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Old August 12th, 2009, 06:34 PM   #61
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Well... I am back amongst the internet living.... still in Montana though. Mother nature didn't seem especially interested in being filmed. I ran up to the park with some in-laws one day for a brief hike and didn't take the camera due to lack of time. I wished I had, as the weather was blowing some clouds around in some pretty spectacular patterns - but overall it was windy, dark and spitty..

Then my then GF (more later) and I hiked into a backcountry chalet. That day was foggy and rather icky, though I did get some decent stuff in the afternoon - and did manage to get some good shots of Rocky Mtn Sheep.

The hike out the following day was not a lot better weather wise, but that night in the backcountry I proposed and my "OLD" gf is my "NEW" fiance!

I made a couple day trips back up, and high wind or rain hampered me some. Nevertheless I have a few hours of stuff to work with now. I captured a nice clip of an Osprey eating a fish up in an old pine tree. I also have some real nice "after a fire" footage - amazing how fast things start to regenerate.

I will be able to start when I get home next Sunday. I'm anxious to watch other's efforts in the meanwhile.

Chris Swanberg

ps. I captured a bear this trip, which was gratifying, a moose (running away mostly), Rocky Mtn Sheep, Mountain Goats and the Osprey. Seems like not a lot for the time I was there. Lots of flowers though (weak smile) and some scenery. Each Day I was there I was either a day late location wise to capture some footage of a Griz and 2 cubs who was becoming a nuisance but presenting great photo ops for those close to her.

pps. I ended up carring about 20# of equipment, and another 20# of clothing, food, etc. I discovered how out of shape I was.

Last edited by Chris Swanberg; August 13th, 2009 at 11:12 AM.
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Old August 13th, 2009, 07:34 AM   #62
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Congratulations Chris! Also, it sounds like you have some great footage to show us when you get back.
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Old August 17th, 2009, 02:29 PM   #63
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Hi Chris:

So, skipping through some of the threads I take it that you don't have a round 3 for us to view at this time? Just back with lots of footage in hand?

Congratulations though, it sounds like this is one major project you are undertaking!

Cat
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Old August 17th, 2009, 05:55 PM   #64
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Cat -

Yes and no. I was gone from July 24th until August 17th so Meryem graciously allowed me to return and put together something. It is forthcoming.

Meanwhile, from my trip up in June I did put together a small piece about winter and ice and spring's waters... and will have that up quite soon as it was mostly done and merely lacking coherent VO prior to my departure in July... but it is just a experiement in VO most of all, from this trip's footage will come my real 3rd submission.

Chris
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Old August 21st, 2009, 09:19 PM   #65
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Those reading this "blog like" thread will know I was up in Montana in June, and found my "capture new footage" efforts somewhat stymied due to late snows and road closures, though I did make major headway in my search for archival photographs of the Park's early history.

I did my best to capture some footage at that time (or as best I could within the limited availability due to road closures), and have put it together into a brief 9 minute offering here. It is not going to be included in my final film, but it does show a side of Glacier Park I hope you will find entertaining.

I was in Montana for a period in early August and captured a few hours of live footage in the Park... and have also ordered some additional archival still photos. I will be working with those and you can expect something more from me using that material. I'll try and get up some live footage from my August visit as well.

This current post was more designed to refine my VO techniques...and work on matching difficult sound levels (ambient background, foley and effects, music and VO).... but all comments and criticisms gladly accepted. ( I already started my own self criticism list and suspect it will get longer.)

Forgive my use of some stock footage in the winter-time scenes... I did not have any "personally shot" winter footage from Glacier at this time and my high Sierra winter time footage was very limited. (It was a good lesson though in weaving stock footage into a larger project.)

Chris Swanberg

ps...the vimeo HD link is here: Glacier National Park in Winter and Spring on Vimeo

pps. Anyone have any footage of wild horses in the deserts of Arizona or Nevada ? (seriously) I am working on a novel theory about the park... involving wild horses (or horses left by the Spanish in the 1500's from whence they came)

pps. Being from Montana, I had to stifle my desire to call a creek a crick. To me, they are cricks.....s'how I grew up.

