Saturday, October 20, 2012

Shark Tank Hopefuls, Pitch Me.

I'm a Shark Tank Fan. Every now and then I am surprised at the approach taken by the shark bait.  I guess some people are so busy trying to get their business off the ground they actually don't watch the show, or don't watch it enough, and fall into some basic traps.

If you want to try out for Shark Tank, but want to practice your presentation, I am available, I may even come up with an idea or two to optimize your presentation.  Odds are I won't hurt your presentation, but possibly make it better.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Why do some people still shoot still film and motion picture film?

Sometimes technology moves along so far and so fast that we automatically think the old stuff has no value or point. And yet, there are music enthusiasts who still crave a top of line Record Player over any CD system.

Film too is becoming misunderstood. 

On a separate but relatable note, the July 4th hot dog eating contests are all about cramming as much dead animal into one's gullet as is humanly possible within a certain time limit. In some ways that is what has become of digital. 

The ability to reshoot, reframe, and retry over and over, and for virtually no cost (although the more one shoots (eats) the longer one takes to log the material (digest the food) and decide which shots are the best), and then retouch those shots over and over in photoshop, is sometimes mistaken as always being a superior method to shooting on film.

The charm of film, besides the look of all the different kind of film stocks, is the planning and concentration involved before one pulls the trigger. Film shooting helps a person create an ingredients list of what shots they need, and what they will do with the shots afterwards.

If you have about 500 to 1,000 dollars to spend, you might want to invest in a top of the line Super-8mm camera, join a super-8 forum,  shoot film, have a lab develop the film, and then have the film transferred to a digital editing format of your choice.  

Ah yes, the secret coolness of film is that it is format agnostic. Film becomes the format you transfer it to, and, as formats improve and new ones get created, the same piece of film can be retransferred again, with new and improved quality. Motion picture films shot in the 60's and 70's can be retransferred today with enhanced quality.

Just recently, Kodak announced a new film designed to preserve productions shot on digital video!

Film has been able to match HD step for step. As HD has improved, so has the look of film transferred to HD.

You just may find yourself getting hooked on the challenge of shooting Super-8mm film, and the ensuing results. Some Super-8 cameras come with so many filming options they actually offer many more options than shooting in 16mm or 35mm. Plus, the viewfinders for Super-8 cameras are among the best ever made. However, if you want to match HD quality, you would shoot on 16mm or 35mm.

Or if you already own a digital camera, you could just be like everybody else and buy the newest digital camera, only to kick yourself in the butt for not waiting an extra year or two for the new and improved digital camera that is always around the corner.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Your Beginners Camera Checklist of things to do while preparing for a film, video or still shoot will grow over time.

Camera checklists are essential when preparing for a film, video, or still shoot. Over time, your camera checklist will probably expand. No matter how well you prepare before your first couple of shoots, actual experience is the best teacher of what should be on your camera checklist.

While it's important to learn by doing, it is also important to start out with a beginners checklist that may be beyond your own expertise level. MyAlexLOGIC can provide you with a terrific starter camera check list from which to build on. All you have to do is book the time.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Why Internet Sandboxes are so important.

I tried signing up for an internet conference recently. I requested the opportunity to "pre-check" if I could view the websites content ahead of time by simply looking at a pre-recorded segment of a prior conference that would be streamed exactly in the same way as the live show would be streamed. I was told such a pre-check option was not available.

Ouch! Possibly one of the biggest areas of deceived victims on the internet are the website owners that buy into a live video conference system that does not allow the end viewer a chance to pre-check, or "sandbox" their connection ahead of time to make sure it works. A sandbox approach would allow the end user a chance to try out their video connection well before the event to ensure a confident viewer during the event.
Watching a live event on the internet should be not different than tuning in a television channel on regular television.
I personally learned hundreds of amazing concepts during the 90's when my video editing online suite was comprised entirely of actual high end videotape editing machines and what I saw is what I got, and I could instantly change and video or audio level prior to recording it onto the video edit master. 

Fast forward ten to 15 years later and I see that those exceptional analog video concepts that I learned in the 90's HAVE NOT made it into the world of internet video interaction for the end user.

MyAlexLOGIC one on one studio classes offer a wealth of information.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Carrie Keagan's Color Blocking Fashion sense on the Craig Ferguson Show.

I'm being serious when I say that I have never seen such a vivid shade of yellow as Carrie Keagan's yellow dress on the Feb. 28th, 2012 Craig Ferguson show. 
 I'm impressed when a color, any color, can pop off the television screen because the combination of luminance, saturation and gray scale has been perfectly captured. 
 Unfortunately, CBS internet video has crushed the black levels from 7.5 to 0.0, so even though the yellow still pops, the actual video image is being incorrectly being displayed by CBS on the internet. 
 Keagan mentioned that her dress was part of the "color blocking" fashion rage.  If you click on the link, definitely watch the 16 image slide show on color blocking fashion.
Unfortunately, CBS internet video has crushed the black levels from 7.5 to 0.0, so even though the yellow still pops, the actual video image is being incorrectly being displayed by CBS. 
Crushing the black level is a way to conserve the amount of broadband needed to transmit an image over the internet. When Keagan turns her back to show the black on the back of her dress, that black is probably not 100 percent black, but it shows up that way in these images because the black levels have been crushed.

