September 22nd, 2012 by Glendyn
Just saw this geeky video comparing the Blackmagic Cinema Camera and the Canon 5DmkIII.
September 22nd, 2012 by Glendyn
Just saw this geeky video comparing the Blackmagic Cinema Camera and the Canon 5DmkIII.
September 7th, 2012 by Glendyn
A couple of posts ago I mentioned the Apocalypse Now mash-up featured one of my all time favorite quotes about filmmaking. Francis Ford Coppola dreaming of the day when the professional (out of reach) world of filmmaking would fall away and technology would allow “a little fat girl from Ohio” to make a beautiful film with her fathers camera.
There is no doubt the democratisation of filmmaking which Francis prophesied is well and truly with us. Some truly great cinema has been made with minimal ‘off the shelf’ equipment. I still get excited by a back-pack full of gear (camera, microphone, laptop) being all you really need to shoot and edit a film. With more recent cameras like the 5D greater aesthetic and quality control has been firmly placed in our hands and I’m in still in awe at whats possible with a DSLR’s these days.
But today I was sent a box which I believe contains the next giant leap forward in breaking down the technology wall. The Blackmagic Cinema Camera is a very new and very exciting camera. It provides stunning, jaw dropping image quality (Pro-res or 2K uncompressed RAW) that is so far above and beyond what any DSLR can provide. It’s built like a brick and everything that plugs in and out of it has professional connectors that are strong and reliable. No more mini-jacks and fiddly HDMI. It records onto removable SSD and this version comes with an EF (Canon) lens mount.
The Blackmagic doesn’t have a lot of bells and whistles. Infact it’s really basic in it’s design and feature set. Personally I find this refreshing. Anything it doesn’t do, and it does have limitations, in my mind is instantly erased by how much it costs, a mere $3000(!). I’ve seen this camera up against the Alexa in the grading suite and it’s comparative in look and feel. It’s different of course, but not $70 000 different. And way, way different to say a 5Dmk3 which cost the same.
I’m planning on testing the camera from a directors perspective as apposed to a cinematographers. I’m not overly technical though. I’m sure there will be a ton of sites out there providing all the specs and pixel peeping tests that will do a way better job of the geek speak than me. I just want to know it’s a reliable easy to use camera that provides good colour depth and gives me gradable detail in the highlights and in the shadows. I kind of already know the Blackmagic does this in spades. DOP John Brawley help test and develop the camera with Blackmagic Design and we used it a little on Puberty Blues. (John has a bunch of info and tests on his blog). But the camera we used then was a beta model and the one I’m holding below is the production one. It will soon to be flying off the shelves and into the hands and hearts of filmmakers around the world.
August 21st, 2012 by Glendyn
Super nerdy but inspiring mash-up of Apocalypse Now, and the subsequent ‘making of…’ epic Hearts of Darkness and more.
Includes one of my favourite filmmaking quotes ever at 3:50!
June 1st, 2012 by Glendyn
My heart skipped a beat while shooting on location yesterday. I was standing next to a book shelf in-between takes and my eye was caught by something near by… Stacked amongst boxed software and A4 ring binders was a mint, unopened, still shrink-wrapped copy of the The Muppet Movie on Super 8!
One of my favourite films. Ever!
May 16th, 2011 by Glendyn
At first glance these images could be mistaken for great fine art or street photography. But they are sourced from an altogether different type of documentation. Similar to this other guy I blogged about a while ago, Jon Rafman who has created 9-Eyes must spend hours (months?) traversing Google Maps discovering the beautiful, bizarre, surreal and spontaneous moments of poetry and drama that daily life brings with it. All these ‘scenes’ are captured by the nine lenses perched on top of the Google vehicles as they drive around the world collecting data for Googles street view.
It’s well worth taking the 15 minutes or so it takes to scroll through the collection.
March 29th, 2011 by Glendyn
Shot with the new Arri Alexa for the first time last week… I think I’m in love.
The Red is dead.
February 17th, 2011 by Glendyn
For about 6 months of my life when I was about 24, I was obsessed, no, addicted, to a computer game called Marathon. It might look super clunky by todays standards but believe it or not, it had very immersive gameplay. I played my way through Marathon, Marathon 2 and then one day when I was about two thirds of the way Marathon Infinity, mid game, I just quit. I’d had enough. Like an alcoholic who had lost the thirst. I never felt like going back to it, it was just finsihed and I was done with the screen. I never really played another game like I did Marathon. I mucked around with Doom and Quake a bit, I really got into Tony Hawk on the PS2 with some housemates for a while and I love playing Little Big Planet with my son (when he’s not banned from it). But I’ve mostly avoided video games mostly because I know how they can take hold of my every waking moment. And I’ve got other things I’d rather be consumed by.
But… that might all change with this incredible ‘trailer’… which looks SO freaking amazing!
Sometimes, when I’m in the edit suite for a commercial and we are having trouble making the cut work, I always joke about just cutting it so everything is in reverse, and then it will appear that it was meant to be confusing and tricky. But I doubt that was the case with this. It makes me really want to kill a ton of zombies!
October 3rd, 2010 by Glendyn
I have really enjoyed looking through the short films and images at CameraBag.tv. A site that aims to “Celebrate image makers and highlight the beauty and style of the camera”. The profiles find a nice balance between creative process and camera geekery. There are only four photographers profiled there at the moment, but it looks as though it will continue to be updated.
