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Today we take a look at making the transition from directing videos to directing feature films. This is a nuanced discussion with many different angles, so let’s take a look!

Being a videographer can be a highly rewarding occupation. Whether you’re directing short films, commercials, or wedding videos, videography is the chance to hone your craft, whilst enjoying the versatility of short contracts. It can be a great opportunity to test ideas, gain a wide variety of experience, and have a highly dynamic career.

And as commercial work can be extremely lucrative, for many this is an ideal situation. Directing short format content provides much of the same creative experience as feature film directing, but with lower risk!

However, for many directors there comes a point where the desire to tell a long form story becomes increasingly irrepressible. It is, arguably, a much bigger canvas to paint on.

The test which this presents can be extremely appealing. It’s ostensibly the chance to reach a larger audience, engage in a deeper narrative, and potentially open up greater professional opportunities.

The challenge, however, is making the leap from directing short format. Because, while the technical considerations may feel significant, the much greater task is actually convincing gatekeepers.

A primary reason for this is that gatekeepers – namely financiers and producers – are, for good reason, typically exceedingly risk adverse. In an industry where one box office bomb can signal the end of a career (or at the very least, a significant period of probation) there is a strong predisposition towards the “tried and proven”.

Directing Videos – An Introduction

When millions of dollars, the producers reputation, and most likely an investment of several years work is at stake, the choice of a director is critical. As such, the level of due diligence which is brought to such a decision is considerable.

This usually puts nascent film directors in a catch 22 position. Essentially, a director is unlikely to get a job directing a feature film if they haven’t already directed one…so how does one surmount such a hurdle?

For aspiring feature film directors with a background in videography, here are several highly pragmatic actions to take…

1. Address concerns

If you are videographer who aspires to transition to feature film directing, you need to empathize with the film producer and financiers. The more you understand the reasons behind their concerns, and the realities which they have to be circumspect of, the better you will be able to address their fears.

Many first-time feature directors make the mistake of focusing on their own desires. They get wrapped up in what they want. This rapidly leads to directors being unreasonable, entitled, and irreverent.

If you are that rare person who can walk a mile in someone else’s shoes, that it will allow you to identify what specific concerns you need to resolve in order to lock down the job. So really think about what your own concerns would be if this was several million dollars of your own money at risk, or a reputation that you’d taken several years to build!

One of the main concerns is likely to be that, while you may be wonderful at directing a team of 5, you may not yet be equipped to handle a crew of 50. Or that, while you’ve worked with large crews on commercials for 3 days, you may not have the stamina to handle a shoot of 30 days.

A great solution to this concern is to get experience working as an assistant director on feature films.

Working in that capacity on a number of long form productions, essentially under the supervision of the director, helps evidence that you have real experience of the rigors of that scale of production.

This will allow you to point to the fact that you do in fact have experience of this level of production.

2. Craft a narrative

As a director of short format content, you should lean into the creativity which short format work allows. Really spin the story of how much experimenting you’ve been able to engage in through this time of honing your craft.

Hiring you as a feature film director is going to be a major gamble for any producer, so you need to make them feel that there’s going to be something really innovative, gritty, or visionary about your work!

You must play to your strengths. From the viewpoint of a film producer, innovation is pretty much the only argument that could exist for such an unorthodox choice!

So the better you are at communicating this narrative of yourself as “the next hot director”, the more successful you are likely to be at landing a job.

Pointing to the plethora of innovation that you’ve engaged in as a result of the freedoms of short format work really helps paint the picture.

You could communicate this through a thirty second elevator pitch, a powerful bio that summarizes how groundbreaking your past work has been, or a reel that powerfully displays the diversity of your past shoots.

3. Create leverage

“Award-winning” is something which producers and publicists can spin. For this reason, if you’re wanting to land your first gig as a feature film director, you should intentionally pursue awards for your short format work.

When building your body of short format work, you should be constantly thinking about what competitions you can enter.

If you have won a prestigious award, that’s leverage that can be used to evidence the (largely unsubstantiated) belief that you’re an up and coming diamond in the rough! It’s a basis on which people can pitch you.

So make sure that you’re doing everything you can to gain the traction necessary. You can’t win competitions if you don’t enter them! You need to be very calculating, highly intentional, and intensely thoughtful about how you can maximize your profile through an aggressive award strategy.

4. Think commercially

You need to understand that there’s a whole world of commercial considerations that a film producer has, which your average short format client simply does not.

Most short format work is not made to sell as a product in its own right – it’s typically promotional in nature. (Or, in the case of short films, it’s almost always purely artistic.)

But feature films are a strange beast – not only does a feature need to be sufficiently artistic to hold merit in the audience’s eyes, but it also needs to function as a standalone transactional product.

Tips for Beginner Directors - YouTube

As such, there are marketing strategies that need to be thought about from concept stage. Name actor value, and the financial potential of a certain theme or IP, are not typically considerations in most short format work.

However, when it comes to feature films, having a well thought out financial/marketing strategy from inception is key.

For this reason, the more financially minded you are from the beginning, the better. And the more effective you are articulating the analytical reasons behind your proposals, the more successful you’ll be.

In a scenario where you are actually pitching original ideas, you need to realize that, unlike most commercial work (where your job is primarily just to spend the money) in this situation your job is also to figure out how to get the money back!

You might have the most beautifully artistic pitch in all of history, but if you have a story that doesn’t have a clear widespread commercial appeal, and the intention of casting sufficiently valuable name actors, then you aren’t going to get very far.

