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Thursday
May292014

Citation

Citation is all about having fun with the California DPT. I have gotten several tickets from them in my time in Los Angeles and used that as fuel to make this very short and hopefully comedic film. It was also a chance to give the Panasonic GH4 a dry run. I was excited about the slow motion capabilities and thought this would be a perfect story to test the camera out. 

My first step was figuring out how to handle the quarter toss. I went to a local art store and picked up supplies to do a green screen stop motion animation of the quarter as it was flying through the air. My plan was to do it as practically as possible but after some tests, I realized it was going to take a long time for me to do this properly. My next step was to buy a 3D quarter model and use Element 3D to animate the quarter within After Effects. This worked well but I needed to have a very stable plate shot over a long distance to sell that the quarter was flying through the air. I didn't have a large budget to hire out a steadicam but fortunately Alex Buono let me borrow his MōVI M10 gimbal and that did the trick for my quarter plates.

Props and costumes were next. I tried very hard to rent a smart car as the DPT hero vehicle but was unable to find one in Los Angeles. As a last resort, I ended up going with a Chevy Spark. I think it works well but doesn't have the same comedic feel that the smart car would have had. I found a yellow light on eBay for $11 and painted the DPT logo on the car in post. Everyone thinks it is the real deal, which is fun. The meter maid costume was rented from Western Costume in the valley and it was spectacular. Gary Shergill, the actor who played the parking attendant really embraced the role while in costume. All the people passing by thought he was a real cop. Nate Fetzer sported some tattered clothing from Goodwill and some heavy-duty grime make up and was great as the homeless character. I also grabbed a Trader Joe's shopping cart that someone left in my neighborhood to lend a little more authentic. Finally, Becky Shergill was a wonderful sport running around all day in her high heels and did a great job catching those quarters.

Location was also key to this shoot and Palm Drive in Beverly Hills was perfect for my final crane shot. If you look closely, you can see Becky flip off Gary as she pulls away. I used the Kessler Crane I borrowed from Vincent Laforet on this shot. I shot that sequence in 4K and love how the image pops. I also borrowed a M43 to PL mount and a vintage Schneider 24-350 lens from Illya at Hot Rod Camera. This allowed me to do the snap zoom. Finally, I added a little frosting with the DJI Phantom and GoPro Hero+ for the very final shot. We grabbed that very quickly and at the end of the day and I nearly hit several Palm Trees. 

Both Ryan Portas and Nate Fetzer provided camera support and Annie Carr did a great job producing and keeping things moving smoothly. 

As for the GH4, I have to agree with Stu's opinions over at Prolost on this camera. The image feels brittle and the 1080 content is soft, especially as you go to higher frame rates. It is also very noisy, surprisingly noisy. I shoot everything in a very flat profile and much of that noise is taken care of when I add a contrast curve during the grade but almost every shot has noise, even on a bright day at ISO 100. It sometimes has a GoPro footage feel about it. With the negatives out of the way, I do really like down sampled 4K image in 1080p. Aside from the noise, the image is wonderful. I do love a lot of the proper video features built into the camera as well. I like to say this is 90% of the camera I would like to own. I love having the option to have 4K, 1080p, variable frame rates and look forward to getting my hands on a shogun to test out the 10bit image to see if that solves some of my issues. 

This was a fun project and I had a lot of support from a lot of people. Enjoy and thanks for reading.

Friday
Apr042014

Digital Production Buzz

Last night I was a guest on the Digital Production Buzz with Larry Jordan and Michael Horton. It was fun to discuss some of my latest projects and get into the specifics about time lapse photography. Thanks to my new friend Cirina Catania for making it happen.

Here is the link to the interview:

http://www.digitalproductionbuzz.com/BuZZ_Audio/Buzz_140404_Carr.mp3

Thursday
Apr032014

NAB 2014 Speaking Schedule

I will be presenting at the Canon booth on C300 post production. Swing by and say hello if you are going to be there. 

Monday April 7th at 2pm

Tuesday April 8th at 2pm

Wednesday April 9th at 4pm

Thursday
Apr032014

20-Hour Desert Time Lapse

Recently, I spent an entire day on the Coyote Creek Dry Lake shooting a 360 degree ultra wide angle 20-hour time lapse. While I am not able to discuss who the project was for, I can say the time lapse was projected on a huge overhead dome at a major LA rock concert. 

Here is a single frame from my time lapse that was unwrapped and projected on the overhead screen:

More to come about the production and post on this amazing project when I am able to discuss the details. 

Thursday
Apr032014

LAX - Tom Bradley International Terminal

I spent a good portion of 2013 working with Moment Factory to shoot and edit content for a 120 foot art installation displayed within the Tom Bradely International Terminal of LAX. The content was edited and delievered in 5K. I created 4 capsules for the "Storyboard Screen" with a focus on LA landscapes, clouds, waves, and airport. Each capsule is 9-minutes long and will be broken up into 3-minute chunks that are cycled on the screen throughout the day based on a variety of factors including time of day.

I am putting the final touches on the video to showcase my content and will post this video shortly but in the meantime, here is a BTS video that Moment Factory has put together to profile the project.

Monday
Sep102012

Blackmagic Cinema Camera

A Week With BMC from Jon Carr on Vimeo.

I was fortunate to get my hands on the Blackmagic Cinema Camera for a week and shot many of my favorite locations around Los Angeles. Thank you Vincent Laforet. I shot everything in RAW and processed in After Effects and Da Vinci Resolve.

For more information on my experience with the BMC, keep an eye on my blog. More to come soon.

To learn more about my post workflow in dealing with the RAW files, please visit:
blog.vincentlaforet.com/2012/09/10/blackmagic-camera-part-deux-bmcc-workflow/

Orange Sky by Alexi Murdoch is available on iTunes. Buy it, it's a beautiful song.

I want to give a shout out to the guys over at Blackmagic who have been great in answering my many questions. 
blackmagic-design.com

Ryan from Wooden Camera sent over their brand new BMC rig. It was incredibly helpful to mount an external battery to extend the power of the internal battery and make the camera much more functional. This will be a necessity for professional jobs. 
woodencamera.corecommerce.com

Finally, I’ve got to send a little love to the Kessler team. I used the Stealth slider which was ideal for some of the epic hikes I took to get to my remote locations. The Stealth is surprisingly lightweight!
kesslercrane.com

Monday
Jun112012

Estria Graffiti Battle

2011 Estria Graffiti Battle from Jon Carr on Vimeo.

Last fall Justin Hamilton, Tim Kotthoff and I grabbed a Red Epic and headed to downtown LA to film some highlights of the Estria graffiti battle. The Estria Invitational Graffiti Battle is a nationwide urban art competition that honors and advances creativity in the Hip Hop arts. This was the first time the event was held in Los Angeles and featured some of the LA's most talented graffiti artists. 

Special thanks to Matteo for giving us a little extra on his dance routine featured in the video. 

This turned out to be a great event to capture at higher frame rates on the Epic. We also used a variety of Ziess CP2 lenses throughout the day. 

Wednesday
Apr112012

Green Screen Tutorial

Green Screen from Vincent Laforet on Vimeo.

I just did a green screen tutorial for Vincent Laforet's blog and I thought I would post it here as well. We wanted to play around with dropping a character into a different environment, which turned out to be downtown Los Angeles. Check it out if you have a few minutes.