Posts Tagged ‘filmmaker’

Ok, so I know this is not a new topic and there are many resources online especially YouTube and Vimeo that go into depth on these subjects. Why might you ask, am I going into it as well? Well I’ve been out a few places and have heard people refer to color grading and color correcting as the same thing. NO it is NOT, NO I SAY AGAIN IT IS NOT!

To put it in layman’s terms if I may, Color Correction is the process by which you fix any white balancing issues that may or may not be there. Increasing the contrast maybe, adjust highlights and even saturation. In most cases, a simple COLOR CORRECTION can help an alright piece of footage look GREAT! Now I’ve just scratched the surface on this portion because I want all of you to go out and check out for yourself what I’m talking about it.

Ok so now on to Color Grading.  Color Grading is done after the primary color correction is completed and can be part of the color correcting process.  Color Grading sets the overal style of your movie.  SinCity had a highly stylized grading that most people remember.  It actually helps to tell the story.  Transformers, Star Trek, Avatar and Lord of The Rings are all examples of movies that used a color grading scenario to convey a feeling or aid in the telling of these stories!

If you are still confused and you say Michael “What the heck” are you blabbering about. Here are some examples from our friends at Film Riot and oh if you didn’t know Emily is BACK! I love Emily…if you don’t know who Emily is the make sure you watch the clips below!

A little back story on some color correcting tools.  In most NLEs (Non Linear Editors) Final Cut, Premiere, Sony Vegas, AVID and the likes, come with a form of color correction, usually a 3 way color wheel of some sort.  Final Cut Studio 3 had the wonderful Color application that to me at first was a little intimidating with its bland opening screen and scary interface.  Then Red Giant came on the scene with Colorista which was so powerful everyone was talking about it.  Then they also came up with Magic Bullet Looks which had a stable of preset looks that you can apply to your project and then tweak if you wanted something more.  For the most part all of these tools can be used.  It’s up to you to choose your weapon!

Now if you are one of those that don’t have the time or the patience to learn yet another thing pertaining to this business, then there are lots of Colorists out there that specialize in this field.  Had the pleasure of meeting a few at the last Atlanta Cutter’s event.

Remember, this is a learn as you go industry.  Even right out of school, different directors and producers go about things differently. Be adaptable to all circumstances if you are able.  Learn as much as you can and when the time is right, ask questions, please not during a take…you’ll be asked to leave the set!

I’ll be talking more about this subject later as it is important!

Happy Coloring!

I’ve just finished work on a pilot by a wonderful Writer/Director named Lonnie Jackson called “UPYRI” (pronounced You PIE Ree) it’s Slovak for Vampire.  The premise is, what if a vampire had the blood of Jesus, would it change him and how? I can’t go too deep but what I was a part of, was amazing.  From the talent to the team.  It epitomized all that I’ve been reading and writing about.  It does still take a family to raise a child and in this case, the child is this wonderfully inspired idea from the mind of Lonnie Jackson.

Mr. Jackson started out with a group prayer, which he requires to keep what he calls the “Good Vibes” going and of course to have every one on the same accord and to dismiss any mishaps that may occur.  Producer and 1st AD Danielle King lead the crew and cast at a steady pace.  Nina Patterson PA/Script Supervisor assisted with some set design and was upbeat. Still photographer and 2nd Camera Cymande Coburn was on deck helping out in any capacity that was needed and had great energy along with Facility coordinator, sound, grip, electrician DreQuan MeDallion who also assisted in every way possible, Writer and wardrobe Geveryl Robinson, Hair and Makeup Iasia Anderson and yours truly as DP/Gaffer.  Cast members Cameron Miller, Darren Radcliff and Barry Piacente rounded out the team.  Their professionalism and performance made the day. Even with some conditions being not so pleasant, the spirit of the entire cast and crew was undaunted and we moved forward eagerly to reach our goal.  It was refreshing to see things move smoothly on set and with convicted direction!  There is no “I” in “TEAM” and this team proved that statement.

