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  • CDL 101

    Posted on July 1st, 2014 Mike No comments

    The ASC CDL is something a lot of people have heard of. A lot of people use them. Very few people seem to really understand how the format came to be, or how it’s generally used in the industry. Nor do they understand its importance in the production and post pipeline. Read the rest of this entry »

  • Catching Up

    Posted on June 29th, 2014 Mike 1 comment

    It’s almost embarrassing how long it’s been since I’ve updated the blog. Recently, a number of people have let me know that they still refer to some of the information I posted here as much as two years ago. I do find it gratifying that some of that material still seems to have relevance in a fast changing industry, and that people still find it useful. But it got me thinking that I should start writing again, if only to talk about what I’ve been doing and plan on doing.

    tech_logo In April of 2012, I was asked to join Technicolor as a Director of On Location Services. That doesn’t make me the head of the department (that would be my friend and colleague from Next Element, David Waters), but it does allow me to undertake a new and really interesting path in my career. My responsibilities include helping to develop and deploy workflows and systems for dailies and finishing outside of the traditional facility environment (although a lot of our software and systems are being used within the Technicolor facilities worldwide as well). This is the wave of the future in our industry, and in the two years I’ve been at Technicolor, remote operations have become a major part of what we do. We have processed dailies on location for television series, pilots, and features very large and very small, on systems that have worked in many parts of the US, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Germany, Thailand, and China, among others. My job involves quite a bit of travel (this year alone I’ve been to Atlanta, Wilmington N.C., New Orleans, New York, Montreal, Toronto, London, and Paris), so I’m not home quite as much. But it’s been and continues to be an interesting ride, and a great new challenge career wise. Read the rest of this entry »

  • Trendspotting

    Posted on May 18th, 2012 Mike 1 comment

    The recently concluded NAB Convention was, as always, interesting at the very least. Like most NAB’s, this one saw new products, updates of existing products, a lot of flash, some new faces, and a lot of old familiar ones. One can go to NAB and other trade shows and look at products, both existing and future, talk to manufacturers, form some opinions, and think about what products best suit their needs. And while that’s valuable, I prefer to look for trends, not specifics.  Read the rest of this entry »

  • Fearless Forecast 2012: Part 2

    Posted on March 4th, 2012 Mike 1 comment

    So, continuing along with this year’s Fearless Forecast, let’s look at the 4 major categories I spelled out in part 1. Read the rest of this entry »

  • Better Late Than Never: Fearless Forecast 2012 Pt 1, A Look Back

    Posted on March 4th, 2012 Mike No comments

    Well, first I have to cop to being a bad boy and remaining absent from the blog for far too long. Haven’t really had a lot to say that I haven’t already said in various posts in various places, but I didn’t mean to stay away quite this long. And that said, the first order of business in these forecasts is to examine how I did last time. And as always, I got a few things right, a number of things wrong, and a number of things that were so far off the mark it’s not even funny. Read the rest of this entry »

  • Understanding Log Grading

    Posted on September 26th, 2011 Mike 3 comments

    In the last post, we discussed what log is and why it’s used in digital cinematography cameras. Now we’re going to look at exactly how it’s implemented and what you should know about how to deal with log coded images. Read the rest of this entry »

  • What Log Is…….And Isn’t

    Posted on September 25th, 2011 Mike 3 comments

    With the rapid success of the Arri Alexa, the continuing evolution of Red (specifically its deployment of the RedlogFilm gamma curve), and the use of log curves in things like the Sony F3 and Technicolor’s Cinestyle curves for Canon DSLR’s, I thought it might be a good time to talk about exactly what log is and is not, specifically in the context of digital images.

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  • Pilot Season – A Survival Guide

    Posted on May 15th, 2011 Mike 4 comments

    With the 2011 pilot season now completed (network pickup and schedule announcements will happen this week), it seems a fitting time to talk a bit about television pilot season, how it works, how it doesn’t work, how things have changed in the last few years, and how those of us who are involved get through it.

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  • All About ACES

    Posted on March 14th, 2011 Mike 7 comments

    There has been a good deal of talk about the IIF/ACES system, but there seems to be a lot of misunderstanding as to exactly what it is. A lot of the early talk centered around the proposed file format to contain ACES information, but the file format is only a very small part of what the system is intended to be, and one of the least significant.

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  • Fearless Forecast v2.0 – 2011 Edition, Part 2

    Posted on January 8th, 2011 Mike 4 comments

    In Part 1 of this year’s forecast, we looked at cameras and production trends. In Part 2, we’ll concentrate on post production, distribution, and technology.

    In 2010, the appearance of Blackmagic’s DaVinci Resolve on the Mac at an unheard of price point was probably the single most significant event in a year that also saw Autodesk release a Mac based version of their Smoke finishing software at a very attractive price point. In some ways, both releases were attempts by their manufacturers to determine exactly where the market sweet spot was going to be for the customer base they were attempting to create and attract. In Blackmagic’s case, they clearly felt that the growing popularity of Red, and perhaps to a lesser degree the Canon DSLR’s as video cameras, was potentially opening up something of a mass market for a category of software that had previously only appealed to the professional end of the post production market. By almost giving the software away (in the professional world, $1000 for a program that formerly cost 100 times that is essentially giving it away), they were attempting to corner a market that they had no proof actually existed. To date, I think the results of that gamble have been mixed. Read the rest of this entry »