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Video clips on website


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#1 PaulEdwards

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Posted 29 February 2004 - 10:19 AM

I'm in the process of updating my website and have put video clips on for the first time (in 'Showreel' section).

I'd appreciate it if anybody who has the time to check it out could comment on the video downloads ie. if they work or not on their machine! Also if the files download at a reasonable speed.

The site is at www.steadicam-op.com

Thanks.

Paul
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#2 JobScholtze

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Posted 29 February 2004 - 01:30 PM

Hi Paul,

Must say that i am impressed. Especially the band of brothers episode, ( it's my favorite ) Your work looks very smooth.

Ps The website works great. Fast download and excellent quality.

Greetings Job " still impressed "Scholtze
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#3 joe mcnally

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Posted 29 February 2004 - 03:32 PM

Hi Paul
looks really good.
Ive only just got broadband so not an expert but everything seems to load well.
The penultimate scene of B o B comes over very dark.
Can you describe how you did the Auf Wiedeshen shot ? It looks like a crane and step off, no ?
Did you do the recent series in Dominican ?
The office scene is great and I did notice a lot of other good work in that series.
BTW Russian Ark was on UK TV last night and I was very impressed.
If I had your material I would put some of the Coldplay vid on your reel. I have been asked about 5 times by directors over the past year or so to shoot it like the Yellow vid.
Hope this helps
Cheers
Joe McNally
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#4 Guido Lux

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Posted 01 March 2004 - 03:53 AM

Very nice smooth work and a beautilful flow! I'm also very impressed!
The clips load very quick and the quality is great!
Keep it up!


Guido "jealous" Lux
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#5 PaulEdwards

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Posted 03 March 2004 - 06:23 AM

Thanks for the feedback guys. Good to hear it works OK.

It's ironic because I didn't get a credit for the Band of Brothers episode..........but someone else did!! I shot for most of the ep. with over 100 steadicam shots including static and dolly shots and a 3 minute intro. sequence which they had to cut for timing. I discovered the credit cock up way too late!

The 'Auf Wiedersehen Pet' shot was done at Looton Hoo. It was a really wide (8mm) lens (SRlll) and we started on the crane platform, went up about 25' and then back down again with a step off as the grips wheeled the crane out of shot. We were under pressure to do it quickly as usual. The platform was really a little too small (seemed to feel smaller the higher up we went!) which made it a little arkward to manoeuvre and if you look closely, there is a slight 'wobble' on the step off where my safety strap just brushes the back of the sled.

Funny you should mention the Coldplay video...it was supposed to be a really complicated shot on the beach involving many extras...pull back with someone out of the sea to find couple lying down sunbathing.....around bucket of crabs by old boat...follow feet up sand dune to find pitched tents...360 around vocals etc. etc......then the weather closed in! The final straight forward shot was in rain and wind gusting 25 mph. I put the gyros on (only third time I've used them) and was also surrounded with three 4x4's wind breakers.

The DOP I worked with yesterday was trying to convince me that 'Russian Ark' had "at least three" cuts in it. I must watch it again to check the points where he mentioned.

Paul
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#6 pbalsdon

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 05:06 PM

Great site Paul, I especially like the design and color scheme very classy.
I think so long as you let visitors know the size of the file they're about load (which you've done) it's fine. I've just been through this process for my site and optimising video files for steadicam is difficult as choosing a slower frame rate to make the file smaller creates a slight jerkniness in the movie (and that we don't want).
I've also found the system useful when production companies have requested a reel urgently to show their client, so I direct them to the website and then let them know I'll courier a reel to them asap.
Love the 'Auf Weidersein Pet' clip great example that things don't have to be over complex to look really good.

Re. Russian Ark; the DOP you worked with may be confusing three shots with three takes. They abandoned the first three takes a short way in due to technical problems and left themselves committed to one final take. It is definately all one shot, the DVD has an excellent 'making of' with it. We spent a couple of evenings watching the DVD at the recent Melbourne Summer Filmaking School steadicam workshop and one of the topics we discussed with the students was if it was gratuitous doing the film all in one steadicam shot. My father-in-law is Russian and not so long ago visited The Heritage, where it was shot, with his wife. They both went to see the film and when I asked them about it they said that after a while they felt so much like they were actually there that a couple of times they found themselves trying peer around the edges of the frame to look for things that they knew were there but not shown. The one shot technique had totally involved them in the setting and I think therefore was a brilliant peice of film making.
The DVD is well worth seeing with lots of interviews with Tilman Buttner and Alexander Sukorov.
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#7 PaulEdwards

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Posted 12 March 2004 - 08:47 AM

Hi Phil,

Thanks for taking the time to check out the site. The video was optimised with a thing called Media Cleaner, which a friend did for me.

As you suggest, it's always a trade-off between quality and download time but I'm now really happy to have the option of being able to point someone to the web site instead of being under pressure to get a reel to them asap.

I see what you mean about Russian Ark. I think my DOP's attitude was, "it could have been an edit point, therefore it must have been", which is very unfair to Alexander Sukorov, Tilman Buttner and everyone else involved.

Paul
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#8 Charles Papert

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Posted 12 March 2004 - 05:09 PM

Paul, nice reel, and I love your graphics, the site looks great.

I've been waiting for years to put my reel up for the reasons Phil mentioned--frame rate vs easy streaming etc. I finally signed up with a service (Demo Reel Network) and have my reels up on that: this link should take you there.

For the reasons you mentioned, Paul, it is dynamite being able to offer the instant access to the material, especially when a decision must be made that afternoon (commercials in particular).

Cheers,

chas
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#9 pbalsdon

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Posted 14 March 2004 - 01:51 AM

The settings I used were based on information from Geof Boyle's reels at cml (www.cinematography.net) and from Phil Rhodes (he really is a very helpful, just a little misunderstood by some people I think). We did, however, play a lot in the edit suite comparing settings and the frame rate was a major consideration, anything slower than 25fps was a problem and introduced a jerkiness. We used Sorensen Video 3 for the compression and settled on a frame size of 240 X 180, a little smaller than I would have liked but I was concerned about file size and this and audio compression were the only places left to compromise. Having done all my steadicam files in a friend's Avid suite I then did all my DP files at home using iMovie and Quicktime Pro and achieved pretty much the same results.
I also found that I got best results using Quicktime, I dabbled with Flash but found video embedded into Flash increased file size and the quality wasn't quite there.
As I completely build and manage my own site it is now very easy to change things around as I please but using a Demo Reel Network would be a good idea for people without the time, knowledge or friendly web master to help them. I would however discuss with them the problem of frame rates to compress video files for steadicam reels.
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