Archive for

December, 2011


December 24, 2011 11:42 am

Magic Lantern HDR Video X-MAS teaser

Those very clever hackers behind the Magic Lantern firmware for Canon DSLRs have added HDR video functionality to their toolbox.

It seems to work by leveraging a similar technique to that used by RED in their HDRX technology, shooting intervening frames at different exposures and combining the exposures to create higher dynamic range images. However, whilst RED shoots additional frames using a different shutter speed, Magic Lantern’s HDR mode, limited by the frame rates on the Canon video mode, shoots alternate frames at different ISO settings, and interpolates between them.

I haven’t had a chance to test the tool yet, but this technique raises interesting questions regarding the interpolation – will it correctly handle motion blur between the frames, and how will it deal with the additional noise created by higher ISOs? I also have reservations about the notorious rolling shutter issues in Canon’s CMOS sensors and how the interpolation will be affected in moving camera shots.

That said, I’m looking forward to getting my hands on this tool and having a play.

11:14 am


The incredibly dedicated and hard working Tom Lowe has released the new trailer for his magnificent looking feature Timescapes. Stunning landscape photography and timelapse work which has earned Lowe the title of Astronomy Photographer of the Year

Lowe has been working tirelessly on this project for two years now. Out in the wild, without support, to get anything made should be regarded as an achievement, but as this trailer demonstrates the results of his efforts are simply stunning. He is a master of his craft.

If you would like to support this project – which frankly everyone who appreciates film making and photography should do – you can pre-order the DVD or Blu-ray, which should be released in May 2012 … just in time for my birthday.

Shot in 4k on the RED Epic, the Canon 5D MKII, and a PL-mount modified 1D MKIV. There is a 4K version of the trailer which can be viewed on YouTube:, for those who have the bandwidth, monitor resolution and processing power.

December 16, 2011 8:33 am

Sherlock Holmes – A Game of Shadows

Sherlock Holmes – A Game of Shadows opens in UK cinema screens this weekend. This is the first feature that I have worked on to get a theatrical release and it is a source of great pride that my first feature is one which is so good. I was at the cast and crew screening last week, so I can confirm that the new Sherlock film is a non-stop thrill ride which easily matches the quality of Guy Richie’s first Sherlock Holmes. And although 4 paint and roto shots which I did at Framestore that actually made it into the film make up at total of bearly 5 seconds of screen time, I am immensely proud to be a part of this I’d recommend it to anyone – and not just because I worked on it.

December 15, 2011 11:21 pm

Walt Disney’s MultiPlane Camera

I found this look at the technology behind Disney’s Multiplane camera, the tool that allowed them to create parallax in their shots, to be absolutely fascinating.

This was the peak of animation technology at the time, a brilliantly simply idea, flawlessly executed. Indeed, the technique is still used today, albeit implemented with a computer.

December 12, 2011 8:26 am


Its rare that you find a well crafted juggling video, and rarer still that one comes out of the spinning community, but NO SWEAT, shot by Francois Dubois and edited by Ladislas, is just that. They have found that winning combination of high-level, cutting edge juggling technique, in this case contact staff, and a slick presentation style in terms of filmmaking technique.

Jon Crott
Olivier van itterbeeck
Michael Tono
and Kevin Arleri

There is still a lot of room for improvement before we start seeing juggling videos on the level of professionalism that we find in other fields – such as dance or extreme sports – but the HDSLR revolution has caused democratization of high level capture devices, making it much easier for young filmmakers to get their hands on high quality equipment and shoot subject they are interested in. This can only be applauded.

December 6, 2011 9:39 pm

That Post Show – Forward Thinking

I stumbled across this fascinating episode of the That Post Show entitled Forward Thinking.

Mike Seymour, Ron Brinkmann and host Kanen Flowers discuss the all manner of issues relating to content production, marketing and delivery in an age of fast internet and portable tablet computers. Their discussion pays particular attention to the complex interplay of content creation and marketing that the most successful, and forward thinking, players in the market are engaged in, and what this new model means for individuals and small businesses trying to operate in this area.

9:20 pm

Nissan Qashqai

I love this new TVC for the Nissan Qashqai. Its like my Masters Project … on steroids.