Controlling Depth of Field with the Canon C300

In this video by AbelCine they show you how to control your depth of field when using 35mm sensor cameras.

When you think of a 35mm sensor camera, what characteristics come to mind? Probably the first is shallow depth of field. It is part of what many consider the “look” of that imager size and a principle defining difference between it and other formats. But while some consider this the chief attribute of the format, others may find it to be a detriment in certain situations. For those shooting documentary, run-and-gun productions, a deeper depth of field may be preferable to maintain focus. Fortunately, there is another major facet to the latest crop of 35mm sensor cameras – a very low noise floor. This means that in a camera such as the Canon C300, a wide range of ISO settings can be applied with little objectionable artifacting to the image. Using the concept of the “variable depth of field camera,” you can adjust the available parameters of the camera to yield the depth of field desired for any given image. Watch the video to see this concept demonstrated.

“Side by Side” – Documentary about the switch from Film to Digital

Keanu Reeves stars in and produced this documentary titled “Side by Side” about the switch from Film to Digital. Here is the trailer.

The documentary investigates the history, process and workflow of both digital and photochemical film creation. We show what artists and filmmakers have been able to accomplish with both film and digital and how their needs and innovations have helped push filmmaking in new directions. Interviews with directors, cinematographers, colorists, scientists, engineers and artists reveal their experiences and feelings about working with film and digital–where we are now, how we got here and what the future may bring.

Filmmaker IQ’s Super Bowl XLVI Ads Critique

For years, the game would take a backseat to the lavish and clever commercials that debuted on Super Bowl Sunday… that hasn’t been the case in recent years. John Hess critiques a handful of commercials from Super Bowl XLVI looking at production design and concept from a filmmaker’s perspective.

Episode 36

Listen Audio Only

Super Bowl Ads featured in this review:

“The Dog Strikes Back” – Volkswagen

“It’s Reinvented” – 2012 Toyota Camry

“2012″ – Chevy Silverado

“Transactions” Extended Version – 2012 Acura

“A Dream Car. For Real Life” – Kia

“Prohibition” – Budweiser

“King’s Court” – Pepsi

“It’s Halftime America” – General Motors

Heart Stop Beating: The Man Who Has No Pulse

March of 2011, Billy Cohn & Bud Frazier, two visionary doctors from the Texas Heart Institute, successfully replaced a dying man’s heart with a ‘continuous flow’ device they developed, proving that life was possible without a pulse or a heart beat.

This short film is directed by Jeremiah Zagar and is part of the Focus Forward Films inspired by GE.

The Following includes shots that may be disturbing to viewers.

Kickstarter campaign for Eye3 Drone Hexacopter Too Good to be True

Ah… the dangers of the internet. Turns out the eye3 drone hexacopter which was being touted as the easiest flying camera platform on earth was just way too good to be true.

Kickstarter pulled support for this project when eagled eyed Helicopter enthusiasts noted that the helicopter in the pitch video was actually photoshopped images of the Chinese built Xaircraft which is currently selling for $669.

Furthermore, the team behind the eye3 Hexacopter, Grayson and Kellie Sigler were the owners of a CNC (Computer Numerical Control) company called Lumenlabs which was selling a computer controlled 3D lathe called the MicRo. But order fullfillment has been abysmal, customers reporting that they haven’t recieved shipment for orders placed 8-10 months ago. LumenLab’s Facebook page and Yahoo Group paint a very nasty picture of a company that simply can’t deliver.

According to a forum message on LuminLab site The company and the Sigglers had to stop production on the micRo due to Grayson Siggler’s recent medical battle with Lupus. In that forum message, Mr. Siggler seemed to indicate that the eye3 hexacopter project was designed to provide funding to keep Luminlabs in operation – a project that was supposedly started before Grayson got sick, but there’s no evidence they ever built or tested a model to begin with before launching the Kickstarter campaign.

In the same post Grayson seemed apologetic to customers who had bought the micRo 3d lathe but it doesn’t look like unfulfilled orders could expect any sort of refund (or product for that matter).

Whether the husband and wife team are just big dreamers who got in way over their heads or a couple of fishy crooks remains to be seen. Luckily a watchful internet community was able to spot a potential fraud and, under the rules of Kickstarter, no money was exchanged because the project had not reached it’s deadline.

