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A Filmmaking Blog | VashiVisuals

25

Jul
2017

No Comments

In Star Wars
Uncategorized

By vashi

The Empirical Truth of Film versus Digital

On 25, Jul 2017 | No Comments | In Star Wars, Uncategorized | By vashi

THE TRUTH

Steve Yedlin is the DP of Star Wars: The Last Jedi and he just released an in-depth video analysis of six high-end filmmaking cameras.

His 67-minute video pulls back the curtain on the truths of resolution and image quality that all filmmakers have been struggling with in this constantly evolving technical world. His empirical testing shows that resolution (HD/2K/3K/4K/6K/8K/11k) is not the most important component of image capture and that Spatial Fidelity is by far the most important metric for delivering the ultimate image.

 

click to enlarge

click to enlarge

 

His term “Authoring the Image” encompasses many elements including: resolution, perceived sharpness, pixel count, lens choice, sharpening, compression, perceptual differences, grain, halation, optical aberration and order of operation.

You can watch both parts of his analysis here:
http://yedlin.net/ResDemo/ResDemoPt2.html

 

 

THE TAKE AWAYS

 

The cameras tested are: Arri Alexa XT, Sony F55, 35mm Film , RED Weapon, Arri Alexa 65, IMAX 15-Perf Film.

Here are the 3 Tenets that Steve Yedlin has set for all the comparisons:

 

click to enlarge

click to enlarge

 

All the images moving forward are based on a 4K workspace. The native capture size of each camera will be either upscaled or downscaled using Steve’s custom algorithms to fit the 4K delivery size. The results of even the first example are mind blowing. Using a 4K workspace, the 2K source upscaled actually looks sharper than the 6K source downscaled in this example.

To clarify even further we are looking at a 100% pixel for pixel image crop at 4K of the source 2K and 6K footage.

 

click to enlarge

click to enlarge

 


THE MAIN COURSE

 

Here are all 6 cameras viewed in a 4K workspace all resized using Steve’s algorithms so we can compare them at the current highest industry deliverable standard.

 

click to view at 4K resolution

click to view at 4K resolution

 

As a film editor it’s my responsibility to handle all formats, codecs and flavors of footage in my daily grind of crafting story. I created the post production workflows for DEADPOOL and GONE GIRL and it’s my job to be current on all new formats that will enter my edit bay. In my opinion, Steve Yedlin just blew the roof off the post production world and has explicitly shown that chasing K’s are not the solution. To achieve Spatial Fideltiy you must have resolution but also a strong dynamic range and clean capture sensor so that you can affect it downstream with full control.

 

THE MAGIC OF FILM GRAIN

The last take away that can be applied to any production regardless of budget that can impart cinematic imagery is film grain.

No matter what your capture format and codec is…adding film grain in either authentic scanned format or digital algorithm can actually add perceived sharpness to the final delivery format. Technically…adding grain to an image is a degradation but it does give the viewer a perceived perception of extra clarity.

The behind the scenes options of post production are extensive and both creative and technical. Thank you to Steve Yedlin for sharing his research, deep digging and openness to share the fruits of his labor. Personally, I am so grateful as he has dispelled so many myths in one feel swoop.

For more amazing Steve Yeldin info please check out: https://twitter.com/hashtag/BoringFilmTechStuff?src=hash

 

Until next time…

vashivisuals.com

@vashikoo

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03

Jul
2017

One Comment

In Low Budget Filmmaking

By vashi

The Filmmaking Journey – Vashi Nedomansky

On 03, Jul 2017 | One Comment | In Low Budget Filmmaking | By vashi

 

I recently visited ADOBE headquarters in San Francisco to film an episode of their new show “Make It” hosted by my friend Jason Levine.

 

Filming MAKE IT at Adobe headquarters in San Francisco

 

We discussed my journey from professional hockey player to editing 11 feature films in Hollywood and the creative process that spans both worlds.

I share how I starting shooting and editing films with a VHS cameras and decks in the 1980’s all the way up to working on: Deadpool, Gone Girl, 6 Below and Sharknado 2 and more.

