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A great continuous single-shot octacopter 5 minute music video!
Posted by Andrzej, motionVFX Team
October 30, 2014, at 8:00 PM

In a world where fast edits are used to hide mistakes and imperfections, prolonged single shots are really scarce. Therefore, the more valuable they are. Especially when it takes about 50-60 times of repeating a scene over and over to get just what the director wanted. That appears to be the case of latest OK Go music video – as we read Harley Brown’s article on

The video is a single continuous shot, filmed entirely from an octacopter:

And here's a photo posted at Instagram by one of OK Go's musicians, Damian Kulash, which shows how the drone was mounted prior to launch:



Harley’s article sheds some light onto how it was recorded:

To coordinate everyone moving in synchrony to the parking lot for the final setup, Harano set up enormous speakers and played "I Won't Let You Down" at half-speed, which "allowed for more precise movements even with the complicated choreography," (comment by Busby Berkeley, choreographer)

To capture all those Japanese schoolgirls flashing colored umbrellas in the shapes of lyrics and OK Go members' faces in perfect synchronicity, Harano used a specialized drone camera controlled both by GPS and by hand from an altitude of nearly half a mile.

More information and photos in the original article at here.



Canon announces EOS C100 Mark II!
Posted by Andrzej, motionVFX Team
October 30, 2014, at 7:59 AM

Finally there’s some good news from Canon: the company has announced the release of Mark II version of their popular C100 cinema camera. Will this put an end to reverberating accusations of Canon being stuck in place for too long? Well, it’s unlikely, as the new C100 isn’t as much of an upgrade, as you might expect from a Mark II version released two years after C100 was first introduced.

The new C100 will include Dual Pixel AF by default, which is great for the type of work the camera is designed for, although it’s not much of a breakthrough, as this feature was already made available for the previous version. Aside from that, as Dan Chung writes in his text:

The original C100 only autofocussed in the centre of the frame. The mark II adds the ability for the camera to track an off centre subject with face detection – but it still lacks the touch screen focus of the 70D. This to me is a real missed opportunity and it’s a shame that the new camera can’t do something that a cheaper DSLR can.

Among other changes we’ll see a next generation image processor, improved EVF and rear OLED screen, slow motion or built-in mono microphone.

According to the press release, the C100 MkII will cost $5,400. While the upgrade fixes some of the main issues that were reported with the previous version like lack of slow motion, it remains to Canon users whether changes introduced in the MkII justify spending that amount of money.

Although there’s no official news, we expect that C300 and C500 upgrades are also scheduled in Canon’s roadmap. For more information, you can look up Dan Chung’s article here, which also includes full text of Canon’s press release.


6K RED DRAGON Cameras are going to Space with NASA!
Posted by Andrzej, motionVFX Team
October 29, 2014, at 11:25 AM

RED cameras are about to reach a whole new level – quite literally. In the RED news pages the company has announced that it has entered a Space Act Agreement with NASA. What is the agreement actually?

[it] is the primary vehicle for NASA to partner with third-parties that allows them to have access to wider range of technologies than is currently available within NASA.

In practice, it means that the astronauts of the International Space Station (ISS) will receive RED EPIC cameras with the Dragon 6K sensor, which will be used to capture ‘critical footage’. As we read at, the company has previously participated in recording various rocket and shuttle launches since 2007, and only now will their camera be sent into space.

Below you can see a photo posted in news section "The EPIC DRAGON being put through the paces within NASA in preparation for the ISS mission." Photo Credit: NASA

RED’s CEO, Jared Land comments:

Since day one, RED has always pushed the boundaries at every level of our company. Our cameras have been to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean, to the top of frigid Mount Everest all the way to the Marum volcano. But going to outer space takes things to a whole new level. We are incredibly honored that NASA has chosen RED to be part of its mission on the International Space Station.

No further technical aspects have been given, most likely because the agreement with NASA forbids RED to do so. Hopefully, soon enough we’ll have a chance to see some awesome space footage, after all, it’s hard to think of a better use for high resolution footage, than space exploration and astronauts’ work, which can’t be witnessed otherwise.

The article does not mention when RED DRAGONS will be transported, however the latest (unmanned flight) equipment transport headed towards ISS has exploded midair with roughly 5,000 pounds of supplies and experiments as we learn from the latest CNN news report . More info on that topic at here.


