23 March 2007

Music Video


It’s been quiet on the blog front this week, since we had a week of ‘self-directed study’ to complete a music video. This was mainly an editing exercise to get all those of us who have never used Final Cut Pro into the editing room and in front of a computer. There were a few days scheduled for pre-production, and a week for shooting, and only two days for editing, but we could divide our time any way we wanted. So I made a decision early on that I wanted to use mostly footage I already had rather than shoot more. I also wanted to make sure that the film, when completed, could be submitted to the local music film festival - ‘Handle the Jandal’. I found Kieran, a part of ‘Mr. Sterile Assembly’, a ska-punk band from Wellington.

I loved the political aspect of their music and thought it would fit well with the footage I shot at the anti-rape demo a few weeks ago. Capturing the demo footage and some concert footage that I managed to get a few days ago was easy. Then came the footage from my gall stone operation 2 years ago, which I was planning to overlay, and that’s where things got a bit trickier. The footage had been captured by the teaching surgeon through the camera he used for the micro surgery and saved to mpg2 format on a DVD. In order to mix this in I had to transcode it into HDV to match the other footage. Luckily there was no audio to deal with, and I was planning to only use the footage as an overlay. One big thing I learnt from this exercise is to make masks in Photoshop to use in FCP.

I wanted to split the screen into three parts, but with ragged edges rather than the straight sharp edges which result from cropping. After a few hits and misses I actually found it quite easy to make a black and white image, import it into FCP, where all the layers show up inside a sequence, and to drop each layer into the Image Mask filter applied to a clip. The other thing I tried as to use different blending modes to layer the footage, specially to make the op footage less gory looking. Anyway, thanks to Kieran and Mr. Sterile Assembly for letting me use their music, enjoy (also available on YouTube):

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