Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Making and Sharing Our Own Movies

In the 1960's filmmakers including Richard Leacock, D.A.Pennebaker and Jean Rouch developed a style of creating movies that they called Cinema Verite. For the first time, documentary movies gave the audience "a sense of being there". These movies were made using an innovation in 16 mm camera recording whereby the moving image and sound could be recorded separately on mobile devices and later synchronized. With this equipment, these filmmakers were able to create movies that transported audience across space and time, allowing them to be present in a room where Stravinsky is working out some musical intricacies, or on a country road with Eddie Sachs as he describes how he handles curves on the race track, or in the Attorney General's office as Robert Kennedy explores the tense situation at the University of Tuscaloosa via phone with General Abrams even as Caroline and John Kennedy as young children run through the room.
Today, small synchronous sound movie recording equipment is ubiquitous and anyone can publish their movies on to the Web, witness Jonas Meekas and YouTube. However, at least for this filmmaker, the search goes on for a new form, a form in which we can share fragments of our longer movie explorations incrementally, and later join the parts of our collection together either programatically or through explicit linking. With this general framework in mind, Aisling Kelliher, a PhD student in the Media Fabrics group at the MIT Media Lab, has developed the concept of Confecitonary, a collage-like format in which you arrange still images, small movies, mp3 files and text onto a canvas. As you publish more than one canvas to a specific collection, you can mark out pathways. The environment allows you to specify the community with whom you want to share a story and invites commenting to help us learn what you think of the stories. To explore stories others have made, register and then go to "Gallery", "Paths", "All Paths" at:
If you like what you see, join our exploration of this format by uploading your own media and make your own confectionaries. Enjoy!

Labels: ,

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Interview with Jonas Mekas

If you don't know Jonas Mekas, you should. He has stories to tell, lots of them.

Short Films from a Long Life

Jonas is a filmmaker, a diarist, a poet, a promoter of cinema verite, and an all around innovator. Those of you who are over a certain age may remember his film criticism column in the Village Voice. Jonas is a true pioneer, and the list of his friends reads like a Who's Who of the creative milieu of the '60s and '70s. At 85, he's embarking on a film a day for the year 2007. You'll be able to view them on his website.

Don't miss it!

Digital Restoration cum laude

What takes 700 Mac G5's and 700 terabytes of storage?

Wired News takes you inside THE premiere digital restoration house. Those who have decaying footage from even twenty years ago can be redeemed. If you've ever scanned one frame of a film negative or positive and tried to work with it, you'll know how time consuming it can be. Image 90 minutes worth of 35 mm film frames. 24fps times 90 minutes times 60 seconds per minute equals 129,600 frames. How much time do you have?

Ever use a $300k scanner in a temperature controlled room? (I wonder what the overhead is.) Read the whole story from the link below.

Aging Films Get a Digital Facelift

Monday, December 04, 2006

60 Seconds of Fame

60 Seconds of Fame

Can you do 60 seconds?
"The British Academy of Film & Television Arts (BAFTA) have launched a new short film competition – 60 Seconds of Fame, run in association with Orange, BAFTA has revealed. This new BAFTA competition has the support of BBC Nations and Regions and the Regional Screen Agency network and is open to anyone aged 16 or over.…

"…As the name suggests, budding film makers are invited to submit a 60 second short film based on the theme 'Celebrate', to reflect BAFTA's 60th birthday and Orange's ten-year partnership with the Academy."

more HERE.

Those vlog pieces you been saving may get you worldwide publicity. Visit the Orange BAFTAs page to see more.

Good luck!

Labels: , , ,