Also check them out on http://upyri.tv/

Although this particular footage was not the footage shot, I look forward with painted breath to the final results.

Enjoy

So while we’ve been waiting for the 5D Mk III and the we’ve been playing with the C300 and the Scarlet by Red, another player has been making a lot of noise in the background! A company named Black Magic Designs have come up with a unit that places a lot of very high end features in a very cost effective package for ALL filmmakers alike.

Please say hello to the Black Magic Cinema Camera

Now this camera impressed me with the stats out of the gate and for such a reasonable price point.  Not to say anything but it’s almost what I expected from the C300 and was hoping for some in the 5D Mk III but that’s another story!

“The Blackmagic Cinema Camera features an amazing 2.5K image sensor with a wide 13 stops of dynamic range for a true digital film camera. You get a built-in SSD recorder, popular open standard uncompressed RAW and compressed file formats, compatibility with quality EF and ZE mount lenses, LCD touchscreen monitoring plus metadata entry, all packed into an exciting hand held design!” This was taken from the site itself.  From what I can tell the industry is a buzz with this new entry into the film world.  It’s compatible with EF lenses and since I’m with Canon already that helps me out.  Although I was planning to get the PL set when I get my Scarlet.  So the only thing I see so far is the lack of more FPS, it goes to 30, there goes my dream of super slow mo’ EFX without using a plugin…but again I digress.

For the money this camera, based on the specs, should produce some very stunning images.  We’ll wait to see the explosion of tests that will undoubtedly start to trickle in as some more people get their hands on this unit.

For more information please see the Blackmagic Designs website for all the juicy tidbits!

From what I can see from the information, it’s gonna be a pretty cool unit that will offer a lot of things to filmmakers! Oh I didn’t mention that it comes with Davinci Resolve and I love the color editing features in that application.  I had to download the light just to see it work!  I’ll tell you more about that later

HAPPY SHOOTING!

Hey everyone, I have not written in a while and wanted to share my experience in “The Bubble” over the Thanksgiving holiday! The Bubble as it has been affectionately named, is a place in Rodeo New Mexico called “The Painted Pony Resort“! What do you do in a desert, you may ask? Well, absolutely nothing or absolutely anything. It was a brand new experience for me personally. I’ve never seen so much beauty in a place and history as well! Our guide Sky GypsiesBAlvarius welcomed us and during our time there shared his experience and knowledge with us. Fascinating seems to fall short of what it was like to hear the history and certain lore of the area. At night looking up into the sky, reminded me of standing in a planetarium, I don’t think I’ve ever seen stars like I saw there. It was breath taking, during our stay we also witnessed two beautiful rainbows in which could be seen the many colors of the spectrum in detail!

I can go on and tell you how wonderful it is but you’d have to see it yourself to believe it. The colors, the air, the sun, the stars, the dirt, yes even the dirt. Ok so let’s get to the accommodations. 9 Bedrooms total on property between the 3 building, a heated pool and Jacuzzi flat screen TVs and yes even internet. But don’t think for one minute you’ll be connected to the outside world via cell phone, remember I said bubble. Well unless you have Verizon, there is no cellular service in the bubble, well not with out help from a repeater which get’s you a Verizon signal. There is a land line there on property as well. I can go on and on about it but, I’ll post a link to some pictures.  For those filmmakers looking for a place to shoot or writers who need a quiet place to put your thoughts together or y0u just want to unwind, this is the place for you…The Painted Pony Resort in Rodeo New Mexico.

2nd Unit - 3 Bedrooms

The Painted Pony 2nd Unit

Master Suite - 1 Bedroom

The Painted Pony Master Suite

Main Suite - 5 Bedrooms

The Painted Pony Main Suite

I’ll be posting more links to pictures and sights shortly! Enjoy!
My name is Michael Stewart and I approve “The Painted Pony Resort”. 🙂

Ok so when we think of Shane Hurlbut, we think of Terminator Salvation – Big TIME! Not truly independent in nature, but as you will see from this post, he is thinking about the indie filmmaker. He’s joined up with letus to create the Master Cinema Series collection that caters to the DSLR Filmmaker! At first looking at it I was like wow this is gonna be a lot of dineros. But it’s actually not as bad as I thought at first.

