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Ben-Hur Opening Action Sequence
Not that Lawrence of Arabia and Ben-Hur have anything at all to do with each other. For one, their stories are set nearly 2000 years apart. Maybe it's just the sand and the heat causing delirium, but as we were putting this week's newsletter together, we couldn't help be reminded of the gorgeous results from the 3-year effort by Sony Pictures Entertainment to restore the 1962 masterpiece Lawrence of Arabia. We were pleased to present a unique look inside this process by Debra Kaufman examining the (then) cutting-edge technology and expertise required to make one of cinema's most enduring classics look more spectacular than ever.



After Effects 2015.3 - My Favorite Features

After Effects 2015.3 - My Favorite Features
Learn why you should upgrade to After Effects CC 2015.3 - 13.8.1 - a close and detailed look at the latest release of After Effects (August 2016). Roei Tzoref will be focusing on his favorite features that set this release apart from previous versions: Performance, Queue in AME, Lumetri Color new features, and more.



Peter O'Toole as Lawrence of Arabia

Lawrence of Arabia: Sony's Beautiful 4K Restoration
In 2012, Sony Pictures Entertainment finished a 3-year process culminating in a stunning 4K restoration of the 1962 masterpiece Lawrence of Arabia, completed just in time for the film's 50th anniversary. Guided by Sony Executive Vice President Grover Crisp, this massive project engaged cutting-edge technology and expertise from Sony Colorworks DI facility as well as Prasad Corporation and MTI Film, working together on a newly scanned negative. One of the most beautiful films of all time is now more gorgeous than ever.









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The Six Benefits of Microbudget Filmmaking

Microscopic budgets present limitations of course, but can also create opportunities. Gex Williams and Brian Crone produced Ctrl+Alt+Dance for $12,000, and it made $50,000 on its first night -- which included showings on every inhabited continent. The film now has followings in nearly every major city, and has been translated into 9 different languages by its fans. Want to know how to achieve that kind of global engagement? Look no further than The Six Benefits of Microbudget Filmmaking.


Advanced Masking in Adobe After Effects * Adobe After Effects * Tobias Gleissenberger

Advanced Masking in Adobe After Effects

Some of the coolest stuff you can do inside of Adobe After Effects is only possible once you unlock the power of masks. Join After Effects whiz Tobias Gleissenberger of Surfaced Studio to learn about mask animation and interpolation, using the variable width feathering tool, managing mask modes and ordering, and more.
The Secret World of Foley, One of Cinema's Most Magical Arts * Art of the Edit * Tim Wilson

The Secret World of Foley, One of Cinema's Most Magical Arts

The Secret World of Foley is an evocative, wordless insight into one of the cinema’s most magical arts: the creative addition of synchronized sound effects in post known as Foley. This short film is also one of the most beautiful things you've seen in a long time. We highly recommend it to any fans of movies, sound, and the inspiration of watching true artists at work.






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Addressing Professional Fears & Growing Up

Kylee Peña looks back now, from her perspective as workflow supervisor for some of TV's most popular and respected shows, at the fears that she had to face as her postproduction career began. It started when someone contacted her about a blog post she'd written years ago. "I was surprised at how quickly I could return in my head to this place years ago where I was feeling overwhelmed and ineffective, desiring direction and getting none," she writes. "I remembered it all immediately.

"But I was even more surprised that I have conquered every one of these things." Here’s a look at her biggest, scariest, most crippling fears as a young editor, and her thoughts about them now.





Ten Ways To Avoid Editor's Block

Just admit it. You're afraid of the empty timeline. Maybe you’re one of the lucky few who can dive right into cutting a new project. Then there are the other 99% of us for whom there’s nothing worse than that moment after you’re prepping, and you have to face it: time to start cutting something. As an editor for high-profile shows including Empire and Burn Notice, Zack Arnold has been there. Here Zack, shares 10 proven tips from his own experience for not just beating editor's block, but completely avoiding it.




The Adobe After Effects Puppet Tool

Become a puppet master by learning how to use the Puppet Tool in Adobe After Effects! This intermediate-level tutorial from After Effects guru Tobias Gleissenberger of Surfaced Studio will show you how the Puppet Tool allows you to add joints and animations to bring life to any static image!






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UAV Filter Frenzy!

