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Old     (deepstructure)      Join Date: Jun 2002       11-29-2003, 6:25 PM Reply   
a few folks have asked me how i did this or that effect in the la familia videos. so i thought, since we have this dedicated forum, wouldn't it be cool if as people posted their films, they also put up a post here explaining what camera they used, what software, maybe how they filmed something or how they did a certain effect, chose a certain shot or didn't, or just their thoughts about their film. a little director's corner type thang.

i know i'd love to hear other people's tales about their fun in the darkroom slaving over fx, or a particular cut. so, i'll toss out the opening salvo...

the equipment

i use this camera exclusively. not because its such a great camera. its

just the only one i have:


i bought it new in 1998 to make a short film with. it's a bit beat up as i crashed with it while filming myself racing down a hill on a snowboard in mammoth. it actually survived the crash better than i did, but has in the long run shown more wear and tear. ;)

the software

i run adobe premiere pro on a xp windows pc (1GB RAM, P4 1.38ghz proc, 60GB hard drive). i think its an excellent program, but haven't used much else to compare it to.

breakdown - part I, the don

la familia is obviously an hommage to the godfather films. when i make a wakeboarding film, i like to come up with a theme. just shoving together a bunch of shots doesn't interest me. picking the music, finding a thru
thread, all of this makes the process of putting together a film much more interesting.

so, since i had spent some time with erica and mark and the rest of their family and friends, i was thinking about family and the godfather theme
seemed a natural fit.

i searched the web for quotes from the godfather and used what i found to determine how i would construct the films. i didn't realize at first that i would be making three films. i thought it might be a two-parter, simply because i knew i had a lot of footage. as i started to put together mark's film, the idea of breaking it into three sections started to coalesce.

the first thing i did actually was create the opening credit sequence for mark's film. i hadn't yet finished digitizing all my footage (which i do at work since i don't have a breakout box for my comp yet - my camera is analog
and doesn't have a firewire connection), so i didn't yet have anything to work with. instead, since i had been struck with the inspiration of doing a godfather idea, i searched the web, found quotes and actual sound bytes from the godfather, and went thru various versions of the theme music on kazaa until settling on the mandolin version.

i did a search on and kazaa for songs with family in the title, which is how i found the bt&h tune. i didn't know it before i started. its a mellow tune, had the right refrain and seemed to fit mark's smooth mellow
style. this first video doesn't feature any sfx except slow-motion and basic cuts and cross-fades.

what would i change/fix?

explict lyrics - unfortunately, i forgot about the language in the thugs song. there's really only one instance of the f-word that really stands out, if that wasnt in there the other stuff might not even be noticed. regardless, it wouldn't take much to edit out the profanity smoothly by using the same music file, but finding a part with just music that matches and
blending the two to obscure the word.

music edit - i didn't do any matching of the video to the music. the music and mark's riding are more flowing - not punctuated by beats and emphasis points so much, so it was easy to just let the music ride underneath the images. but i would probably edit the music a bit. i don't particularly like the accompaniment during this section:


image stabilization - during this shot the image jumps around quite a bit, even in slow motion:


this of course happens when you zoom in, as i was doing to focus on the fact that tim was riding out of his bindings. i could stabilize this shot a bit by zooming in on the image and then moving the image to adjust for the camera movement...but its a serious pain in the ass to do.

i'll continue the discussion of the next two installments in subsequent posts. }


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