Here’s the 16-minute video:

 

 

Here’s a bonus shot of me directing Jason in a short film a couple years ago in the same room we shot this interview.

 

Green screen madness on the set of THE CLUB BOAT

Green screen madness on the set of THE CLUB BOAT

 

Until next time…

vashivisuals.com

@vashikoo

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19

Jun
2017

No Comments

In 1-Page Film School

By vashi

2010: The Year We Make Contact BTS

On 19, Jun 2017 | No Comments | In 1-Page Film School | By vashi

 

2010: The Year We Make Contact (1984) was the sequel to
2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) and based on the book 2010: Odyssey Two written by Arthur C Clarke.

Director Peter Hyams had experience in Sci-Fi with Capricorn One (1977) and Outland (1981) but bravely took on the unenviable task of following in Stanley Kubrick’s cinematic footsteps. Hyam asked for and received Kubrick’s blessing to direct the sequel…”Don’t be afraid. Just go do your own movie.”

 

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

 

Hyams and Clarke wrote the script in 1983 on different continents using cutting edge e-mail, Kaypro II computers and dial-up modems.

Shot in 71 days, the special effects included extensive spacecraft models and early CGI all captured with 65mm film.

The original Discovery One 50-foot model from “2001” was destroyed by Kubrick and he kept the original model designs under lock and key. Entertainment Effects Group (EEG) led by Richard Edlund used a 70mm copy of “2001” to analyze, copy and create a new Discovery One model.

 

Read the script:

LINK BELOW TO SCRIPT

CLICK ON IMAGE FOR SCRIPT

 

 

Odyssey Archive has extensive pages devoted to “2010”.

CLICK ON IMAGE TO VIEW ALBUMS

Read more…

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07

Jun
2017

One Comment

In Cinematography

By vashi

The Aspect Ratio of 2.00 : 1 is Everywhere

On 07, Jun 2017 | One Comment | In Cinematography | By vashi

In more and more prestige TV series, an odd aspect ratio is popping up on some of the most popular and well-reviewed shows.

The 2.00:1 aspect ratio has stealthily wormed its way into our viewing experiences without any of us knowing it.

Here’s how and why it was created.

Technically, the first use of the 2.00:1 aspect ratio was in the RKO SUPERSCOPE format for the 1954 production of VERA CRUZ.

 

click to enlarge

Gary Cooper and Burt Lancaster in VERA CRUZ (1954)

 

In 1998, DP Vittorio Storaro proposed UNIVISIUM as a new film format with an aspect ratio of 2 to 1. He felt that the rise of electronic screens (TV, computer, portable…) needed a new format that could enhance and future-proof the visuals across all viewing platforms and situations. Vittorio has shot his last 10 feature films in the 2:1 ratio including his latest film Cafe Society for Woody Allen. Vittorio has even reframed several of his most famous films (Apocalypse Now, Reds, The Last Emperor) and released them in new DVD and Blu Ray editions.

 

click to enlarge

click to enlarge

 

In 2013 the 2.00:1 ratio also known as the 2:1 or even 18:9 aspect ratio became a very common format on TV.

It falls right in-between the common 16:9 and classic widescreen aspect ratio.

 

click to enlarge

click to enlarge

 

 

Here’s the recent chronological history of 8 popular TV shows that use this aspect ratio:

 

House of Cards (2013)

click to enlarge

click to enlarge

 

Marco Polo (2014)

click to enlarge

click to enlarge

 

Transparent (2014)

Transparent aspect ratio

click to enlarge

 

The Crown (2016)

click to enlarge

click to enlarge

Stranger Things (2016)

click to enlarge

click to enlarge

 

A Series of Unfortunate Events (2017)

click to enlarge

click to enlarge

 

Fargo (Season 3 – 2017)

click to enlarge

 

The Handmaid’s Tale (2017)

click to enlarge

click to enlarge

 

 

There has been a resurgence of the 2:1 aspect ratio in the feature film world as well.

