Tuesday, September 25, 2007

#48 Wk33 - Intro to Avid

I've finally gotten a handle on some of my recording tools, such as the Mbox2 mixer and my condenser mic. I hope you've noticed an improvement in the audio quality. I'm still working on production quality, but I got a helping hand from Erica at CDIA, who helps maintain the audio and classroom maintenance for the Recording arts program at school. She demonstrated that my problems were due to my incompetence and not the equipment manufacturers. She also gave me a quick but thorough tour of Pro Tools. Sometime soon I'll take a few trips into Pro Tools country to record a few episodes.

Another problem I had was the absence of a mic stand and so I made one out of coat hanger and I used the leftover wire to create a pop filter which keeps the mic clean and softens annoying plosives.

This weeks classes continues the module on learning Avid. Since we have already covered Final Cut Pro earlier in the program everyone was wondering how you work the two together in a single workflow. Avid and Apple don't make it easy, but thanks to software plug-ins from Automatic Duck, and a bunch of money, you can make them friends.

I continue the saga of a filmmaking project I'm involved in with classmate Laura creating a promotional video for the Huntington Theater in Boston. We're shooting audience reactions following a performance of the play 39 Steps.

Finally the class gets to attend a screening of the documentary This is Nollywood, produced by some of CDIA's own, Franco Sacchi, Aimee Corrigan as well as renowned National Geographic photographer Robert Caputo. You may not see it in a theater near you, but you'll find it as a DVD online. If you're curious about the exciting filmmaking scene that is developing in West Africa you should check it out.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

#47 We'll Talk

I'm sorry you weren't there when I called. I'll talk to you next week.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

#46 Wk32 - Intro to Avid

This is the first week of a new module where we learn how to use Avid Xpress Pro, in preparation for editing the footage we shoot a few weeks ago. Avid doesn't have the mind share among would be filmmakers as Final Cut Pro does, so I spend a little time talking about it's place in the filmmaking world.

It is the premier NLE and there's always talk about how it measures up against FCP, so I've included 1, 2, 3 different articles comparing the two. A very significant difference is that the companies that produce these programs have very different missions. Apple is all about bringing the professional media experience to the consumer, Avid is focused on the production needs of professional media makers thru it's own post production systems and the many companies it has acquired, like M-box, Digidesign and Softimage.

I've got some details about a project I'm involved in along with Laura, who I've worked with in the past on the genetic fingerprint documentary. We're going to shoot audience reaction to the play, The 39 Steps, that will be running at the Huntington Theater during September and October. It's a lot of work in a short time, so it should make for some interesting experiences.
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