Again, your faithful narrator has had a busy time in the last two weeks. I’ve been working a lot doing A/V work, and that’s not as bad as it sounds. At least I’m getting caught up on bills and even saving up for another car. That’s right, yet another catastrophe of automotive proportions has hit. The Chevy Blazer pretty much kicked it after all of 1,200 miles. Yee haw. See? I told you it wasn’t me!!!! On Tuesday night, there was a surprise party for Mike Tavares of Tavares Teleproductions. It was for his 50th birthday and not only did his family fly in for the surprise; his father got him the new JVC HD camera, the GY-HD110U. Poor mike has been without a camera of his own since his broadcast camera was stolen 2 years ago. Not only does he now have a camera, it’s High Definition.
This has sent me on a research binge on this camera. So far, AVID Xpress Pro, Adobe Premiere Pro 2.0, and Final Cut Pro 5HD all support this camera for editing. Funnily enough, a few other people I know got this same camera. Stepping up into the High Definition world will help Tavares’ business, and it also means I’ll be able to do some editing in HD there as well try the camera out.
This lead me to 2 techie upgrades. I will now officially Geek Out on you all.
I formatted my main editing machine & re-installed Windows XP. Then I installed all the latest & greatest of my Adobe Software and Avid again. Every now & then you need to clean out the proverbial closet on your computer to keep it running optimally. Never have I been running this well on my main editing machine. The newer tools seem to be running fine and I feel good.
This inevitably led to another re-format, and re-install on the basement editing machine too. This was a little different though because I wanted to do some physical upgrades too. Over the past several years, I’ve stock piled many computer parts, including CPU’s, Memory, hard drives, and more. The Basement Editing machine really is a spare computer and used for visitors and renters that need to edit their own projects. This was a 4 year old machine, stats like “1.7 Gigahertz Celeron processor” and “384 meg of Ram”, plus the slow USB 1.1 connections.
Sitting on my shelf, I pulled all my best components and wanted to see if I could make this machine go faster and be better. Since messing with a CPU is serious business usually involving jumpers, settings, and power management, I recruited TJ Cooley to assist (actually do it since this terrified me). I upgraded to a Intel Pentium iV 2.5 Gigahertz CPU and lo & behold, it was fully automatic and detected the speed and adjusted automatically. I also got 768 Meg of RAM installed and working with one simple push in. I tried to upgrade that RAM over a year ago and it wouldn’t work, and now it suddenly just ate it like it was candy.
Now my Basement Editing machine has a similar upgrade and is only slightly less powerful than my Main Editing machine. This is freakin COOL. Both are capable of handling HDV footage, and I have some decent hard drive space on both machines now. A few months ago as an experiment, I purchased a cheap $20 USB hard drive enclosure from ADS (name brand that makes the PYRO firewire cards for video editing). It worked great for a time and then crapped out, so I bought another one from a no name brand that seems more stable and works faster & more reliably. I will probably pick up another enclosure for the drive sitting on the shelf so that I can put it to use. I want portable drives for being able to transfer video from one location to another for multiple users. Multiple drives for multiple editors… for future projects…. : )
I’m primed to do some real work now… and I have a few projects coming up of my own. There’s something more educational I want to try, and now I think I’ll even do it all in HD because I can. Then there’s the short that may or may not happen for John Fromes depending on if it snows.
Then there’s my next feature… Right now, I’ve got some script pages from George Caleodis and they look good. They flow more along the lines of what I had in mind. Once he completes his draft, I’ll do a quickie re-write of minor tweaks, and then we’ll sit down and have a table read with actors. I’m happier now than I have been about this project.
70 books sold from the TALES FROM THE FRONT LINE OF INDIE FILMMAKING. Not bad since I’m not really trying that hard. I need one more image and an editorial revision for spelling & grammar from my copy editors then this puppy will go wide methinks.
We won a Chris Award from the Columbus International Film Festival. I was not able to attend. I had to work, but I have no regrets. I need the money and if I had to talk about Horrors of War to anyone, I’d have to kill myself. I even moved one of the posters down to the basement and exchanged it for a REVENGE OF THE SITH poster in the living room. That was cathartic.
I finished a Stanley Kubrick book with Interviews with the elusive filmmaker. It got a little repetitive, but also informative. I’m fascinated by the misconceptions about the guy.
He was not a hermit or too weird, he was just private. My favorite part? When Gene Siskel directly asks him about the rumors that he makes his driver go only 30 miles per hour and that he wears a football helmet whenever they drive. Stanley’s response? “[i]I drive a Porsche 930, and it goes a lot faster then 30 miles per hour… I know because I don’t have a driver and I like to drive fast.[/i]”
“V” Is doing well. He’s a happy man. He loves being at eye level with humans, which leads to many climbing adventures. V can get to the top shelf of my 6 foot bookshelves with little effort. If I spend too much time (like right now writing a blog) on the computer, he will work had to get my attention, which in a strange way is helpful to me as a human being to get away from the machines more and be more interactive with the corporeal world.
My party had a clean sweep at the elections this year here in Rossdonia. I even made some TV spots against my opposition in the races. My ad smearing was complete and I won the vote 2 to 3 against Cousette’s Brain, running for Food Administrator in Rossdonia. She lost and was not gracious about it. I had to put her in prison for 15 minutes after her concession speech because it was unconstitutional.
Cousette and V are getting along better, but his attacks are getting more consistent. We will have to get him fixed in a few months and that won’t be a fun trip. He already hates the Vet because he keeps getting shots. Mornings are my time with both cats. They invade my bed and attack me or each other in spite of my body being an obstacle after Brandy leaves for work. I sleep less, but smile more.
On that note, I bid you adieu my loving acolytes.
– Peter John Ross