’s definitely worth 90 minutes of your life!

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