I recently posted an open question about Apple’s intention with Pro Apps to ProVideoCoalition (where you can find me writing slightly more often than here) in light of their firm denial that they intend to sell them. My thesis is that any time a company with a firm policy of not responding to rumors responds to a rumor – something’s up.

Now comes speculation on this topic from that prime silicon valley speculator, Robert X. Cringely. He’s not always right, but he’s an insider reporting with certainty that Apple was talking to anyone and everyone at NAB who would buy Pro Apps.

So that Apple could buy Adobe.

Gulp.

2 May 2008 | punditry | Comments Off on Apple Pro Apps will not leave the Rumor Mill

I am so proud to have been associated with fxphd.com for the last couple of years. I am late posting this but have had a chance to look at the first couple classes in several courses for this term and am impressed. A few highlights:

– The RED101 course focuses on postproduction usage of R3D files. This is The Postproduction Camera and Mike and the guys at fxphd have had their RED since autumn, so they are seasoned veterans on the topic. If you’re in a facility where there are hot debates about how to post-process those R3D files, this course alone could justify the price.

– Gareth Edwards, hero to After Effects artists everywhere for singlehandedly turning around 2 shots a day for months on end in his bedroom for a BBC feature, shows you how he did it.

– Tim Clapham shares his legendary Cinema 4D skills.

– There is a full DOP course that, again, anyone who works with shot footage should see for how well it covers the fundamentals of shooting.

– Victor Wolansky, whom I had the opportunity to meet at NAB, has designed a Syntheyes course – learn to use the world’s most economical 3D tracker beyond RTFM.

– not to mention classes just on Assimilate Scratch, a great series on Nuke, the best Intro to Maya course I’ve ever seen (and I’m not alone in thinking so), and a host of other application-based courses for nerds like us. And a fine art photography course for the less nerdy.

Although the 2 week intro period where you can pick and choose has already come and gone, it’s not too late to sign up pharmacieinde.fr.

29 April 2008 | news, training | No Comments

Wondering where I went? I am alive and more or less well, although Flowseeker might have to become Balanceseeker for a while. You can find me:

– at NAB this week where I’ll be appearing daily in the Artbeats booth giving a “dry for wet” presentation along the lines of a tutorial I designed for StudioDaily (but free of charge)

– on the VFX Show Podcast where I’ve recently been acting as host or co-host

– on Digital Production Buzz where I was interviewed a couple of nights ago about the book

– at ProVideoCoalition where I will be posting observations about NAB and other musings about production and post (and there will no doubt be a good deal of information from colleagues such as Adam Wilt and Mike Curtis about RED’s 3 big announcements, which are creating a Steve Jobs-worthy buzz

As for this blog, I’m annoyed that its appearance disappeared after upgrading WordPress (but not enough to delay posting further in order to fix it). Flowseeker LLC was born a few weeks ago and re-branding will evolve over the next bit… when I can find time…

12 April 2008 | news | No Comments



Check out this video in which Adobe engineers debut some much rumored hardware designed to interface with a future version of Photoshop (and, perhaps, other of our favorite Adobe apps?) to provide persective and depth of field in post.

Not only is it a stunning demo, such a lens might not require mechanical controls for changing focus or aperture; the lenses are the fixed focus type found in your point and shoot camera.

It’s possible to recreate depth of field in post, or do without it entirely, Gregg Toland-style (but since we all know that DOF is crucial to a cinematic look, that ability may be more useful for 3D artists who need that kind of image fidelity).

Adobe has vastly increased its investment in research and development so this is hardly the last innovation we’re likely to see, particularly in cases where the proof of concept comes from academia.

13 February 2008 | after effects, new technology, news, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Adobe’s Magical 3D Lens

Yep, straight from the Product Manager of After Effects, it’s safe to render QuickTime movies again vardenafil otc.

Or rather, it’s at least safer than it was in 7.4, so if you’ve been stuck trying to downgrade to 7.3, there’s an official way out.

