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Alexis Vanier

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About Alexis Vanier

  • Birthday 08/09/1987

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  • Location
    Montréal, Canada
  • Specialties
    Photo, sound, music, filmmaking, digital stuff, more photo... more photo again. Always up for a gearfest.

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  1. Hi, I'm currently exploring my options for a documentary short I'm producing. So far, the HPX-500 I feel is the camera that makes the most sense for my project with the deals I'm being offered. I don't quite totally trust the 500 to deliver the goods for an HD finish, so I'm thinking about going for a very clean SD finish. Anyway, I sort of have my mind set on a SD finish since all my other camera options are SD. Has anyone tested the difference of shooting DVCPro 50 and finishing SD versus shooting DVCProHD and downconverting in post to finish SD. I will most likely be editing on Final Cut Pro and I'd like to keep post as simple as possible. A trip through After Effects is out of my motivational gamut... File size is a non-issue if you're thinking about it. Otherwise, I was offered interesting deals for the Digibeta DVW-700WS which I've shot with already (and which I really like), the DVCAM Sony DSR-570, but I'd like to go with 4:2:2 colour space to allow myself some room for colour correction. Finally the Sony EX1 could be an option but I'd like to stay 2/3". I'm very open to suggestions. Thank you for sharing your knowledge.
  2. Hi, I'm working on a documentary TV series project and I was wondering if somebody knew about TV advertisement standards. My goal is to prepare a template defining the temporal min-max dimensions for all the building blocks in the show so I can try and figure out how much material has to be shot to fill in those blocks. Put it simply : How is 42 minutes of show material usually cut up for advertisements? Is there one standard template or will my show be ready to be cut up according to different templates? I'd like to optimize my concept as much as possible so the advertisements will work well with the show's flow.
  3. Thank you very much for your answers Mr. Mullen, Graff, and Nash. Very much appreciated. To Mr. Graff. I specifically did have the RED in mind when wondering how to work with the filters, but not because I thought channel noise following white balance could be a problem (not even in extreme scenarios really). I was rather asking the question just for the sake of expanding my knowledge. Regarding the way the human light react to blue light. Isn't the fact that we have fewer blue sensitive cones offset by the fact that blue light has higher power due to it's shorter wavelength?
  4. Hi, I've been asking myself a lot about white balance recently, especially in light of some information I've read regarding per channel noise on different cameras and formats (although I must admit I'm still very much confused about it). As far as I know white balance is achieved by adding or subtracting gain from individual colour channels and applying tint (rolling chroma phase?) either electronically before the sensor's signal goes to AD conversion or numerically either in camera or post. My guess is a given sensor or system must have an optimal response to a certain colour temperature. My question is then, omitting practical details in regard to lighting, would be : " Could one achieve a reduction in apparent noise by using optical filters (80A/85B) to circumvent the gain involved in the white balance process. Essentially rating your sensor as tungsten or daylight and compensate like you would with film. " I was actually thinking about that with the RED ONE camera in mind, where one could shoot try and limit the use of white balance as much as possible. Please share your knowledge as I'm surfing on a lot of half-knowledge. While what I'm proposing might not seem practical, I'm pretty sure the knowledge could serve some specific applications. I have blue/red screen compositing and extreme light temperature situations come to my mind. Alexis.
  5. I recently shot a feature where we had to do similar shots with a Redrock M2 rig. We used the Marshall HD monitor attached to a cheapo monitor bracket I tie-wrapped to the front rods, then we balanced the front heaviness out by attaching a bundle of mathellinis and gobo heads to the back of the support plate. It was heavy (30+ pounds) but worked great! Pretty makeshift indie style though. As for wiring, the Marshall has component outputs so it was HD all the way, so I can't say about using both outputs at the same time. I've attached a picture. It doesn't show me monitor bracket (that's a blind setup), but shows how we balanced the rig. Hope this helps.
  6. I'm currently working on a feature film that's strongly aesthetically influenced by John Carpenter's Halloween (1978) and I'm noticing how much he and Dean Cundey used the 2.35:1 Panavision anamorphic process (and no real use of lenses under 35mm) to restrict the vertical field of view and keep things "boxed" and "pressed down upon". Now we've got ourselves a small budget and a potential distribution deal which could lead to theatrical release. This makes a lot of questions pop up. So... 2.35 anamorphic... intended for film print... on an HVX-200. We're going to be shooting with the HVX200. I opted out the whole DoF adaptor deal since I think we're not going to play that much with depth of field. In my opinion, the genre seemed to call for more depth of field actually. So, well, no anamorphic Lomos for me. My guess was that using a 16:9 adaptor as described in this thread would yield better results than cropping/masking. I haven't decided decided yet whether to shoot 1080iPA or 720p. I think we can afford the storage, so that's not exactly an issue. The thread doesn't talk about what happened on the field and the real end result. Has anybody tried it, poked around with it? Monitoring and framing doesn't bother me, so does rigging and fitting filters on the rig. My concerns are more in the lines of seeing blown up stretched video grain on a fifty feet wide screen, aberration and the such. I've called my rental house already to try the actual shooting and editing part out with them. But I can't really spend our budget to explore the viability of a remote possibility of film print, so I'm looking for your input and experience to try and figure this out.
