Monday, September 15, 2014

How Should Your Android Look Today?

As we frequently do, we need an android.
At first I was down with this pseudo-nude look. Making the skin look like this would be hard. And the reflective metal pieces would make movement a nightmare.
Trying to figure out what an android in our next movie should look like. Oof.
This armor is hard but maybe not impossible? Perhaps with a base of motorcycle armor and foam-filled cloth pieces and rubber sections it would work. I particularly like the piece over the abdomen and the neck section.
The base mesh is, to me, the tricky part on this costume. Plus, of course, getting it to not gather and wrinkle at all -- that's very tricky. The breast pieces don't work for me, but I do dig the tank-driver's helmet and the way it connects.
I also particularly like the pieces on the upper thighs. Getting them to not gather and flop when the actor walks will be tricky but they look great.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Big Monitoring

I got a Seiki monitor off of Amazon http://www.amazon.co...0?ie=UTF8&psc=1
It's a 39" monitor for $340 delivered (to the US). The refresh rate is limited to 30Hz at "4K" resolution and I drive it with my Quatro 4000 video card.

So far I really like it. I've fiddled a bit with Windows font sizing and such.

All of my "professional" work is audio-for-video so it's really nice to be able to have the mixer up, with a reasonably sized video window, while having enough space to edit on. It's also nice to have a reasonable number of tracks to be able to see at one time. Oh, and the 5.1 meters show up too.

I'll probably do some massaging of the way the screen is set up as I live with it. The slow refresh doesn't bother me as far as working goes but NTSC video looks very, er, "video" to my eyes on this screen at 30Hz. So I slowed it down even further: 24Hz. There is lag, sure, but the video is prettier.

Here's the link to the screenshot via Imgur: http://imgur.com/JCIYobp
The image below is perhaps annoyingly large so feel free to look at the imgur link instead.

JCIYobp.jpg

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Please Vote

Click on this: Mission Main St Grant It'll take you to vote so we're eligible for this grant. I don't know what sort of chance we have, but I figure it's worth a try.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Melissa Schlachtmeyer

Melissa Schlachtmeyer, sister of Laura, passed away on August 6th.
There's a memorial service in New York for Melissa:

Sunday, October 19, 2:00 p.m.
Fifth Floor Theatre
Tisch School of the Arts at NYU
111 2nd Avenue
New York, NY

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Importing XML


As far as I can tell, the problem exists entirely within Final Cut Pro. Because even a straight-up import of xml causes it to freeze at 67 or 68%. Which is rude and ignorant of FCP.
The reason I figure it's Final Cut's fault is that I took an XML file and brought it into Text Edit. Then I found the following text in the XML:


3.00 : 1
7


7
And I changed the last value to "1" which should be the 1.66:1 letterbox. I did a search and replace. Very proud of myself, I was.
To no avail though. The import still froze at 68%.
So I quit. And I'm doing the changes manually. It's not as difficult as I thought it would be.

Today's Gonna Be a Long Day

On our latest movie we tried a 3:1 letterbox. The sales rep said "no way".
Now on most of our movies we've delivered a 2.35:1 letterbox and we ain't heard nuthin'. And we usually think of there being a letterbox on set when we're shooting. So if a boom creeps briefly in or what-have-you we don't mind so much.
But our rep would prefer full-frame 16x9.
Ugh. The letterbox is applied to each clip individually on the whole movie. That's a lot of clicking.
So searching around the Internet I found there's a thing called Edit Mule Filter Remover. It's got a 14-day trial and it's only $15 anyway. Perfect.
Except the company doesn't seem to exist anymore. Well, I better get all the work done in those 14 days. Except. It doesn't work.
It freezes on importing back into Final Cut Pro. I got no idea. I got nuthin'.
I will be doing a lot of clicking today. Oh, and I still reserve the right to letterbox to 2.35:1 because of boom lines and shadows. Luckily it seems that we actually rendered out all the effects at full 16x9.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Colors and cities

Color bars and how to use them.
Some Shutterstock city flyovers.
Lee filter 508 "Midnight Maya" is something close to what the opposite of the color of my florescent lights+the color of the walls in the office is.
The actual opposite color of my walls under light.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Two things are all I've got

You know that movie that you tried to make at your friend's parent's place Upstate? You know, where you have that great big house and you can shoot anywhere you want and it'll be that awesome noir-horror-thriller?
The Aggression Scale is that movie.
Ancillary Justice is... well it's just a terrible name for a book. But it's a smashing book.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Prometheus Trap Japan

Prometheus Trap Japanese artwork:
 So it's "Starship Invasion".
The beautiful Rebecca Kush commands the mission.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Monitor, color

The time has come to change my picture monitoring situation on the PC. We'll see how that goes.
  Seiki Monitor 39" and apparently takes some tweaking to work, but the price sure is right.
I'm not altogether down with the light and the color of the walls in the new studio.
There's a groovy app on Android called ON Color Measure which uses the camera to take color measurements. Which is very cool. And the color that's opposite of the institutional color of the walls is this.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Failure Groupies

Here's a trailer for our own Mandira Chauhan's Failure Groupies.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Render Order

Oftentimes in my life I have wondered what order effects are rendered in Final Cut Pro.

According to this search result it is indeed from top-to-bottom.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Solve that Roll

Via Kangas is this kind of brilliant tutorial on correcting for rolling-shutter problems. It's a very wonky solution, and I bet you could do it such that it corrected for each and every line of video which would only drive you very slightly insane. But it's quite brilliant. Yeah, you're not gonna want to do that for a whole feature, but man there's always a couple shots you wish you could do some handheld with that doesn't get all jello-cam on you.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Distortion in ADR

So my new thing is putting some distortion on ADR tracks to make them fit better.
The amp simulator plugin in Samplitude works really well for this. But all by itself it's a bit too much. So I feed an aux channel from an ADR channel so that I can blend the inserted distortion all I like.
Like so.


Where did I get this idea from? I got it from this brilliant book on dialog editing. Oh man. This book is good. Read it. Live it. Ignore all the ProTools-centric stuff. ;-)