Last edited by Chris Swanberg; August 21st, 2009 at 11:17 PM.
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Old August 31st, 2009, 02:46 AM   #66
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Hi Chris
You have stated that you won't be including this Spring video in your final film so I won't go too much into the footage you have, other than to say that some of the water shots were really stunning. What a beautiful place!
One other thing I did notice from your exercise of including stock footage into your larger video (in case you want to do this in the future) was that your zooms and pans were noticeably faster than those in the stock footage.
Your narrating and storytelling abilities are very good. Just remember you have an international audience and that the dates for 'Thanksgiving day' and 'Labour day' are not familiar to us. Better to use months for this instead.
While I was watching I was consciously wondering how you managed to get such clear water sounds beneath the music - really well done Chris.
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Old September 27th, 2009, 04:09 PM   #67
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Marj, a belated thank you.

I am still awaiting some (a lot) of archival stuff from Glacier... seems to be a little backed up - a month overdue. :(

I am also trying to negotiate a couple interviews with Park folks and USGS folks on the phone this week, we'll see how that goes. I will be back up there 2nd week in October and hope to conduct the interviews at that time.

However, the reason for this post is to remind folks that tonight, Sunday September 27, is a 4 hour premier on the Public Broadcasting System (PBS) of Ken Burns - "National Parks - America's Greatest Idea". It will way overeclipse my meager effort on Glacier, but I think it might be a great watch for UWOL'ers and instructive for me technique-wise.

Anyway, if you might have an interest this is just a reminder.

You can visit the PBS website on it here:

http://www.pbs.org/aboutpbs/news/200...onalparks.html

Chris
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Old October 7th, 2009, 12:51 AM   #68
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Well... my Glacier pictures... extensive stills from 100 years ago or so...has still not arrived from the archivist... months overdue...

Yet, I have put together a little version of my piece on the building of the park hotels, am adding music and VO (foley will have to wait) and trying to get it posted before I head back to Montana on Friday - right before new posts are due.

I hope to add some talking head interviews and maybe some more live footage. The hotel building clip I am going to post is mostly archival (non-park sources), and more and more I feel like the lack of "live"footage" makes my selected subject less of a true video and more of a Ken Burns slideshow.

I guess the proof of it all will be in the final result.

I'll be honest..anyone who thinks hey can do one of these in their spare time in a year is only kidding themselves. I admire my compatriots in this long form challenge more and more, and I am healthy and uninjured!

The secondary aspect of this... more time and feedback for those who chose to partake in it, will be invaluable. I think the collaboration for those pursuing their films to the bitter end will be wonderful, healing, and beneficial.

I WILL have something up for this required post and the final deadline...but know that the end result that I want and can be proud of is beyond that deadline.

Chris

As I watch Ken Burn's "National Parks" endeavor, I am amazed he managed it in 5 years!
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Old October 8th, 2009, 07:44 PM   #69
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Well, I still don't have most of my needed archival images, and hence it was kind of tough to weave something together, as they are kind of the glue for most segments.

I did have some photographs of the Park's Hotels, and using those was able to weave togther a short piece about the building of the first hotel in the Park. My main focus was on my "Ken Burns effect" and I am curious how the treatment of the stills looks to others eyes. I felt like I finally got it about right. I think for this submssion that was my main desire... to finalize how I am going to treat the stills. The opening was saving space for a number of relevant stills I did not have so I apologize for the slow start. I hope the images can help make up for that.

I had already learned and again last night re-learned that you need an identical setup to use for each bit of narration. Doing it in two different places and ways just cannot be sonicly hidden... but that was not critical here, though it will be next month. I plan to make a sound booth like enclosure and set up exactly the same for ALL the final narration. I also plan to try and do the narration in one piece if I possibly can...

