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Chayse Irvin

Chayse Irvin Demo Reel 2009

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Wow, great stuff.

 

Could you break down the process of making that reel and getting it on the web in such quality? Even the 480P version looks great. What were the source material? How did you edit it? How did you get it all to be progressive-scan? How did you get the quicktime playback to be 2.35?

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Pretty freak'n sick. Nice job.

 

Thanks Justin!

 

Wow, great stuff.

 

Could you break down the process of making that reel and getting it on the web in such quality? Even the 480P version looks great. What were the source material? How did you edit it? How did you get it all to be progressive-scan? How did you get the quicktime playback to be 2.35?

 

Thanks David. I saw you at cine gear a few days ago but chicken out when it came to saying hey. I was hoping to catch you at the ASC golf classic... but it turns out not many DP's play golf haha. God knows I had no business being out there... it was ugly.

 

The main reason it looks so high quality is because I edit my reel in Apple Pro Rez 1080p and the red is in Pro Rez 2k. I edit on a Macbook Pro with a gang of 1TB FW800 drives. In exchange for free gigs i had all my old 35mm negative rescanned to HDcamSR by just bringing the cans to that jobs session and then that to ProRez. Getting the footage in Apple Pro rez has always gone down in different circumstances. This last RED show I put it in my deal memo and just pulled R3D's. This wasn't the case on a S16mm feature I did last year... I had to wait months and months for a HDSR version of the film. Finally got it last month and went into Deluxe off hours on the weekend and transfered clips to ProRez. I did a EFilm DI on a short that you can see a bunch of Beach Bypass footage from in the reel... still having figured out how im going to get my hands on that version. But in the reel I self timed the apple pro rez offline edit. I was hoping to get a DPX from EFilm and compress my own prorez version with Glue Tools, but the DPX is in LOG space. I'll have to transfer the HDCAM SR version a deluxe again.

 

The compression is h.264 with AAC audio at 48kHz. I alway compress off the FCP sequence itself. I've tested many different workflows to this and always got the best results in terms of color/contrast constancy. The data rate i restrict. For the 480p my bit rate is at 3500 kbps. 720p = 6500 kbps and then optimized for Download. To make it stream with these settings you need to have the streaming function set to "Fast Start".

 

For DVD's I get a really really nice compression by doing One Pass CBR (constant bit rate) 9mbps Mpeg2, audio being Dolby Digital Pro 2.0 192kbps. And i burn them through DVD studio pro. DVD's are 16x9. I restrict to constant bit rates as oppose to variable because variable will try and compress in areas of the image like shadows or highlights and during transitions, grainy areas of the image, ect. My demo is 3min and I can max out all the stats and still have it fit on any DVD.

 

I burned myself by doing a past reel in 2.40 when most if not all my footage was 2.40. Now I have well composed 1.85 stuff... but I had a version where it had the matte break off and go bigger for those shots... but the directors i sent it too complained and said it would be better all 2.40. I laid a matte in Final Cut Pro and did reframing in there. Then in compressor I set the dimensions to a 2.40 frame eg. (720p version = 1280x544) Then I set a "Source Inset Crop" to

"Panavision 2.35:1" (bottom: 131, top: 131). All of them are presets in Compressor... however they were there till the last version for FCP.

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I'm amazed you can get HD material from anyone -- I can only get 60i/480 DVD or DVCAM copies. I'd get laughed at if I asked for HD quality clips from a studio.

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Hi Chayse,

lovely reel...can you tell me which clips are S16 please.

 

best

rob spence

 

www.dogleapfilms.co.uk

www.bigness.co.uk

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Artful, moving, and perfectly timed. The shots I love the most are the ones that challenge my idea of what a "well lit" shot looks like; flare, flicker, a streak of bright light on someone's shirt, an underexposed face-- what could easily be classified as "mistakes" are here clearly deliberate choices that bring emotion to the shot instead of distract. They don't come across as gimmicks either. That takes skill!

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I'm amazed you can get HD material from anyone -- I can only get 60i/480 DVD or DVCAM copies. I'd get laughed at if I asked for HD quality clips from a studio.

 

Do you find that directors or producers want to see montage reel for you David? You have amassed a collection of films that look fantastic, some are good, and have distribution. Most the comments i get from directors and producers are that they like it but want to see more... but I have nothing else to show them because none of the films i've done have distribution.