Virtually every UAV/drone in the air uses the same image processing chip, and most have similar lenses. None of them are ideal, and they all operate at very high shutter speeds. None of them allow for shutter speed control either, and as a result, it's up to the user to slow the shutter speed. This can only be done through the use of filters, says longtime Creative COW leader and legend Douglas Spotted Eagle of Drones Plus. Join him for a closer look at how to achieve more beautiful imagery from above.


Fixing Common After Effects Problems and Mistakes * Adobe After Effects * Tobias Gleissenberger

Fixing Common After Effects Problems and Mistakes

Got problems using Adobe After Effects? Exported files too large, Expressions not working, mixing shapes and makes, modes/switches, selecting previews for layers vs. comps - Surfaced Studio's Tobias Gleissenberger shows you fast fixes for these and more!
Editing Movie Trailers with Patricio Hoter * Art of the Edit * Christian Jhonson

Editing Movie Trailers with Patricio Hoter

More and more, films that are currently in production are working alongside with their marketing teams to establish a strategy months in advance of its release. That means that there’s more time to explore several options when crafting a trailer, but the workload also becomes heavier, and the stakes become higher. Avid Media Composer editors Christian Jhonson and Patricio Hoter (The Jungle Book, The Last Witch Hunter, Green Room, Titanic 3D, and more) explore this evolving artform.






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Accomplished editors tend to point to instinct and experience when it comes to the exact edit point. Here are 5 tips from veteran editor Sven Pape of "This Guy Edits" that may help you get there. Some editors say that great editing is invisible. So is the right frame the one we don't notice?


mocha AE Planar Tracker for Absolute Beginners * Adobe After Effects * Tobias Gleissenberger

mocha AE Planar Tracker for Absolute Beginners

Want to learn how to create advanced visual effects? Learn how to use mocha AE to track your shot and add advanced visual effects to live action footage inside Adobe After Effects. mocha can help you track shots that would be hard to track using traditional 2D point or feature trackers because it is a PLANAR TRACKER. A planar tracker uses planes and textures to track as opposed to points or groups of pixels. This allows the tracker to stay on track even if your shot contains motion blur or a very shallow depth of field. mocha AE comes included with Adobe After Effects and is available since CS3 and there is no reason for you not to use this awesome tool to make it easier for you to track your shot, replace screens or rotoscope!
Seven Ways to Make Your Own Luck in The Film Industry * Business & Marketing * John 'Pliny' Eremic

Seven Ways to Make Your Own Luck in The Film Industry

HBO Director of Workflow, post-house founder, owner of the first two RED cameras, founder and developer of Endcrawl, technologist, futurist, educator, and more: John 'Pliny' Eremic, is regularly asked for career advice in the field of filmmaking. Step One, he says, is to consider a new job. There's much more of course, delivered with Pliny's peerless wit, directness, and insight. Whether you're just starting in the business, or looking to break through to the next level, you won't want to miss this guide to making your own luck.






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Seven Ways to Make Your Own Luck in The Film Industry

HBO Director of Workflow, post-house founder, owner of the first two RED cameras, founder and developer of Endcrawl, technologist, futurist, educator, and more: John 'Pliny' Eremic, is regularly asked for career advice in the field of filmmaking. Step One, he says, is to consider a new career! There's much more of course, delivered with Pliny's peerless wit, directness, and insight. Whether you're just starting in the business, or looking to break through to the next level, you won't want to miss this guide to making your own luck.



The Surprising Upside Of Procrastination In Film Editing

The Surprising Upside Of Procrastination In Film Editing

What if you wouldn't have to stop procrastinating? Sven Pape of "This Guy Edits" demonstrates how to use procrastination to achieve some of your best film editing work. "Why do I procrastinate?" asks Sven. "I give you Aaron Sorkin who has one of the best procrastination quotes: 'You call it procrastination I call it thinking.'"



Working with Audio in Adobe Premiere Pro

Working with Audio in Adobe Premiere Pro

Want to learn how to add music and sound effects to your videos using Adobe Premiere Pro? Tobias Gleissenberger of Surfaced Studio will teach you all you need to know about adding music and sound effects to your projects, creating and using submixes, working with audio keyframes, and much more.





Join the Blue Collar Post Collective for the first in a series of free LIVE STREAMED summer talks on the human side of post production, starting with how we can work together to make the post production industry more inclusive. We’ll talk about our own experiences, and how we can apply those to build each other up and change what the face of an expert looks like in the machine room, DI theater, edit suite, or executive conference room.