So even though you are pitching for the role of director, the more you can think like a producer, the more the gatekeepers will feel that you understand the requirements of the job.

While certainly there are rare cases of patrons of the arts whose primary concern is purely the creation of great cultural masterpieces, those kinds of cultural benefactors are few and far between.

So an idealistic approach is a rookie mistake! You need to make sure that you’re truly approaching your pitch with the same kind of pragmatic realism that a seasoned feature film director would have.

Directing a Film vs Music Video - YouTube

Directing Videos – Wrapping up

The good news is that some of the greatest feature film directors of all time got their start doing short format commercial work.

Ridley Scott, Guillermo del Toro, and Zack Snyder are just a few of the internationally renowned feature film directors who have proven that you can indeed make the leap from a career in short format work, to making a name for yourself as a feature film director.

As such, history has proven many times over that it is certainly possible to shift the film industry’s perception of the kind of director that one is. But in order to make the transition groundwork, positioning, and strategic thinking are vital.

Vanessa Frank is the presenter of Film Funding from A-Z, an on-demand course which teaches film finance to independent filmmakers.

The post How To Make The Leap From Directing Videos to Directing Features appeared first on Filmmaking Lifestyle.

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The visual medium is the most impactful one compared to others because it has more influence on the audience. When you see a photograph, video or movie, it will be registered and imprinted in your memory for long time. The art of video making has been around from centuries with first ever silent video being recorded in 1888.

Over the years, this field has evolved and become better with new high-tech advancements. In this day and age, the video making is way easier compared to the time of its inception. There is state of the art equipment available that brings out excellent quality in final product. But where there is ease, there are some problems too.

What does the producer do for a successful film?

With time, this art form has become more detail-oriented. Video and film making in this era demands perfection in production with everything on point. As the video and film making has become more common, its access to the masses has also seen a rise. Due to this reason, there are as many critics of your work as there are admirers.

So, you got to be on your toes every time you venture on a new production project. What does the producer do? That is a big question in your mind right now. This article will give you an insight into video production, film making and their business aspect.

Steps involved in Video and film production:

Pre-production

This is the initial step of the process which involves the homework, research and planning of the project. The producer has to arrange resources like finances, location, screenwriter, director, cast and crew.

After managing all of it, there are many brainstorming sessions conducted between the producer and his subordinates. A plan is devised to run the operations with consent of every stakeholder.

Production

After the completion of pre-production, the phase of production starts. It includes mobilizing resources for the shooting. The producer is in coordination with everyone from spot boy to the director. There is a big team that is working together to manage everything on the set. It is a mutual effort where every team player has to play their part for successful production.

Post-production

The post-production succeeds production phase of a film. In this phase, the producer or production company looks into the finances to ensure that there is enough money for a successful post-production. The film is dubbed and edited.

This phase involves the quality assurance process and critical analysis of a film before release. The promotion and release of a film are also included in this phase.

Video production

The videomaking is no more a hobby now. It has become a serious profession with millions of aspiring newcomers around the globe learning this art form.

There are many types of video making including Vlogging, documentary making, television broadcasting, product videos, brand promotions. There are so many platforms where you can put your videos to reach out to a bigger audience like YouTube, Dailymotion Vimeo etc.

A video production requires skills and dedication, but most importantly, it needs good management. The producer is the captain of the ship as far as management goes. He has to look into all the affairs of video production from feasibility to resource allocation. The factors that are involved in video production are listed below:

Content

The content is the foundation on which the structure of video production stands. It includes the storyline, plot and scope of the video. If your content is strong enough, your video is more likely to receive appreciation and return on investment.

Videography

The videography is another important aspect of video production. It includes the technical side of the project including camera handling, lighting and video editing.

Logistics

The logistic support plays a vital role in the success of a video. It involves organizing all the resources from equipment to staff. If you have a good logistic support, the creative process becomes easier.

Film Making

The craft of filmmaking is only for the ones who have passion for it. From the moment a film is conceived to the finishing tweaks on it, it’s a process of evolution. Every film reaches the cinemas in its most refined form after incorporation of many changes.

Even though the filmmaking is an extension of video making, but its huge scope gives it a whole new dimension. If you compromise on any aspect, your film might end up in the flop category. So, when stakes are so high, what does the producer do? The answer to that question lies in the following important factors of film making:

Audience

Being aware of likes and dislikes of your audience is very important. You have to put yourself in their shoes to judge your film honestly. In this way, you can do a critical analysis of your film all by yourself and the finished product will come out stronger.

Direction

The direction is an integral part of the whole film making process. Without a good director, a film can never become successful. The director is the puppet master who guides the actors in adopting a role.

Casting

Casting is another important factor in film making. The face value and popularity of the celebrities can contribute heavily in deciding the fate of a film. Some films become hit just because the cast includes famous names. So, you should be cautious while selecting the cast of a film.

Acting

Good acting skills are also very important in making a film successful. If you have a very good story in hand, but the actors are not able to perceive it correctly or do justice with the roles, then it’s all in vain. So, while hiring big names, you should not ignore their abilities.

Distribution

The distribution is the medium from where the producers derive the return on their investments. When a film is completed, the producer or production company decides the platforms to distribute the film. A large chunk of a film’s distribution is directed to cinema owners with fixed amount of screen time. The other mediums to showcase a film are televisions, DVDs, internet etc.

What does a Producer ACTUALLY do? - YouTube

How to make a film profitable?

