Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Little Update

Got another shoot on Saturday. I can't wait. It's been fun so far and each Ginker we interview has some interesting stories. I just have to pick up some tapes and such first. Might order me a wide angle lens too. I've been jonesing for one though a telephoto would help more, I reckon.

New comics today as well. Some decent stuff in addition to the stuff I missed last week. JSA Classified had a good Hourman story. GL was decent with the Alpha Lanterns though I'm annoyed that they took one of my favorite new lanterns, Kraken, and turned her into one. I'm not a fan of the half-robot GLs that they have become. Maybe if I seem them in more detail I'll like them but their oath is pretty stupid. I wish everyone would stop using the GL title as an excuse for bad poetry. It's just as bad as the Sinestro Corps oath, so be warned.

Edit: Got the name wrong again. It's Kraken, not Raker. Guess she's not really my new fave. :)

Monday, January 21, 2008

Ginkers Youtube Clip

Hi all. Here's a little project that I've been working on and promising in previous posts. It's the first clip from all the shooting I've been doing for Rob. Nerfherder supplied the music. Enjoy.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Striking Features

The writer's strike is turning out to be a good thing for me. No, not because I'm a scab, but because without all the quality tv that I usually watch, I'm actually finding free time to finish some models that I've been working on, or at least come close to finish them. Right now I'm just about done with Parallax (who I started in August) and Ion and Soranik Natu, who I started last month. Once they're done, I'll either finish or toss the shitty Power Girl I was working on (which I'm hoping to save with a decapitation) and then finish the Havoc and Mechagoatman so I can work on a video I've been telling everyone I'm going to do. Keep your eyes peeled here for pictures and ramblings.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Write Up

Rob gots himself a write up in the Asbury Park Press about the movie. For those about to rock and who don't have a copy of the Friday Jersey Alive! section, I have scanned it in for you. Like so many other things, just click it to enlarge.

God this is going to give me a lot of white space to fill up. Maybe I'll do a little dance. Beware.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Day 2

Another day of shooting, this one rather brief and stripped down, occurred between 12 and 1 today in Beachwood. It was just Rob, me, the subject and a camera. I think it went well and this guy has some great stories to tell about the scene and Ginkerdom in general. I think the footage looks good but I still have to check it to make sure all the levels are fine. Cloudy day so that made things fairly easy, lighting-wise though I'll have to invest in some black posterboard or foamcore to get negative light, in addition to some reflectors for later outdoor shoots to make things easier on us. Good day overall.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Day 1

Ok, so it's a few days past but on Saturday we officially had our first day of shooting on the Ginker documentary as helmed by Rob Thorpe, our director and captain. It was a fun shoot. We rallied at 3:30pm to meet and get ready for a magic hour shoot and headed out to the river down the street in Keyport to get some good footage. I was on second camera, a Canon HV20, while Matt was the man with the XL-1. His camera is a prosumer model where I'm at a consumer level but HD and we both got some excellent footage. I'm a little disappointed with about a minute of it where it's pretty grainy due to the light issue discussed in a previous post but there are plenty of useable shots. I was making due with a ghetto steadicam rig too, which is basically a folded up tripod, so it's not even a real ghetto steadicam but it helped even out a few of the shots.

Later on, after dinner and a drink, we headed to our next location but it started raining out so the interview had to be conducted indoors at a friend's house since every other location we tried didn't work out for various reasons. I wish we could have gotten the pizza place since it would have been sweet. I think for a future shoot we should try for one since the neon lights in their windows give off a cool glow. Regardless, the interview went great and the subject was quite lively and I think we got some goodly results for a first shoot. Check out the Rucksack Films myspace page for more info.

I'm going to try and post some of the outdoor shots on Vimeo to check out later if the render I'm working on ever finishes and if it's ok with Rob.

HV20 Fun

Unfortunately, no video, but I found out a cool trick while surfing online. Apparently I can turn off the gain while shooting so I can get better shadows and night shots. On the down side, this requires a lot of light, or at least more than a regular room bulb. That's still pretty cool though. I might have been able to use that trick on Saturday. I have one minute or so of footage that is a great shot but isn't that great quality-wise thanks to the gain. There was little light though since it was an outside night shoot so I'd probably be screwed either way but I'd rather be screwed without the grain.

Also, HD video is a processor hog. :)

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Super Swing Golf 2

Fore. It's golfing season again, at least indoors on the Wii with Super Swing Golf Season 2. If you like the first game, it's a lot more of the same great golf action but with some improvements. You can skip the computer's turn so the rounds move faster, you can unlock costumes by collecting coins, rather than performing esoteric tasks in a specific way and the load times are a lot better as well. The tour mode is particularly fun as it's set up like a game board that you progress by playing golf matches or mini-games. The difficulty seems to be ramped fairly well so you won't be going crazy like in the first one against a computer that chips in a shot from 50 yards to get an eagle.

The characters are the same as the previous iteration though they have new costumes and there are more items and clubs to choose from. I'm only a little way in but I'm enjoying the game quite a bit as the title isn't one that I play rabidly, but go to about once a day for my golf fix so I'm not killing a ton of time. Well worth picking up if you like golf tempered with anime style characters and a few power shots to cut down on the dryness of realistic golf.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Happy New Year

It's 2008 and time for some new reviews. The first up is I Am Legend. There may be some spoilers, so be warned.

I went to see this Sunday and was actually fairly disappointed in it. It's a decent flick but it doesn't really follow the book save for bits and pieces, which isn't a bad thing, but the things they didn't keep makes you wonder why they kept the name at all.

The plot centers around Robert Neville, a virologist and colonel who seems to be the last man alive in NYC, much less the word. Seems a virus wiped out the world and he's trying to find a cure for it, though he himself is immune. It's basically in case he finds any survivors who somehow dodged the bullet like himself, which would mean they are immune and not needing the cure, but maybe for future generations born without the immunity. You know, for posterity and such. Anyhow, he spends his days working out and in his lab and cruising for food and dvds. By night, well, you don't really know unless you read the book or saw a spoiler, but he basically hides from somethings that go bump in the night.

Vampires are those things, well, kinda. You don't really get the idea that they're vampires and you don't really see them do any feeding but since there's not much around to hunt, you can't really knock them for that. The thing is, in the book, the vampires are basically humans who come out at night and who are a little more savage and hate the light, but they're not a great deviation from a human being. The vamps in this movie look like a cross between the infected from 28 Days Later and the shit from Van Helsing. Scary, but with crappy CGI and the whole monster aspect removes one of the key points of the book, especially the ending.

When the third act of the film starts, you think it's the second and then it's a breakneck rush to an ending that feels tacked on. Will Smith is great throughout and it's a shame that the movie falls apart at this point. A lot of that comes from the decision to make the vampires superhuman. So a virus does this? Really, does it give them super muscles and bone structure so that they can scale fucking buildings in a single bound? It doesn't really make sense but provides some scares.

Overall, I think The Last Man on Earth stands as a better adaptation of Richard Matheson's novel and this movies stands as a good remake of the Omega Man. Worth checking out but for god sakes read the book so you can see what the hell I'm talking about. Also, watch 28 Days Later, since it provides a fun spin on the book, even though it's not based on it, and for what this movie might have been.