Epic Adventure

Wow, this was one crazy, creative test shot. The best way to learn is to do and boy did we learn, with a total environment replacement as illustrated here in a split screen showing the before and after of this 50 sec. tracking “reveal” shot. See the final video on YouTube .

Magnolia Time

I love these flowers but they responded very slowly to light and temperature, look closely and you can just make out the flowers expanding as the morning passes.

Magic Decoder Rings

I’ve been experimenting with capturing RAW images from the Canon 5D mk3 using the Magic Lantern ‘hack”. With all that amazing image latitude going to waste in “normal” mode how could you resist! But now I have that power there comes a great responsibility. What is the correct way to move forward with this new power? Magic Decoder Rings, of course! This is my none technical way of describing LUT’s or Look Up Tables (not so sexy). They can transform an image from an ugly duckling into a magnificent swan! Below is an example of a few ways to get the most out of the RAW image. Going from quick and easy to a more complex approach that balances three different “Magic Decoder Rings” to emulate the look and feel of images the way they were created before the age of computers. Using exotic media like Kodak Eastman Vision3 5219 negative for the creation phase and out putting to Vision 2393 Positive Release Print film for the distribution phase (movie theaters, web or marketing), see last example below. Why go to all this expense and trouble you ask? Well, if you want an aesthetic that people see as natural, authentic and beautiful, the film look is the only way to go. For more about the amazing power and beauty of “Film Emulation”, Vision Color is a great resource.


Terrence Malick wakes up drunk in the forest.

Joking aside, this 60 sec. piece was shot to test a Wooden Camera hand held rig I bought for the Black Magic Production camera, shot in the gorgeous 4K, DNG raw format. I wanted to test the raw format too and under exposed the first shot by a stop and a half, the shadow recovery was exceptional. The over exposed sunlit clouds, in the last shot, didn’t co-operate as readily, exposing for highlights is a better approach. Even though this footage was uploaded as 2K, you are only seeing one quarter of the original resolution, and is heavily compressed by YouTube, the result is still much more detailed than shooting in full HD. Another advantage is you can re-frame “Push Into” shots by 200% without loosing any resolution 😀
I love the Canon 24mm Cine lenses rendering of the image and the Firecrest IRND 1.2 filter allowed me to revel in the Bokeh, even on a sunny day. Subtle “film” grain and vignette added to taste in post. The dancing texture gives a earthy tangible quality to the subject, though is crushed by YouTube compression. Be sure to switch to full screen and HD mode! Sound track courtesy of James/Hammer Strings.