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Old May 27th, 2008, 02:33 PM   #1
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uwol 8 redo and ranch update

Hi all:

Now that everyone is starting to check back in for another great round of filming I just wanted to throw an update out there.

Even though the material I threw out there for uwol 8 was the kind of stuff worth investigating but in the end should end up on the cutting room floor... I did mention that I was interested in reworking a few things to see if some comments that were made could be taken into consideration. So here it is:

http://www.spikeproductions.com/UWOL8Redo.mov (65 mb) 320 x 240

I don't expect anyone to watch this, but if you do feel free to just spot check it to note the changes. Please don't even think of enduring it to the end!

It addresses two comments (made by just about everyone):

1) The hands are now brought "closer to the camera" which makes the motion larger in scope to allow for a larger center movie.

2) The hands have a smooth motion without the occasional jerk.

A lot more polishing could be done but not worth the time or effort... I know now that more space can easily be made available to allow for larger center movies which was worth figuring out.

Ranch update:

We are still at war with this fox, but are hoping we are converging on a fence so solid that we will win this battle. We are grieving the loss of 26 chickens to date. The last hit was 2 Fridays ago (9 down) and since then all has been very quiet. This is very normal behavior, so we still don't know if it's because we have a full-proof fence or if the fox is mustering for another blow. We are doing everything we can do: attempts at trapping, building a 10' 3 wire electric fence, surrounding the compound with boulders on both sides of the fence, we have a gun loaded and ready if it comes to that, and we are looking into the possibility of a guard Llama, which will for certain end up in my uwol movies if we do get one.

On a happier note, we are raising 14 chicks, 2 Guinea fowl (which are good alarm callers), and 2 Chinese guard geese (which attack everything except the owners who rear them!). They have grown up a lot since this movie but if you want to enjoy these little critters and reminisce about the way the ranch USED TO BE please enjoy this 2 minute birthday clip created for my niece. The little yellow rubber ducks are the goslings.

http://www.spikeproductions.com/Word...1Mb_Stream.mov (720x480, 35 mb, 2 min)

Looking forward to another go at uwol 9 and seeing everyone else's awesome creations.

Cato
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Old May 27th, 2008, 09:27 PM   #2
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May I make a suggestion about the gloves and light. I have had to learn a lot about lighting in a very short amount of time and I don't even know the tip of the ice burg. Something to consider with what you are trying to do is lighting the gloves from directly above and/or directly below. You are wanting to create the floating hands effect, so you want to minimize light on the background subject. If you are in a totally black environment, try to move the subject as far away from any background as possible to none of the light hits it. Because you are in so close, you can have your light in close as well. Your camera is trying very hard to stay in focus and it can't due to the lack of light.

You can also use a garbage matte, which I think can be found on many consumer editors, to cut out your undesired backgrounds and leave your floating hands. A garbage matte allows you to create a polygon that will cut away things you don't want and keep things that you do. You can move the polygon to fit your area that you wish to cat away, give you freedom. So you could have the hands in a box and film your subject, then go back and cut out your surroundings and leave your floating hands.

I hope that helps. If I botched any of that I hope someone corrects me.
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Old May 28th, 2008, 07:04 AM   #3
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Thanks Martin for you input. These are interesting insights. The practical application of the polygon to cut away the background is a technique I don't quite grasp from your description. I'll email you for further details.

Appreciate the input!

Cat
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Old May 28th, 2008, 06:01 PM   #4
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cat,

took a break from roofing the pigeons loft today and watched your rework.

first, yes it is a definite improvement!! it always was one of my favorites just due to the creativity of it.

A couple of the zoom ins need to be smoother and perhaps slower..

As i watched it I realized i was thinking, "I wish it was wide screen as it would all fit together even better".

Are you willing to share just How did you actually film the hands?

To remove the background i think you might have to go to after effects.

I reckon you could crop quite a bit too.

Personally I think it is prretty fine just as it is!!!
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Old May 29th, 2008, 07:18 AM   #5
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Hi Dale:

Amazing you sat through that again! For that, I will reveal my secrets. Sadly, once you know how this was done it will take the "magic" out of it and you will realize how ordinary this all was! It was filmed against a black background with one light illuminating my hands. I wore all black with thick white gloves with the camera view clipping my head and feet. So it was me moving my own hands and my husband simply watched through the lens to make sure I was staying within the camera view. This clip was screened against a black background in AE with filters to bring out the hands... one reason why it is so grainy. In AE, I timed all the other clips to the motion of the hands moving. This is why, in the redo, the center clips could have been smoother... I didn't take the time and effort to redo the scaling to fit perfectly the adjusted position the hands took after bringing them "closer to the camera" which makes them look bigger and gives more room for the center clips to scale up to a larger size.

So there ya go! Keep those pigeons safe for us! We don't need any more stories about predators going after these beautiful creatures.

Looking forward to your uwol 9 clip, Dale.

Cato
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Old May 30th, 2008, 11:05 AM   #6
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CAt,

Thanks for the information, it still is one of my favs.


The pigeons are not for the predators. I actually have bred one family for 34 years (never an outcross) and I use them mostly for genetics studies, and I just like them.

Anxiously awaiting sunday.
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