Autumn 2018 (AV)

The season of mellow fruitfulness I’ve heard it said – from Keats I think it was

But too often the onset of autumnal colour has brought with it wind and rain denying the weekend photographer and stripping trees and hedgerows overnight of this beautiful seasonal delight, robbing us all of the splendour of this jewel amongst the seasons.

“Thou comest, Autumn, heralded by the rain,
With banners, by great gales incessant fanned”

(Longfellow before you think I’ve gone highbrow)

But 2018 was a little different up here and whilst muted compared to recent years the colours have at least lingered and provided a welcome visual feast

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I want to go back …

I thought I’d share a work in progress. My plan is to revisit and amend this video in a couple of months time when I’ve had a chance to implement feedback on another PTE AV that I created recently.

Of course, as a work in progress it has many rough edges although I plan to maintain the length at 3 minutes and limit the images to 36.  I have a vague idea about 36 frames on a roll of 35mm film but it is very vague!

To conform or not to conform?

Hospital (again) this morning, routine blood tests so no stress just the inconvenience of arriving at 7.30am to be tenth in the queue, which is a lot better than turning up any later. They work hard at Calderdale Royal Infirmary that’s for sure. But you’ve not tuned in for a medical report!

I recently joined a dedicated audio visual group in order to expand my skills and most importantly get some impartial feedback. I have to submit a sequence (yup, already got the lingo) during March and I finished the first draft of one last week.  I said finished but added the caveat draft you notice; good practice is to leave the finished sequence for a day or two then watch it twice a day for a few days. Right, I thought, that’s a waste of time but I will try it.

© Dave Whenham

Light and dark – I don’t always conform.

Not to beat about the bush, I was wrong. On the first two viewings I tweaked a couple of things. After the third viewing I started to get annoyed at how a few of the slides didn’t quite dissolve into each other neatly. I spent half an hour sorting that out. After the fourth viewing I took all the music out and replaced it with new choices. Yesterday I watched it for the fifth time and completely scrapped the opening section and rebuilt it from scratch. An hours work for a newbie. © Dave Whenham

I’ve now watched it back eight times, making small changes until on the eighth viewing I finally decided there was nothing more I’d tweak.  At least not until I view it again I suspect.

 

 

But for now, PHEW!

There is a sting in the tail though. Reading some AV guidance notes from one of the larger UK clubs I’m now wondering if what I’ve done fundamentally breaks all the norms. I shall have to speak to my group leader for a view.  I’m happy to break the rules, but as it will be my first submission to the group I don’t want to upset the apple cart just yet. That can wait until I’m more settled in the group.

I’ve done a lot of reading and online searching this last week, eagerly absorbing any morsel of information that I can. Dedicated AV guidance is sparse. There is quite a bit available on using Pictures to Exe, the most popular software for the AV worker, either commercially or via YouTube. But general guidance is a lot harder to come by it seems. True, a lot of the skills needed are not specific to AV, but I’d expected to find something other than a few general, very high-level notes on AV Club websites. If anyone can point me in the direction of a book I’d be very appreciative!

I’m sure that there will be more words from me on this subject as the year goes on.

Watch this space!!

Promoting the Club (Pictures to Exe)

I am a member of the PPC (Postal Photographic Club) an online and postal photographic club – the photography club that comes to you! I was recently tasked with producing a couple of promotional videos for the club; one showcasing the online side and another promoting the print/postal side of the club.

I produced the final videos in Pictures to Exe although the component parts have been through Lightroom, Photoshop and Final Cut Pro on their way into PTE. I was impressed at how well my iMac coped with running Mac OS and Windows 7 simultaneously, swapping between the two and transferring files between the various programmes seamlessly.

For posterity here are the two finished items.

 

Through the square window

Looking through my images from the first half of 2017 I realised that I produce a lot of square compositions across a wide range of genres. So what better way to practice using some of the techniques I’ve learnt this week than by producing a four minute slideshow with which to showcase them.

Square (Pictures to Exe) from Dave Whenham on Vimeo.

For those with Windows wanting the full PTE experience the file can be downloaded from my media fire account.

Vimeo – for all things PTE

I have decided to use my Vimeo account purely for my Pictures to Exe experiments and to use YouTube for my other videos and video diaries. Quite a few AV producers that I follow use Vimeo so I’m hoping that by being there I may see a little more “traffic” to my own PTE offerings.  I can be found at https://vimeo.com/user10575556.

I am currently working hard at understanding the audio-editing capabilities of PTE as  the next stage in my development as I see it is fitting the transitions between slides to the flow of the music. There are a few “good” examples in my current PTE offerings but I could do a LOT better I’m sure.

The revised version of Buckstones Edge (above) features some refinements in terms of presentation and don’t miss the end credit shot with a drone and produced in Final Cut Pro – melding the two disciplines already 🙂

For the Piece Hall slideshow I opted for a faster pace compared to my earlier offerings. It worked in parts but in places there was simply too much movement. I produced a re-worked version to see for myself how small changes could make a difference and was pleasantly surprised. Another thing on my to-do list is to find out how to make these reworked versions available online without cluttering my Vimeo account with various versions.

EDIT: if this has worked here’s the link to v2 of the Piece Hall video (Windows only).