October 25, 00
has great Title Effects and it's called
-overflow crowd at the Oct meeting-
So we decided to experiment with
this October meeting with no RSVPS and it seemed to work quite
nicely. Oh sure, there were too many people at times and not
enough seats. There was the occasional fight in the hall over
the last cookie(s). There was a time when we had to call the
cops to break up a platform war, but all in all it worked, and
we will continue to hold our monthly meetings without RSVPS,
so help me God.
This months bonus hour
was a real treat as we brought in FCP Guru and Dr. Rawstock
Foreman to give us all a demo on FCP's Log and Capture secrets,
and Jim did not disappoint. Jim gave us all a nifty handout explaining
what exactly he was covering complete with Screen shots and a
detailed explanation written for the dummy in all of us. You
would be surprised at how many steps you might be adding to your
log and capture. Jim breaks it down to a simple 1,2,3 process
and leaves us little room for error, which is good for those
of us prone to that sort of thing.
He took us from preferences
to Capture and explained to us the pitfalls one might encounter
if you muck up something along the way. Get those settings right
and all is well with the world, says Jim. Learn what every button
on the Log and capture window means and does. Click away and
see what happens. Understand the four quadrants of time code.
Understand the difference between Capture Now and Batch Capture.
Read the hand out and the manual. This stuff is simple, just
don't guess. If you wish Jim's fine hand out on Log and Capture,
just go on down to Dr Rawstock and tell em you are a lafcpug
member and beg for one. Tell em Lowell sent ya. Thanks Jim for
a very informative 45 minutes.
Real meeting was called
to order at 7:15 and I made a couple of announcements, one of
which is I need your ideas on future meetings, your tips and
tricks, and generally anything you can think of to make us the
most powerful User Group on the Planet. So send those ideas in.
Our crack treasurer and all around good guy
Soltz was first
up to start the conversation on the new QuickTime 5 preview release.
Neds comments were quite favorable on QuickTime 5 but with certain
caveats such as QT 5 breaks Echo Fire, Commotion DV , and causes
strange and intermittent bursts of colored pixels on ones NTSC
The discussion on QT-5
can be quite complex and baffle even the most knowledgeable DV
filmmaker. There are RGB values and YUV values and... moral values
and such. There is the DVTK codec and DVTK beta to consider in
the comparison test. There are different QT versions. This stuff
can be fascinating or really boring. But it's stuff we got to
know if we want to do professional work. So - knowing this, Ned
gave us a killer presentation on QT 4 against 5 using samples
of YUV rendered text and video of Hasidic Jews praying a the
Wailing Wall in Israel. Not only that, he added a a techno music
track to it all, so those of us who didn't understand a dang
word of what Ned was saying could get lost in the toe tapping
beat of these folks walking up to the wall and doing their thing.
Cool, I say.
While Ned was winding down his comments I was on the phone, courtesy
of our friends at ATT, with video guru and world expert on all
things codec, Adam Wilt. One cannot do a presentation on QT 5 or codecs
for that matter, with out the participation of Adam Wilt, so
since he lives in Northern California, we brought him in via
speaker phone to give his comments.
Adam Wilt has done exhaustive
and possibly definitive side by side comparison tests on the
QuickTime 5 preview release. Go to his web site and hang around there for a
few hours and come away either brain dead or with EVERYTHING
you want to know about codecs and QT 5. His conclusion? QT 5
ROCKS. It's fast, it works and it is a couple of bugs away from
being THE professional codec we all deserve. But, he does not
recommend you install it until it's final release. It is a BETA
release after all.
Hans Fischmann, Content
Manager of QuickTime
TV also was present
pointing out to us that most of Apples resources are going to
OSX, and maybe just maybe we will get a final release of QT 5
come MacWorld in January. But don't tell anyone he said that
. <g> Thank you Adam, Ned and Hans for your extraordinary
work on this incredibly complex issue.
and FCP Guru
Steve Martin was up next, and Steve gave us a quick fifteen minute
tour of just how exactly to prepare images in Photoshop for import
into FCP. And
if you didn't know how to do this before, well- fifteen minutes
spent with Steve you will.
Prepare those images
at 720X534 RGB, and 72dpi, assuming you are not using a capture
card. When you are finished doing your prep in PS, change it
to 720x480 in the image size menu. Don't forget to uncheck the
proportion box or you will scream a lot. Then Save as a Copy.
Yeah, yeah, the image
looks weird, but once you import it into FCP and drop it into
the Timeline, by golly, it looks right again. On the NTSC monitor
at least, and that is what counts. Don't flatten the image unless
you want a white background. Use Merge layers if you want drop
shadows and other layers to come into FCP separately. Steve says
why not do your drop shadows in FCP rather than PS. Makes sense.
