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Tech Writ

Platform Building: A More Important Question

It's inevitable that to make your way in the world you have to build your platform. As a full-time producer, I've been having a lot of discussion around this recently. It was precipitated by a blog post that was written by a major publisher (I forget who it was now, several weeks ago). I appreciated the article as it addressed the issue by an irate guy who stated, "so what you're saying is that you won't take me unless I'm already famous" to which the publisher said, "yeah, pretty much." The publisher then went on to explain that into today's highly noisy culture and the ease with which you can publish your own content, it's makes it far more difficult for a publisher to make their content rise above the rest if that person doesn't bring some fans a long with them. You might be wondering why in the world I'm writing about this. Platform building is equally applicable to any media production efforts. I liken to to bands. Bands spend years writing music, picking up fans at little shows on the weekends and working their butts off to get that bigger fan-base, sell more records, have better shows, etc. …

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Dead Reckoning Season 3 Tech

Pre-Production This season of Dead Reckoning TV was a bit of a change brought about by two things: the first was moving the studio to another suite in the same building, turning the former into a dedicated set. The second catalyst was the move from my MacPro tower to my HP Zbook. Brian and I also did a little target audience readjusting based on feedback from season 2 which was a big step up content-wise compared to season 1 so we expected some changes. I won't get into the platform switch except to say that MacPro was dying and because I was moving back and forth between set and studio once a week, I needed something mobile. At the time, I was readjusting Red Futon Films' project focus as well so that played a role in the choice of the Zbook. Production Figuring out how to do web TV with guests on the budget has been difficult. In season 2, I was Skyping screen capturing via Screenflow from my Macbook Air. Primary audio was being fed from the MBA to the MacPro via the Apollo Duo with the host mic going directly the Apollo. I could control each track independently  This …

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Rhythm & Hues: Life After Pi (Trailer)

I hear a lot about the poor treatment of VFX facilities and artists in my industry. This should be interesting.

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Speedgrade Stuff

So the Premiere to Speedgrade Dynamic Direct Link functionality is pretty rad. So rad, I’m grading the entire doc in Speedgrade. So far, I’m extremely happy with the results I’m getting on everything except two shots. In the real word, it’s only two clips but three shots in the edit. So in my adventures of fixing those shots today, I’ve now learned a few things about this workflow: Dynamic Direct Link does not give you any options to adjust RAW properties of a clip in Speedgrade. Not that number 1 matters a whole lot since Sg doesn’t give me any worthwhile adjustments for DNG anyway- oddly enough. I find irony in number 2 because DNG is an Adobe format (yes, I know Sg wasn’t an Adobe app natively, but it’s still funny). I can’t control how Premiere interprets my RAW footage. It seems to arbitrarily pick a matrix out of thin air. If that decoding matrix happens to bring in the footage overexposed then… …that footage will be clipped in Speedgrade if accessed via DL. I think after trying a variety of different ways to fix the overexposed shots, I’ve settled on converting those clips to Cineform RAW and replacing them in …

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2014: Crafted, Capstan, Screenplays & Lecture Projects

I really want to start blogging again, but most of the time I think to myself, what do I have to offer? Why would people listen to me?  Most of that is likely true so like, my screenplay writing forays, they’re mostly for my own personal enjoyment and exercise I guess. So I’ll start with a catch-up of things I’m working on while looking ahead through 2014.   Crafted: Beer + Faith + Community My new short doc is about how the limited run beer, All Souls Ale by Big Sky Brewing came into being. It’s getting some great coverage and regular plays thanks to Reelhouse for throwing us on the front page. It’s about 20 minutes long and the finishing work should be done end of this month so release is next month. I plan to submit it to a couple of festivals this year just to get some more eyes an fans with the hopes that this becomes the seeds for a crowd-sourced feature doc with the same themes. Watch the trailer here.   Capstan Visual My creative partner and I, Chris Fenner (@fenner403) who’s based in Atlanta have launched a new production agency. We’re still feeling our …

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