Filmmaking is one thing and making it profitable is another. You can never predict the response that a film will get. Many things can go wrong, and you should have a plan to tackle them. It is not an easy job by any stretch of imagination. So, what does the producer do? Following guidelines can be followed if you want a good return on your investment:

Set your priorities and invest on them

First thing is to have a clear mind about your priorities. You should focus more on the important factors rather than on less significant ones. For example, if you invest a lot on casting and don’t have a good director or equipment, your film will never be successful. So, try to balance things out and invest on things that can have a big impact on the outcome of the film.

Hire Freelancers

By hiring freelancers in your crew, you can save a good amount of money. Like if you are hiring a drone operator for 2000 $ a day, it will do no good to your pocket. You can hire a freelancer in much low cost who will provide an evenly good job.

Distribute the film on multiple platforms

Having your hands in different pockets increases the probability of you getting money. So, if you distribute your film on different mediums, it is more likely to give you good return.

Promote your film effectively

The promotion of a film also has an impact on the box office numbers. You have to reach out to your audience effectively by building a hype of the film. A better promotion means that more people know about your film that might turn up to cinemas to watch it.

The post What Does the Producer Do? appeared first on Filmmaking Lifestyle.

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Animated videos are a great instrument for video creators and help businesses to reach their audience. This guide takes you by the hand and walks you through 5 of the best animation software options out there.

Do you know why animated videos are gaining so much attention? Well, it is a fact that our brain responds to visual content quickly as compared to the text, or audio content.

According to HubSpot and Video Brewery, out of the 50 best explainer videos, 43 are animated while seven videos are non-animated.

Due to the importance and massive demand for animated videos, nowadays people are on the hunt for the best animation software. But, in this internet world, it has become very difficult to find the animation software that ticks all the boxes for you.

In this article, we have come up with the best animation software apps that you can use to create stunning and engaging animated videos.

Best Animation Software

So, without any further delay, let us take a closer look at the best animation software tools:

1. Toon Boom Harmony

The first 2D animation software in our list is Toon Boom Harmony. It has gained a lot of attention in the industry in the last few years. World’s most famous animation studios like Pipeline studios, SAEROM, UBISOFT, etc. are using it.

Features of the Toon Boom Harmony animation software
  • It comes with the powerful tools which you can use to create almost any type of animation.
  • The brush engine inside this software uses the advanced vector drawing technology.
  • With the help of the Toon Boom Harmony, you can make 2D animation for all types of games that are compatible with the different game engines like Unity, and others.
  • You can add various effects like motion blur inside this software.
  • It allows you to add various angles of 2D animation video.

Toon Boom Harmony is compatible with both Mac and Windows operating systems. As per their official website, you require a video card of Nvidia, Intel or Radeon, etc. to use it. A memory of 16 GB is sufficient to use this software without any issues.

You can use the Toon Boom Harmony software for 21 days without paying a single dollar. But after a period of 21 days, you have to upgrade.

The important benefit of the Toon Boom harmony is that it is cost effective and highly efficient.

2. Stop Motion Studio

Have you seen movies like Gromit and Wallace? Stop Motion Studio allows you to create such incredible movies without wasting your precious hours. It is the one stop solution for making stop-action animated movies and videos.

Features of the Stop Motion Studio animation software
  • Stop Motion Studio comes with more than a dozen sound clips and background music that you can use to add background sound in your animation videos. You can also record your own voice inside the software.
  • With the help of the green screen feature, you can change the background of your video.
  • With this software, you can make human-like animated characters. That means you can give human-like facial expressions to your characters.
  • You can also import any video, image and audio clip inside the software.

The best thing about the Stop Motion Studio is that it is compatible in most of the devices. Whether you are using a tablet, mobile, computer or laptop, it works perfectly.

The only drawback of this software is that it is quite advanced and not beginner friendly. If you want to really master it then, use it a lot of times. It is the leading-edge solution for making stop motion videos.

Do you want a free trial? Yes, a free trial of the Stop Motion Studio is available.

3. OpenToonz

Are you searching for free animation software? Then, OpenToonz is the perfect choice for you. It is an open source animation software that means anyone can use for commercial or personal applications.

Features of the OpenToonz software
  • OpenToonz can handle both the vector images and raster images and allows the usage of the anti-aliased lines.
  • Inside the software, you will get effects like affected incident light, wavy distortion, etc.
  • It is available in Japanese and English language.

Talking about the system requirements, OpenToonz can work on the Windows as well as on Mac. You require an Intel core processor and 4GB RAM to run this software on your computer.

The disadvantage of this software is that it cannot be used for producing studio like animation videos. However, you can create high-quality animation graphics with it. On the other side of the spectrum, you don’t have to pay any fees at all to use it as OpenToonz is 100% free to use.

4. Moho Pro 12

Moho Pro 12 is a world-renowned software as it was used in the production of the Oscar-nominated movies like Song of the Sea and The Breadwinner. It is the must-have animation software for video professionals and artists in this digital world.

Features of the Moho Pro 12 animation software:

  • The revolutionary smart bone feature of the Moho Pro 12 separates it from the other tools. This feature allows you to remove the distortion produced near the elbows and knees of the character. The same feature is used to monitor the facial expressions and the body movement of the character.
  • Moho Pro 12 permits you to import your photoshop files inside this software. Due to this feature, you don’t have to worry about your saved photoshop files.
  • With Moho Pro 12, you can control the layer order, layer visibility and can review your animation before rendering it.
  • Another great feature of this software is its ability to bounce any character in the animated video.