New MacBreak Studio episode - Rating and Filtering in Final Cut Pro X!
Posted by Michal, motionVFX Team
October 29, 2014, at 2:49 AM

The new episode of MacBreak Studio just got published and it features Mark Spencer and guest Bill Davis who will take you back to the basics of Final Cut Pro X. This week you will learn a bit on rating and filtering clips in Apple's non-linear editor. It is a process very useful when preparing for editing, so make sure to watch this episode if you want to improve your workflow. Mark admits that keyword collections and smart collections are also incredibly valuable tools, but he also thinks that rating and filtering deserves its own focus and it's hard to disagree, because if you master the rating and filtering process in Final Cut Pro X, your editorial experience with this software will be much better.


And traditionally here's a bit more from Mark:

"Bill's approach is simple, fast and effective: first, he uses the up and down arrows to navigate clips in the Browser. Then, to review an individual clip, he starts by immediately pressing I to set an In-point on the first frame. From there, he uses J-K-L to play, pause, reverse, and speed through the clip. His goal is to have every part of the clip identified as Rejected, Favorite, or Unrated. To do so, he presses O to set the Out point of a range, then presses the Delete key to reject, the F key to Favorite, or does nothing to leave a clip range as unrated. Rejecting a range adds a red line across the top edge of that range; favoriting adds a green line. Selecting this line re-selects the range so that you can easily change the rating. Pressing the U key will unrate a rated range. By using these keyboard shortcuts (J,K,L,I,O,F,U, Delete, and the arrow keys), Bill demonstrates how one can quite quickly review and rate footage."

He also added:

"From the top of the Browser, you can choose to view the full clips, hide your rejected clip ranges, view just your favorite ranges, just rejected ranges, ranges of clips that haven't been used in the current project, and clip ranges that have no ratings or keywords. Personally I find every single one of these filtering options useful in different stages of the editing process, and I recommend memorizing the keyboard shortcuts for selecting them that appear next to them in the menu."


Sony A7s review by Andrew Reid - why he prefers it over the Panasonic GH4!
Posted by Michal, motionVFX Team
October 29, 2014, at 12:55 AM

Andrew Reid of EOS HD finally posted the second part of his Sony A7s review and he admits in it that Sony's camera became his main filmmaking tool and so he had the opportunity to work with this product a lot and has many thoughts and interesting observations. And even though Andrew is a big fan of Panasonic's cameras and he loves the GH4, he discovered that he spends more time with the A7s. The biggest advantage of the camera are the low-light capabilities - it's just easier to set up the camera, it takes less time and working with the A7s is simply a pleasure. Of course the GH4 offers some great specs, mainly allows for in-camera 4K recording, but in many projects Full HD is more than enough. He also likes what he can do with the footage recorded on the A7s:

"The A7S footage can be pushed around more in post than either the GH4 or the Nikon D750, which adds yet more creative flexibility. S-LOG 2 is a gem and gives you a very filmic image which grades superbly, especially in Blackmagic Resolve. You can then export looks in the form of LUT files from there to your editing software like Adobe Premiere to use in the edit. Initially I found the Nikon D750 did great colour with very little prodding. Over time however, I find the A7S is less digital looking and does better skin tones. You just have to get it right in the grade, which sadly with S-LOG 2 is no simple thing. But once you do have it right, very little further effort is required on your part to coax the best colour and skin tones from it."

There are some things he doesn't like. For example the way the Sony A7s manages 4K recording:

"4K HDMI output, and the user cannot make use of it. Dear Sony. Why. If you’re going to have a major headline feature first to the market, at least offer some kind of recorder straight off the bat so we can make use of it. The wait for the Atomos Shogun has been torture!"

Nevertheless Andrew loves the camera and he believes it can be a workhorse. 

"The Sony A7S is the first camera to really beat the Canon 5D Mark III across the board at almost every level for both stills and video, especially the latter. The A7R did not have the video quality to rival the Canon, but the A7S is a different proposition altogether and raises the bar to another level, possibly signalling the end of DSLR domination in this area at the same time. I can think of no reason to shoot on stock Canon 5D Mark III video settings when you can shoot XAVC-S on the A7S."

In order to read the full review, follow this link.



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