Wednesday, December 28, 2011


Hey guys! A real brief update… first off, let me just say, I messed up the vlogs I shot. All three of them. I’d thought I’d save myself some time and knock them all out in evening and then edit them the next and have three vlogs ready to rock. Sadly… I tried something, thought it would work and didn’t check it after the first. Anyways… I was scrubbing the footage and noticed just how BAD it looked. It was awful. Let me tell you… it’s very difficult to use such a picky camera from the far side of a room and only have a small LCD screen telling you it looks ok. Basically, what I’m saying is, I wish I’d had a more automatic camera to do some of the work for me and remove the guessing. :/ lesson learned, moving forward.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Slow Going for the Holidays

Howdy. Sorry there’s not a lot to report. Stupid work… I have been given permission to shoot photos of the Portland Boulder Rally finals on December 3rd (I’ll be competing in the morning session). But other than that… nothing.

I have my goals set for the new year. Thanksgiving is coming. I’m vlogging. Well… I have notes for the next vlog. Just need to be home long enough to knock it out. I still have those reviews… and what else?

Assassins Creed. Oi. Could that game do anything other than be awesome? Did you know that I tried Parkour because of this game series? Yep. True story, bro. well, I’ll have a vlog and some other stuff to share soon. Stupid NDA’s… >:[

Have a goodnight. And Happy Thanksgiving.

James :)

Thursday, November 17, 2011

First Vlog!

Hey guys, Here's something new I want to try. Vlogging. I know this is me at my most upbeat and excited... I promise I'll be more interesting in the future. Anyways, take care. :)

Monday, November 14, 2011

I Want to Make Climbing Movies!

Howdy. Welcome back. :) I’ve got another video that I put together. Just a little practice video of some climbers at The Circuit Bouldering Gym in Portland Oregon.

I seem to have two loves. Filmmaking and climbing. It would make sense to somehow combine these two in order to completely and thoroughly enjoy a synergistic life (you know… 1+1=4 kind of thing?). I have done some shooting at the Circuit before. One of which was a failed attempt at time lapse (NEVER leave a camera to just run on it’s own… oi) and also a Dyno Competition (a dyno is short for a dynamic lunge. Basically a big jump from one set of holds to the next).

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Pacific Ride Home is FINISHED!

I’m behind on this post. I released the music video I’ve been working on 2… 3 weeks ago? I had every intention of having this out immediately after. It didn’t happen.

So I guess, how do I recap a project that I watched over and over and spent so much time wanting to make perfect? Wanting a piece that I felt pushed me?

Ugh… just watch it. Like it. Leave comments. Share it. Please… I beg you.

Ok. Phew… I’m happy with this. I spent a lot of time getting the colors the way I wanted. however my workflow revealed some issues. Despite everything I did, there was some degradation to the quality. It might be time to start learning Adobe Premiere. It might be that time.

I’ll start practicing on my next project… a little something I shot at The Circuit.

I’ve mentioned it in a few previous blog posts. But I’ll remind you, in case you forgot. Tim Lundy has been playing guitar and writing his own music for a decade or so… Give or take some years. He’s been at it a while. He also does my sound effects and music for all of my projects.

I also had every intention of doing a behind the scenes video to show the joy and fun we have on set. But, for the life of me, I can’t find the footage. Or even the pictures that we took. Sadly… I think maybe in my disdain for anything having to do with this project, I may have “accidentally” deleted all of it.

Which isn’t true. I loved it. I had a blast drawing up this idea with Tim. And then planning it down to the tiniest details. And then seeing it all come together. I just can’t stand hearing the song anymore. I listen to it muted. Tim did a great job on the song. I just don’t want to ever hear it again. :)

So there’s that. This is definitely one of my more explicit blogs. I will be posting my reviews of the new Steadicam and slider we used for the making of the music video. Check the (soon to be links) labels below… they’ll take you to the reviews. And those WILL have videos demonstrating the equipment, along with footage from the actual shoot.