I leave tomorrow for my last trip back to Montana prior to the final submission, and I hope the weather and Park folks cooperate. Supposed to be under 10 degrees farenheit at night during my visit...

Anyway, regardless, I'm going to be busy between now and November 15.

So, here it is, a couple days early, let me know your thoughts (and yeah I know a dropout in a pan...saw it during the render ... arghhh) My main interest here is how I handled the stills, but solicit any and all ideas.

Audio Note: Watching Ken Burns "National Parks" I saw the need for realistic foley sound effects on occasion and tried those at the train station scene. I liked the additional mental stimulation they added. Now my sound effects library is under scrutiny. SoundSnap.com here I come ! They have a great library that I find can fill in a personally owned sound library nicely. At 5 freebies a month it is pretty cool.

Clip is at:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RGVAdNM4DVE

Chris Swanberg

Last edited by Chris Swanberg; October 9th, 2009 at 09:47 AM.
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Old October 12th, 2009, 04:05 PM   #70
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Chris Burns ;-)

Splendid! This is coming along nicely and the work that has gone into it is evident. I think your treatment of the stills is beautifully done and most definitely gives the Ken Burns effect to the video. The sound effects to enhance the photos adds nicely, and your footage of the actual Park itself is stunning.

My only suggestion is that the opening footage, as beautiful as it is, remains for the first 1.5 minutes of your video... which became a bit stale to me. I'm sure there is lots of eye candy for us that you can provide during this time slot, as you ultimately start doing after the 1.5 minutes.

I like how this is developing. I thought, with both of us concentrating on a National Park, we might run similar tracks.... but I never would have thought to cover the lodges in the Park. It is a very interesting take on things.

All the best Chris.

Cat

P.S. When I tried to provide the link to my video submission on Vimeo, DVInfo embedded the movie in the thread! So I took it out. Do you have any suggestions?
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Old October 14th, 2009, 08:42 AM   #71
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Hey Chris:

When I submitted a reply, I noticed that there are miscellaneous option that are toggled to be on that automatically embeds video into DVInfo. They are found in a short section just below the submit reply button. These can be toggled off if one prefers, but what a nice option to have! Way to go DVInfo!

Cat
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Old October 15th, 2009, 01:48 PM   #72
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Chris,

I enjoyed the voice over and found it informative. You opening shot seems way to bright on my computer compared to your other images, perhaps reduce gamma on it.

look forward to the final product!! In a month!!
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Old October 19th, 2009, 06:55 PM   #73
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Chris- You have really got this Pan and Scan technique down! It looks really good. That one shot towards the end with the interior of the lodge looks like a live action crane shot. Very nice. I only have one suggestion. Where you transition from a black-and -white still to a color one, try reducing the saturation of the color shot to zero and after the cut fade it up to 100%. I think it might make a smoother transition. I hope you get access to the rest of your material soon. I canít wait to see what you do with it!
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Old October 20th, 2009, 02:56 PM   #74
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Chris,
This section looks great. I appreciate the slow movements of the "Ken Burns" . Your narration is clean and understandable for a Norwegian. I like your background sound and music. The sound of the locomotive gives the right atmosphere.
As Catherine commented, the opening mountain footage is far too long.

I am looking forward to see the whole film.
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Old October 22nd, 2009, 08:28 AM   #75
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Hi Chris - very nicely done. I'm not sure how much of this particular narration you will keep but as a mini sequence the story kept my interest and attention throughout. I did find the pace a little slow, but coming from someone who has a bad habit of doing the opposite I'm not sure you need worry too much.
Your photos are really well done and with the addition of sound - really fantastic.
I am really sorry you have had to wait so long for the archive material to arrive it mst be very frustrating. I am sure it must take a long time to do those photos. Do you have your lighting set up the same for each photo or do you have to change it depending on the surface of the picture?
Here's hoping you can get at least some of the archival material included for the final submission.
Marj
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