I'm amazed at how much I have learned by having my own video editing studio and how easily such basic, critical and foundational knowledge skills are either being lost or purposely ignored as technology continues to "improve".

MyAlexLOGIC offers classes on monitor calibration and key color correction strategies.

You can catch this Feb. 28, 2012 Craig Ferguson episode at CBS online.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Analog solutions in a digital world, or how people learned to love Fed Ex for shipping computer data.

This is why MyAlexLOGIC exists. It's no longer just about what piece of film, sound, or video equipment you may decide to purchase, it's really about implementing a complete plan on how you realistically intend on using the device you purchased, how it will actually integrate with what you already are using.

Realistically and integrate being the key words. There may be times when actually keeping data on separate drives, or having more than one computer system, or more than one work station may increase productivity by leaps and bounds.

However, there may always be a strategy that you don't see until you actually discuss your plans with an expert. 

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Hackers can cause printers to start on fire, really?

According to Time Magazine's Techland, new age printers can be hacked via a computer and set to glow red and burn. The trouble nowadays with hacking, is if a hack really works, it could just be a step away from being taught to those who would never know how to do it themselves.

However, is it the hackers that are the bad guys if the product being sold can be hacked and turned into a potential lethal weapon?  Hopefully manufacturers will respect that there should be a legitimate firewall between their products and hacking.

One of the aspects of MyAlexLOGIC classes that I am proud of is the attention given to what you control and what you don't control. 

What you control, and what you don't control can be incorporated into every day life and is included in virtually any class that you take from MyAlexLOGIC

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Martin Scorsese 3d Family Film Hugo proves that filmmakers who shoot on film make the best digital and 3d digital productions.

What I find so beguiling about all the film hating, digital is "better, faster and cheaper" crowd is that when a FILM MAKER comes along like Martin Scorsese, they celebrate his making a digital 3d film without ever concluding that perhaps the reason Mr. Scorsese can make such a great 3D film on his first try is that he made so many great FILMS, shot on FILM, first.

It's been well over 5 years ago that I pretty much wrote the concept that digital video makers who have also shot on film will usually do a better job on digital video production than those who have not. 

I have also previously stated that filmmakers who have shot on film stand a better chance of making a better video production shot on digital video as well. I think Martin Scorsese supplements my point for me as well.

No matter how good one is at digital "film" making, learning how to make a film, on film, should expand your digital creativity, and your expertise should grow by leaps and bounds as well.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Explaining the Human Microphone used by the Occupy Movement.

The Occupy Movement's "human microphone" has a secret brilliance to it that I have not seen mentioned yet. 

The naysayers who don't believe in the Occupy Movement can point to the human microphone as proof that the Occupy group does not have a mind of its own, that the group simply repeats what the speaker says.

Others can also point out that the group's repetition of the original speakers voice can lead to a form of social brainwashing as the group speak can be labeled a form of catatonia. This is an ironic yet inaccurate interpretation of a social cause that is diametrically opposed to the elite political and financial collusion that certainly does exist nowadays.

The human microphone replaces amplified sound in the event that amplified sound is not allowed. The human microphone also gives the audience a forewarning that something was just said, and if they continue to pay attention they will hear it the second time around.
But there is another, extremely deft reason for the human microphone. The human microphone prevents small group chatter that can drown out the very purpose for meeting as a group in public. I can unequivocally state from all of my experiences as both a headphone wearing camera person and as an attendee to various public events that crowd chatter can render the purpose of any meeting relatively pointless.
I've experienced groups as small as 12 to 15 people become multiple chatter islands that prevent the group as a whole from listening to the head speaker. 

So the next time you view a youtube video of an occupy movement and you hear a group repeat what the speaker just said, you can be pretty sure that the audience is actually listening.

(Update, Nov. 25, 2011, 10:23am)  About a week after I first wrote the above, I found this very fascinating topic about the human microphone on Occupy Los Angeles. Please note that virtually everything I discussed above is mentioned in the article, with the exception of the crowd chatter.


Thursday, November 10, 2011

My Free Stuff links that I have shared on the internet.

I have written perhaps over 5,000 free comments on the internet that are either researched or from my own production experiences. If you can't afford to take my one on one classes you can always check out my free resources that are spread all over the internet.