Flycam 5000

ProAim 4' Slider

Monday, October 10, 2011

It’s a Video Camera

For those of you getting into the DSLR game, you’re going to run into a very common thing; The frozen subject. 98% (give or take a percent). Of the people you encounter will know that what you’re pointing at them is in fact a camera. They’re used to seeing it in the hands of photographers… not videographers. In most cases, the fact that you’re shooting video will be lost on them.

You’ll notice subjects putting on a smile and holding still. After a moment, wondering why there’s no flash, you’ll have to inform them you’re shooting video. I have a lot of footage strewn throughout my hard drives… I’ve often thought about putting together a highlights reel. I haven’t had time to sort through all that… but I’m getting away from my point.

I think I should wear a t-shirt that says “it’s a VIDEO camera.” I’m not sure it will help. But if nothing else, the uneducated will continue to give us all awkward pauses to add to our highlight reels.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Review: Canon 24-70mm 2.8L

What to say about this lens? It’s on that list that’s floating around the Internet somewhere. The one that has the essentials for DSLR filmmaking on it. The end all be all list. I can’t tell you the countless hours I spent lusting over this magical piece of kit. I dreamt of how it would make my pictures worthy of a magazine.

Friday, September 16, 2011


Odds are you’ve seen it in films. 300, Gladiator, Mission Impossible 2… actually all John Woo Films I’ve seen, Hero and a lot of Chinese Cinema. Technically it’s called Ramping. The Slowing down, speeding up of the film either to draw attention to specific details, add emotion, or just be awesome.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Here’s a quick review that’s a bit different from the reviews I usually do. I typically focus on the techy gadgets that save you money, and the things that make your camera perform better. So why not talk about something that makes ME perform better? An article of clothing that over the last six months has become an essential piece of my kit.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Behind the Camera: It’s not about Beauty, it’s about what get’s the job done.

Hey guys, real quick… I just wanted to point out that if the audience doesn’t see it… who cares what it looks like? Just get the job done and do it well (and safely… ie: don’t hang lights using gaffe tape.).

We’ve had to do some pretty weird looking things that were still quite effective. Like these:

Monday, August 29, 2011

Review of

If you’re like me, you’ve spent hours perusing through websites looking for the best deals on the best gear. And as you may have noticed I enjoy getting that piece of gear that does what I need it to at a fraction of the cost of the big name brands.
When I heard about I began doing my homework. An Indian company building cheaper versions of branded products like Steadicam. Reviews of the site were usually “I was nervous to try the more expensive stuff… so I bought a matte box. It does the job.” there wasn’t much word on the other products.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Pacific Ride Home, Music Video shoot Recap

Holy wow… Hi blog. It’s been a while. And we have much to catch up on. How’re you doing? Sweet… I’ve been busy. We filmed a music video for Tim Lundy. Drove down to Cape Kiwandis in Oregon and had an early morning wake up call of 3am. Hit the beach at 6am and hiked up the cape with our gear.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Medford and Sons

I’m tired. August seemed to have snuck up on me like… Something very sneaky. I’m sitting in a car in Medford Oregon about to head home. It’s a five hour drive. I know this because we made the drive this morning.

I feel like I’m behind in blogs. Always behind. Not because I’m slacking but because I’m working. Finally! After all this time, I’m getting somewhere. Thank you for your support. Or if you’re new, thanks for checking me out (new peoples someone’s talking about me ;p ).

Friday, August 5, 2011

The Uncertain Art of Creating Sound Effects

Directors are good at having a vision…but they're not always good at explaining them. So when I get a list of sound effects to work on for an upcoming video, there is often a lot of room for interpretation. Sometimes I have no idea what he actually wants. Typically they read something like this:

"SFX List:
-generator activating
-camera start-up noise thing
-something that sounds like an energetic teleportation…thing. ?
-atmospheric sounds,"

To which I must ask multiple questions to figure out the scene or what he actually means (Where is the sound relative to the viewer? What kind of environment is it in? WTF are you talking about?!?!?). Sometimes it just has to be something that sounds cool and works with the action. Other times there is a more specific vision of his that I am after.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Dragon Ball Z: James vs the Computer

What child product of the 90’s didn’t grow up watching Dragon Ball Z? such an incredibly cheesy show, but so good.

