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April 28, 2015, 01:46 am

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1  Forum / Dumbtown / Re: The "EFHRK and Snips are moving to LA to live with Boron" thread on: April 21, 2015, 02:44 pm
Do you have a parent who'd be willing to cosign on the lease? That's how I managed to get apartments in NYC as a student. Or can you ask the USC financial aid office for a special letter explaining your circumstances?
2  Forum / The Futuredrome / Re: I am drunk and I have OPINIONS on: April 10, 2015, 01:47 pm
Barcelona is great, you should go! Spain is great for vacations, especially if you want to eat dinner really late, stay out until the wee hours, and have a recovery nap in the afternoon. They take siestas seriously.
3  Forum / General Discussion / Re: Creative Works on: March 19, 2015, 10:43 am
I love a good difference matte! In this case, the Tims never overlap (by design) so a feathered garbage matte was definitely the quickest method. And I think the background of multicolored book titles might have complicated a difference matte, so if they did overlap I'd probably have had to just roto it anyway. There are always a bunch of ways to approach something like this and usually the specifics of the shoot determine the best one! Thanks for subscribing too, it is hard to build a ~web presence~ so every bit helps.
4  Forum / General Discussion / Re: Creative Works on: March 18, 2015, 09:32 pm
boron, I think Tim might take you up on that! I think you guys are facebook friends, that's probably how he'll be in touch.

Wibblewobble- good question! Each layer/instrument is shot separately, and I used a compositing program called Nuke (though it could also be done in After Effects or even Final Cut, just not as easily) to draw masks around each Tim and layer them that way (the piano plate is what I used for the background), so it's not a multiple exposure or anything like that. Basically the way you can select something in Photoshop and copy it to another layer? Like that, but with video. I hope that makes sense!

We had two cameras- one for the wide shot that we kept in the same place the whole time, and one for the close-up of each instrument, and Tim was listening to a guide track from an mp3 player (you can see the wire for the earbud in a couple shots I think) so that as he played each instrument it would sync up, and Tim mixed the different instruments in Cubase afterwards. It took probably five or six hours for the different camera and mic setups and getting good takes of each of the four instruments, and there were windows at camera left, so to eliminate problems with changing light we blacked them out with garbage bags and just used practical lighting.

Thanks so much for your feedback guys. I really appreciate it and know Cam does too.
5  Forum / General Discussion / Re: Creative Works on: March 18, 2015, 12:17 pm
I passed on all your comments, guys, thank you so much for taking a look. We've recorded another cover and a couple of original songs too.

The cover is 'Hood' by Perfume Genius, who I'm kind of obsessed with at the moment.
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dGHroKVi8E" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dGHroKVi8E</a>

This is 'Prophet of the Rose & Crown', an original song about a barfly in an English pub:
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mv8AS1p2Vvc" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mv8AS1p2Vvc</a>
This was the craziest to shoot because of limited space in our apartment- we didn't have sandbags to keep the tripod steady and I definitely bumped into it at least twice in between takes of the wide shot and shifted it out of position. I was able to stitch it all together with a little post-production witchcraft, though, and I'm really happy with how it turned out.

And this is 'Strangest Joy', which is a straight-up heartbreaker. This one's also original, about growing old and watching your partner also grow old and slip away. It slays me, don't listen to it if you don't want to cry.
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rVX3cKft3L0" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rVX3cKft3L0</a>

So much of my experience in the past five years or so is just at a desk, editing and compositing, so it's been fun to get behind a camera again and dealing with all the on-set issues. All of these are live sound, too, no lip-synching, though I'm looking forward to doing some artsier videos with a pre-recorded track.
6  Forum / AV Club / Re: TODAY I WATCHED... on: March 08, 2015, 09:53 pm
PHEW THANK YOU

I also watched Whiplash this weekend, and while I wasn't crazy about it sort of justifying the abusive-man teaching method, I really loved everything else about it. And while the ending storywise was a bit weak for me, it succeeded in being so entertaining and brilliantly edited that I didn't mind. The first two thirds were such an effective horror film, and the performances were excellent.
7  Forum / AV Club / Re: TODAY I WATCHED... on: March 08, 2015, 12:21 pm
Birdman

Hoo boy I did not think this was a good film! I felt like none of the points it was trying to make about acting or theater or film rang true, the characterizations were one-note and cliche, most of the character arcs didn't lead anywhere, the theater critic was a cartoonishly villainous strawman, and the ending was nonsensical. I hated that the attempted rape was brushed off with a one-liner from a character who was a sexist parody of every actress cliche, and thought it was odd that most of the supporting cast all but disappeared by the third act of the film. And ultimately I felt like the script couldn't make up its mind about any of the dichotomies it posed. Are superhero films low-brow trash or some kind of redemptive freedom? Is theater a higher art form than film, or is it an enterprise propped up entirely by agenda-driven critics and arbitrary standards? Blah blah social media?

For a film about acting I also found most of the performances either too inert or over-the-top. The stage scenes are mostly shot from behind the actors, which is a deliberate choice I guess, but left the quality of their performances pretty ambiguous and made those scenes feel more anticlimactic than they should have been. The play didn't seem very ...good.

A lot of other smaller things bothered me too, like the film just taking at face value Norton's assertion that he's a fraud everywhere but on stage. That's how some actors think of themselves, probably, but there's also heaping piles of insecurity and doubt in there too. He very much cares what other people think of him! That the film never punctures the characters own bs was a constant irritant.

Anyway I'm not surprised that the Academy loved it, but I am surprised at the almost universally positive critical reception. I can only guess that the scary theater critic in the film intimidated too many critics into "I'm not like other moms, I'm a cool mom" mode.
8  Forum / Dumbtown / Re: I'm going to pursue comedy full time, tell me I'm crazy? on: March 04, 2015, 07:29 pm
Yay! This is awesome and inspiring.