Panelists
  • Cate Haight, ACE, editor of shows like Transparent and Mozart in the Jungle.
  • Joe Delgado, lead assistant editor for Geiger Post, working on reality/docuseries and awards shows like the BET Awards and other quick turn live events.
  • Mark Hartzell, editor of shows like Agent Carter and True Blood.
  • Lauren Ellis, VFX Producer for The Molecule LA who works on shows like Master of None and House of Cards.

Moderated by Kylee Peña -- a workflow supervisor for Bling Digital where she works on the technical side of post production for TV shows like Scorpion and Jane the Virgin.

A live stream is being provided by our friends at The SIM Group and will be streamed through YouTube Live. A live chat will also be available so you can participate in the discussion and ask questions too. You'll also be able to watch it later if you miss out.

But why on earth would you want to miss out??? Tune in Saturday at 3:30PM Pacific for what is sure to be a provocative, inspiring conversation with some of the industry's leading creative professionals. Click here for more information!







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The Secret World of Foley, One of Cinema's Most Magical Arts

The Secret World of Foley is an evocative, wordless insight into one of the cinema’s most magical arts: the creative addition of synchronized sound effects in post known as Foley.

Named for Jack Foley, the man who introduced these techniques over 90 years ago, the idea behind the art of Foley is simple: artists create sounds that weren’t, often couldn’t possibly have been, recorded while shooting pictures. The idea behind The Secret World of Foley is likewise simple. Rather than explain even as much I just did, Director/Producer Daniel Jewel just shows it.

Starting with a spectacular film – honestly, “composed” is the best word – for the occasion, set in the fishing village of Clovely on England’s Devon coast (lensed by the Devon-born James Watson who suggested the location, and graded by Nadya Gorodeskaya), we follow along in the studio as artists Peter Burgis and Sue Hardy work their magic. This short film is also one of the most beautiful things you've seen in a long time. We highly recommend it to any fans of movies, sound, and the inspiration of watching true artists at work.


Editing: The Kuleshov Effect Put to the Test * Art of the Edit * Sven Pape

Editing: The Kuleshov Effect Put to the Test

One of the most powerful discoveries in the early days of editing became known as The Kuleshov Effect: the same piece of footage means different things depending on the shots that surround it. It is a mental phenomenon by which the audience derives more meaning from the interaction of two sequential shots than from a single shot in isolation. One hundred years later, Sven Pape of This Guy Edits puts this venerable axiom to the test. Does this fundamental principle of modern editing still hold up? Prepare to be amazed.
How to Make After Effects Faster with Proxies * Adobe After Effects * Tobias Gleissenberger

How to Make After Effects Faster with Proxies

Learn how to make Adobe After Effects faster by using PROXIES! A proxy is a placeholder that stands in place for a very large video file or image sequence in your project. You can easily create proxies for the large source files that you are using and After Effects will automatically link them to the item in your project panel.
FuseFX & mocha: VFX for Walking Dead, Empire, AHS & More * Art of the Edit * Imagineer Systems

FuseFX & mocha: VFX for Walking Dead, Empire, AHS & More

The 100+ member team at FuseFX juggles over 30 television episodics a season, while also working on features and commercials. Current credits include: FOX's Empire, ABC's Agents of SHIELD, AMC's The Walking Dead, SyFy's The Magicians, CBS's Zoo, and FX's American Horror Story. Brigitte Bourque, FuseFX's Digital Effects Supervisor and a 20 year industry vet, talks to us about the work that FuseFX does, and how Imagineer Systems mocha fits into their pipeline.






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Game of Thrones: Battle of the Bastards VFX

Deluxe Entertainment Services Group (Deluxe) has shared with us that its Australian animation and visual effects studio Iloura delivered a significant suite of work for the recent "Battle of the Bastards" episode of HBO's tentpole series Game of Thrones. Working on the epic battle sequence for the Season 6, Episode 9 crescendo, Iloura's team of visual artists used a mix of VFX and hand-crafted animation techniques to realize the vision for the bloody showdown. As a bonus, we include HBO's production featurette on staging and shooting Game of Thrones' most epic scene yet.