The inspiration from this video came while I was still in Australia. My old laptop (the first MacBook Pro with an Intel dual core processor) was at the end of its life. I spent a lot of time aggravated, trying to get it working. I wanted to just blow it up.

Given some time, this concept grew and it was that simple.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Milky Way Shoot

Alright guys, back from vacation and ready for some blogging action… you’ll notice the website continues to grow, the home page actually is working, and we have a new section in development that will focus on videogames… but more on that later.

I just wanted to do a brief blog on the photo portion of my camping trip. Now, I love photography. Not quite as much as videography… but I still love shooting stills. However, when I’m on vacation, I’m often the only member of my family without a camera (not an exaggeration). I feel I document so much of my life, this one-week can fall on someone else’s shoulders. That sounds worse than it is.

As I was packing, still practicing minimalism, I found myself hesitating to bring my camera. In the end I couldn’t handle the thought of going without it. That sucker is apart of me… I did compromise by deciding to leave the tripod at home thinking, “I won’t need this.” Famous last words.

Monday, July 18, 2011


Jordan Dalton, a local illustrator that I went to high school with, was kind enough to come up with this caricature of me the other night.

I felt it might be kind of taboo to ask an artist to draw me (I tried to find the “draw me” scene from Titanic…). But I think his work is incredible and secretly… I really was hoping he might be willing to work some magic. So, I asked in the nicest, most sincere way I could manage in a facebook message.

30 minutes or so later (at about 4am I think it was…) I get a response; “You’re lucky I can’t sleep.” And this picture was posted.

I had fallen asleep at that point. So, I didn’t see it until the next morning. But I was ecstatic. I love the detail Jordan put into it. The cocky smirk, the freckles, the cowlick people think is an intentional faux hawk. He even got my Merrell’s and Prana’s in there. And the company logo. And the RED one… which was from a picture of me holding a real RED. It was really a flattering moment to see that version of me on my news feed.

I kind of felt like a superhero. I don’t know what my power would be. Or what my name would be. But I feel like a little kid when I look at that.

So thanks again to Jordan Dalton. You can follow the links to his:


Facebook fan page


Peeby & Jay

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Golden Hour is Happy Hour.

Shooting during that last hour of sunlight almost seems like cheating. You can take most subjects, bathe it in that heavenly light and with very little effort you have incredibly dynamic and eye catching photos.

Tim Lundy, a name that returning readers have heard before, was in dire need of some photos for his webpage. I asked if he had time to run out and shoot some before the sun set. Danielle, a mutual friend, played grip (although I prefer the term “Reflectorist”).

She held a reflector and bounced light onto the subject. She helped kick around location ideas and pestered the talent to the point of him saying, “This is so unprofessional…”

We tried for the gazebo at Esther Short Park in downtown Vancouver, but we just barely missed the light. We sped down to the waterfront and had about ten minutes before the light moved to low again. Ran to the train tracks… and decided not to play there as we could have died from the fast trains speeding by. We chose a pedestrian bridge by Fort Vancouver as the place to end our shoot.

There was this constant pressure to chase the light. I had no idea what the client (Tim) wanted. I just knew where I wanted my light. And that pressure to stay ahead of the setting sun was exhilarating. A part of me was on autopilot, getting the exposures I wanted with little conscious thought. Allowing me to call out changes to Danielle and get new angles quickly. The pace was fast and fun and I love it.

This is exactly what I mean about "cheating." I didn't give him warning. I just lifted the camera and took the picture. That's it. And the picture isn't stellar, but the angle of the light and the warmth from it really create an interesting image.

Finally, I had to admit defeat. The sun was gone, and the reflector was of no use. Not willing to waste the time, though, I popped out the onboard flash (a very heinous act in most cases) and took some couples shots with Tim and Danielle.