Naruto: Pein Speedpaint in Anime Studio Pro/Moho Pro 12 - YouTube

You can try Moho Pro 12 free for 30 days. Though it has powerful features, its cost is quite high. So, if you are looking for the software that gives you a friendly interface and saves you time then, Moho Pro 12 is suitable for you.

5. CelAction2D

The last animation software on our list is CelAction 2D. It is simple and easy to use software that is used for creating TV series, commercials, and movies.

Features of the CelAction 2D animation software
  • Inside the CelAction 2D, you will get more than 60 effects for creating an engaging and dynamic video.
  • The advanced syncing technology inside this software helps you to manage all the animated scenes properly. The real-time animation preview window inside the CelAction2D also saves your lot of time.
  • CelAction2D gives you an added advantage of exporting into both PDF and Animatic format. You can also export sketches in the form of the image file.
  • In this software, you will find auto scrubbing feature and multiple audio tracks with volume control.
  • CelAction2D provides the full support of graphics tablets.

The only downside of this software is that it is not compatible with Mac OS. If you want to use it on the Windows then, you must have a PC with Intel processor and 4 GB RAM.

CellAction2D comes in three versions: Studio, Professional and Educational. You can get more information about each of these versions here.

Toot Turning 'Toot the Tiny Tugboat' CelAction Animation - YouTube

Best Animation Software – Final Words

That ends our list of the best animation software that you can use to create amazing graphics and animated videos.

Making an animation video is an easy task if you have the right skills and software. Explore the above-listed tools yourself to get the best out of it.

Thanks for reading this article and if you know any other animation software that is working best for you then, please let us know by commenting below.

The post Best Animation Software: 5 Top Animation Software Apps  appeared first on Filmmaking Lifestyle.

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Our industry has long thrived on word of mouth and personal recommendations. But what do you do when you’re looking for video producer jobs?

As a freelance producer who has always been a tad uncomfortable with self-promotion, I’ve increasingly found myself turning to the web for new connections, clients and talent.

I’ve had some great and not-so-great experiences hiring and being hired, so hopefully my successes and missteps will be helpful to you when it comes to deciding which sites to scan on the daily.

Finding Video Producer Jobs

Ready? Ok, let’s brave the interwebs and find you a gig.

Facebook Groups

Facebook groups are the closest thing you can get to attending a networking mixer without having to leave your house or awkwardly sip a themed cocktail.

Since Facebook already acts as a virtual reflection of your social network, it’s a great way to track down opportunities and have friends within those groups endorse you via likes, tags or comments.

This makes the application process a little more personal and booking a gig a lot more likely.

PROS:

Both client & applicants have a face

You can see the profile of the person or company posting the job, and clients can see yours. That doesn’t necessarily eliminate the need for due diligence, but does add a layer of verification and security.

Receive personal recommendations

Friends can instantly tag you in job posts that seem relevant to your skill set and vice versa. A lot of groups have an endorsement system where you can “Like” or “+1” a user in the comments to recommend them for said gig.

CONS:

Jobs posts can be a needle in a haystack

You really have to be on the prowl to find the right opportunity, in the right group, at the right time. Job posts are easily lost in the mass of information, questions, and rants pumped through group boards or your personal feed.

DMs land in the forgotten inbox

Unlike more traditional job posts that include an avenue for email correspondence, you will most likely have to send a Direct Message and pray the client knows how to open their secret “Message Requests” inbox.

ProductionHub

ProductionHub has been in the game a long time and caters specifically to our industry, which is obviously a huge plus. They have an extensive network of professionals (150,000+) which means there is a lot of traffic routed through their site.

PROS:

Plenty of listings

Because they have such a wide reaching network, tons of jobs are listed on the daily, all in a wide variety of production-related fields.

An actual human you can call

Their team is made of people that have worked in the industry and their lines have real human operators that will take your questions.

CONS:

Pay-for-Placement profiles

If users pay a monthly fee ($59.99) their profiles are featured more prominently, which skews search results and applications in their favor regardless of qualification and experience.

A lot of competition and less gatekeeping

In addition to dealing with featured profiles (should you decide not to pay for premium) your resume is going to be tossed in a gigantic pool of applicants.

Unlike Facebook, where some anonymity is lost and merit is gained through existing connections, ProductionHub is still a little more like the virtual Wild West.

Craigslist 

I can already hear the groans, so hear me out: This is the OG job site and admittedly also the most seedy one. There are a lot of “unpaid internships” and “exposure bucks” posts that we as an industry should not tolerate.

Craigslist is not anyone’s first choice, but it does bear mentioning because sometimes – and especially if you’re still looking to break in on some level – there are some opportunities to be found.

There are old school producers that still post on the site because they are familiar with it, and if you’re willing to dig for ‘em you just might be rewarded.

PROS:

Not as competitive

Because of the relatively BIG Cons (see below) you’re not dealing with as many qualified individuals applying to one job.

CONS:

Slightly sketchy

You really have to do your due diligence to a) find a job that’s worth your time and b) confirm it actually is what it says it is.

Not catering specifically to our industry

Craigslist casts a very broad net and is not built for film. That means posts follow few guidelines and often don’t contain the full set of information needed for a job.

StaffMeUp

StaffMeUp used to be focused on reality jobs only (formerly RealityStaff.com), but has since expanded and features job in a wide range of media related fields. They have a free membership and optional “level-ups” if you find you use their services more frequently.

PROS:

Notable clients

StaffMeUp boasts some regular postings by large studios like VICE, Pilgrim Studios, and Discovery.

