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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 »

  • Fearless Forecast v2.0 – 2011 Edition, Part 1

    Posted on January 1st, 2011 Mike 3 comments

    In doing another Fearless Forecast for the coming year, I re-read my previous forecast (posted exactly a year ago) just to see how I did. In a nutshell, not bad. Here are some things I predicted and how they actually turned out:

    Read the rest of this entry »

  • Grading The Feedback

    Posted on November 21st, 2010 Mike No comments

    From the reaction to the two part “Grading The Graders” series, it was a topic that needed to be covered. The differences between the professional systems are not always clear, which is the reason I wrote the articles in the first place. I did want to present the systems in a quasi-comparative way, in which I wasn’t really trying to point out how each has changed over the years as much as I was trying to point out the specific strengths and weaknesses of each in relation to the others. However, I got some very valuable feedback, so I thought I’d address it here rather than in private emails to each of the respondents.

    Read the rest of this entry »

  • Grading the Graders: The Long Awaited Part 2

    Posted on November 12th, 2010 Mike 12 comments

    In reviewing Part 1 of this article, I did notice that I left out one of the more important “pros” of the Baselight system, and that is its directly integrated support for the Truelight color management system. Truelight, like Baselight, is a Filmlight product, and  Baselight is designed around the use of that technology for all color management functions, a great advantage. Now…..

    Continuing right along where we left off…..

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  • Grading The Graders, Part 1

    Posted on October 31st, 2010 Mike 8 comments

    There seems to be a lot of talk these days about color grading, and a lot of it seems to revolve around what system represents the best solution given a particular set of circumstances. In a lot of these discussions, there seems to be a lot of attention paid to using general purpose platforms, such as nonlinear editors like Final Cut, Avid Media Composer, and Premiere Pro, for this purpose, or using software written for the purpose of file format conversion, like Red’s Redcine-X, for final creative color grading. And while for some this may present a very inexpensive (i.e., essentially free) solution on certain personal projects, in the professional world it is generally not practical or desirable. And it is not pricing that determines these things, rather, it is a combination of factors that together fulfill the practical needs of a professional colorist. Read the rest of this entry »

  • I’m Back

    Posted on May 16th, 2010 Mike No comments

    I’ve been a bit busy lately, both personally and professionally, which has resulted in a bit of time between posts. Personally, I moved (from Woodland Hills, in the San Fernando Valley, to Playa Vista, near Marina Del Rey) about 3 weeks ago. This represents a kind of homecoming for me, only a year after coming home from a few years in Florida, as I lived in the Marina on and off for almost 10 years. I’ve always loved living near the beach, especially here in Los Angeles during the summer months, as during the day, it’s almost always at least 20-30 degrees cooler than it is in the Valley (yes, you read that right: it can be 105 degrees in the Valley, while at the beach – less than 10 miles away if you’re in Woodland Hills – it’s only in the mid 70’s). Professionally, I’m now working for a digital intermediate and post facility called Next Element by Deluxe, in Burbank. Next Element has been a working digital intermediate facility for the last 7 years (it was previously known as Hollywood Intermediate), and was recently acquired by Deluxe Digital Media. The company has expanded its focus into television post production, and that’s in part where I come in. My actual title is Senior Colorist (along with Julius Friede, whom I’ve known for many years), although as with most smaller facilities, I’ll also be involved in helping to solve some workflow and technical issues along the way. The people at Next Element are top notch, from the management team, to the producers, to the technical staff, and I’m very happy to be with them. It also represents a reunion of sorts for me with an old friend, Bruce Long, who’s come in as President of Next Element, and is someone I’ve known for almost 20 years and worked with previously during my time at Encore Video. He’s also a very close friend, and the opportunity to work together again is something I’ve looked forward to for a long time. In addition, Next Element is one of the first of what I would consider a “new age” post facility, one that is almost entirely file based, with no use of videotape other than for ingest and delivery. The combination of a custom built Linux based infrastructure, Baselight color grading systems, and some very, very smart people makes for a rather unique atmosphere. I think (and hope) the industry will be hearing quite a bit about us in the near future.

    That’s enough about me. We now return you to our regularly scheduled blog posts, already in progress….