The flash wasn’t too awful. The images seemed washed out just enough to work. Some of the pictures didn’t however, for other reasons…

All in all, the shoot was pretty good. Especially considering the lack of planning… we just hopped in the car, camera in hand and hoping for the best.

I know reviewing a reflector seems kind of lame, but I’ll try to get a brief review up for all of you. And also a review of my new lens. :)

Keep it intense,


These aren't all of the pictures. Feel free to check out the facebook page for the full album as we edit them and post them. :)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Route Setting

It seems like I’m struggling to get these blogs out. Joel’s been on my case and I’ve got a few projects that need to simply be typed up and finished.

If you’re keeping an eye on the webpage, you’ll notice there’s a new banner up, and some of the pages are getting closer to done. Like the photography portfolio page, for instance… As we finish more projects, that too will get updated.

Ok. On to what this blog is supposed to be about. I recently posted a blog about the Circuit Bouldering Gym’s annual member party, and through the same contacts I got to hang out with their route setting crew.

I’d often wondered about the process. It seems like a kind of art. They start with a blank canvas and their pieces of plastic. I talked to the setters and they seemed to have their separate approaches. One set tape a long the path they want the climber to go. Another set large features, or the “crux” and found the pieces to connect them.

Colored tape designates the route a climber follows. The start has two pieces of tape with the difficulty rating and usually the date the route was set and initials of the route setter are places on there as well.

I had my gopro shooting the whole time and I planned on making a time-lapse video of the process. The idea wasn’t mine though. Chelsea, my friend and an employee of the gym, came to me with this idea. The video has had some serious technical issues… I’m still trying to fix it.

If you’re in or around the Portland, OR. Area, check it out at either of the Circuit Bouldering Gym Locations. :)

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Intense Entertainment Is Growing Up!

You might have noticed some changes to the website these past few days... We're working on giving the makeover it deserves to provide you guys with more content and consolidate our online presence! Whoo!

*Starts but fails a slow clap because people don't read blog posts live and even if they did I don't have a microphone recording my slow clap attempt and even if that all wasn't true nothing guarantees that you have your speakers turned on.*

Wow... That was a long sentence to say in one breath.  Good thing I was typing.  Now let's get back to business.

We're currently working on putting together photo and video portfolios to display some of IE's finest work. As usual, you're input and opinions on what should be considered as IE's finest work up till now is welcome! (Don't go being a funny man and say the helium singing video...).

On the project side of things, we are working on a few things right now... The project I'm personally most excited for is a Dragon Ball Z video effects spoof! Hopefully, we'll have this available for you in the very near future!

If you haven't done so yet, you can follow us on Youtube, Twitter & Facebook so you get access to the latest content when it's still hot from the printing press!




Keep it intense folks.  It's the only way to go about things.

- The IE Team

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Circuit Bouldering Gym Annual Member Party

I've had these pictures on the back burner for a while. It's not that I haven't had time to post them... I just am not happy with them. And so they've sat, idly, on my hard drive while I waited for a miracle.

Well... That miracle isn't coming. And sometimes, i'll just be disappointed with the photos I produce. I actually deleted A LOT of them already... you can find them on the IE Facebook page.

This shoot really woke me up to the necessity of strobes. I traded clean shots that would be blurry for a crisp (kind of) image with a lot of noise. I cringe when I look at these, and I'm disappointed that I deleted the terrible, but interesting photos. Haha, sometimes I might be too critical... Those shots would have made for good examples of failing. :)

Anyways, I'm hoping to get a real blog up tomorrow.

Take care,

And let me know what you think... be brutal, be honest. I've got some thick skin, so feel free to check out the pictures and leave comments either below the blog post, or on the facebook page. I'll respond to any questions or comments as quickly as possible.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Sand Lundy and Helium

The sun has arrived. It took forever and with it comes the hardest part of my job: sitting at a desk in a basement for hours at a time. Productivity is rapidly hitting an all time low. A list of work sits untouched while I play outside…

But how I’ve missed it. The warmth, the smell of sun-kissed skin, freshly cut grass. has a special on hammocks and I want one really bad. My birthday is coming… J

This blog is normally about projects that either push me, or are lessons for readers. This particular entry might not fit in those categories. In fact, this post is about bad ideas. A lot of people tend to scrap bad ideas. But I wonder how you learn from them if you don’t let them see the light of day.

