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Watch out, Adobe!

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Charlie King
Re: Watch out, Adobe!
on Aug 18, 2008 at 5:18:54 pm

Mark,
I totally agree, it blew me away too. I believe more than ever now that I have picked the right time to retire. It is truly obvious that I am really a dinasour. With the new age of software and video capabilities, the old time making equipment do what it was not originally designed to do in order to make things look better is past it's time, and as a result so am I.

We've been saying it for awhile now that computers have brought in a whole new set of production people. Anyone is capable now of creating pretty pictures, you don't need an artist anymore.

For anyone that is not yet aware, my last day of regular work is September 11, after that I will be a civilian of liesure activities,
well, at least in name. My honey do list is pretty big and should keep me busy for a while.

Charlie

ProductionKing Video Services
Unmarked Door Productions
Flamingo Las Vegas Hotel
Las Vegas, Nevada


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Mark Suszko
Re: Watch out, Adobe!
on Aug 18, 2008 at 9:36:13 pm

Charlie, congrats on the career and what I'm sure is a well-deserved rest. Don't think this gets you off the hook for sticking around here to lend some of your experience to us younger folks!

However, I look at the situation you described differently. I think things are more positive than you're saying. After all, we are still artists and craftspeople, and the most sophisticated tools in and of themselves don't create anything. That's the part of us that never gets old or goes out of style.

I've looked all over the Lightwave 3-D interface and damned if I can find the "make cool dinosaur" button:-) Likewise, Final Cut does not have a "make this video not suck" menu. Such things are up to we who want to learn how to do these things.

The link I pointed out offers a powerful new combination of tools, nothing more. They can be used to fix things that never could be fixed before, and they can be used proactively to improve or create new, better images we could only imagine before. It's all really up to us. And it is this facet of many in the business that keeps me feeling young. You can't learn it all, it keeps growing, and you chase it as long as as hard as you dare. I'm just now getting to the point in my own life that I'm beginning to see what all the possibilities are, how the new parts can be fit together with the old, so we can do what we have always done, since Porter spliced his first shot:

Tell stories.


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Watch out, Adobe!
on Aug 18, 2008 at 10:03:53 pm

I agree with you Mark. It's the tools that are getting more powerful and thus allows them to be spread around to many many more users. This program fixes major major major issues. If the camera was in the right hands to begin with, these fixes wouldn't be necessary, or need to be as drastic.

The video is very cool, what they don't ruminate on is who is taking the still pictures and how good those have to be or how they need to be framed in relation to the video. Very cool stuff, but I get a sense of what you are seeing on that video is the very best of the best. Still, the technology experiment seems to be very promising. Increasing resolution on low res images will be very crucial as time goes on and shooting/broadcast resolution increases as editors have to pull from their beta/digibeta/dv libraries of yesteryear and combine that with higher resolution video images of today. You have to remember HD video is still low res, hell so is 4K, when you compare the resolution to even the cheapest of consumer grade still cams.

Jeremy


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Charlie King
Re: Watch out, Adobe!
on Aug 19, 2008 at 3:26:08 pm

OK, so I went a little overboard. I think I may be a little bit depressed as I watch a long and satisfying career come to an end. I really shouldn't be pushing my minor depressing feelings on others.
I really don't wish to say there are no artists anymore, the true professionals are still artists with better brushes than I had early in my career. My concern is that the labor market is being diluted with professional wannabe's that see these tools as a shortcut to better products than hard work and true creative thought. It's these people that make it harder for the true artists that are still trying to get quality into their product, and the clients that prefer cheap over quality.

[Jeremy Garchow] "If the camera was in the right hands to begin with, these fixes wouldn't be necessary, or need to be as drastic."
That's the point I am talking about. It brings back the old saying that was always the pet peeve of good editors, "He can fix it in post."

[Jeremy Garchow] "The video is very cool, what they don't ruminate on is who is taking the still pictures and how good those have to be or how they need to be framed in relation to the video."

Reminds me of the tests of tape products in the past. The tape Manufacturers would have demos on how well their product made things look, but they would use the best possible circumstances to use as the demo. I preferrred to bring along a video that was not shot under best conditions and see if it worked as well on that.

Sorry for the long post, but I have to vent sometimes.

Hang in there guys and make us dinosaurs proud of the tradition we are leaving behind.

Charlie


ProductionKing Video Services
Unmarked Door Productions
Flamingo Las Vegas Hotel
Las Vegas, Nevada


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Watch out, Adobe!
on Aug 19, 2008 at 3:43:46 pm

[Charlie King] "It's these people that make it harder for the true artists that are still trying to get quality into their product, and the clients that prefer cheap over quality. "

I hear that. It is definitely a concern for me as I get further along in my career. But to some degree hasn't this always been true?


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Charlie King
Re: Watch out, Adobe!
on Aug 19, 2008 at 3:56:07 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "But to some degree hasn't this always been true?"