Stabilize & Smooth: mocha 5 Plug-in for Adobe & Avid * Adobe After Effects * Mary Poplin

Stabilize & Smooth: mocha 5 Plug-in for Adobe & Avid

Imagineer Systems and Boris FX product specialist Mary Poplin shows you how to stabilize with the new mocha Pro 5 plug-in inside of Avid Media Composer, Adobe Premiere Pro and After Effects. This tutorial covers artistic stabilization, such as smoothing out camera movements or stabilizing around moving objects, completely locking down shots, and automatically replacing edge fill on planar backgrounds.
Top 10 Adobe Premiere Pro Keyboard Shortcuts * Adobe Premiere Pro * Tobias Gleissenberger

Top 10 Adobe Premiere Pro Keyboard Shortcuts

Join Tobias Gleissenberger for an energetic look at the top ten keyboard shortcuts Adobe Premiere Pro. These essential tips will greatly improve your efficiency and help you optimise your editing workflow!






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Capturing People in VR Cinematography

Close-up VR imagery from camera-originated material is awesome but tricky, says multimedia and VR pioneer Michael Naimark. The question is, how do you actually DO it? Taking Google's collaboration with Go Pro on the Jump VR 16-camera rig as a starting point, Michael and his team began to map out the specifics of managing point of view inside a 360 degree panorama. It requires a combination of complexity (stitching this many POVs together) and simplicity (panoramic sound helps a lot!) that we're just now beginning to explore. Ready for a wild ride into the future of capturing people in the world of VR cinematography? Start here.


Advanced Keying in Blackmagic Design Fusion * Blackmagic Design Fusion * Simon Ubsdell

Advanced Keying in Blackmagic Design Fusion

Following his well-received exploration of the power of customized keying inside Blackmagic Design Fusion, Simon Ubsdell goes even further into his look at the liberation from the inevitable limitations of other people's keyers by building your own inside Fusion. Along the way, you'll learn about Channel Booleans and many other insights that you'll be able to use in all of your Fusion projects.
How To Become A (Wanted) Film Editor * Art of the Edit * Sven Pape

How To Become A (Wanted) Film Editor

What does it take to master the art of film editing? Sven Pape, host of This Guy Edits, shares 7 recommendations that may just turn you into a storyteller in demand. Or more specifically, he says, these are his thoughts on how to become what you love, whether directing, screenwriting, shooting, acting: anything that you have a passion for.
Gravity's Mark Sanger: Cut & Talk with Oscar-Winning Editor * Art of the Edit * Mark Sanger and Christian Jhonson

Gravity's Mark Sanger: Cut & Talk with Oscar-Winning Editor

Academy Award-winning editor Mark Sanger stopped his usual activities to talk about working with director Alfonso Cuarón and his amazing work on Gravity, what to cut out of the film, and what to cut out of life with his guiding principle: make yourself invaluable, but never at the expense of others.






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Breaking the Drone Code

An understanding of the Drone Code may help clarify the lines the FAA and UAS/UAV/drone owners have drawn in the sand for each other, says Douglas Spotted Eagle, CEO of Drones Plus, Inc. The Drone Code may seem to shift at the whims of legislation, lobbyists, manufacturer organizations, government agencies, and UAS users. It doesn't. Here is Part 1 of your path to distinguishing shifting sands vs. the solid underlying large rocks anchored to the earth. Read on...



How to Spawn A Clone in Adobe After Effects

Want to learn how to create a cool clone spawn effect in Adobe After Effects? Follow along with After Effects whiz Tobias from Surfaced Studio in this exciting new visual effects tutorial that combines green screen using Keylight, CC Vector Blur, the Liquify Effect, CC Particle World, and much more, delivered in Tobias' inimitable style! Read on...



A Beautiful Planet, with Canon & Cinematographer James Neihouse, ASC

Sarah Mason and Jake Essoe of The Harold & Maudecast recently got to speak with James Neihouse, ASC, to discuss his experience making the IMAX film A BEAUTIFUL PLANET. The film, a collaboration between Canon and NASA, was shot from space (oh yeah), entirely on Canon EOS C500 and the Canon EOS 1D-C. It's an amazing story about how James decided that Canon cameras were the way to go, and the absolutely astounding lengths that the crew went in order to capture these extraordinary images. Read on...

And while you're visiting the Creative COW Blogs, Mathieu Marano of My Canadian Studio offers a close-up look at the new Canon C300 Mark II. New features abound, including 4K, and what DP Alexis Landriault declares is the best autofocus on the market. Read on...








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