Vimeo member Tom Guilmette posted a great video commentary about the launch and guess what, some of my favorites were there too. Vincent Laforet and even Ryan “The Film Riot” Connoly. I love it. Why you ask, was Ryan there, well Ryan maintains that his job is to teach us indie filmmakers not be indie all our lives. 🙂 Well something like that in a nut shell! To see him there was awesome! I guess I need to get out more!

Well enjoy the videos

Maybe I’ll be making one soon of my new toys in action…when I get them…

Happy Filmmaking!

Here is the Letus Master Series site http://www.mastercinemaseries.com/

Ok so everyone has been hearing about Georgia’s great tax credits to filmmakers. A lot of Hollywood studios have been relocating or opening divisions here in Georgia. An enterprising county decided to get in on some of the 1.5 Billion in film industry money that was spent in Georgia in the past few years. Smart move. Although it still leaves out the Independent Filmmakers but it’s great for the Hollywood class!

If you don’t know already, Mark SQuared is a Resource and Production Studio that provides INDEPENDENT MEDIA MAKERS with talent, equipment, resources, and knowledge to UnBox their creative visions. They are there to assist in the production process of short films, stage plays, and special event showcases to full feature movies. Their resource center is where you can meet and work with talented actors, directors, musicians, designers, stylist, film crews, and photographers all in one central location. They provide an exclusive studio rental space which includes CYC wall, green screen area, rehearsal/casting call room, and photography area. Becoming a member will allow you certain discounts and benefits of the facility.

I personally had a great experience with Mark SQuared while doing a music video project and they made my some what chaotic situation more bearable.  They are conscientious, patient and they understand the business.  Headed by Karlotta Washington, DreQuan Medallion and Tiffany Roberts they are expanding, growing to meet the needs of the independent media makers market and are also poised to be an integral part of Georgia’s growing media creative community. So if you are an out of the box thinker or even an in the box thinker, Mark SQuared is where you need to be, to Unbox Your Creativity!

My name is Michael Stewart and I approve this message!

So you got this smash film and now what do you do with it. I’m personally not near in producing my own film yet but I want to know what my outlets are. My roots are in the music business and we also have the same issues. Distribution…the elusive holy grail. You hear it all the time, “once we get distribution, we’re set” or better yet, “trying to get distribution is a b*tch”. Most distributors aren’t looking at you unless you are doing something big on your own. Which if you think about it correctly, then you don’t REALLY NEED THEM. With how technology is now, all you need is a little time and a plan to get things out. Jon Reiss and Sherri Candler present a creative way on how to get your films out without “selling” your soul!

This is a must read for independent filmmakers that are wondering what to do next with their projects, besides entering them in film festivals and like. If you get and get it now, it’s FREE in most formats except paperback until October 1st, 2011 and after that will be available for $4.99 which is still awesome for this kind of information, definitely this is a must have in your arsenal!

Hopefully this will inspire you as it has inspired me!

Check out their website
http://sellingyourfilm.com/

Here is the graphic for Running an entry from a team that I had the extreme pleasure of working with in the 24Hr Film Race Atlanta.

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I saw this and was totally blown away! This is made by Jesse Blanchard of Chompers3D.com check it out

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After getting into this thing called cinematography I figured out after being involved in some project that I wanted to try my hand at being a Directory of Photography. I love the things involved with setting up a scene and lighting and getting the shots. Obviously when you are a one man show you have to wear a lot of hats but in this case I decided to stick with the things I am passionate about, filming, lighting and of course sound. Editing is a different beast all together, I do it because I have to, but I’ve learned a lot in that area too. All these things take time and together makes a film what it is, a long with a script of course outlining what the film is about. Then you have directors and actors/actresses before you know it, you are like Universal Studios.

I have noticed that you can get a lot done when you put the right people and minds together and you can create something wonderful!