  7. I shot a slasher/thriller feature pilot using warm white CFLs in chinaballs for a couple scenes. We deliberately lit some scenes to get that green spike and that was fine. As for flickering, the bulbs we had exhibited none at the speeds we shot. Overall, I'd recommend to keep away from those unless you either know how to cope with green spike (although I haven't tested higher CRI bulbs) or want the green spike. Nevertheless, in chinaballs they're just wonderful. I stuffed a 24" lantern with four 1600 lumens CFLs (100w tungsten equivalent) while getting 2/3 the heat output of two 100w tungstens. My experience also showed me that CFLs individually cannot get hot enough to even yellow the paper if it gets in contact. It just made me feel safer... until the tubes started wiggling in their base. But that's another story.
  8. :rolleyes: Thank you for pointing this tiny detail to my attention. I'm just reading this other thread about fuji vs kodak films. Does anyone know if I can get a student discount from fuji in Montréal Canada? I know it's very simple with Kodak. Thanks.
  9. Hi you all, As our latest project, we want to take our first dip into shooting super-16. All we've shot before is super-8 (very carelessly that is) and sd video. I regularly shoot still 35mm and medium format, but I haven't got to do much dark room work and didn't shoot enough slide to my liking and get acquainted to what's on the film. Hence I turn to the Greater Knowledge for some much needed input and/or advice. So, well, here's the pitch, you tell me where I'm headed. No budget film. The script was written to be as simple as possible on the technical side. Simple costumes, simple locations, few (no) props, simple camera work. Some tripod, some panning, some shoulder cam, some steadicam. I'm planning on buying 800' and shooting for transfer. This is an all exterior winter with snow 5 minutes Sci-Fi short. There's two locations, a fire site with some trees and (ideally) some small waterfall thing in the background, and some path surrounded with threes. The two characters will be wearing dark uniform coats with very few marks, some small red, purple, gold, silver embroideries and silver buttons. Characters is a short dark haired man and a woman, short blond hair. Pale skin tones. They might be wearing black berets (like the green berets' berets... but black.) half the time. Every day I pray to the good lord I'm going to get an overcast sky. That's what I picture. I'm for no grain realistic shots with down to earth colours, slighly desaturated. I like pastel skin tones. Whites are white, not cooler. Blown sky if weather provides. Might tint it warmer a bit with a graded filter. I'm figuring 5205 so far, since I'm thinking about using a polarizer to try and reduce the reflections from the coats which will most probably be this sort of felt material and try to salvage some saturation from the trees in the background. We won't be using much lighting equipment, maybe a couple flexfill diffusers and reflectors... some small flags, silks, dunno. I'll try shooting with a constant medium aperture, NDing the extra light out. That's my plan so far and I'm looking for input, suggestions and criticism. I've been at a loss, having recently watched too much Battlestar Galactica and some X-Files, and only having Star Trek First Contact handy for study. I don't have a single movie with snow shots in my library. I'd be looking for good recommendations on movies to study. Thank you,
  10. That's true unless you change format, isn't it? So, is there a way to do a quick and dirty calculation of depth of field by including format (well that would be the standard CoC) in the formula?
  11. I think you all cleared this thing up. But that is most interesting, although a more thourough and mathematically sustained explanation might be even more revealing to my still confused comprehension. I like the laws of physics. B)
  12. Hi there, I'm an amateur cinematographer, I've shot video and 35mm still, some super 8 on fixed lens cameras and now, as I just landed a job at the service departement of one of the biggest photo shops in Montréal, I am facing the thing I dread the most : digital cameras and the bloody conversion thing. Here is my simple question : Are digital camera lenses partly responsible for the too deep depth of field associated to digital still cameras? Here is my complicated sub-questions : Is, what is called, the actual focal length (the one written on the lens), really the actual focal length of the glass, or is the 35mm 'equivalent' the real focal length. If the focal length is 'phony' then all the the F-markings on the lens are screwed-up and depth-of-field is, because DoF is relative to aperture diameter relative to focal length, the CoC and its progression over distance from focal point AND display circumstances RELATIVE to the capture area dimensions. Summation : I'm completely lost. Help me. Sub-summation quesdtion : Are 'digital' lenses real lenses of their own with 'focals' adapted to their capture area OR is the digital image 'a crop from a 35mm frame'. ========== Again, please help me. I'm completely lost in all this.
  13. That ought to make the use of a follow focus unit relatively impossible. Any way to fight that? Like welding a rubber mouthed wisegrip claw thingy under the lens port to jam the lens in its position? Anybody's seen such a gadget?
  14. Does anyone know of companies in Canada that provide insurance for photographic and cinematographic material? I'd be interested to have a look at that.
  15. Yeah, I heard of the M-42 since my still 35 kit is an old K-1000. Yet, I've never even seen one such lens. I've avtually never seen a single screw on lens of my life.
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