Intraview

No, that title isn’t a typo. Hopefully all will make sense shortly. Things have been a bit off-and-on for me, photography wise recently. I have a lot of other stuff going on which is requiring my attention, and I hadn’t really used my camera in anger for a while. That all changed a couple of weekends ago though! There’s a website which I occasionally write music reviews for called Call Upon The Author; I’ve mentioned it on here before. It’s run by my friend Matt, and recently he’s wanted to give the site a bit of an overhaul. There’re lots of live reviews and things on there, but he was very keen to get some interviews with bands and artists on the go. This sparked off some creative ideas in my brain, so I ran the prospect of perhaps doing some video interviews past him. He was very keen, so I set up an interview with Tunbridge Wells based band, and friends of mine Intraverse. As usual, I wanted to make it the best quality production I possibly could, so I roped in Ben (with whom I’ve made some very successful short films with before) to come along. Having a second camera/cameraman made such a huge difference and added an extra level of interest to the interview and (especially) the live show which we also filmed. We cut the whole thing together (interview footage interspliced with some live performances), added in some cool After Effects stuff, and had it rendered in just under a week, which I thought was pretty good for over 15 minutes worth of final footage. Check it out below and see what you think:

We also had a load of footage left over (mainly live stuff) which seemed like a shame to waste, so I cut together an extra track as well. We’ve probably got enough to do a couple more as well, and if/when I get time then I will do:

Other than a couple of wobbles and issues we had to deal with on the fly, the shooting of the footage was actually the easy part. Mikey and Tim did an excellent job in the interview making it both informative and funny. They were very patient with us too, but I thought considering this was the first one of these we’d done, we did a decent job.

The cutting and editing was (as always) a lot more work than expected. We’d learned a lot from our Hueco video; mainly in regards to being organised with footage and things. I spent some time getting everything organised within the project and setting up sequences etc. I also gave myself a crash course in synching the video footage with the external audio source which I recorded during the show. I don’t think I did it the most efficient way (i.e. by eye) but for the footage which we had it seemed to work. I basically shot two or three long clips on my 5D-MkII from the back of the venue while Ben was down the front with his Canon EOS 7D shooting close ups. He shot lots of shorter clips, so this ended up meaning that we had to synch up each individual clip separately. Below is a screen grab from one of our Premiere Pro sequences, which also shows my incredibly anal file structure (which I’m rather proud of):

As is expected, we still made a few mistakes and a few details were overlooked (mainly concerning frame rates; you don’t have to worry about that sort of thing with stills!), but I’m chalking them up to experience. I’m really getting to grips with Premiere Pro and After Effects now, and they feel a lot more natural and familiar than when I first opened them (especially After Effects) thinking “I know Photohshop; how different can it be?…” – That was quite a shock. I’m looking forward to doing more video projects. Hopefully we can get some decent climbing footage from South Africa and pull together another climbing short. Stay tuned!

First Aid Kit…

First Aid Kit, originally uploaded by Ben Grubb.

A while back, I went to see a pretty cool Swedish folk-y type duo called First Aid Kit play at the (cringe enducingly named) “Relentless Garage” in Islington. It’s a really nice venue, despite the name, and the show was really fun. I also shot some photos and wrote a short review for Call Upon The Author. I hope you enjoy them both. I have plenty more bloggy goodness to come soon. I’m up to my eyes at the moment, but loving every minute…

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Hello all. Sorry it’s been a while. A lot’s been going on with me recently which is good! Also, I was computer-less for a while. My PC picked up a rather nasty virus which it is still recovering from, and had to undergo some particularly nerve wracking open hard drive surgery! Luckily, we found a suitable 1TB donor and the operation seemed to be a success. There’s still some way to go until full recovery though. Huge thanks to master surgeon Dr. Ben Sales for all the help. I definitely wouldn’t have been able to do it without him and would be a jibbering wreck on the floor by now. More than normal I mean, obviously.

Also, my MacBook had to go in to the Apple Store to have it’s fan and top case replaced (which they did for free, bless ‘em) and is now back to it’s full glory and looks all cleaned up and handsome again. Wonderful. It’s good to be able to actually do work and things again.

Anyway, techno geekery aside, I have some exciting news: I have started to write and photography shows for my friend Matt’s music review site Call Upon The Author. The very same site which I designed a banner for last year. I’m working towards getting together a decent portfolio of concert shots, and Matt’s the man with the contacts, so I thought we could help each other out. So far, so good. I went to my first show as a “reviewer” last week, and to start things off, I was lucky enough to see Paul Murphy’s (of Wintersleep fame) side project Postdata at The Borderline. He (or rather they, as he was joined by fellow Wintersleep band mate Tim D’eon on keyboards) are doing a short European tour opening for David Bazan (of Pedro The Lion). Both were rather enjoyable, and I certainly enjoyed Postdata! The review is done and up on Call Upon The Author now is you want to have a look. There’s also a small selection of photos on Flickr. Definitely check out the album as well – it’s marvelous. I have a few more shows lined up over the next few months which I’m looking forward to, and I hope you’ll check out my post gig ramblings. I’ve got a few other exciting things in the pipeline as well which I’ll no doubt talk about on here in due course. As the weather starts to brighten, so to does my year! Good times.