But for the budding aviator, there’s still a silver lining. Paul Mather of put together a shopping list of parts that you’ll need to build the aircraft as seen in the picture. What’s not included is the hours of trial and error and fine tuning to get it successfully off the ground. But with a final cost of between $1000-1600, the possibility of flying your own Xaircraft hexacopter isn’t that far off.

And the demo video for the Xaircraft is way more impressive than anything in the Kickstarter Campaign…

Final Cut Pro X gets an Update, Sucks Less

Apple just released Final Cut Pro X 10.0.3 – and with the addition of a small numeral change comes a handful of important updates, key among them: multi-cam support, advanced chromakey tools, support for output cards for preview monitors, and (about time) an upgrade path to import old FCP 7 projects into X (although you have to pay for that feature)

Once again, Apple has launched a minor number update to its professional video-editing software, Final Cut Pro X, with some major feature adds. The non-linear editing program was initially launched to protests by the pro-editing community, but Version 10.0.3 addresses nearly all of the remaining criticisms of the post-production tool, adding multicam support, external broadcast monitoring (still a beta feature), and detailed chroma-key controls. And perhaps the biggest criticism—the lack of an upgrade path for projects built into previous Final Cut versions—has now been addressed by a third-party plugin called 7toX, from Intelligent Assistance.

The free program update and the 7toX transfer plugin ($9.99) will be available on the Mac App Store starting today.
Other new features include a more-detailed XML 1.1 import/export format with support for effect parameters and audio keyframes, manual media relinking, and the ability to import and edit layered Photoshop graphics.

— PC Mag | Read the Full Article

Yeah, I cited PC Magazine… How do you like them Apples?

10 Key Tips To Becoming A Successful Video Freelancer

Ready to take the plunge to becoming a filmmaking gun for hire? Remington McElhaney compiles 10 tips to help making that transition smoother.

1. Be Prepared
Deciding to take the leap into freelancing can be terrifying. You can ease your way into it but eventually you are going to have to take the plunge and jump on it. Quitting your job and not knowing where your next pay check is coming can be very scary. It’s especially scary if you have a lot of bills or a family to support (luckily I didn’t).

One of the most important things to do is to make sure you are prepared. I made sure I could go three months without getting a single job and still be okay. Not because I thought I would have that hard of a time getting work, but I didn’t know. I was awarded 10 jobs in December. For all I knew though, December could be the biggest month of the year for freelancers. Maybe January was the worst…

Another important reason for this was I didn’t want to be pressured into taking jobs I wouldn’t normally take. If you are getting desperate for work and your bills are stacking up you’ll take anything. I didn’t want to be put into that position. A few (or one) negative feedback on a site such as Elance can sink your freelancing dreams very quickly in the early stages.

There will always be clients you should steer clear off and unfortunately that’s one of those things you will to figure out and develop a sense over time. Being prepared will help take some (not all) of the stress out of freelancing.

— AE.tuts | Read the Full Article

A fully dimensional look at 3-D and its use in “Pina”

Pina” is a German dance film dedicated to the choreographer Pina Bausch. Nominated for an Oscar for best documentary feature, Pina is also dazzling audiences with breathtaking 3-D that has been compared to Avatar in terms of total audience immersion. Lewis Segal explores how the use of 3d breathes life into this dance documentary.

The Trailer for Pina

But right now 3-D is arguably just a novelty act, existing in so many formats and processes that it’s premature to embrace it as the future of film and video dance. For starters, the stats on “Pina” say it exists in Digital 3-D and Real 3-D (that’s a corporate name, not a value judgment), as well as 2-D. And current 3-D eyewear ranges from those red-and-green plastic glasses you need for most YouTube 3-D on through so-called passive movie specs to expensive electric goggles required for 3-D TV. Most of them darken the image or desaturate color and some impose a flicker or shimmer.

What’s more, “Pina” is a special case, a valedictory compendium of excerpts, not a dance film per se. Indeed, Wenders arguably misrepresents Bausch’s achievements by emphasizing early and pure-dance pieces, never revealing that some of the exquisitely eccentric passages on view are embedded in multidisciplinary three- to four-hour panoramic epics. Bausch’s sense of time in the theater and her use of audience-confrontation tactics are ignored. What remains is eine kleine Pina: her Tanztheater with only the Tanz.

— LA Times | Read the Full Article

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