6 February 2008 | after effects, news | No Comments

The Pro Video Coalition is now a few hours into its public beta, and I’ve just added an entry there about my favorite new free After Effects script, Magnum, and how Adobe needs to encourage more of that kind of thing.

I’m looking forward to seeing how this evolves – some writers I respect and am proud to be associated with are there. Stay tuned. Thanks to all who came out and said hello at SF Cutters this evening.

1 February 2008 | after effects, news | No Comments

Yes, I’m up late preparing. I’ll be presenting this evening at Adobe’s SF headquarters, along with Stu Maschwitz and Bob Donlon. You can sign up to join us (and do say hello if you’re a reader of this blog, fxphd-er, or we share anything important like a favorite 90’s Hollywood comedy (hmm, well, tie actually between Groundhog Day and Office Space, despite that the latter was a flop whose director allegedly thought of the perfect ending shortly after editing completed).

Also, Rich Young today posted a nice review of the book. He seems likely to be at the event too, if you’d like to meet him.

31 January 2008 | after effects | No Comments

fxguidetvThe latest episode of fxguide TV includes a 5 minute segment from me at the end describing in a nutshell how to stabilize a moving camera in After Effects, a technique that is more thoroughly documented in the book.

Watch High Bandwidth Episode | Watch Low Bandwidth Episode


My bit is in the last five minutes, preceded by a great set of interviews with my neighbors ILM about the amazing work in that VFX Oscar odds-on favorite, Transformers (a stunning array of effects whose sophistication is in inverse proportion to that of the movie itself, if you get my drift).

And don’t forget, a new term is underway at fxphd.com as well; they’ve raised the bar again, and I’m happy to have helped pull in a great motion graphics prof, Tim Clapham from hypa.tv to accompany an array of design courses. It’s 2 weeks in already but not too late to sign up at generic priligy canad.

(Oh, and my afx202 class is back for anyone interested…)

27 January 2008 | after effects, training | No Comments

post-its for post

Readers of this blog may also be aware of Eric Escobar’s blog Prep, Shoot, Post. Last week he described prep, shoot and post on a rather ambitious green-screen commercial project and it just so happens I’m the vfx supervisor. I’m a little late to the party and suddenly realized I should blog about little things having to do with this job. This photo document our prep of the giant cyclorama for motion tracking.


We used lowly green post-it notes from Office Depot. They provide contrast by being brighter and greener than the Rosco Green walls (the post-its are nearly pure green, while the green to be keyed intentionally has a bit more blue in it).


I’ll have more to share about this job as it progresses. It’s a great pleasure to work with the guys at Kontent Films, including Eric, and they got an amazing performance out of their actor/dancers, which will make this piece really stand out. Our work is very much cut out for us as it’s a long piece for a virtual set, but the popping, locking and acrobatics in this piece is so good, people may hardly notice the rest of the visuals, which would be fine – it would mean we didn’t detract from the human element.


Today’s report: I completed a shot breakdown in the same manner that a supervisor on a feature film would do – giving each shot a name and choosing a keyframe from the edit to make a storyboard that we can tape to the wall with a description of important information about the shot, the frame count, which take was used, and so on. Once I have those taped up perhaps I can share that image. Tomorrow we do the online conform of 4:4:4 footage and then we have no excuses – we just have just a few weeks to complete 70 or so shots!

25 January 2008 | after effects | No Comments

Unless you’re one of my parents, you can probably decode that. Here is a list of everything fixed in the latest dot-build of AE. Particularly welcome in this build will be that QuickTime Legacy settings are now on by default. Adobe has wised up and no longer assumes that QuickTime won’t completely screw users with new builds, as it has done with version 7.4. So to recap:

After Effects 8.0.2 for Mac or Windows – what it is.
QuickTime 7.4 – what the eff?

22 January 2008 | after effects, news | Comments Off on AE 8.0.2 Yes! QT 7.4 No!

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