First up is the Sand Lundy. The original footage of Tim wiping out while running down a sand dune wasn’t planned… the Sand Lundy video that footage spawned however, was. Now, I’m not saying there was any alcohol impairing our judgment when we came up with the concept of a father threatening his child with the mythical Sand Lundy… But I’m not saying there wasn’t, either.

My old coach played the father and the lines were just thrown at him. I said go. 10 minutes later, I packed up and left. This video is funny to me. But I say it’s a failure or “bad idea” because at no point was this video challenging. It just is, and I’m very hesitant to show it. The camera work on the staged part was very basic and the VFX work was a joke (took me a whole five minutes… I didn’t even color grade.) but we at IE found it hilarious. And I guess part of why we do this is to make things we want to see.

Which brings me to bad idea #2. I’m not even sure what got this creative masterpiece going, other than us talking about YouTube videos and songs and somehow singing with helium came in to the equation.

I think the video speaks for itself. I’ve been coughing up latex powder since.

Moral of this story: bad ideas happen to good people. Don’t be afraid to laugh at your moments of impaired judgment. You might be the only one who does.

Keep an eye out for upcoming blogs from our sound guru, Tim Lundy (the guy who eats it in Sand Lundy, and the guy playing guitar in the helium video.) and there will also be some changes coming to the layout of

:) James

Monday, June 13, 2011


I love to just disappear sometimes. Hop in the car and go. It’s becoming something I do less frequently now. I over-plan, over-think, hesitate, lose interest.

I bailed on a trip up north for the weekend because work was overwhelming me a bit. I was behind, more was coming, and I was tired. But after catching up on sleep, motivation and my projects I was ready for something. Enter my friend, Terra. She was in her hometown not too far away for the weekend and when she offered to show me around, I jumped at the opportunity.

She didn’t seem to understand why I’d want to go to some out of the way farm town. Not realizing “Out of the way” was exactly where I wanted to be.

I had no idea what I’d find when I got there. Single traffic light? Abandoned farmhouses? I was hoping for billowing fields of grass… Her family just happens to grow ryegrass, fescue, wheat and bent grass.

I arrived, met a very large and incredibly welcoming family. I think I may have gone into shock hearing so many names. Learning little pieces of information about their family history. My host and I eventually headed out to their property. We drove past a lot of fields to get there. I loved it. I tend to get stir crazy in cities. Hurried drivers, noise, constant stimuli in every direction. Sublimity was different, peaceful, and just out of reach from all that. I’ve felt that vaguely from places I lived in when I was younger.

I’ve been having trouble just taking a deep breath, relaxing and enjoying the moment. A storm was coming, and it was soothing.

We walked through fields and I was given incredibly detailed lessons on the different types of grass. I couldn’t describe them with any kind of justice, even if I used Google to help me. She spoke about them in a way you won’t find most 22-year-old college students talking. She seemed proud of the grass her family grew, and the work she personally put into it.

As we took pictures, the clouds began to play with my light. Part of me thought “crap… the storm’s coming.” And the other part was yelling “YES! The storm’s coming.” Here’s why: thirty minutes to an hour before a storm actually hits, the clouds will cause this incredibly diffused light (allowing soft edges in the shadows) while leaving the sky a dark purple-y blue.

You can see a really good example of the sky here...

Scientifically? We’ll say it’s because the clouds are swirling and condensing all around you. I don’t know if that’s true… I just made it up. But your lighting will change rapidly, keeping you on your toes if you’re shooting manual. But the results can be awesome if you take advantage of the moment.

(Also… I love storms. A favorite place of mine would definitely be sitting on a deck or hill, looking out onto the horizon as lightning creeps in.)