There are good articles on this very subject in Lisa
2-pops Library, and DV Companion. Thanks Steve for another great presentation.
Running late as usual
and with very little time left before the break, lafcpug HeadCutter
Michael Horton decided to not bump himself again from the line
up and plowed forward to show and tell of his historical documentary
, "The Forgotten Grave." The
story of Sarah Edmonds, a woman who dressed as a man to fight
in the American Civil War, this 13 minute film just won first
place in the Zoie Fest Woman to Woman film festival. Utilizing
still pictures downloaded from the Library of Congress, extensive
use of FCPs motion tracking features, free sound effects, (go
to Yahoo.com and type in Free Sound Effects) and the voices and
help of good friends, this project came in for the budget of
Zero Dollars. Due to time constraints, Michael was forced to
race through the presentation utilizing the fast forward feature
on the DSR-20 supplied by Dr. Rawstock. However, comments overheard during the break
suggested that Mr. Hortons Documentary was worthy of high praise
and certainly Academy Award consideration. (when you are HeadCutter
you can write whatever you want)
After a break for smokes
and chit chat, it was time to bring on our Key Note speaker and
expert, Tim Wilson. Tim was on the end of a grueling 2 week trip
across the country demoing Boris FX to various UGs and and other
folks and we were his last stop. You wouldn't have known it judging
from Tims enthusiasm and down right love of all things Boris.
It's been said that FCP
has a great titler and it's Photo shop, but after seeing Tim
Demo Boris Graffiti, I think it is safe to say that FCP has a
great titler and its called Graffiti.
Graffiti is a plug in for FCP and does everything
the professional titler wants it to do, from one click text crawls,
3D, 2D, tracking, blur, key framing, animation, you name it.
This is one cool app and Tim made it look simple. Heck, it IS
simple. There is even tutorials and techniques online at plugin central on how to use this program if you don't like
manuals. Graffiti has 14 special FX filters including Lens Flare,
which actually works. He showed us, trust me.
You can change character
styles at the individual character level for goodness sakes.
You can pick your colors even form the finder level. Like one
of those icon colors up in the menu? Well then, use it. Tim showed
us how to do a Star Wars like text crawl, a nifty "Sands
of Time" effect where letters break up into grains of sand
and fall gracefully to the ground and numerous other effects
this summary has 'not the space to go into. Just real cool stuff
and a lot of fun watching Tim share his knowledge. If you are
a User group of folks interested in getting a demo of Boris ,
ask for Tim. You won't be disappointed.
Next up was filmmaker Ramy Katrib who showed us a clip from his
documentary, "Particles and People." This doc concerns
itself with a gigantic machine in Loma Linda that is used to
disintegrate cancer tumors from patients who otherwise have inoperatable
tumors due to the tumors position in the body. A highly watchable
movie, it was filmed with a Canon XL1 camera and edited on FCP
and finally color corrected on a Da Vinci Color Corrector which
Ramy has a great knowledge of. Kind of makes you want to go to
Loma Linda and see this thing. Lord knows, I wouldn't want to
be subjected to this machine, but judging by the patients who
appeared in this documentary, this monolith of a machine works.
Finally our last Show
and Tell presenter was none other than our ace secretary of lafcpug,
gave us an eyeful and earful of highlights from his documentary,
Angels ladies is about a couple from Eugene
Oregon who gave up their Mortuary business and moved to Nevada
to run a Brothel. Yeah, thats what I said. This is a alternately
funny and poignant film on the "end of the road" for
Nevadas famed prostitutes, the community they live in, and the
couple who run the business. A sure fire hit for any film festival
that picks it up, Angels Ladies will be screening for the New
York Press Nov. 9, and then will be screened for the public at
the "Screening Room," Nov. 10 in NYC. More details
can be had at by clicking here.
We all wish Doug much luck and know if NYC has good taste, then
this film is sure to be a hit.
World famous raffle was
up next and our friends from Dr Rawstock donated T-shirts and
Hats. Our good friends Charles McConathy and Cawan Starks from
Lisa Brenneis Books, a way cool copy of Digital Juice
and the excellent FCP How2, Extreme Editing Video Tape. Boris FX donated
a copy of graffiti and finally 2-pop.coms Ralph Fairweather donated himself
for 2 hours of whatever you want to talk about concerning FCP.
Now there is a prize.
Some of the winners included:
(we screwed up and did not get all the winners names, so if you
want your name in this summary, write me and you can show the
world you were lucky for one day in your life.)
Michael Horton- Dr Rawstock
Boris Graffiti- Kathleen Lantos
Digital Juice - Karen Rasch (?)
Ralph Fairweather - Steve Williams
Very special thanks to
Dan Brockett for taping this months meeting
See ya all next Nov 29
for the continuing drama of lafcpug