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5 important skills that will make you a better filmmaker on the set!
Posted by Michal, motionVFX Team
October 25, 2014, at 1:37 AM

Caleb Pike of DSLR Video Shooter posted a video in which he shares some info on 5 skills that will make you a much better filmmaker - useful stuff especially if your task is to support a director. Caleb starts with tips on staging gear, because in his opinion it is one of the most important steps in production, besides you will be able to work more efficiently (things will be easier to find). In this case he focuses mainly on lights. Another huge topic is how you should behave on the set and why you should try to be subtle and quiet. You should also be asking questions if you want to learn something and achieve better results - you need to know what you're doing and why you're doing it. Additionally don't forget to be observant and try to study your boss to meet his/hers needs before asked. 
 

 

Caleb conludes:

"This post might just sound like a list of ways to suck up to your boss or director, but trust me when I say these skills go far beyond that. Today you could find yourself doing these things as an assistant, but one day you might find yourself on set as a director. Then you will need to know how to have your crew stage gear. You will have mastered the art of being a subtle director. You will know how to ask questions and discover new methods for doing things. You will be a master of observation and nothing will get past you. And finally, you will be able to study and serve your boss well and that boss won’t be a director, it’ll be the story."

Source: http://dslrvideoshooter.com

Color correction - why do we need to convince our audience that they need it!
Posted by Andrzej, motionVFX Team
October 24, 2014, at 6:12 PM

They say a good editor is the one who’s work is not noticeable by the viewer. What about color correction? If the colors, skin tones, shades etc. are made so they look natural within a shot and between two separate shots put together, then you can say that the colorist has done a good job. However, Terence Curren in a short article and video posted at provideocoalition.com poses a valid question: how would your client know the amount (and quality) of work you’ve done, and appreciate your professional services, if the final product looks the way it should look:

"In our industry, I have long believed we have done a disservice to our long-term economic health by being secretive about our craft. If our clients and consumers don’t know exactly what we do, why should they pay more for a skilled artisan?"

The point of the video is not to teach how to perform a professional color correction, but rather to point at some of the work colorists do, in order to increase general awareness how good can a corrected shot look, and the idea to implement changes live as the video progresses seems to do the trick just perfect.



For more information head over to provideocoalition.com to Terrence's short text on color correction.

Source: http://provideocoalition.com

Panasonic VariCam prices announced!
Posted by Andrzej, motionVFX Team
October 24, 2014, at 5:01 PM

Panasonic’s new VariCam was among this year’s biggest camera announcements. The new model drew a lot of attention due to a number of innovative solutions  (to learn more about the camera itself, please refer to our previous posts on this topic). In the meantime, let’s focus on another issue – who the potential buyer is. It was known from the start that the new VariCam won’t be cheap – speculations placed it around ARRI Amira or Alexa price levels. 

Now, rumors be no more, the official pricing has been announced recently: following a blog post at abelcine.com, we read that a complete VariCam 35 4K package will cost $55,000 and VariCam HS (High-Speed/Variable Frame Rate) $46,000. For that price you’ll receive:

  • camera module 
  • recording / control module,
  • color viewfinder, 
  • shoulder mount module
     


All of the modules can be bought separately. For a list of modules and prices you may visit abelcine.com blog via this link.

A while ago the new VariCam first footage has been published - while it was generally well received in articles around the industry press and blogs, those who are interested in further details may wish to have a look at "A Critical Look at Varicam’s Latest Demon Reel" written by Art Adams and posted on dvinfo.net here. Art’s article is quite long, and very exhaustive, with plenty of details analysed.

Source: http://blog.abelcine.com

Apple's fourth quarter - strong iPhone, Mac and App Store sales!
Posted by Michal, motionVFX Team
October 24, 2014, at 1:52 AM

A few days ago Apple announced financial results for its fiscal 2014 fourth quarter that ended September 27, 2014 and as you could expect the results are strong (I believe we all got used to it;)). The Cupertino company posted a quarterly revenue of $42.1 billion and quarterly net profit of $8.5 billion and these results compare to revenue of $37.5 billion and net profit of $7.5 billion in the year-ago quarter, so as you can see Apple still manages to grow. What's more the gross margin was 38 percent compared to 37 percent in the year-ago quarter and international sales accounted for 60 percent of the quarter’s revenue. MacRumors posted a very interesting piechart in which you can see the revenue by category and if you wonder why Apple dropped the iPod Touch, just look at this chart and you will find the answer...


If you own Apple's shares you will be pleased to know that the board of directors has declared a cash dividend of $.47 per share - this dividend will be payable on November 13, 2014. Of course strong results were influenced by iPhone 6 sales and Tim Cook said:

“Our fiscal 2014 was one for the record books, including the biggest iPhone launch ever with iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. With amazing innovations in our new iPhones, iPads and Macs, as well as iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite, we are heading into the holidays with Apple’s strongest product lineup ever. We are also incredibly excited about Apple Watch and other great products and services in the pipeline for 2015.”

Apple also provided the following guidance for its fiscal 2015 first quarter (via Apple):

  • revenue between $63.5 billion and $66.5 billion
  • gross margin between 37.5 percent and 38.5 percent
  • operating expenses between $5.4 billion and $5.5 billion
  • other income/(expense) of $325 million
  • tax rate of 26.5 percent

Source: http://www.apple.com

Samsung joins the ranks of mirrorless 4K cameras with the Samsung NX1!
Posted by Michal, motionVFX Team
October 23, 2014, at 3:21 AM

Many filmmakers and reviewers believe that mirrorless cameras are much better than DSLRs and Samsung seems to agree because the company made the decision to join the ranks of mirrorless 4K cameras, as reported by Definition Magazine. The end of HD is near and the magazine believes that we are witnessing an important change on the market, because even a company with no history in video introduces a stills camera that can record 4K (in 24fps and with the H.265 codec). The Samsung NX1 also gives you full manual control of many functions, such as ISO, shutter speed, aperture, white balance and audio. The data rate is also not bad - 80Mb/s seems to be enough in the case of many projects and while some cameras offer better specs, the promo video is pretty great!
 

 

And here's an excerpt from Definition Magazine:

"Data rate is up to 80Mb/s (As good as 160Mb/s say Samsung) and internal recording is to Class 10 SD cards up to 64GB in size. A clean HDMI signal lets you use an external recorder.

The camera has a 28MP APS-C backside illuminated sensor with ISO up to 25600 (expanded to 51200) and full phase detection AF usuable for video. Samsung also offer a transcoder for your files to ProRes, DNxHD and Cinema DNG as editing H.265 is difficult at the moment."


The camera will cost £1299 (US$2110/AU$1175) and will be out next month.

Source: http://www.definitionmagazine.com



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