Variety of locations

We know production hotbeds like Atlanta, LA, and NYC always need crew, but StaffMeUp offers a surprising amount of gigs in other locations, like Seattle, Charleston or Baltimore.

CONS:

Limit on applications

If you stick with the free version you will be limited to five job applications per month.

Separate client & vendor accounts

StaffMeUp differentiates between freelancer and employer profiles, which is difficult for those of us who wear both hats.

Wrangle

Wrangle is new to the game and the only site that combines both the project management and staffing workflow in one streamlined platform. They are currently only accessible if you are invited to be a part of their private beta.

PROS:

The community is invite-only

All our users must be referred by an existing member and/or vetted through an application form. Also, anyone who is repeatedly flagged as posting unpaid or underpaid jobs risks being ejected from the community.

Access to project management tools

Users can pick kits, negotiate rates, group message the team, hold or book freelancers, all from a project dashboard.

Hire & be hired from one account

You don’t have to decide whether you are a “client” or “vendor” in the traditional sense. Every approved member can hire or be hired into projects.

Options to give feedback

Member can give anonymous feedback after collaborations so clients or freelancers that are repeatedly unprofessional are flagged.

CONS:

Let’s look at some of the cons.

The community is invite-only

We know that’s in the Pro’s column as well, but there is of course a downside to that. If you don’t already have a significant body of work, you may not be admitted.

Still in its early stages

The platform is still beta testing, so there are several features that still need to be built out.

Applying For Video Editing Jobs on Upwork - YouTube

Still stuck when looking for that next job? Here are some other options!

Film/Video Job Sites Freelancing Sites Video Producer Jobs: Wrapping Up

Finally, most importantly, just don’t give up. Being a freelancer is tough and film is notoriously one of the toughest industries to find consistent work in. Wishing everyone the best of luck on your job hunt!

We hope you’ve found this article on finding video producer jobs helpful. Bookmark this article so that you remember these places the next time you’re looking for a video producer job.

This article was written by Lena Strothe. I am the co-founder of the new technology platform for filmmakers, Wrangle.

The post How to Find Your Next Gig Online – A Review of 5 Video Producer Jobs Sites appeared first on Filmmaking Lifestyle.

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When action’s called, the cinematographer knows it is time to put effort into producing a great film. But if you’re learning cinematography, what are the best books for cinematographers?

Good films, of course, are not only about lighting, but they are also about proper camera motions, a good measurement of film fields, selection of good shot colors, and scene arrangement. All this may not be the tasks of the cinematographer but good communication with the film director will see the creation of good visual elements in a film.

To perform their best in these fields, the cinematographer will require good skills. Skills can be acquired from different areas and the most common one is attending a cinematographers’ school. Schools, however, are not the only source of information. If you have self-confidence and discipline to train yourself, you can opt to buy books and gain knowledge on this art industry.

Best Books for Cinematographers

Books are a good choice because they offer reference ground when some important information is needed. The advantage of books is that they are also not an excerpt of new cinematographers but can also be used by well trained and experienced filmmakers.

We’re going to highlight and briefly explain the top books that are highly recommended for cinematographers at all levels.

1. The Five C’s of Cinematography by Joseph V. Mascelli

This is probably one of the most recommended books for cinematography. Having a look at it will tell you why. With most humans being visual beings, the use of photographs and diagrams in the book make it easy to understand the whole art of filmmaking.

The 5C’s that stand for camera angles, continuity, composition detail, cutting, and close-ups are all clearly explained in each chapter of the book. How these techniques interact with each other is something that Joseph V. Mascelli also explains very well. You will realize that applying most of his techniques results in high-quality visual elements.

Mascelli also explains the importance of adjusting camera heights for different scenes. The result of this is a professional master scene. The book also gives directions on all motion pictures camera works and editing tips for different types of film.

Sale
The Five C's of Cinematography: Motion Picture Filming Techniques
  • Silman-James Press
  • Joseph V Mascelli
  • Publisher: Silman-James Press
  • Edition no. 1 (08/03/2005)
  • Paperback: 251 pages
$29.95 - $6.92 $23.03
Buy on Amazon

2. Cinematography: Theory and Practice: Image Making for Cinematographers and Directors by Blain Brown

If you are looking for a book that contains the entire concepts linked to cinematography, then this is your go-to guide. It is based on standard filmmaking practices with clear examples from the real world.

The diagrams that are included are all up-to-date and contain new formats. One basic advantage of this book is that it has bridged the gap between traditional and contemporary aspects of cinematography.

It has explained some of the rules that were used in the old days and their integration with new technological advancements. It has also included both the basic and advanced levels of cinematography to cater for all levels of filmmakers.

It is an easy read with clear explanations that enable easy interaction between the cinematographers and directors. The fresh ideas presented in each chapter are something that most cinematographers can relate to.

If you are looking for a book that covers the entire art of cinematographers, then you definitely need to add this to your collection.

Cinematography: Theory and Practice: Image Making for Cinematographers, Directors, and Videographers
  • Blain Brown
  • Publisher: Focal Press
  • Edition no. 1 (10/23/2002)
  • Paperback: 303 pages
$58.58
Buy on Amazon
3. Painting with Light by John Alton

If you want to go back into history to information that gave birth to good cinematography concepts, then John Alton’s book will take you there. Though some of its contents are not applicable to today’s film world, some information is still very relevant.

An example is the importance of lighting in determining the visual look of a film. Alton used crisp shadows and beams of light that were sculpted to suit different films. The importance of this is that it made it easy for him to complete projects quickly and also create different lighting textures.

