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#1 Bryan Darling

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 12:45 AM

Had some time on my hands today so I transferred some Super 8 I just had developed of a party from last New Years. Totally nonsensical but fun. It was shot with a Nizo 2056 using Tri-X pushed a stop. The main light is a little portable that I rigged up to a 12V battery pack I put together.

Nothing like playing with some film around the house when you're bored, haha.

New Years 2005 film

You'll need Quicktime 6 or 7. It's an MP4.

B-
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#2 Bryan Darling

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 03:12 AM

Since I'm not sure how to edit my last post, or if it's possible, here is another link. This will work much better.

New Year 2005 - USE THIS
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#3 Brant Collins

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 08:24 AM

Looks great!
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#4 Bryan Darling

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 04:52 PM

Thank you very much. I have to say that the Workprinter XP is a great machine. I use it to digitize my films and as a business for others. The image quality is awesome. I have mostly shot 16mm until about year or two ago when I started playing around with Super 8. My first camera was a hand-me-down Chinon with a lot of bells and whistles. However several months ago I got a Nizo and the difference is quite astounding and noticeable. They are great cameras with great lenses. I've ground very fond of Super 8. It's wonderful to have so many mediums and tools to use.

Additionally I was skeptical about using the workprinter because I was so used to doing supervised transfers out of Monaco Labs in San Francisco. But since using it I've been amazed. A lot is in the setup of the machine, what type of camera and how you utilize the settings. It's like anything else in finding and creating a system that works. I still do all my 16mm telecine work at Monaco but it's great having a complete solution/system for Super 8.

It's a great teaching tool and provides easy access for new people coming into the medium. Somehow a lot of people end up on my doorstep over the years so it's great to be able to teach and guide others into the medium of film
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#5 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 13 April 2006 - 12:38 AM

Thank you very much. I have to say that the Workprinter XP is a great machine. I use it to digitize my films and as a business for others. The image quality is awesome. I have mostly shot 16mm until about year or two ago when I started playing around with Super 8. My first camera was a hand-me-down Chinon with a lot of bells and whistles. However several months ago I got a Nizo and the difference is quite astounding and noticeable. They are great cameras with great lenses. I've ground very fond of Super 8. It's wonderful to have so many mediums and tools to use.

Additionally I was skeptical about using the workprinter because I was so used to doing supervised transfers out of Monaco Labs in San Francisco. But since using it I've been amazed. A lot is in the setup of the machine, what type of camera and how you utilize the settings. It's like anything else in finding and creating a system that works. I still do all my 16mm telecine work at Monaco but it's great having a complete solution/system for Super 8.

It's a great teaching tool and provides easy access for new people coming into the medium. Somehow a lot of people end up on my doorstep over the years so it's great to be able to teach and guide others into the medium of film


Kind of a glowing yet confusing tribute to the workprinter. You are able to use your years of experience to set up the workprinter and optimize it's performance. Now take away your experience at Monaco labs and the odds increase that you wouldn't properly optimize what the workprinter might be capable of.
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#6 Bryan Darling

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Posted 13 April 2006 - 02:02 AM

Kind of a glowing yet confusing tribute to the workprinter. You are able to use your years of experience to set up the workprinter at optimize it's performance. Now take away your experience at Monaco labs and the odds increase that you wouldn't properly optimize what the workprinter might be capable of.


That's probably true, in that I wouldn't have a reference to work from. However, that's not to say that I nor anyone else wouldn't seek out a way to compare. For instance, taking some film to a reputable lab and having it professionally transferred then use that for a sort of benchmark. A lot of using any equipment is learning how it works and what you can do with it. When you set up or use a piece of equipment and wouldn't you say, "Now is this how I want it to perform? Is this the best result I can get for what I want to achieve? Can this do anything else?

It becomes not so much an experience thing but rather a process thing, in that how you approach something. I know many people who think that just by having the latest camera for instance anything they make will be great or better. Yet I'll see people using outdated or cheap equipment and their results surpass the people with all the gear. I would dare say that a lot of people are more product or end-result orientated rather than process orientated.

I remember seeing some film clips of a film made here in Sacramento. It was shot on Super 16. It was some sort of wannabe crime thriller. What struck me is how the whole think could of been shot on DV, honestly. I was suprised to learn that they spent $50k+. I wondered where it all went?
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#7 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 13 April 2006 - 02:51 AM

An excellent suggestion/idea.

