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Super 8mm short - have my footage scanned, finally


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#1 Matt Stevens

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Posted 27 June 2011 - 04:33 PM

So I was finally able to finish shooting my Super8 short film late last month. The 10 rolls (a single Ektachrome 100D and nine 500t neg: one from Pro8 and the others from kodak) were developed at Pac-Lab in NYC (I had some issues with them involving lack of customer care that I won't get into right now) and then sent to LIGHTPRESS in Seattle.

One roll of 500twas underexposed, though I am not sure why. It might have been the 500t roll I had from Pro8mm (wouldn't that be funny). Looking back, I guess the DP or I could have done something wrong. We were using few lights and trying for a natural look. Lord knows, sh** goes wrong when using film on an old camera (in this case, The Nikon R10). That entire roll of film was for our actress' big nude scene. Thank the maker we shot an additional take on a second roll for safety!

I must say that I am very pleased with the results of Lightpress' 1080po scan. I have a PC with CS5 so ProRes was out. Eric delivered 1080p QuickTime, uncompressed and it is very very nice. Much nicer than any of the local 1080p transfers we had performed on our test rolls over the winter.

So far editing the original Qt files is no problem, though the system does hang a bit for dissolves that are not rendered.

Earlier today I posted some footage to Vimeo. You will notice the camera is never on a steadicam or tripod. We just embraced the hand held aspect of Super8 on this one. Also, we knew the beginning and end of the cartridges would be more prone to jumping and damage so we embraced that too.

Here is a montage of the Ektachrome 100D color Reversal footage...

http://vimeo.com/25676690

Vimeo cannot do Lightpress justice, but it seems better than YouTube.
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#2 Jean-Louis Seguin

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Posted 27 June 2011 - 05:06 PM

Looking at your footage, I kept thinking Stanley Kubrick's Killer's Kiss but in color!

Cheers,
Jean-Louis
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#3 Nicholas Kovats

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Posted 27 June 2011 - 08:44 PM

Considering in general the minimal latitude of reversal film...your E100D looks great! Good focus and exposures. Did you color correct during transfer or afterwards? And if so by what method?

Good stuff.
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#4 Matt Stevens

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Posted 27 June 2011 - 08:54 PM

Considering in general the minimal latitude of reversal film...your E100D looks great! Good focus and exposures. Did you color correct during transfer or afterwards? And if so by what method?

Good stuff.


Thanks. I was amazed the footage in the subway came out. The meter was in the red. Like, all the way to the left. Which should have meant no exposure at all. Had I known I was going to get exposure I would have shot more subway material.

Eric art Lightpress scanned the material and went for a consistent look. I have not done a thing with the footage here at home. Once I have finished my cut the DP will sit down with me and color grade.

Jean Louis, I have not actually seen that film. My bad. The only Kulbrick I have yet to see. Looks like I need to rent it.
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#5 Will Montgomery

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Posted 28 June 2011 - 11:04 AM

Thanks. I was amazed the footage in the subway came out. The meter was in the red. Like, all the way to the left. Which should have meant no exposure at all. Had I known I was going to get exposure I would have shot more subway material.

Since your camera didn't know how to handle 500T, it just kept the aperture wide open which was probably perfect for the subway... you may have actually slightly overexposed which is even better for that stock.

Looks great, Lightpress does a great job. I kept thinking that it would be easy to grab environmental sound if you needed it since there isn't any dialog.
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#6 Matt Stevens

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Posted 28 June 2011 - 08:19 PM

Oh the subway stuff was shot on 100D! Amazing that it came out.

The Nikon reads 500t as 400asa, so that's fine. I am uploading a 500t montage to Vimeo right now.
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#7 Vincent Sweeney

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Posted 28 June 2011 - 09:20 PM

Why not frame for, and post in, 16:9? I'd consider that next time around. It works very well and won't distract some viewers with the side-bars.
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#8 Jordan Seymore

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Posted 28 June 2011 - 11:30 PM

Wow, looks outstanding!
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#9 Matt Stevens

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Posted 28 June 2011 - 11:44 PM

Why not frame for, and post in, 16:9? I'd consider that next time around. It works very well and won't distract some viewers with the side-bars.

That was considered, but when we were testing camera setups at the location we found that some shots we wanted would simply be impossible without knocking walls down with a sledgehammer. One money shot is a full on nude shot of the actress in front of a mirror and framing 16x9 simply couldn't be done.

Oh well.

Here is some of the 500t footage...



The first shot is a bit off on focus, but the rest are a-okay. Sorry to tease you with the snippet of shower footage at the end, but if you want to see that, ya gotta come to my screening July 26 in NYC! B)
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#10 Nicholas Kovats

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Posted 29 June 2011 - 10:09 PM

Matt.