Through this book, cinematographers can learn about cross-lighting, back-lighting, and camera techniques. They can also learn the importance of depth in cinematography and also how to adjust lighting for different faces.

If you are looking to explore how visual elements are affected by camera angles, lighting, and film location, then this is your best guide. The diagrams will aid in the easy understanding of the different concepts.

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Painting With Light
  • University of California Press
  • John Alton
  • Publisher: University of California Press
  • Edition no. 0 (02/05/2013)
  • Paperback: 242 pages
$34.95 - $9.59 $25.36
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4. New Cinematographers by Alex Ballinger

This is a good read for those who are just starting out in cinematography. It is also an appropriate book for those who are well advanced in cinematography.

It contains real-life examples with some chapters even featuring real life stories. The featured stories involve six young cinematographers, who have challenged themselves enough to succeed in the art.

What makes it a good book for beginners is how it gives full details about all occurrences in the film industry. There is a full illustration of storyboards, good details about the lighting charts, and also information about stills and more.

The resource section also contains detailed information and the book also has an annotated bibliography. For the search of specific topics for reading, the author has an additional technically detailed glossary that makes it easy to find reference pages.

New Cinematographers
  • Used Book in Good Condition
  • Alex Ballinger
  • Publisher: Harper Design
  • Edition no. 0 (10/12/2004)
  • Paperback: 192 pages
$62.39
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5. American Cinematography Manual by Michael Goi

Once you get your hands on this book, you will understand why it has always been referred to as the “filmmaker’s bible” for so many years. Many cinematographers use it as a cinema reference book. They have also offered it as a digital guide to most upcoming filmmakers.

It is a good book because it has helped show the development of the film industry through the contemporary era. It also features technological changes that are effective for different camera techniques. Most of the terminologies used in the book are digital and more comprehensive.

The book talks more about the digital effects of image capture and even has a new section that explains the preparation of digital cameras. It is a book that all cinematographers should look out for if they are looking for further digital learning apart from what is offered in schools.

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American Cinematographer Manual Vol. I: 1
  • Basic Digital Concepts, Low-Cost Options For Digital Cinematography, Comparisons of 1.85, Anamorphic...
  • Exposure Meters, Lenses, Camera & Camera Support Systems, 3-D Stereoscopic Cinematography
  • Day-for-Night, Infrared and Ultraviolet Cinematography,
  • The Cinematographer and the Laboratory: Emulsion Testing, Finding Your Own Printer Light, Adjusting...
  • LED Lighting For Motion Picture Production
$49.95 - $7.18 $42.77
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6. Lighting for Cinematography: A Practical Guide to the Art and Craft of Lighting for the Moving Image by David Landau

Lighting impacts shot and this book explains this all so clearly. The book covers real film concepts with advice from professionals in the film industry. Cinematographers can use this book to learn about stills, non-fiction and night lighting.

The book also explains about working with windows and lighting movements with example diagrams for reference. It also includes example exercises to help readers put into practice the knowledge acquired from the resources.

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Lighting for Cinematography: A Practical Guide to the Art and Craft of Lighting for the Moving Image (The CineTech Guides to the Film Crafts)
  • Bloomsbury Academic
  • David Landau
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
  • Edition no. 0 (07/10/2014)
  • Paperback: 288 pages
$35.95 - $3.60 $32.35
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"Advice to Young Cinematographers" with Bradford Young, ASC - YouTube

Best Books for Cinematographers – The Bottom Line

There are many reasons why cinematographers read books but the basic one is to gain extensive knowledge. It is not enough to learn from schools. Learn to also read books that will help you in creativity by explaining traditional and contemporary filmmaking concepts.

If you want to learn from professionals, then you have to gain insights from what they do. Professionals can be found in different places and the easiest one is in books. Books contain so much information that when well captured, will scale your career in cinematography.

It is also important to find a mentor who will guide you through the process. Always visit film-sets to practice and perfect your skills.

We hope you’ve found this article on the best books for cinematographers informative. Have we missed out your favorite cinematography book? Let us know in the comments below.

The post 6 Best Books For Cinematographers appeared first on Filmmaking Lifestyle.

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In the past few years, 360 video has really taken off thanks to new advances in technology. These advances are making it possible for filmmakers and consumers alike to create high quality immersive video content – and the GoPro Omni has been one of the big contenders in providing professional filmmakers with the tools they need to do just that.

GoPro Omni Review – Introduction

Last year, TopLine Film travelled to Alaska to shoot a video about the sustainable salmon fishing industry and what makes the produce of our client, Alaska Seafood, incredibly fresh and sustainably caught.

We wanted the audience to see first-hand the efforts that are going into sustainable fishing in Alaska and therefore we felt that the best way to fulfil the aim of this video was to shoot an immersive 360 video using the GoPro Omni camera rig to ‘’transport’’ the audience to see it.

So, what is the GoPro Omni? It is a spherical array of six synchronised GoPro Hero 4 cameras which, once edited together, creates high quality 360 images. It can output up to 8K video in raw mode and was designed to help professionals create immersive content.

This review takes a behind the scenes look at the process of shooting 360 video with the GoPro Omni through the making of this video for Alaska Seafood. Hints and tips on how to get the best from shooting with this camera are provided from pre-post production.

Pre-Production

When preparing for a 360 video shoot it is important that you have all of the necessary kit with you. There is a lot more to think about than simply packing a camera and a couple of lenses. Here’s some top tips we learnt from our Alaska Seafood 360 shoot:

Pack enough media

With each camera capable of shooting 4K video, the GoPro Omni is hungry for card space. Therefore, if you’re planning on shooting a lot of content with the Omni it is important to make sure you carry sufficient cards.