It turns out that this aspect ratio is a logical middle ground between the 2.35 and 1.78 ratios.

Even the new Samsung S8 and the LG G6 smartphones have embraced the 2:1 aspect ratio in the consumer device market.

 

pictures courtesy of THE VERGE and SAMSUNG

pictures courtesy of THE VERGE and SAMSUNG

 

 

Some of the most recent feature films also utilize this aspect ratio including:

JURASSIC WORLD
CAFE SOCIETY
THE GIRL WITH THE ALL THE GIFTS
20TH CENTURY WOMEN
THE BOOK OF HENRY

In one of my most popular posts…I documented every aspect ratio in the history of film.

With so many options for the framing of TV and feature films and no industry standard anymore…the visual parameters belongs to the content creator and we can choose our own frame.

I will be adding a video to this page to dig deeper into the history of the 2:1 aspect ratio so check back soon…

 

Until next time…

vashivisuals.com

@vashikoo

18

Apr
2017

No Comments

In Editing
Film Score

By vashi

PEACHES at Pappy and Harriet’s:
Fuck The Pain Away (NSFW)

On 18, Apr 2017 | No Comments | In Editing, Film Score | By vashi

THE SONG

 

LIVE AT PAPPY & HARRIET'S in PIONEERTOWN, CALIFORNIA

PEACHES – LIVE AT PAPPY & HARRIET’S in PIONEERTOWN, CALIFORNIA

 

The first time I heard “Fuck The Pain Away” was in Sofia Coppola’s film
LOST IN TRANSLATION (2003) starring Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson. Great use of music to create an awkward moment in the strip club scene!

 

 

Canadian musician PEACHES wrote and recorded the song in 2000
for her album THE TEACHES OF PEACHES. I love the song, love her music, love herĀ approach to life and finally had a chance to see her live.

On a cold night at Pappy & Harriet’s in Pioneertown…PEACHES brought the thunder. Sick show. I recorded the performance on my iPhone 6S Plus and decided to cut a video the next morning.

My goal was to try to make the most interesting video with only my one angle of footage shot from the side of the outdoor stage. I took it as a creative challenge to see what I could come up with. I also chose to not use 3rd party plug-ins and only use the built-in effects of Premiere Pro.

2 shots superimposed of PEACHES

2 shots superimposed of PEACHES

Read more…

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02

Feb
2017

No Comments

In Photography

By vashi

The $9.99 Polaroid Failure Project

On 02, Feb 2017 | No Comments | In Photography | By vashi

 

The Polaroid OneStep SX-70

The Polaroid OneStep SX-70

 

Sometimes failure can be a good thing. Sometimes the accidental can be refreshing. Sometimes not planning can create surprising results. Last week I bought a Polaroid OneStep SX-70 camera for $9.99 at a thrift store in Joshua Tree, California. I planned on shooting a great 8-photograph series in the Mojave Desert. I inserted my Impossible Project color film and then chaos ensued.

All 8-photographs exposed themselves and ejected from the faulty camera in 12 seconds. The shutter was apparently stuck and $23.49 worth of film flew out of the Polaroid as I screamed WTF and wildly swung the camera around while pointing it out the window.

My preparations on subject, exposure, composition, focus, lighting and framing were null and void and all I had were 8 shots taken automatically in 12 seconds by a screaming lunatic holding a click crazy camera.

You know what…I really love them. Here are the photographs in chronological order as they came out of the camera:

 

The 8 Prematurely Ejected Photographs

The 8 Prematurely Ejected Photographs

 

The takeaway I learned is ALWAYS test your Polaroid camera with an empty film pack as the battery inside the pack is the power source for the camera.

Test your Polaroid with a used film pack

Test your Polaroid with a used film pack

 

 

You can learn more about the iconic Polaroid SX-70 here and if you have an old Polaroid that needs some repairs or customization then check out 2ndshotsx70

 

Until next time…

vashivisuals.com

@vashikoo

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25

Dec
2016

No Comments

In Ringtones

By vashi

BLADE RUNNER Ringtone 2049

On 25, Dec 2016 | No Comments | In Ringtones | By vashi

 

BLADE RUNNER 2049 comes out on October 6th, 2017. What a cast!

