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Bristol, United Kingdom
Chronicle of an aspiring amateur filmmaker taking on the world!

Saturday, 5 January 2013

Into the Final Phase!

Hey there, happy new year to you all!

Have decided to do a full update here today as I've somewhat neglected my blog of late;

Music Video Project

Great news on the ongoing music video project, I'm almost finished with it! As you will have seen in previous postings, I'd edited together to whole of the band performance footage into one coherent video, despite some audio/video sync issues.  The next stage was to edit in some stock footage of rioting and civil unrest, which I've now done (got a couple of lovely smash-cuts involving explosions!) Finally, I've had to edit the solo footage of the bands singer delivering the lines form the song.  There were two variants of this, firstly the news reader footage filmed in front of a green screen and then the solo footage that was front lit that looked a bit like a police interrogation.  I've edited in both bits of footage and inter-weaved them with the performance footage.  This took ages as I had to composite a virtual studio on the news reader footage, but I've also put some great colour and texture effects on the interrogation footage as well.  The two different bits of footage now are polar opposites, one brightly lit, the other very dark and brooding, I really like the juxtaposition of them both, it adds an awesome touch to the video narrative, almost like you are hearing the lines of the song delivered from different perspectives.

One big change I've done is that I've changed my plans slightly with the aspect ratio.  Originally, as the raw footage was shot on a fairly basic camera that could only do 4:3 ratio, I figured thats how I'd have to leave the finished article, but I've done a quick test in 16:9 widescreen, and although we lose a little bit of footage from the top and bottom of the screen, its acceptable and looks a lot nicer, so I'm going with that.  The final version will also have a bit of cinematic blue highlights and midtones boosted to give it a slightly colder, dramatic look - I've done some testing on that already and it looks awesome.

So, I'm right at the last bit of editing - I'm adding stock footage to the little video screen in the background of the news footage, then I have to add some witty captions, also on the news footage, then finally I have some basic graphics to overlay on two specific parts of the video, and then just add some opening and closing credits. I've managed to put in a solid two-three hours of editing per evening for the last week, so based on that I'm hoping to finish the video this weekend.  Can't honestly believe how long the whole thing has taken - obviously there was little I could do when waiting on band to do the second film shoot, but the editing has taken over two months due to home circumstances.  My next project is going to have to take a lot less time!  Speaking of which...

What Next?

Well, I have access to a better camera for whatever my next project might be, so that might force my hand in terms of upgrading my PC.  Ideally I need a new machine altogether, especially one with more video RAM,  so considering some options there.  Have also found a great deal on some better lights, but doubt I have the money to contemplate purchasing all these things.  I've considered trying to crowdfund my next project, which I think will have to be another music video, but I'd need to find a band with a decent enough following.

I'd previously hinted at maybe attempting something a bit film noir, black and white with lots of atmospheric shadow, shade, etc.  I'm still talking over rough ideas with Jon from Alien Stash Tin about that, but I really would like to try out out something for a heavier band, something with a dark/gothic look to it, and definitely wouldn't mind working some horror elements in there.

What I've Been Watching

Haven't done this for a while, bit of a round up of some of the movies I've seen recently.

Anyone familiar with the podcast I co-host will know from my review in the last episode that I really enjoyed In The Mouth Of Madness, possibly John Carpenter's last truly awesome film. 

Over Christmas I watched a couple of low budget horrors in Lord of Illusions and Deepstar Six, both passable but not Earth-shattering, and Hard Rock Zombies which was utter bollocks.

One I really did enjoy was Hell Comes To Frogtown, where the post-apocalypse features masses of loose women, mutant frogs and Rowdy Roddy Piper with an exploding codpiece!  What more could you want?

I was coaxed to the cinema by my other half just after Christmas to see The Hobbit, despite my reservations about what  Peter Jackson was doing splitting such a small book into three films. Didn't see it in the controversial high frame rate, so cannot comment on that, but my fears about everything else were realised.  Firstly, after the initial narrated scene giving the dwarf history, the film more or less stops dead for nearly an hour as the characters take forever to assemble in the Shire.  We almost get 'Carry On Middle Earth' as the film reaches camp levels that wouldn't be caught dead in any of the Lord of the Rings movies.  Once they all get moving on their quest things pick up, and the one truly iconic standout moment of the film appears about halfway through in the 'Riddles in the Dark' chapter, thank goodness for Andy Serkis' reprisal of the Gollum role.  After that, we have a long chase/fight sequence that runs almost to the end of the film, but lacks any of the gritty realism of the battles in LOTR, in contrast it feels like an arcade game.  Sorry, 2hours 40mins, for one rewarding scene, its no good, I cannot see me being tempted to the cinema to watch the other two films, especially as Gollum will not be in them!  I cannot stress enough how incredible the Riddles in the Dark chapter is, but by the same measure, what goes before and after are extremely average, and I swear people are giving the film inflated reviews through rose-tinted spectacles whilst looking specifically at that scene.  Ah well.

And Finally

As part of my research for the music video, I've had to go through a lot of footage of rioting, protesting and antisocial behaviour.  Whilst doing so I came across this little gem of epic failure;


Well, bye for now...

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