Tim's in a similar place with wanting to quit his job and pursue music full time, and we've got a rough timeline for making that happen, and are really excited about getting to a point where it's possible, but man it's scary too (probably moreso for him than me). I also quit my job to go freelance at the end of last year, and I've got a steady freelancing gig at the moment and am much better off than I was before, but for the first six weeks or so it was kind of tumbleweeds, far too easy to feel like I'd messed up, so don't get discouraged if things seem like they're taking too long to get going. You and your family are awesome and I'm super happy for you.
9  Forum / AV Club / Re: The Kanye West Thread on: February 09, 2015, 02:35 pm
I want to clarify that I am FULLY in favor of Kanye coming on stage to correct awards shows missteps, though. He's the People's Voice.
10  Forum / AV Club / Re: The Kanye West Thread on: February 09, 2015, 02:30 pm
The video at Vulture has been taken down, but it's all here:
http://gawker.com/kim-smiles-nervously-as-kanye-delivers-his-full-beck-ra-1684611748

I am obsessed with trying to read Kim's expression when he says "The Kardashians wouldn't be famous if beauty wasn't important."

I love Beck but was pretty bored by Morning Phase, I don't think it was award-worthy. But I think Kanye would be a lot happier if he took awards shows less seriously? His ire is justified but his targets make no sense- it's not Beck's fault that the Grammys are decided by a bunch of old dudes or that hip-hop and R&B are frequently overlooked for AotY. The solution isn't making poor Beck or Taylor Swift give up their awards but like, not participating in awards shows or not using them as any kind of credible measure of artistic achievement, because they aren't, and never have been.

I love his righteous condemnation of branding, but network advertising is probably the least insidious, and that's who's giving him his platform in the first place, and then he just uses the opportunity to show off Kim's outfit. I guess his argument there would be that fashion is art, rather than advertising, which, eh. I feel like he's always on the right track and generally has good points, but gets flustered trying to say everything he wants to say in the couple minutes of airtime he knows he's limited to.

Also his performance of Only One was great:
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LRisdzyIECA" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LRisdzyIECA</a>
11  Forum / AV Club / Re: The Kanye West Thread on: February 09, 2015, 11:51 am
Ah, excellent.
12  Forum / AV Club / Re: The Kanye West Thread on: February 09, 2015, 11:22 am
I love how much Kanye loves Beyonce.

JRB- I didn't watch the Grammys- what's happening in that GIF?
13  Forum / General Discussion / Re: Anonymous Facebook Status Thingies on: February 07, 2015, 06:32 pm
In a mother’s womb were two babies. One asked the other: “Do you believe in life after delivery?” The other replied, “Holy crap, a talking fetus!"
14  Forum / General Discussion / Re: Creative Works on: January 15, 2015, 03:29 pm
This is only partially my creative work- I helped to shoot, and subsequently edited, this video of a dude you guys may know as Camerhil performing Billie Holiday's Lover Man:
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NUgk0XUjwJQ" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NUgk0XUjwJQ</a>

We're hoping to shoot more videos in the coming weeks- some more covers, but especially some original songs that nobody's heard yet, which are really very good.
15  Forum / Sanctum Sanctorum / Re: Charts and Graphs thread on: December 05, 2014, 07:40 pm
Hmm yes *strokes beard* this seems very good and true
16  Forum / General Discussion / Re: When work attacks. on: December 02, 2014, 03:55 am
Who's got two thumbs, is still work at four in the morning, and is about to fall face-first onto her keyboakldsfkldjrggggggggggggggggggg
17  Forum / Dumbtown / Re: nerds fucking suck on: November 23, 2014, 11:39 am
This is my new favorite blog. Here he reads a study about mutual appreciation and acknowledgment between partners and turns it into a scoring system for women's submissiveness. I love picturing him sitting in a living room with his girlfriend (who doesn't exist) while she's reading or something and he's just asking her inane questions every four minutes and taking notes on how she responds. And when he finally realizes it MIGHT be a two-way street:
Quote
Acknowledging her bids and participating in what seems like mindless, pointless discussion is actually re-affirming and validating your interpersonal attachment to each other.

Awww romance isn't dead
18  Forum / Sanctum Sanctorum / Re: Charts and Graphs thread on: November 09, 2014, 01:05 pm
I'm sure it depends on the university, but my ID didn't have my date of birth on it, and some people aren't yet 18 when they start school. And for people with limited ability to get a drivers license, state ID, or passport, a university ID is possibly even less accessible. Depending on your brother's state laws, it's possible that it was just up to the pollworker to accept his ID, and discrimination could play a factor in how that played out for other people as well.
19  Forum / AV Club / Re: TODAY I WATCHED... on: November 02, 2014, 05:44 pm
Strange Days (1995)

What a mess! Has roots as James Cameron's film response to the Rodney King verdict and the LA riots (all of which is handled pretty well and much more directly than it would be today, and it is all still super relevant because our cops are still racist murderers) but gets swamped by Ralph Fiennes being a bit camper than he can really pull off and a plot with Juliette Lewis as an aspiring singer that is really only tangentially related to the heart of the story. Somebody could do a cut of just Angela Bassett's scenes (because she really should be the main character) and it would make 50% more sense, be a tidy 90 minutes long, and be much more politically and emotionally effective. A lot of bits and pieces are great and inventive and provocative, but ultimately it's too unwieldy and doesn't cohere.
20  Forum / Dumbtown / Re: What is the Best Nut? on: October 27, 2014, 06:48 pm
I'm only linking to this as an example of how to rank nuts completely and utterly incorrectly.
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