Harrison Ford
Robin Wright
Ryan Gosling
Mackenzie Davis
Lennis James
David Bautista
and Jared Leto for starters…

 

Here’s the announcement trailer:

 

The trailer has a thick sonic palette with some ripping, crunchy bass hits and the classic Vangelis high pitched synth dives amid apocalyptic rumbles.
Perfect for me to create a stylized Blade Runner 2049 ringtone. Enjoy!

Read more…

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18

Dec
2016

No Comments

In Star Wars

By vashi

ROGUE ONE – 46 SHOTS NOT IN THE FINAL FILM

On 18, Dec 2016 | No Comments | In Star Wars | By vashi

 

46 shots not used in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

46 shots not used in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

 

THE FILM

I just got home from watching ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY and am still electrified with the exhilarating experience it provided. In my opinion it is the first STAR WARS film to recapture the spirit and feeling of the original STAR WARS (1977). Even though it is classified as a one-off and stand alone story, it transmitted to me the euphoric feeling and impact of the original film that I saw in the theaters 5 times much to the chagrin of my mother who took me each and every time.

 

As a film editor, I understand the marketing and have helped in creating the trailers for the 10 feature films I have edited. I have also worked with several trailer houses in Los Angeles that cut the trailers that we all consume in the theaters and online. The specific skillset and mindset that an editor must adopt to live in the world of movie trailer editing is no small task. The notes from the studio, producer, director and countless other people boggles the mind in terms of volume and contradictory requests. The trailer game is an ever-changing pursuit that tries to stay ahead of the intelligent public but must also find new ways to tease, cajole and intrigue. Get the asses into the seats! Show scenes that aren’t in the film. Manipulate dialog and visuals to make a scene more interesting. Shift the order of shots to make it more interesting or compelling. Add music not in the film to hit an emotional beat. Use every trick in the book to make an effective trailer.

 

THE TRAILERS

ROGUE ONE: A STARS WARS STORY used one teaser, 3 trailers and several BTS promos to build a world that STAR WARS fans would hopefully want to visit and share in the experience. With the reshoots and adjustments that Gareth Edwards, Tony Gilroy and the studio made on the film, a lot of the footage in every incarnation made the final cut…but a lot of it never made the final cut. I have isolated 46 individual shots that were shared in the promotional material but never made the final cut of the film. The goal of the promotional push over the months leading up to the release of the film on December 16th, 2016 had one ultimate goal…to attract an audience.
Read more…

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08

Dec
2016

No Comments

In Screenplay

By vashi

HEAT – Script to Screen

On 08, Dec 2016 | No Comments | In Screenplay | By vashi

 

HEAT - Script to Screen

HEAT – Script to Screen

The 4K restoration of Michael Mann’s seminal Los Angeles crime film HEAT (1995) is on the verge of being released. I wanted to revisit the titanic acting showdown between Al Pacino and Robert De Niro in their first ever on-screen scene. The two legends square off in a 6-minute and 17-second scene that alternates between only two over-the-shoulder close-ups. Michael Mann shot a wide profile shot with both actors in frame…but chose to stay within the intimate close proximity the close-ups provided.

Michael Mann’s attention to detail is clearly visible in his annotated script that stresses the importance of this pivotal scene. I have merged the written page with the film footage so you can analyze and learn what made the final cut, what was improvised and what was left out. I’ve also added some trivia nuggets into the video from the production of the scene. Enjoy HEAT – Script to Screen.

 

Read more…

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The Filmmaking Strategy of HELL OR HIGH WATER

On 19, Nov 2016 | No Comments | In Low Budget Filmmaking, One Sheets | By vashi

The Filmmaking Strategy of HELL OR HIGH WATER

 

CLICK TO ENLARGE

 

INTERVIEW with Director David Mackenzie

 

Until next time…

vashivisuals.com

@vashikoo