I tried to capture some lightning, but even with the super long exposures, I couldn’t catch a bolt to save my life.

I hadn’t stopped to think until now, how many coincidences had to occur for me to be there, at that moment with someone willing to share it with me.

A single different choice could have kept me home, and possibly in bed at a decent time (we all know that’s not likely to happen.). But because of that opportunity, I got to hang out, lying in a field of grass listening to the wind and not worrying or caring about anything else. I just got to be there with someone who I hardly know, and we had that moment.

I think that’s why I like these pictures so much. I was in them, enjoying them. It wasn’t work, it was playtime. My subject was awesome and great company. The lighting and weather weren’t what I asked for, but I can say without a doubt, these are the most satisfying pictures I’ve shot in a very long time.

Side note: at some point, I mentioned how dirty her feet were. She casually turns and says, “If you’re not dirty, you’re not living.” I’ve tried to word the rest of this in a way I can describe how that notion made me feel, and touched on everything I’ve felt these last few months/years… however long it’s been. But nothing does it justice. So I’ll leave you with this.

Sublime: Of such excellence, grandeur and beauty as to inspire great admiration and awe.

You can find the album with these pictures on our facebook page. :)

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Size Does Matter

I’m 24 years old, out of college and trying to work with professional photographers. Veterans, who’ve worked for years, honing their skills, gathering the high-end equipment. I often find myself not being taken seriously because of my age, or because I don’t have the most expensive toys.

A few weeks ago, I get the opportunity to go to the GNAC championships held at Western Oregon University in Monmouth, Oregon. Odds were that I wouldn’t be allowed to go inside the competition area.

Before heading down to the meet, I was talking to my friend Kim, I asked if I could borrow his Canon 70-200mm 2.8L IS lens. I was surprised he said yes, as is it’s a $2,200 lens.

Upon arriving at the stadium, I attempted to get credentials. “Who sent you?” I fibbed… “Uhh… Western Oregon?” he looks at the camera, “Cool.” And I was in.

That’s kind of how it went all weekend. People saw the lens and didn’t hassle me. Another photographer even stopped me and asked “is that the 2.8?” “Yeah.” “Nice.” And he walked away.

It was nice being taken seriously for a while. Although I learned a few lessons… first off, I let myself get distracted by watching my friends compete. I stuck mostly to pole vault instead of covering the event. This really hampered the variety of shots I had to go through. 64 gigs and even I got sick of pole vault pics… this may go with the first, but I did not take it as seriously as I should have. I need to enjoy the shoot while still representing myself as a professional and delivering good product. That way I’m looked at as a professional because I am one, not because I have a big lens.

My old coach J.T. Statler, and the Outdoor Women's Pole Vault Champion and Teammate Kati Davis.

Tim Lundy, the guy who does IE's Logos and Sound Effects/Music was also there competing.

As far as the lens goes… I was in heaven. I typically don’t like my camera to be on anything other than manual. But due to rapidly changing light, and fast moving subjects I had to rely on the camera’s brains a little more. I put the lens on autofocus also. This is typically a huge no-no to me. I would NEVER use autofocus for film. But photography… with this lens? Oh man. It was so blindingly fast and accurate. I was lusting a bit. That’s also probably why my trigger finger got so heavy. This lens will be in my kit someday.

As for the quality of the pictures: I still find myself frustrated and not liking my results. They were good, using them just for coverage and such, giving pictures to the competitors. But I got a little cranky when I was searching for stuff for my increasingly dusty portfolio.

All in all, it was good practice. I learned some things. And as for being taken seriously: if you’re young and have a nice camera, expect people to not think much of you. But have a huge lens and get their attention. Size DOES matter. However, I will continue to learn and improve. I’d rather be known for the quality of my work, not for the kit I’m packing.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

GoPro HD Hero Review

What to say about this piece of equipment? First of all, I got turned onto it by all the ads places around sporting websites and facebook. Then it started popping up on YouTube in extreme sports videos and also on Freddie Wong’s channel in the form of a “First Person Shooter. The video cranked out 7 million views in the first week (Don’t quote me on that) I was at least ten of them.

