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Business Advice for Tough Times

Sound business advice is more precious than ever, and you can find TONS of it from the businesspeople at Creative Cow. Our very own Cowdog has gathered some of the best tips for building your business from around the Cow, including getting deadbeat clients to pay you, creating strong contracts, protecting your onscreen talent from accidental explosions...and a reminder that, as far as the client is concerned, everything is YOUR fault.

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Focus on Controlling Depth of Field with Depth of Field Converters

Cinematographer and Creative Cow leader Todd Terry has shot countless television commercials and industrials using both 35mm film and depth-of-field converted video. In this Creative Cow Magazine Extra, from The Visual Effects Issue, learn how depth of field converters allow you to attach 35mm lenses even to video cameras with fixed lenses, how they work, and which one might be right for you.

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The Truth About 2K, 4K and The Future of Pixels

John Galt, Panavision Senior Vice President of Advanced Digital Imaging, led the team that created the Genesis camera, was responsible for the F900 "Star Wars" camera, and continues to play a leading role in guiding future digital cinema technologies. In this Creative Cow Magazine Extra, join us for a wide-ranging conversation, as John cuts through the intentional obfuscation of marketing pixels, and considers the range of options that are becoming available to digital filmmakers.

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21st Century Cinema: An indie look at Digital Cinema

You may have heard that digital cinema is coming, and that it will be big. Both are true, and Creative Cow leader Russell Lasson is one of the people making it happen. Here is a look at how digital cinema works, and how one indie company is building their business around it. Also, a closer look at professional-strength Windows on Mac workflows. Read more...
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Nuke - An Introduction for After Effects Users

Nuke, the new compositing tool from The Foundry, is rapidly becoming a favorite in high-end film production. Its price also offers an easy entry for indie producers who want to create better work, faster and more powerfully. Film compositor Pete O'Connell offers this guided tour of Nuke for AE users, along with tips for leveraging your AE experience in the brave "Nuke" world of VFX creation. Read more...
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Final Cut Pro Tutorials

NEW FINAL CUT PRO TUTORIALS: Multicam & 3-way Color Correction

The arrival of 3-way color correction and multicam editing in Apple Final Cut Pro caused every bit of the commotion that you'd have expected from two such eagerly-anticipated features. These are also two of the most powerful features that put the "Pro" in "Final Cut Pro." But are you taking full advantage of them? You'll find that the best journeys begin with the best first steps, and here are some great ones. Creative Cow leader and author Rich Harrington shows you exactly what you need to get moving in the right direction, including syncing your Multicam clips, and using the 3-way Color Corrector for skin tones and scene matching.
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Apple Motion Templates

I Second that in Motion: 2 Tutorials for Apple Motion 3
Great ideas, templates. Hundreds, no, thousands of Master Templates and Apple-designed graphic elements to be used in one of the smoooo-thest motion graphic apps ever designed. The only problem is that it can be a challenge to customize the templates in Motion, especially as you continue finding your way through the new features of Motion 3. Speaking of which, Motion 3 allows you to create your own templates from scratch, to re-use later. These 2 tutorials from Creative Cow contributing editor Stephen Smith show you how to get started with Apple's templates, as well as your own.
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Surgical Video

Creative Cow Contributing leader Mike Cohen has been working on the cutting edge of surgical video for years. In this expanded version of his article in the Cow Magazine's "Non-Broadcast Production Issue," Mike answers some of the most frequently asked questions about these techniques from the Cow forums. He also describes the process of helping doctors to become better surgeons, and observes that he's somehow become much more adept at sewing buttons back onto his shirts.

It's fascinating stuff, but seriously, you might want to make sure you've had breakfast before reading this, and taking a look at Mike's amazing pictures. Read more...
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One Team. Three Network Shows. Every Week.

Workflow. Such a lovely word... Almost like magic. Long flowing robes and flowing tresses, resting beside the gently flowing stream. Ah, sweet repose...

Except that in the steaming trenches of hardcore post-production, the emphasis isn't on "flow." No, the real word is work. "Workflow" isn't a product feature. Workflow is a combination of planning, discipline and creativity, achieved by perseverance, mastery of technology, and, if necessary, brute force, to get from one end of your job to the other. Itís anything but ethereal.

Creative Cow Contributing Editor Zed Saeed and the team at Hollywood's DigitalFilm Tree have been learning this the hard way, over a decade of pioneering Final Cut Pro workflows on major feature films and episodic TV. Here's the story of how a team of 9 went from posting one major network show each week to posting THREE shows every week, for three different networks -- keeping all three clients happy, and without going insane, thanks to the wonders of workflow management. Read more...
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You already know Dave Stump's work. He's worked as a cinematographer, Visual Effects Director of Photography and VFX supervisor on features as varied as "Quantum of Solace," "X-Men" and "X-men 2," "The Bourne Identity," "Blade," "Batman Forever," "Rambo III," "Star Trek: First Contact," "Army of Darkness," and dozens more. (You can see the rest of Dave's profile here.)

Dave is also the chair of the American Society of Cinematographer's subcommittee on Cameras, and co-chair of the subcommittee on Metadata. In this expanded version of an interview first published in Creative Cow Magazine, Dave describes a possible future for filmmaking -- faster, less expensive, and more creative -- as cameras and metadata come together. Along the way, he tells a few stories from the films he's worked on in this don't-miss interview. Read more...
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