For the Alaska Seafood video we ensured that we had a spare card for each of the six cameras so that we could continue shooting whilst the first batch of rushes were backing up. All cards were high capacity too at 32GB, giving us 40+ minutes of recording time at maximum resolution.

TOP TIP: Should you need more recording time, the Omni also takes 64GB cards which will give you 90+ minutes of recording time in the maximum resolution.

It’s important to make sure that all of your cards are the same capacity and formatted beforehand, as before mentioned all of the six cameras in the array are synchronised and so once one camera has reached capacity, they all stop recording.

For example, if one of your five cards is 16GB and the rest are 32GB then this will limit the recording for the whole rig. Likewise, if one card isn’t formatted and the others are then this will also affect the filming.

Have a replacement backup GoPro

In the unfortunate event that one of the GoPros become damaged, which for us was likely in an environment like Alaska, it is important that you have a spare camera as the Omni will not continue to work with only 5 cameras.

It is also worth noting that the Omni is only compatible with the GoPro Hero4 Black cameras so do not try installing another model of camera into this rig as this will cause an array error which will halt the rig’s ability to record.

Finally, the spare camera must also contain the GoPro Omni camera firmware, you can find instructions from GoPro on how to do this here.

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GoPro HERO7 Black - Waterproof Digital Action Camera with Touch Screen 4K HD Video 12MP Photos Live Streaming Stabilization
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Make sure you choose the appropriate grip equipment for your shoot

During the pre-production phase of the Alaska Seafood video we knew that many of our shots would be filmed on a fishing boat in choppy seas so we needed to make sure that we had the appropriate grip equipment to secure the camera rig during filming. This consisted of heavy-duty monopod bases and magic arms, and cable ties.

In terms of mounting the Omni to you can do so through the industry-standard ¼’’-20 screw thread located at several points on the Omni. Be sure to have several thread adaptors if you’re planning on using a variety of grip equipment with the Omni.

It is important to note here that grip equipment for 360 filming is somewhat different to grip equipment that you would find on a traditional video shoot. For example, because the GoPro Omni is recording a 360 space, whatever grip equipment you connect to the camera rig will be in shot, right? This is partially correct, here’s a few tips:

  • For bulkier equipment, like a tripod for instance, 360 filming is impossible as the cameras towards the ‘bottom’ of the rig will only see the tripod head and legs.

  • The narrower the grip equipment, a monopod for example, the better as you can hide the equipment between the cameras ‘stitch lines’.

  • A stitch line is where the field of views of several cameras meet and overlap, creating a void where your grip equipment can sit.

For the Alaska Seafood video we connected the GoPro Omni to a monopod which was hidden perfectly between the stitch lines. As the audience look down the only thing they can see is the monopod’s baseplate which we ‘plated’ out in the edit (see post-production section for notes on plating).

Get creative with where you place your audience

What do you want your audience to see, and from what angle? Although a monopod is great for static shots on the ground, you may want to place your audience somewhere really cool.

For example, there is a scene in the Alaska Seafood video where we mounted the camera rig above a trap door so you could see our subjects loading the fishing nets from the first floor of a warehouse into their truck on the ground floor below. This keeps it interesting for the audience and doesn’t result in every shot looking the same.

We achieved this shot by rigging the GoPro Omni to a magic arm which was suspended above the trap door. Like the tripod, the magic arm was hidden between the Omni’s stitch lines. The magic arm grip was removed in post-production.

Furthermore, we also rigged a 360 camera to the wing of a seaplane – capturing breathtaking views from an unusual vantage point.

Test the camera rig before you leave for the shoot

This is something we cannot recommend enough. As intuitive as the GoPro Omni rig is it is important to remember that these are GoPros and not Arri Alexa’s. With that in mind be sure to check that the rig is working correctly before you leave. Ask yourself the following:

  • Are all of the cards working properly?

  • Do any of the lenses have scratches on them which could affect your shot? Don’t forget – 360 cameras see everything.

  • Are all of the cameras sync’d (this can be found by checking the master camera for a message that says ‘Array ready’.

  • Are all cameras secure in the rig? If one camera is loose you will see part of the 360 video wobbling. The GoPro Omni rig is generally pretty stable but check out what happens should this problem occur here.

360 Video - London Taxi - YouTube

Label each of the cameras by number

Before your shoot we’d recommend that you physically number each of the cameras so that these are easy to identify when DIT’ing your footage. Backing up multiple cards from six cameras can get rather messy and the clearer it is the more efficient the post-production process will be.

Pack tweezers for handling media

This may seem like an odd tip but one we’d definitely advise you to heed. Once all of the GoPros are secured in the Omni it can be very fiddly to insert / eject the SD cards.

We brought a pair of tweezers with us which made the process of recycling cards in the array a lot smoother. When you’re trying to eject cards on a choppy fishing boat it was important that we had a firm grasp of those cards. If one was lost it’s game over.

GoPro HERO6 Black - Waterproof Digital Action Camera for Travel with Touch Screen 4K HD Video 12MP Photos
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Production

Let’s look at some of the pointers to consider when in Production itself.

Best settings for the GoPro Omni

When shooting with the GoPro Omni, it’s important that your cameras are set up correctly to achieve the highest quality video and easiest post-production workflow.

What is amazing about the rig is that once you have set the master camera’s settings, the array will set the other five cameras to the exact same settings automatically.

