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Old September 3rd, 2011, 12:37 PM   #16
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Re: UWOL 21-Here Be Dragons-Mike Sims

Thanks Finn-Erik. Figuring out what the software is capable of doing is the hard part. With the internet you can always then find someone to show you how to do it. The story is so simple this time (Gator gone, now back.) that I worry that all the gimmickry overwhelms it. The disappearing alligator is just a cross dissolve between a shot with him there and one with him gone. It didnít match well because of movement in the water surface in both shots so I tried to fool the eye with the B&W photos.
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Old September 4th, 2011, 03:46 AM   #17
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Re: UWOL 21-Here Be Dragons-Mike Sims

Hey Mike.
This was an incredibly fascinating video. A product of class with professionals. Be proud - man:)
You have a good story, good production, and editing is very good too.
Crocodiles and Aligator has always fascinated me and at first I thought it was the very Crocodile Dundee in action :)
I wonder how much film and how long it took to accomplish these recordings?
Also, how you did the map? Is the aligator sound for real or Foley sound?
If I'm to criticize anything, it must be that the VO is somewhat low in the beginning of the video, against the music.
Wish you the very best and thansk for sharing.
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Old September 4th, 2011, 08:39 AM   #18
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Re: UWOL 21-Here Be Dragons-Mike Sims

Thanks Geir Inge. Kind words from such an accomplished film maker are always a boost. I got embarrassingly little extra usable footage this time. Much of the footage had to be discarded because of missed focus. (I have another appointment for an adjustment to my eyeglasses prescription in a couple of weeks and hope to have that problem sorted.) I think I finished on the 24th except for a few tweeks which probably didnít help anything.

Are you asking about the fire burning away the map? I just Googled ďAfterEffects burning page tutorialĒ and found three. I watched them all and kind of picked and chose parts from each. My version isnít as good as any of the examples, but I only worked on it less than a day. It could really be improved. The sound is only crinkled cellophane. I think recording a real fire would be much better.

Those are real alligator sounds (but not recorded with the video). When they get going they can make that sound every few seconds for hours. Itís the male territorial growl. It was recorded at night at Brazos Bend State Park (the same place Victor Wilcox made his fine video last round) using my home made parabolic microphone- which I havenít showed you guys yet. I had hoped to shoot alligators there also but it was so dry I couldnít get close enough. I ended up shooting them in, of all places, Alligator Creek which is a small tributary of the Comal River. Most of the other shots are at the head springs of the Comal River.

I agree about the audio. In an earlier mix the projector sound was too low. Instead of boosting it I should have dropped the music level.
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Old September 4th, 2011, 08:41 AM   #19
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Re: UWOL 21-Here Be Dragons-Mike Sims

Since no one has mentioned it, I would be happy for any additional feedback concerning the home made borescope. The shot in question is at 0:21-0:27. I know it is hard to judge because of the heavy grading and scratched film effect (also please ignore the amateur acting). The salamander is a centimeter from the lens and Iím standing ten feet away. Iím mostly interested in whether anyone thinks this might be a useful tool and if you would care to have a discussion on how to build one. Thanks.
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Old September 6th, 2011, 07:35 PM   #20
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Re: UWOL 21-Here Be Dragons-Mike Sims

Mike, you always have the best graphics, and a wry sense of humor with your videos. A twinkle in the alligator's eye?... that gator's getting some action. The caveman bit is a classic, I'll bet we'll see a spin off on that scene on the Discovery or History channel in the future. Now about that parabolic microphone.....and also the borescope, that provides such an interesting shot. Could you share building specs?
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Old September 7th, 2011, 07:05 AM   #21
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Re: UWOL 21-Here Be Dragons-Mike Sims

I really enjoyed it. Glad to see at least one Texan stayed out of the shark tank. They still have water in San Antonio? All my water hole over in my part of the state are getting dry.
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Old September 7th, 2011, 11:32 AM   #22
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Re: UWOL 21-Here Be Dragons-Mike Sims

Thanks, Bill. In the next couple of months I hope to have information posted about my motorized time-lapse slider (several people have asked about that), parabolic microphone, borescope, and possibly the cable cam Iím currently building. If you, or anyone else, need the info quicker just e-mail me and Iíll see what I can do.
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Old September 7th, 2011, 11:33 AM   #23
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Re: UWOL 21-Here Be Dragons-Mike Sims

Hi Vic. Glad you liked it. San Antonio gets all of itís water from the Edwards Aquifer. Because of the geology the springs shown will be the last ones to dry up. By the time that happens weíll have over a million thirsty people rioting around here.
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