You guys achieved a good density with 500T that I have still not been able to achieve, i.e.

The transfer was a "one-color average light" pass and I suspect my regular transfer facility could potentially "tweak" it a bit more.

But it is still definitely grainier than 200T....which is an amazing beautiful stock. I have even had 200T wide open shots (f1.8/2.0) push processed to 400ASA and the color fidelity was still good.

I am very curious about 50D and may have some double perf 16mm stock re-perforated for my new R8mm film format.

Good luck with your presentation.
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#11 Kent Kumpula

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 05:16 PM

I have a PC with CS5 so ProRes was out....


I just thought I would point out that a PC can handle ProRes just fine. You cannot create new ProRes files after you are done with editing, because you need Final Cut to get the encoder (and for that... you need a mac). But you can still use and edit ProRes files on a PC if you have the latest version of Quicktime installed, because in that package you get a decoder for ProRes.
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#12 Toby Edwards

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Posted 02 July 2011 - 12:06 AM

Footage looks really good,

Toby
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#13 Anthony Schilling

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 11:55 AM

The colors look great! I just got 6 rolls of 100D and 2 V3 200T back from Alpha Cine that i intend to send to Lightpress for a HD transfer to an external drive.. I've been trying to figure out what file route to go. i use a PC with Vegas 10, and I do not have Quicktime on my PC yet. Kind of reluctant to add it on but may have to in order to edit the files. If so, I should be able to start with a ProRes in my timeline, edit then render it to a windows friendly file?
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#14 Kent Kumpula

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 01:50 PM

i use a PC with Vegas 10, and I do not have Quicktime on my PC yet. Kind of reluctant to add it on but may have to in order to edit the files.


If you are getting ProRes files, then yes you need to install Quicktime on your PC. The free version works just fine, there is no needd to pay for the pro-version of quicktime.

If so, I should be able to start with a ProRes in my timeline, edit then render it to a windows friendly file?


Yes, with Quicktime installed you can do this.
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#15 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 01:51 AM

The steadicam style of shot of the girl as she walks down the street, there is some type of intermittent reflection going on, it is very subtle but it is definitely there, how did that happen?

Overall very nice footage. Some of the blacks near the end are slightly crushed, but that might have been vimeo doing the crushing.
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#16 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 01:54 AM

That was considered, but when we were testing camera setups at the location we found that some shots we wanted would simply be impossible without knocking walls down with a sledgehammer. One money shot is a full on nude shot of the actress in front of a mirror and framing 16x9 simply couldn't be done.

Oh well.

Here is some of the 500t footage...



The first shot is a bit off on focus, but the rest are a-okay. Sorry to tease you with the snippet of shower footage at the end, but if you want to see that, ya gotta come to my screening July 26 in NYC! B)


The shot of the guy taking off his clothes while we see the girl in the mirror mimicking his every move was priceless.
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#17 Matt Stevens

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 09:26 AM

You guys achieved a good density with 500T that I have still not been able to achieve, i.e. The transfer was a "one-color average light" pass and I suspect my regular transfer facility could potentially "tweak" it a bit more.

But it is still definitely grainier than 200T....which is an amazing beautiful stock. I have even had 200T wide open shots (f1.8/2.0) push processed to 400ASA and the color fidelity was still good. I am very curious about 50D and may have some double perf 16mm stock re-perforated for my new R8mm film format.


Thanks for the kind words. We would have used 200t if we had actually had a budget for lights. But all our money was going towards purchasing the film (and Kodak gave us 50% off, so props to them), processing and scanning. So we went with 500t and thank goodness because it was needed for the interiors.

Lighting we brought with us included: A small LED panel and two 350 watt bulbs to replace practical light bulbs in the house. That's it. A bounce board came in handy, as well.


The steadicam style of shot of the girl as she walks down the street, there is some type of intermittent reflection going on, it is very subtle but it is definitely there, how did that happen?


Yes, of my three takes, that was the only one with a bit of lens flare (not intentional) and that is why I chose it. Something about the reflection, along with the actor's performance made me say, "that one." Hand held shots are too jumpy for me and I wish I had had use of a steadicam for the shot in question, but we figured we might as well embrace the idea of Super8 shooting, which is hand held, rough and on the fly.

The shot of the guy taking off his clothes while we see the girl in the mirror mimicking his every move was priceless.

Thanks a bunch. B) That scene was scripted differently, but when I saw the potential using the mirror, I changed what was planned. I shot that from the back of the closet. The only tripod shot. That was also the first shot in which the actors worked together. They had met only minutes earlier.
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Visual Products

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Glidecam

The Slider

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

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Willys Widgets

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