What attracted me to this item was the price ($300 for the HD Hero Motorsports package) and the versatility. A camera shooting 1080p at variable frame rates in a waterproof cage and mounts that attach it to… pretty much whatever you can think of. Tons of accessories, this baby was made for sports.

I picked one up when I made a deal with my employer. Instead of paying me for the work I was doing he bought me the GoPro Motorsports Hero package and also bought me the helmet mouths. Pretty good deal.

First impressions, hands on, were different. 2 buttons, light, sturdy. My first experiences using the camera were confusing though. It’s an easy camera IF you read the directions. There are about 5 books in different languages. I recommend the one in English. Anyways, after the first moments of tinkering I had the camera filming Pole Vaulters at a track meet at Western Oregon University. I let it run until the battery died (2.5 hours) and only use about half of my 16 gig card.

The footage might not blow your mind. It can be grainy at times. But that’s why it costs $300 and a 7d costs $1600. I did however realize that I could use the wide angle (720p) setting and get some beautiful time lapse without much effort.

For Example: a still of Tim Vaulting

Look at all that sky. I had 2.5 hours of this... sadly there's a bunch of people flailing around on sticks in the middle of the shot.

We tested vibrations from the rig and mounted it to the front of Tim's car and drove along a winding freeway. the footage looks pretty smooth.

If you’re wondering about the stability of the mounts and how firmly they attach… I can attest to the resilience of them. If you let the 3m tacky substance completely adhere, it’s on there… whatever it is you stuck it too… it’s there. If you really want it off, you’ll need to work pretty hard to get it off without either breaking the mount, or the item (helmet, car, body) it’s attached too. However, I noticed that even though I repositioned my mount 6 times (yes… I put it in the wrong place 6 times.) It was still extremely sticky and I haven’t had any issues yet. The suction cup works really well too.

Probably the only concern was not being able to see what I’m shooting. That’s easily solved though for $80. An add on LCD is available. It comes with new backs to the waterproof housing to accommodate the new size. You will need a firmware update. And I’m not sure of the effects on battery life. A spare is only $20 so it’s not really an issue.

Actually I thought of one more… charging the battery, at least for now requires plugging the camera into a computer to charge. I suppose there are ways around that, but a dock for charging would be awesome.

I have not tested the durability. Though I could have thrown it out the window and seen how it fared. But I’m not doing that. Sorry.

And as a warning: without the LCD, all of your videos will begin with this frame…

All in all, I think you should have at least one of these in your kit. You never know when it might come in handy: time lapse, POV, fixed perspective during a shoot or concert. I’ve come up with a dozen different uses that I’m not telling you here until I get to put them to use first.

Get one. The end.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Where Has All The Time Gone?

Holy crap, sorry guys. I know it’s been a while, but hopefully we can get the ball rolling again.

So to update… I haven’t stopped working. In fact, I now have three jobs (hence the hiatus). And I’ve been playing with the idea of sports Videography and trying to change the style of filming sports to something new… the results so far are very promising. Move on that when I review my newest toy.

Obviously the “two a month” idea has fallen through. So for now (probably until June), were going to postpone the videos, and just release them as I have time. Currently I have a few symphonies to edit and prep to go on television. I’m working on a music video with Tim Lundy (which will be discussed in another post.). and we scouted locations this last weekend. Tested my new GoPro and plan to further test and apply this camera to the world of climbing. I’m also doing two coaching gigs and still working for a small production company. So I have my hands full, but I love it.

Anyways, I apologize for the disappearing act as of late and I’m really looking forward to the months to come. Please stay tuned as things are getting very exciting. J

Oh Yeah, I'm gonna be setting up another youtube channel. bam!

