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General | PIXscotland

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Video: Duo Concertante

We were recently asked to produce a promotional video for local musicians performing by the name of Duo Concertante.

They were playing in the Edinburgh Society of Musicians one evening in September 2013 and were looking a video to be produced for their web site and other general promotional uses. The evening was well attended by locals including many members of the society itself.

We started the evening by preparing the room for the event, making sure to safely move the piano and other furniture to create a clean space for the performers and for the production crew. We set out the seating arrangement and preparation was completed by setting up the three cameras. We were shooting on a Canon 5D Mk2 from the left and a Canon 600D at the front. There was an additional high view camera that didn’t make it to this video. All in all we were completely setup in around one hour from our arrival.

Unfortunately lighting in the room was very limited. We had a few halogen spots above the musicians and nothing else. We would have loved to bring in some proper video lighting and to have control over the room but we could not do that as this performance was primarily for the music, not the video. As the evening closed in and daylight faded things got a bit harder with exposure however we did meet the challenges and succeed with the project.

Audio capture was a very simple affair. We set up the Zoom H1 just in front of the performers and pointed it up towards them. This had proven to give the best balance of sound quality, stereo separation and most subtle fitment into the room. It would have been preferable to locate extra microphones however the Zoom did it’s job admirably. Audio was also recorded on the cameras for the purpose of synchronisation in post production. This audio was not used in the final video of course.

Editing and all post production work was completed in Adobe Premiere 5.5 along with Plural Eyes 2 which did a perfect job of synchronising the audio within a few seconds. Without this software production would have been a much harder process.

All in all I believe this was a successful production given the short lead time and limited lighting available. We look forward to further opportunities to work with Duo Concertante, the Edinburgh Society of Musicians and our team of assistants.

 

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Another little video. I get my revenge this time.

Following on from the experiment the other week I have now edited another ending.

This was also a very time restricted project with the simple purpose of shooting, editing and publishing a video as quickly as possible. This was useful in homing the skills required for quick production. Moving the lights and camera around in the restricted and planning the shots was reasonably easy as I was the only person involved however that brings its own complications. Lighting and camera positions are difficult to set correctly when you can’t just look at your subject and adjust appropriately.  Getting these items right is simple enough but does consume time during the shoot.

Anyway, here’s the result of this quick and dirty edit.

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A little video, just because I couldn’t sleep!

So… I couldn’t sleep and this was generated to help pass the time.

Planned, shot and edited in around two hours this was an experiment in low light shooting and quick story telling. The end results appears OK but need a little more work. I plan on an “Alternative Ending” to be made this weekend… just waiting for the beard to grow again!

 

 

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SPECIAL DEAL: Groupon photo book.

EDIT: 2012/06/17 — This is an expired offer. Sorry!

 

I know it’s short notice but I thought I would add this deal to the blog.

Printerpix.co.uk has a deal on right now that gives a huge discount on some budget photobooks.

Even if you’ve no particular project in mind right now, having this will probably inspire you to get out there shooting.

Where else can you get a custom designed leather bound photobook for less than a calendar?

 

Click here to go get the deal from Printerpix now!

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No Adobe Flash player for me.

I recently posted in reference to a book I had read and I was interested to see the results.

This review received approximately  70,000 hits within the first 24 hours and has now exceeded 100,000 hits in around 4 days. Most of these visitors came to the site through a link provided by the publisher and one other person, both of whom posted on Twitter. One thing which I noticed almost immediately was the amount of hits coming in from iPhones and iPad devices. Now that we’ve hit the 100,000 mark I decided to do some checking on this traffic.

A summary is as below:

  • 58% of visits came from iPad devices.
  • 23% of visits came from iPhone devices.
  • 11% came from Apple OSX based devices.
  • The remaining hits were from Windows devices of which 70% were Windows 7, 5% Windows Vista and the remaining as XP or Windows 2000.
  • Note: I have excluded all known spiders and search engine hits from these stats.

No Adobe Flash for me then. Imagine if my site was Flash based or had Flash galleries. Nearly 8 out of 10 visitors would not have been able to view the site. Why would anyone accept that 80% of their visitors get stopped at the front door?

Another point making me push forward my no Flash thinking is down to my media player at home. I use an old XP based machine which is pretty clean. The software is up to date and there’s pretty much nothing installed. This laptop is connected to my television to allow me to watch streaming content and such like. Well, it’s started crashing in the last few weeks. Crashing when playing Flash content. Never at any other time. Random results are reported after reboot, from Memory Errors to Video card errors are stated. I can watch more flash and it’ll crash, another flash video and it’ll crash. Then I watch hours of podcasts using VLC player with not a thought of crashing. I’ve reinstalled everything from scratch, replaced the hard drive, I’ve even checked the machine for heating issues. Nothing gets it working right for Adobe Flash.

I’ve given up on Flash now. I’ve been telling folk I would not really use it on any site and especially not for making the site. A flash only site is basically the equivalent of  “Internet Suicide” in my opinion.

I await the full replacement for Flash and will now seriously encourage everyone not to use Adobe Flash unless there’s no alternative. Not just an inconvenient alternative, none.

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