Most lower end digital cameras probably won't have the adjustability range that one would probably get at a professional film transfer service house, (presuming one can afford the best light transfer).

How would you handle that scenario?
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#8 Bryan Darling

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Posted 13 April 2006 - 04:37 AM

Well with the workprinter, I started out using a Canon XL1. However, I've switched to a Canon GL2 and the results have been markedly better. The main problem is film transfers is the contrast. For the most part you're dealing with film that is already on the contrasty side, i.e. Kodachrome & B&W reversal. Anything you can do to lower the contrast and flatten the image really helps in capturing more of the dynamic range of the film. Saturation can be a problem in Kodachrome. The problem is that video is contrasty and saturated by nature, so anything you can do to reduce that helps.

That's just the first step. Then it's a matter of working with the image once it's in the computer. I bought the Canopus Edius NX card because I was very tired of trying to work with the native Microsoft DV codec. It's really a pain if you want to do anything to the image besides a simple cut. Apple's codec is much better as well. Since I've always been a PC guy, building my systems since I was a kid, I went out looking for good cost-effective solutions for the type of work I do. To me it had the most bang for the buck and didn't require upgrading my system since I just do regular ol' SD work.

Canopus has done, what I feel is, a great job in creating a system for DV work. Their NX card works with DV by oversampling it and working with it in an uncompressed manner. Essentially it edits everything un uncompressed YUV 4:2:2. The card does all the video processing using a built in hardware DV codec chip so it frees up the CPU and let you apply a lot of filters without any rendering so you can play it right from the timeline to your NTSC monitor.

This is my long-winded way to say that I use this system to adjust the digitized film's curves and color. From setting the shadows and highlights to adjusting the color of the shadows, midtones, and highlights. Sometimes it also becomes necessary to work with the saturation as well. When I tried doing this using Premiere it was just a nightmare, hard to control the adjustments exactly and the quality began to suffer if I rendered it out as DV. So I figured out workarounds using uncompressed but it was all so much rendering time and drive space. Now with the Canopus system there's no rendering and the ability to color correct and work with the image is much better than Premiere. As a side note I've worked with Final Cut Pro as well and it has nice correction features, too. I think Edius has some things up on Final Cut in that department, however I've never found any one system that can do everything I want it to.

I feel for most people the area of color and image adjustment is very difficult to grasp. Interpreting curves and being able to see minute color shifts is something that takes time to learn. I've worked in the photographic world for some years prior and that helped. Printing color photographs by hand and machine can really help teach you to see color and how it works. I also recommend studying color. I went out and got some books on color and color theory because I was starting to work with color motion-picture film and felt that I should really know about color before I start using it. Johannes Itten's book, The Art of Color is very good reading. He taught color at the Bauhaus.

Ok I've rambled off long enough, hope that answers some of your question.
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#9 Bryan Darling

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Posted 13 April 2006 - 04:49 AM

:blink: Oops! I made an error as to the title of the book. It is The Elements of Color by Johannes Itten.
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#10 Giles Perkins

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Posted 13 April 2006 - 10:18 AM

Stereolab for the sound track too - very classy!!
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#11 Freya Black

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Posted 14 April 2006 - 06:13 AM

I actually liked it a lot in places. My favourite bits were tiger girl and when it starts raining (what was that?).

What was the portable light you used? It didn't seem to give off noticeable hot spots or anything? What kind of watts was the output?

loe

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#12 Bryan Darling

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Posted 15 April 2006 - 04:45 AM

I actually liked it a lot in places. My favourite bits were tiger girl and when it starts raining (what was that?).

What was the portable light you used? It didn't seem to give off noticeable hot spots or anything? What kind of watts was the output?

loe

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Thank you very much for your compliments. The shot wear it appears to be raining is the light reflecting on water bubbles moving through a built-in water feature as part of a wall. The small light I had was illuminating those bubbles.

The light is some sort of old cheap portable 12V 50W lamp with a reflector behind the bulb and just a piece of transparent glass protecting the bulb. It had a cigarette light adapter that I cut off and replaced with a XLR connector. I bought a 12V lead acid battery used for motorcycles or boats, I can't remember exactly. I then soldered a cord with an XLR connector onto it and viola.