September 1st, 2010 by Glendyn
David Lynch is a hero of mine, I love nearly all his films, but sadly I’ve never been able to get into Inland Empire. As much as I wanted to and I’ve attemped to watch it a few times there is something about that film which has never clicked. Anyway, the saving grace of Inland Empire is a very special extra feature on the DVD which is a 20 minute film of David Lynch cooking himself a dinner of the ancient grain Quinoa and some broccoli.
Doesn’t sound that exciting, but believe me it’s one of the most strangely satisfying cooking shows you’ll be lucky enough to see. It’s not so much the Quinoa, but a story he tells while he sits on his dark balcony and has a cigarette while he waits for the the dinner to cook. Maybe it’s just me but when I first saw this I was totally mesmerised. It’s like Lynch draws you in and hypnotises you as he recounts a train trip he took through Europe many years ago.
I think this is one of the coolest extra features on a DVD I’ve seen. Bon Appetit!
Part Two is here (there is a point at 5mins 34 that is SO beautifully surreal and so incredibly David Lynch!)
And I recommend the Quinoa too, it’s delicious!!
August 19th, 2010 by Glendyn
If your interested in Stanley Kubrick, or interested in film, or just want to watch a great doco. Do yourself a favour and watch ‘Stanley Kubrick’s Boxes’. An excellent and often amusing doco about the thousands of boxes that Kubrick filled with ideas, research, reference and obsessions. Most of which had never been opened until this film was made. It doesn’t get more process driven than this. Full film on YouTube, Part 1 of 5 HERE…
July 29th, 2010 by Glendyn
I find it interesting when people concentrate on the negatives rather than the positives. Particularly when it comes to technology.
The hilarious animation above was sent to me five times yesterday. Although all the arguments the little bear ‘cinematographer’ give seem valid. I think the little bear ‘producer’ is making the most sense.
If you would like to argue, perhaps you should first watch the clip below. Directed by fellow Exiteer Garth Davis and shot by Greig Fraser, who tells me “there were no lights used at all” during the shoot. It was also made with a small crew, the only way of making (in this circumstance), the seemingly impossible, possible.
Greig used Panovision ‘film’ lenses on the 5D (using a PL mount). Which makes the 5D even more viable aesthetically. I have seen Ride at full rez and it’s even more beautiful. It would be just as stunning blown up and projected onto a cinema screen as well I’m sure. Screw you little cinematographer bear!
I promise this will be my last gushy 5D post for a while…
June 1st, 2010 by Glendyn
Those that know me a little will know I’m totally OCD when it comes to anything related to NIN and Trent Reznor.
Trent has pretty much given away his last few releases. His approach it seems to getting around the whole music piracy thing is to either give the music away, or sell it for very little via his own website. It’s very clever. The thinking being, that the music is not a commodity but rather a creative asset, and part of much bigger and deeper, b(r)and / consumer relationship. Of course there will be a hard copy of the album for sale in a few weeks. I’ll be waiting and paying happily for the vinyl! And if you followed the link to the free download, you’d see a bunch of other things you can ‘buy’ that can’t be downloaded and digitally copied. See how this free thing works?!
Once again Trent and team have provided beautiful artwork. I’m so fascinated by the illustrations that adorn the album artwork and website. Such a beautiful colour palette, design and tone. Oh and the music is everything you would expect. There is a little bit of the last 6 NIN albums mixed with the smokey whispered vocals of Mariqueen Maandig. Do yourself a favour.
May 10th, 2010 by Glendyn
I have been wanting to get some of the portraits of Tom and Hugo shot for Last Ride blown up and framed. As they were shot on medium format (Grieg brought his old toy Holga along) I was really keen to get them enlarged optically and printed old school stylee on fibre based black and white paper. I found a printer called Asko at CPL here in Melbourne. Asko is an artist in his own right. Carrying on the tradition of darkroom exposures, hand burning and dodging, and hand chemical development. What was once an essential photographic service (Asko told me in 1988 the company he worked for developed over half a million dollars worth of black and white prints!) is now quite a specialist area, as everything image based is in the realm of the computer.
It was very cool to visit him in his dark room and see how the prints were coming along. The potent smell of the chemicals taking me back to my uni days spent in the dark up to my neck in developer.
The prints are quite large, I’m getting some 24inch x 24inch and a couple 34inch by 34inch. I’ll post some framed shots when they are complete.
April 21st, 2010 by Glendyn
The interview is about an hour long and goes into quite alot of detail into the whys and hows of shooting one of the most popular TV shows in the world on sub $3000 DSLR camera. To shoot with the 5D (and the cameras that will soon follow) is no longer a decision and discussion based around budget, but one about creativity, control and creating a working process that most filmmakers have been dreaming of. Myself included.
I have never watched House, but I’ll be certainly sitting down in front of the TV to watch this ep.
April 11th, 2010 by Glendyn
I’m totally amazed by the music video below. Over 8 minutes long and beautifully shot on the Canon 7D. Have a look at it, it’s stunning. And it was shot with a CREW OF TWO people. One being the singer! On a camera you can buy for around $1500. Epic!
Small crews, small cameras. Less fuss, less logistics, freeing you up for so much more actual film making! I find this kind of thing totally inspiring for so many reasons. Some of which I’ll go into more detail when I post the ‘Sound Maker’ film here (hopefully in the next week or so…)
Along with the minimal fuss approach to the filming, what these guys have done so well is choose great (public) locations, that are already lit and look great. This is where the Canon 7D / 5D’s excel, in low light. So not having to use expensive film lights, opens up the possibilities, everything out in there in the perfectly lit city is ready and waiting to be utilised and pre-lit location. That said, the sequences shot in the snowy / foggy forest are equally amazing!
Here is a brief ‘making of’ the ‘Break My Soul’ video. And a few more details here.