The present and future of post production business and technology | Philip Hodgetts

Archive for June 2011

I was fortunate to beta test Final Cut Pro 1 back in early 1999; my company had the second training tool for Final Cut Pro a few months later with the DV Companion; I’ve been writing about editing paradigms and new workflows/new professionals for some time. I was on record as wanting Apple to do the “Apple thing” for Final Cut Pro and pursue some new paradigms for editing. And for the last year, I’ve spend way too much of my time working out what Apple were doing with Final Cut Pro X and what technologies it would use.

So, when Apple invited me for a private preview last week – just a week before Final Cut Pro X’s release – I jumped at the opportunity. Apple additionally have loaned me an i7 17″ MacBook Pro for my testing pleasure.

So, what do I think?


Macromedia Final Cut t-shirt. Fits a much younger man.

I was tipped off at my first NAB in 1998 that Macromedia were showing their new NLE in a little room off the show floor, in among a maze of temporary rooms in the basement of the Sands Convention Center. It was the last demo of NAB.

At the end of the demo – where I immediately knew this was going to be the “hot new NLE” – they threw out T shirts, and in a jump that would do the NBA proud, I caught this T shirt.

Thanks to some recent dieting since NAB 2011, I now fit into this again! Amazing co-incidence just days before a whole new version of Final Cut Pro drops.

What we don’t know about FCP X – What my last year’s obsession can tell us about the unreleased FCP X. (A lot)

If you’re not in LA, don’t want to wait, or are busy Wednesday night, you can get a longer version, with a whole lot of bonus material from Filmmaking Webinars.



The Business side of the Biz!

The Business side of the Biz. Episode 29 of The Terence and Philip show.

In this episode Terence and Philip tackle the business side of the Biz: where we’re at, what being in business means and how to price yourself appropriately.

In the show notes, Terry provides a bunch of useful links for calculating your appropriate hourly rate.

Why a JavaScript hater thinks everyone needs to learn JavaScript in the next year

Since HTML5 is the combination of a few new html tags (predominantly the audio, video and canvas tags) with JavaScript for the interaction, JavaScript is very important to the future of the web, web applications and a browser-based world.

What makes a language useful is some combination of the language’s expressiveness and the libraries and tools available. JavaScript clearly passed the expressiveness barrier a long time ago, even if the ceremony required for creating objects is distasteful. But recently, we’ve seen some extremely important game-changers: jQuery, JSON, Node.js, and HTML5. JavaScript may have been a perfectly adequate language in the past, but these changes (and a few others that I’ll point out) have made JavaScript a language that is essential for every developer to know. If there’s one language you need to learn in the next year, it’s JavaScript.

If this is your beat, the article is well worth reading.  If you’re not that technical, keep in mind that HTML5 is largely about JavaScript, which is getting faster and more flexible all the time!

Last Saturday, June 4th, I had the pleasure of sharing a Keynote with Marcelo Lewin at the OC Pro Media Camp.  The topic was re-inventing ourselves.  This blog post is the essence of what I said in that keynote.

How do we embrace change? Wholeheartedly and with gusto.  Change is inevitable. In fact it may be the only true constant.  Most people dislike or even fear change, but want things to “get better”.

Fundamentally there are two types of change: Continued Reinvention & Dramatic Reinvention.  I’m 55 now and, as best I can count, I’m on my sixth distinct career. Many of those were a slow transition: from being a general, do anything video production company to specializing in training and education production, which lead inevitably to becoming a training design specialist. The transition from Charisma Video Productions – my first Australian company – to Charisma Digital as the first digital post house in Australia’s sixth largest market – was a significant transition, but more evolution than revolution. But the jump from the Intelligent Assistant training tools to Digital Production BuZZ was a complete re-invent.


Lighting bill plumets using EPIC. Post on Reduser parallels my thinking from March

From the forum post:

We are working on a few quotations out of the US, Europe and Asia at the moment and we often go back to older jobs for reference.

One thing that dawned on us the other day was how our lighting (gaffa) quotations have plummeted over the last 12 months. We still hire Gaffas but really.. hardly any gear comes out any more. Well only a small percentage of what we did use. 
The latitude and range of the chips these days are so bloody good in hi contrast situations and low light situations that large lamp fill is almost non existent anymore. In Shots were I’d throw up an 18k without even thinking twice to fill a shot under a tree through a 20×20 trace… gone. Generator gone, best boy gone… time delays waiting to set it all up also gone… Trucks have turned to Vans, Hmi’s turned to small LED panels or bounce boards…

How Do You Measure the Value of a Branded Web Series?

As regular readers will know, I’m a big fan of branded media. Like soap operas of days gone by, branded media is a single sponsorship of music, film or web video projects. Of course, one of the problems with any media investment by a brand – be it with branded media or advertising – is measuring the effectiveness.

Wilson Cleveland of CJP Digital who has made a name for himself as a producer of branded content has a formula for assessing monetary value of the media to the brand:

And in working with brands, he’s created a formula by which the actual monetary value of a branded web series can be measured for the brand. “We’re in a position to calculate a different kind of ROI than ad plays and impressions,” Cleveland said via phone. The basic purpose is to evaluate things from an earned media perspective.

Branded media is at least only giving us one brand message, and one presumes it’s done in a way that is at least sympathetic to the media’s content.

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