The advantage in taking a one on one class is that you help control where the content of the class goes. If I tried to create webisodes passing on various things I have learned, the odds that I would create it in the order you wanted to see it in are miniscule at best.

The one on one classes allow you to have my full attention and our interaction can result in getting a lot of information that directly relates to your production situation. Here are some links to just some of my free internet contributions.

(8) Ebay Guides.

All Experts - Alessandro Machi has answered 101 film and video related questions.

I've also shared thousands of comments on several film and video production forums.  If I can remember where they all are I might add them to this article.  However, I'm not exactly sure that is necessary.

Simply google my name "Alessandro Machi" in quotes and you should find a ton of links to forums and such.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Actor's Demo Reel Reviewed by AlexLOGIC.

I have edited several dozen actors demo tapes. Having the actor with me when I edited was very enlightening. Not only did I learn some very interesting tidbits about what the actor experienced during their acting jobs, I was also able to evaluate the scenes the actor liked versus what I felt were their most impactful scenes.

Having your demo reel evaluated by me may help you choose the best scenes for your demo reel. I recommend not only bringing your finished demo reel, but the longer version that features most of your work as well. 

This two hour course should teach you what to look for when you make your next acting demo reel. This is key, actually figuring out which scene is your strongest can be complicated by various factors that are not always obvious.

Because I am both a camera person and editor, I also have a keen eye for technical issues and can point out what scenes I think are your strongest scenes.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Learn about Twitter.

Did you know you don't need a cell phone to use Twitter? Don't dismiss Twitter until you learn the various ways it can work as a communication tool for you even if you prefer using a conventional phone.

I've never twittered by phone but still have several Twitter accounts that I regularly use.

This one on one class with Alessandro Machi will show you the productive ways you can use twitter to find people with similar interests as yourself. 

This course is of course for those who don't twitter, don't know how to twitter, or don't want to know how to twitter by phone but want to learn how they can still benefit by using twitter on their computer.

Agents Only! How to stay competitive as a Talent Agent.

Talent Agents, don't look the other way as the digital revolution passes you by. If you don't have a devoted friend or family member who knows computers, odds are you have fallen behind the latest revolution of digital media options.

Your lifelong clients can benefit career wise if you learn more about the digital revolution and the ways you can promote their past and future projects.

This one on one class with Alessandro Machi is an excellent way to learn a low cost and even no cost way to promote your clients, even your famous clients, in the Digital Age.

For the serious prosumer and consumer non-linear editor, this class is for you.

My 25 years of video editing experience has taught me basic, extremely functional methods that are essential to successfully editing video projects.

If you are presently non-linear editing or about to enter the world of non-linear editing, the instruction I can share with you before you begin editing can save you a lot of grief and upset later on. 

The advice you receive one on one with Alessandro Machi may involve ideas and concepts that you won't receive anywhere else, but they will be ideas that are easily embraceable and that should reward you with a happier and more efficient non linear editing experience.

Surprising Video Camera Choices for Youtube Videos.

In this one on one course you will witness the quality of various older cameras, both analog and digital, that can produce surprisingly good results as compared to the newer compact internet ready cameras.

Bring your own computer top internet ready camera and we can compare the quality between the various cameras.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

How Anton Battery Chargers and Digital Video Chargers work.

This one on one class gives you hands on experience working with anton bauer batteries and chargers plus how the smaller prosumer and consumer batteries work.

Learn the difference between lead acid batteries, ni-cad batteries, and lithium ion batteries and which battery may be the logical choice for your particular production situation.

Super-8 Special Effects Revealed.

There is no point in never sharing some of the special effects I have learned from shooting in Super-8. Some of the award winning Super-8 special effects that I have created may have never been done before or since.

My super-8 special effects are usually of the long time exposure type.  However, I've also done a lot of time-lapse super-8 and can share my experiences when it comes to determining the ideal time-lapse rate for your particular purpose. 

You will see never before shared super-8 special effects techniques.

Security and Surveillance Videos Analyzed.

My 25 years of award winning editing and camera experience sometimes enable me to sometimes notice things within a video image that others may miss. 

I can analyze a video sequence with you present and see if I notice something about the video that may have previously gone unnoticed.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Transferring VHS, S-VHS, 8mm, Hi-8 and Digital 8 video to DVD, why it's so much more complicated than it seems.

I used to offer analog video to DVD services. I stopped offering the videotape to DVD service when I realized that for 99% of the population, the cost was all that mattered. 

If you are the curious type and wonder what goes into actually optimizing the quality of an amateur home video, you will be blown away by the amount of adjustments that can be made during the process of transferring a home video to either digital videotape or a hard drive, or straight to DVD.

Irrespective of what can be done digitally after a video is uploaded to a hard drive for further processing, the actual step of playing back the video is downplayed, even though the quality of the transfer into the digital realm is just as important as what can be done once in the digital realm.