 

Hi Chayse,

lovely reel...can you tell me which clips are S16 please.

 

best

rob spence

 

www.dogleapfilms.co.uk

www.bigness.co.uk

 

Thanks Rob.

The shots of the girl on the swing is S16mm Fuji Eterna 500T. Same with the grainy unlit night ext stuff and the very last shot at the end. Anything with that character actually.

 

Artful, moving, and perfectly timed. The shots I love the most are the ones that challenge my idea of what a "well lit" shot looks like; flare, flicker, a streak of bright light on someone's shirt, an underexposed face-- what could easily be classified as "mistakes" are here clearly deliberate choices that bring emotion to the shot instead of distract. They don't come across as gimmicks either. That takes skill!

 

Thanks Derek! I feel like the imperfections in films and particularly cinematography are what makes it feel honest; and if done right can be expressive and subjective at the same time.

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Really nice!!!

What was the music? the whole thing was not only visually impressive but touching in a way that I wouldnt usually expect from a demo reel...very well cut to the music.

Good work.

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Small update on vimeo!

 

http://www.vimeo.com/6552526

 

Chayse, you do have some great images there and the compression looks really amazing. although it's your demo reel and you need to bring in the best shots you have, I also feel that you could put in some shots with more 'soul' to them, because in my opinion cinematography is not only about pretty pictures, I'm sure you'll agree with me. Nowadays we can shoot slowmotion easily and play around with the images in digital color grading and that's a plus. But honestly lots of people can do that (I'm not saying anyone can do what you do), so... what makes you special, what's going to make a producer or a director choose you instead of anyone else? That's what I call the 'soul' of the image, the feeling, the heart. And it has nothing to do with compression.

You have a beautiful work.

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Chayse, you do have some great images there and the compression looks really amazing. although it's your demo reel and you need to bring in the best shots you have, I also feel that you could put in some shots with more 'soul' to them, because in my opinion cinematography is not only about pretty pictures, I'm sure you'll agree with me. Nowadays we can shoot slowmotion easily and play around with the images in digital color grading and that's a plus. But honestly lots of people can do that (I'm not saying anyone can do what you do), so... what makes you special, what's going to make a producer or a director choose you instead of anyone else? That's what I call the 'soul' of the image, the feeling, the heart. And it has nothing to do with compression.

You have a beautiful work.

 

 

I agree. Cinematography is about storytelling. I would say a demo reel is a story about a cinematographer. Are you meaning my stuff looks like someone else, or each image lacks meaning? What feeling are you looking for in the image? What's missing? The images lack honesty in the technique there for lack in feeling?

 

All the things you've stated about soul is where I come from when shooting a project. Whether I focus my mind on carefully designing the cinematography or going into a production with just an idea in my head and just my own heart/emotion to understand a performance or setting is dependent on who I'm collaborating with. I try to never use my own pertinacious resolve of how I think a story should look because unless its my story. Which it isn't and the closest I'll get to understanding that is through the director. I can tell you all the images in the reel are my interpretation of words and feelings the director described to me and they are a direct manifestation of that collaboration. To get the looks described I use the technical tools my obsession (cinema) understands. The reel itself is just me editing parts of the footage from those stories into a montage. If there were a question asked on why I made a image look that way I would answer with a honest reason both artistically and technically.

 

My understanding of your post causes an contradiction in my mind. Your saying I have things in there that pretty in the technical sense, but lack in feeling or heart... but thats exactly where I come from when shooting. So perhaps there is something lacking in my artistic sensibilities or I have to find a new path to express. I think if anything, as far as tools go, I mostly express myself not how the camera moves, color grading, compression, or use slow motion... but how I expose it... the ladder being more so an expression of that collaboration.

 

After seeing my reel... how would you describe the images in my demo reel and why?

 

Chayse

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I agree. Cinematography is about storytelling. I would say a demo reel is a story about a cinematographer. Are you meaning my stuff looks like someone else, or each image lacks meaning? What feeling are you looking for in the image? What's missing? The images lack honesty in the technique there for lack in feeling?