When an edit bay cost over $1 million to equip, you didn't have as many people getting into the business cheap. You always had clients that wanted you to cut your prices, but when there was no one that could afford to do that and keep their payments up on their facilities, it was not a problem. Oh, and by the way, $1 million got you bare basics, not many frills.



Charlie



ProductionKing Video Services
Unmarked Door Productions
Flamingo Las Vegas Hotel
Las Vegas, Nevada


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Watch out, Adobe!
on Aug 19, 2008 at 4:08:42 pm

I guess that was a bit before my time. Let me ask you this.

Do you think the people that were lucky enough to have a job operating that equipment were truly the best artists, or were they the people that had the proper training to operate it? And don't you think with the proliferation of video media on everyone's everyday lives worldwide, don't you think the market has changed a ton?

Congrats on your retirement by the way!

Jeremy


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Mark Suszko
Re: Watch out, Adobe!
on Aug 19, 2008 at 8:13:25 pm

Jeremy, I was on the tail end of that era when I got into the biz, and my opinion is it was a bit of both. The barriers to entry were higher, so it was more important to get some internships and a university degreee as a way to get in the door. Nobody was going to let you touch the million-dollar suite until you passed some kind of filter. In my day, a major filter was going thru the university and internship system. It was sort of an apprenticeship.

The guys that ran those 80's suites broke down into two main types: engineering-centric types who were "helmsmen", i.e. button-pushers, more interested in the electro-mechanics and not neccessarily storytelling, who took their orders from some creative type, but did pretty boring and blah stuff oin their own... and then there were "cutters" who were already pretty sharp cutting film and just transitioned into a different medium with this then-new technology.

This is not to say there weren't also blends of these two types, you could find mixtures all along the spectrum, but there was definitely a camp of gearheads who were mostly about the technology, and another camp who were primarily creative storytellers, who really didn't care how the clock was made, just what time it was. Made for a complete technological ecosystem.

But the shops that pushed the boundaries back then had to have both. Sometimes this was in one person, other times, a team of cutters supported by engineering types. As the gear got ever easier, and the exclusive cachet of the gear wore off the engineering-centric types often moved off to other, more cutting-edge stuff, from my perspective. Kind of like hams after the CB craze. The ones that stayed with it often moved off into more esoteric areas of that hobby.

Again, this is just one man's generalization, not meant to pigeonhole anybody.

Now, can we get back to how cool this technology is? And how we can start incorporating it into future work.



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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Watch out, Adobe!
on Aug 19, 2008 at 8:18:48 pm

[Mark Suszko] "Now, can we get back to how cool this technology is? And how we can start incorporating it into future work. "

:-D Agreed. Thanks, Mark!

Jeremy


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Jason Powell
Re: Watch out, Adobe!
on Aug 20, 2008 at 1:50:09 pm

Well if you dig what those guys are doing at the University of Washington (that's what the Vimeo profile says), then you should definitely check out Paul Debevec's work at USC... http://www.debevec.org/

I don't think this kind of research is at odds with the art and craft we know and love. For those that make their living editing or shooting or just plain old story-telling it just means that we will have better images to convey our message.

J.



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Tim Kolb
Re: Watch out, Adobe!
on Aug 20, 2008 at 3:09:34 pm

I'm not sure I understand the subject line.

Adobe has been working on a few things too. Some of you may remember seeing this:







Also...as far as dynamics and exposure latitude, with motion RAW becoming more and more prevalent, I think much of that problem will fade away.

The scene comp replacements were nice on that clip. (the original one the thread started with...)

Also...CS4 does have some interesting stuff on the way...Adobe hasn't gone to sleep.




TimK,
Director, Consultant
Kolb Productions,

CPO, Digieffects


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Tim Kolb
Re: Watch out, Adobe!
on Aug 20, 2008 at 3:21:28 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "Do you think the people that were lucky enough to have a job operating that equipment were truly the best artists, or were they the people that had the proper training to operate it? And don't you think with the proliferation of video media on everyone's everyday lives worldwide, don't you think the market has changed a ton?"

I'd just toss out that the cost of equipment used to dictate that the production process be very modular. You couldn't afford to be a project producer that had an edit suite (and the engineer to support it) sit around until you finished shooting...at which point your camera goes in the closet until you finish this project in post and start shooting another... You had to have people assigned to the equipment and keep it working, like a bulldozer or an airliner. Continuity of vision was a rare thing.

Now we have the ability to be fully equipped artists able to access any piece of equipment when we want to because more often than not we own it...and pay our bills from doing very integrated, creatively fluid finished work.

...and of course, since the equipment is so affordable, we have any number of newly minted production "professionals" who sell themselves for projects that are more extensive than their experience and because many of them can certainly purchase the same tools we can, the whole field gets a black eye in the customer's mind when they don't perform....

I haven't found anything in life that's completely good or bad...




TimK,
Director, Consultant
Kolb Productions,

CPO, Digieffects


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Watch out, Adobe!
on Aug 20, 2008 at 3:49:56 pm

[Tim Kolb] "I haven't found anything in life that's completely good or bad... "

:)




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