Monday, February 14, 2011

A Weekend in Seattle, Battlestar Gallactica at EMP

So the 9th has come and gone and the video hasn’t been released. I’ve left town for the weekend and have been sick since I’ve gotten home. The video needs to be color graded, which I’m hurting some trouble with. Time has been incredibly busy, and hasn’t had time to do the sound. So… Cops and Robbers is in a holding pattern while I begin work on the next one. Maybe my Monday or next Wednesday… either way, I plan on being back on track for the 23rd.

Anyways, last weekend I got to go to Seattle to visit my girlfriend. It was Super Bowl Weekend and the first I’d seen her in a month. She took me to the Battlestar Gallactica exhibit at EMP. BSG is one of my favorite TV shows, and Kris’ enthusiasm to check out the nerdy exhibit was much appreciated.

I totally geeked out at the miniatures used during filming and the costumes and props. I especially liked the parts that teach the importance of the sound and the way it was designed. I’m too excited to do it justice. I have a lot of pictures posted on Facebook. Please like the page if you haven’t already.

Plus I’ve been reading the BSG Bible. It’s a document written before the show aired to help writers stick to the story the creator wanted. It’s extremely in-depth and great for building your own world or background story.

Now, I don’t know how you feel about the Battlestar Gallactica series, old or new. I’m still needing to see the old one. But I read around the time the show started that the creator had built the arc for the story before the show aired. It was supposed to be four seasons and would end. All the major plot points were planned out, and the scripts just needed to be written to connect the plot points.

Honestly, I feel to distracted to do this justice… but the shows ability to be as dramatic as other action dramas that have been hitting TV lately. The whole series is supposed to be an allegory to the world we live in today with the threat of terrorism that constantly looms over us after 9/11. And the parallels drawn into this reality created in this universe is really well done. Please just… ignore my inability to communicate and check out the show. Maybe I’ll edit this and rewrite it later. haha

This is my new desktop. taken from the side of Apollo's Viper Mark VII. SO AWESOME~

Monday, January 31, 2011

Planning a Shoot in Preproduction

Ok seriously… I can’t recommend preproduction planning enough. If you checked out my blog about the dollar trick, you may have noticed my paragraph about how much effort went into the shoot before hand. Nothing was preplanned. Sorry… from personal experience, the more planning that’s done, the smoother production goes, the easier editing goes.

Planning won’t safeguard from the random act of God that tends to happen, but will better equip you to handle a situation that comes up. It is hard to think of everything that could come up. However, there are some things you can add to your each of your productions.

Get on site. Or set, to the location of your shoot. I love taking pictures or video of the location for reference. This will help with staging or rifuring out set dressings and props. Actually seeing your location gives you a good sense of your limitations.

The next step is a pre-visualization. Technically, this is all previz… but this is where I block and start thinking about the 180 degree rule. I take a slightly more stage approach while I place my actors. I don’t think about my camera positions at all.

I like to include an over the top view of my set with the positions of my actors. I’ve made my own key, which I try to keep consistent. It also would be good to leave it fairly legible so anyone working with you can figure it out, or with little explanation to follow along.

This one is actually from the Cops and Robbers video we shot last weekend.

Storyboards generally follow. Once you know where actors will be, begin developing your shot list. I’ve talked about it here. You might make some changes to your actor’s positions or what not, but a storyboard will help figure things out for you.

And they can be elaborate with a professional artist or (my preference) stick figures that all smile. Elaborate for me generally means a small comic book sketch with the script underneath. And if I’m being fancy, a red pencil for arrows that show camera moves. Putting these on note cards is good because they can be reorganized if needed or kept on set with you. I like to hole punch them and run one of those metal rings

I apologize that it looks like the arrow is suggesting the camera point at his crotch... this is more of an elaborate version of a story board that i would do. normally i wouldn't put this kind of time or energy into it unless it was a short film/feature film project that i'm working on.

Rehearsal. Plan in some time before shooting to walk the scene, run through and hopefully, if your actors know their lines, you can actually have them do the scene while you sit back and do what a director is supposed to… which is direct. All this should help develop and prepare your scene for shooting. Hopefully this helps.