 

All the things you've stated about soul is where I come from when shooting a project. Whether I focus my mind on carefully designing the cinematography or going into a production with just an idea in my head and just my own heart/emotion to understand a performance or setting is dependent on who I'm collaborating with. I try to never use my own pertinacious resolve of how I think a story should look because unless its my story. Which it isn't and the closest I'll get to understanding that is through the director. I can tell you all the images in the reel are my interpretation of words and feelings the director described to me and they are a direct manifestation of that collaboration. To get the looks described I use the technical tools my obsession (cinema) understands. The reel itself is just me editing parts of the footage from those stories into a montage. If there were a question asked on why I made a image look that way I would answer with a honest reason both artistically and technically.

 

My understanding of your post causes an contradiction in my mind. Your saying I have things in there that pretty in the technical sense, but lack in feeling or heart... but thats exactly where I come from when shooting. So perhaps there is something lacking in my artistic sensibilities or I have to find a new path to express. I think if anything, as far as tools go, I mostly express myself not how the camera moves, color grading, compression, or use slow motion... but how I expose it... the ladder being more so an expression of that collaboration.

 

After seeing my reel... how would you describe the images in my demo reel and why?

 

Chayse

 

That's that. it would be hard to discuss about those images without knowing the context. in fact, I'm not saying that images are common or that they lack in feeling. I think that a reel like this (showing us amazing images) goes beyond pretty images. It allows us to start discussing cinematography in depth. By looking at this reel, we can't really say that images lack in feeling or are full of soul... it's hard to say that. Of course, these images are perfectly exposed and compressed, and I'm sure that you interpret the scripts and colaborates with your vision.

I just wanted to bring up the point that a pretty image can also be an empty image, but I'm not saying that this is the case. As a cinematographer I'm always exercising this. I always want to be able to know if the image I'm creating is empty, is full, or lacks in something, or goes beyond the story and makes it smaller or bigger.

It's a great reel, it makes me keep thinking in terms of images.

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That's that. it would be hard to discuss about those images without knowing the context. in fact, I'm not saying that images are common or that they lack in feeling. I think that a reel like this (showing us amazing images) goes beyond pretty images. It allows us to start discussing cinematography in depth. By looking at this reel, we can't really say that images lack in feeling or are full of soul... it's hard to say that. Of course, these images are perfectly exposed and compressed, and I'm sure that you interpret the scripts and colaborates with your vision.

I just wanted to bring up the point that a pretty image can also be an empty image, but I'm not saying that this is the case. As a cinematographer I'm always exercising this. I always want to be able to know if the image I'm creating is empty, is full, or lacks in something, or goes beyond the story and makes it smaller or bigger.

It's a great reel, it makes me keep thinking in terms of images.

 

I agree. I've been moved by the honest and raw images in "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind". Where in the film "Sin Nombre" I felt like nothing but an observer, watching pretty images pass by with no connectivity to me. However my girl friend who was sitting with me did connect. After watching it the first time I rewatched it numerous times to find a reason that soul was seen by someone else and not me. At first I thought it was something technical... the cinematography seemed to perfect. But I felt that was my ego talking, not my heart. Its something subjective that allows that. The images were something reminiscent to my girl friend as well as surreal, like a dream she may have had. But thats something unique to her and I don't think its a formula that can be exercised; Perhaps as your own vision to your own soul it can. But that will only touch those who are in tune with it.

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Great work Chase!

quick question: how do you stream the footage?

 

Thanks

 

Hey Francisco!

 

Thanks! If your meaning having it open into QT then streaming after clicking on one of the icons... I stoled that coding off of Apple trailers then changed to that design. :ph34r:

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Hey Francisco!

 

Thanks! If your meaning having it open into QT then streaming after clicking on one of the icons... I stoled that coding off of Apple trailers then changed to that design. :ph34r:

 

Hey

 

I meant what company do you use to stream the footage on the web?

 

thanks

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Hey

 

I meant what company do you use to stream the footage on the web?

 

thanks

 

I just upload a QT to my ftp. My website provider is canaca.com

 

Chayse

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Chayse, there are some really compelling shots in here! I really loved the couple of shots with the young girl on the swing. Well done!

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Chayse, there are some really compelling shots in here! I really loved the couple of shots with the young girl on the swing. Well done!

 

 

Chayse,

 

This is truly beautiful photography. Excellent imagery, fantastic lighting...wonderful stuff.

 

Kudos.

 

 

Thanks guys. Really appreciate it. I have a new link to vimeo: http://www.vimeo.com/6134256

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