Wednsday, September 1, 2010
It’s been a pretty crazy last week. We didn’t do any filming, so I’ve started working on some more post stuff. I had one of the composers, Mark Richardson, come over and expand a simple six note melody that I had created. When he left, we had a final track for the film! The really cool part was that it sounded AMAZING! So not only will the movie look great, but sound great too!
Then I got a call from the other composer, Russ Seaton, and he was interested in seeing what we’ve done so far. Initially I was just going to send him an offline render, but then I decided to go through the steps and render out an online for him. Plus, I want to see what my movie looks like in HD too! The past few nights have been a blur as I’ve started to go through the process. I first needed to create my online clips, as I hadn’t done that yet. Converting 14 days of footage to the Avid DNxHD codec took almost 20 hours. Next I bumped all the scenes on the timeline against each other and saved an EDL. Keep in mind that at this point, it was only a 40 minute timeline. When I tried to import the timeline into AE to master, AE crashed. I tried a few times with different settings, but nothing. Great. This means I’ll have to do it one scene at a time.
I’ve made it through two scenes so far. I copy all the clips for a scene from my master Vegas timeline and paste it into another project. Then I can save an EDL for just that scene. That is then opened in AE and I replace all the offlines with the onlines. I then take that scene’s comp and place it in a master comp. Hopefully this will work. The one thing I’m not looking forward to is having to do this all again, but double the amount when I’m ready to do the final master for the picture.
So yeah, it’s going to be a lot of work, but at least it’ll make the movie look the best it possibly can. The other day I went ahead and shot a 30 minute video that showcases the workflow I’ve developed since I’m kind of pioneering my own thing here. Almost no one seems to know what offline editing is anymore. I see and hear about people all the time complaining that their computers aren’t fast enough to edit HD. As I’ve said before, mine is seven years old, a single celeron processor, with only 2 gigs of RAM. I do have a video card, but Vegas doesn’t use it, except to output the signal to my TV. And I’m editing HD footage from the Rebel T2i. Hopefully the video will be able to help someone like me who has a dated system, but wants to shoot HD without spending the farm. The only problem with the video is that it’s 1.8 gigs and 30 minutes long. I can’t find any hosting sites for it, so people might have to wait until it goes to DVD.
Besides trying to “preach” about offline editing and what it allows you, I’ve also been busy trying to correct common misconceptions about the limitations of DSLR cameras, namely rolling shutter. You read on the net how you can’t do this, and you can’t do that. Excuse me- I’m doing this. I’m doing that. And it looks amazing! There are two big secrets I found that allow you to get almost any shot you want. First, pivot the pan behind the sensor. We’ve shot the entire movie with my steadypod and shoulderpod. Both rigs place the sensor between 1 and 2 feet from my body, which is the pivot. Second is to treat the camera like a motion picture camera. Hollywood doesn’t use cameras that fit in your hand, so use rigs to make your camera bigger. Then you’re having to move a larger camera, and that alone will eliminate 90% of rolling shutter issues. Our movie has some pretty shakey shots, but very little jello. Sure if you pause frame by frame you might see a tiny bit, but when you watch it as intended, you won’t see thing.
So that’s what’s been going on here at STARS Pictures. I haven’t done too much work yet on the next script, but I hope to get started soon.