I think as for hotspots, I would say that it is one gigantic hot spot and perhaps that's why you might think there aren't any hot spots. A lot is how you shoot with it, for instance you can always through some diffusion over it. Also I didn't directly hold the light over the camera. Quite often I held it off to the side. I found that the amount of light it puts off is pretty low for a 160 speed film. The light works very well with video cameras amd I'm sure it would with faster films. If I remember right I was shoot somewhere around 1.4 to maybe 2.8. I decided to push the film based on how the camera's meter was reading and also by how it felt to me. I knew there was enough light to get a decent exposure.

In the end I discovered I really like Super 8 Tri-X pushed a stop. I'm going to do a test for a 2-stop push in the coming weeks. I love a lot contrast and in black and white I love grain.

Edited by tornsprocket, 15 April 2006 - 04:50 AM.

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#13 Hal Smith

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Posted 15 April 2006 - 08:39 AM

Tornsprocket - you need to write a book. Being able to leverage professional knowledge onto amateur level equipment successfully is a gift from the gods. The world is full of people who are convinced that only the latest, biggest, most expensive is going to work for them. The difference between Master of a trade and a Jack is that the Master's jury rigs work.

Todo Juntos Forever!

Later: Mi Amigo Miquel informs me that "Vamos Todos Juntos" covers us doing it together as a community. Is that particularly a Mexican use of the phrase? Could one of the Forum members from Central or South America - possibly Espana help out here? I'm thinking my soon to be born production company may have found a name for itself.

Later Later: Miquel worked on the crew that made Servando Gonzalez's "Yanco" in Mexico. Does anyone know of where I can get a VHS, DVD, or print of it as a present for him?
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#14 Bryan Darling

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Posted 15 April 2006 - 05:15 PM

Sincere thanks for your compliment, although I feel far from professional. It's more trying to come to some understanding with all the various mediums and how you, or I in this case, feel they fit in with my goals and aesthetics.

Some people seem very obsessed with the most "professional" looking results. Problem is professional results is a highly subjective qualifier. I think a better way to look at it is from the perspective of "effective" results. Was what I did effective for what I was trying to achieve, more often referred to as the final "look" of the film or video.

In my opinion Super 8, 16mm, 35mm, and all the many various formats of video, analog or digital, are not "better" or "worse" than one another but rather different mediums and aesthetical choices that one has in the world of image-making.

It's interesting to me how people are spending so much time, money, and resources to make video look like film. I think it's entirely the wrong approach. Both mediums have their own aesthetics. It'd be better to let each live side by side rather than in competition. However where ego is involved it's only natural that the technology used would be just as competitive against one another as the people are with their peers. After all, all this technology, equipment, and gear is really just an extension of ourselves. All of it used to express ourselves so it seems only logical for the equipment, and views of it, to reflect/mirror ourselves.

I think the key to staying sane in this world of over-choice and inundation of equipment and medium is to observe, ask questions, listen, and THINK. Combined it allows you to create a filter in a sense. Filtering out all the many choices of gear down to what you really NEED to do what you want to achieve. I see so many people buy tons of equipment because it's cool or they "need" it however they never use it and it collects dust on the shelf or they never use it to it's actual potential. It's tragic since it really does more a disservice to the equipment and those people that would really utilize it for what it was designed to do, that of working and performing its function. But many people attach themselves to and romanticize about using the gear and what it would do or look like having used the gear. Sadly nothing happens because the work it requires to achieve that result is more than a pleasant and fun thought in one's head.

A lot of people talk of getting a camera that will let them output to film later, however will they really do this? More often it's the idea of doing this and the "coolness" of imaging seeing one's work in a multiplex. The reality is if you're shooting on video you probably wouldn't have the money to even make a proper film print. A person would shoot back that well when a distributor picks it up they will do this. Honestly though I think many people are delusional about getting their film distributed. It's more likely that the project will end up on a DVD on some website they make and email to all the people they know. Why let such a remote possibility control so much of one's creative choices and money?

Anyhow I have rambled on so much so I should stop. I'm afraid I may offend some people with my statements but I would hope they would be comfortable enough with themselves and their work to see the perspective of my comments even if they disagree.
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Metropolis Post

Ritter Battery

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Glidecam

FJS International, LLC

Rig Wheels Passport

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Broadcast Solutions Inc

Aerial Filmworks

Technodolly

Willys Widgets

Tai Audio

The Slider

CineLab

Paralinx LLC

Visual Products

Wooden Camera

rebotnix Technologies