Archive for July, 2012

So I was watching Monday Challenge with Ryan Connolly and the crew and he mentions Video Copilot and something called ELEMENTS. So I meander over to Videocopilot and see they’ve launched a new product. After about 30 minutes of me sitting there with my mouth dropped, I decided I need to get out more! If you guys don’t know about Video Copilot, you better get with the program!

So what do you need to know about Video Copilot? Well if you want to know anything at all about After Effects, they are the leading authority on it.  They have a wide array of tutorials for many different things that you can use a filmmaker or editor to take your projects to the next level.  Plus, he’s pretty funny! I’ve learned and used quite a few things myself.  As I said earlier, Andrew Kramer and his team have released this new application for 3D manipulation that will take your projects even higher. I’m not even going to pretend to understand how and what it really is but what it DOES is A-ma-za-zing! Check it out for yourself if you don’t believe me!

Oh and on a side note, I was sitting and watching the behind the scenes of Star Trek by JJ Abrams and heard him mention the opening title sequence was done by Andrew Kramer himself. so if you don’t believe me how outstanding he is, then take it from JJ Abrams.  He is the real deal.  So you guys better get all this knowledge and cool stuff from him before Hollywood takes him from us!

Happy Learning


Ok so in the past I’ve spoken about the importance of a “crew” in filmmaking. Well at least I think I did…so if I didn’t, here is just a tidbit of that information from a wonderful site The Black and Blue. I recently subscribed to them and have been getting wonderful bits of information, tips and knowledge.

Now we all know that the world of film is usually a visual world, right? But with bad sound that can make a good film bad and a bad film unbearable. With indie films we, and yes I said “WE” tend to skimp on things because we either can’t afford it or may not know the “RIGHT” people to get to the do the job. I would venture to say that sound is like 80 to 90 percent of your film unless of course it is a silent film or one without the need for dialogue. We’ve already got the understanding that you have to have clean shots and proper lighting, the basics, but sound is the elusive holy grail. We’ll spend money on the LED light and the new Tokina 11-16 lens but we don’t put anything in the budget for proper execution of sound acquisition. Hmmm that sounded pretty cool.

With people out there like Ryan Connolly of Film Riot, Caleb from DSLR VideoShooterKoo from NoFilmSchool, where by the way you can download a copy of a his DSRL Cinematography Guide, and Dave Dugdale from LearningDSLRVideo just to name a few, I actually watch a lot more but this is to save you from scouring over the entire internet.  I’m actually waiting for my DVD copy of the movie TELL, which I wrote about in a previous blog! Ryan Connolly and his team have me on the edge of my seat and eagerly waiting for the next installment of media mayhem they successfully provide along with a hearty mindful of knowledge for that bootay! The DVD package is something I’m excited about because Ryan is providing some really NICE extra material that I’m dying to see.  Maybe one day I’ll have some thing worthy of him directing! That’s on my santa’s wish list along with my RED camera. But I digress, I was just saying that with these resources online you should be able to get your sound to a level where it need not be CRAPPY (yes that’s a technical word)! And yes it is a learning process, each situation will dictate a different method of working around a particular problem.  We’ve got H4ns, H1s, Tascams, Rodes, I mean the list goes on, so please please pay attention to your SOUND!

Sorry I think I rambled on too much.  Without further adieu

Thanks to Evan Luzi from The Black and Blue for this wonderful video!

This is an exciting post because again, if you haven’t guessed it yet, I’m a sucker for cartoon movies. I have an extensive collection of them. Well today I will be talking about two movies I just watched this past week. Madagascar and Brave.

I must say this, usually I’m not happy with the last movie in a trilogy but I accept it because it completes a set. Yes very simple I know but it’s how I roll (line from Despicable Me). Anyway, I was happily surprised with Madagascar 3, Chris Rock and the Polka Dot  Afro Song is hilarious.  All your favorite characters are back with the introduction of some new ones.  I will say this, see it in 3D, it’s fantastic.


Marty The Zebra


Alex The Lion


Melman The Giraffe


Gloria The Hippo

The Penguins

Circus Animals

King Julian, Maurce & Mort

Brave – by Pixar, hmmm it was cute, not what I expected I guess.  But enjoyed it anyway. I felt like I never really connected with the lead character Merida voiced by Kelly Macdonald who if you didn’t know played in Harry Potter’s last movie as Helena Ravenclaw, she just seemed like a spoiled brat.  But like many other stories, Merida is misunderstood by her parents and she wants to do things her way!  There is a very important message there, though and that’s KEEP THE FAMILY BONDS STRONG! Some thing that is desperately needed in the world today! Billy Connolly also lends his voice talent to Fergus (I wonder if he’s any relations to the Connolly’s we love from Film Riot…I have tweet him about that) and Emma Thompson as Elinor, Julie Walters as the witch and we know her as Molly Weasley. Also Robbie Coltrane who we loved as Rubeus Hagrid who voices Lord Dingwall.  This is almost a Harry Potter Reunion…ok…maybe not 😦


What else can I say about it, it’s PIXAR, expect great looking graphics and EFX as usual, lovable and funny characters, that everyone can relate to or can say “hey my uncle is like that” – well at least some of us…lol

Two great movies to go and see if you haven’t already!

Until next time…