Recording on the master camera will also trigger all other cameras to record at exactly the same time to ensure that all of your footage will sync perfectly in post-production. You can see more of this in GoPro’s product video.

GoPro: Introducing Omni - YouTube

There are several factors to consider when setting up the GoPros for 360 video as they are not set as you typically would for a traditional video. A few general things to note:

  • The aspect ratio should be 4:3 opposed to the favoured 16:9 ratio used most often these days. This helps with stitching the images later in post-production.

  • Higher frame rates than the standard 25p/ 24p are also better for successful syncing in post-production.

  • The colour profile and white balance should be set to Flat & Native as this helps with stitching the shots together.

  • Sharpness also has a part in stitching – high sharpness is not advised as this will make the stitch lines more prominent which will break the ‘’illusion’’ of the 360 video.

Here’s our recommended settings for the GoPro Omni for each video output. For our Alaska Seafood 360 video we shot for optimum 8K video output:

For optimum 8K video output:

  • Resolution: 2.7K
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3
  • Frame Rate: 30fps
  • Colour Profile: Flat
  • White Balance: Native
  • Sharpness: Medium or Low
  • Protune: On

For 5.5K video output:

  • Resolution: 1440p
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3
  • Frame Rate: 30fps
  • Colour Profile: Flat
  • White Balance: Native
  • Sharpness: Medium or Low
  • Protune: On

For 4K video output:

  • Resolution: 960p
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3
  • Frame Rate: 30fps
  • Colour Profile: Flat
  • White Balance: Native
  • Sharpness: Medium or Low
  • Protune: On
Setting up the GoPro Omni for a shot

When setting up a shot on the GoPro Omni there are a few things to remember. First of all, make sure your monopod has a heavy-duty base, especially when filming on uneven surfaces. The Omni rig has cameras on each side so if your array topples over it will scratch a lens and once that happens the 360 video dream is over.

Secondly, make sure the surface you are leaving the Omni on is plateable. Although the shaft of the monopod disappears within the stitch lines you’ll still need to remove the base of the monopod in post-production. Therefore, choose your surface wisely.

Surfaces such as grass, concrete and gravel are perfect for this as they can be easily ‘plated’ (see post-production section) later. Surfaces with a complex design like a quirky carpet are more challenging for removing the monopod base.

Another thing to note when setting up your shot is to keep people and objects typically two metres from the camera. Any closer and the camera’s stitch lines become more prominent resulting in warping, distortion and ghosting on the camera. See below.

Finally, if you can see the GoPro Omni from where you’re standing it can see you. In other words, if you don’t want to make a cameo appearance in your own 360 video set up the GoPro Omni and hide in a place it can’t see you.

On location in the Alaska Seafood video, the crew hid inside the cabin of the fishing boats and behind bushes in the scenery shots. You learn to get creative with this.

Powering your GoPro Omni

As you can imagine, six GoPros recording simultaneously requires a lot of power to keep going, especially as these little cameras only have a battery life of 45 minutes. We’d recommend buying a few external power packs with several USB ports to keep you going.

External power packs can increase the battery life of the GoPros to two hours! This was perfect for our Alaska Seafood shoot as we could not keep going back to land every 45 minutes to charge the GoPro batteries.

The GoPro Omni comes with long USB cables so these can be connected to external power packs, wrapped around the monopod shaft and hidden within a stitch line.

Get creative with your shots

Because 360 video production is a somewhat new video medium of filmmaking you quickly learn to use your initiative and get creative. For example, on the fishing boat we used some heavy boat chains we found to stop the GoPro Omni’s monopod falling over during choppy waters.

You may be thinking, why not use a sandbag? Well, should the audience look down during this scene at least it is an authentic prop found on fishing boats rather than something alien to the environment like a sandbag for instance.

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GoPro HERO5 Black Waterproof Digital Action Camera w/ 4K HD Video & 12MP Photo (Renewed)
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$169.99 - $5.00 $164.99
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Tim Ferriss is an interesting guy – autodidact, polymath and modern day Renaissance man. In his books and on his podcast, he’s interviewed a wide range of other interesting and successful people. In this article, we’ve put together a list of Tim Ferriss recommended books based on books recommended by him and his podcast guests.

If you’re a fan of Tim Ferriss podcast, and his work in a variety of fields, you might be interested in the books he’s read and recommends. Through his diverse career and regular podcast, Tim has met and interviewed people from all sorts of fields and backgrounds. It’s enabled him to learn about all kinds of amazing books and writers.

In this article, we’re going to share a list of the Tim Ferriss recommended books – those books that he’s mentioned the most, be it on his podcast, in his books, on social media or elsewhere.

So if you’re looking for Tim Ferriss books, we have just the list for you!

Whether you’re looking for a relaxed nighttime read, or something more academic, we have a whole goldmine of knowledge to share! All Tim Ferriss recommended!

Tim Ferriss Recommended Books

Let’s take a look at the books Tim Ferriss has read and loved.

Tao Te Ching

“The Tao Te Ching is a Chinese classic text traditionally credited to the 6th-century BC sage Laozi. The text’s authorship, date of composition and date of compilation are debated.

The oldest excavated portion dates back to the late 4th century BC, but modern scholarship dates other parts of the text as having been written—or at least compiled—later than the earliest portions of the Zhuangzi.

The Tao Te Ching, along with the Zhuangzi, is a fundamental text for both philosophical and religious Taoism. It also strongly influenced other schools of Chinese philosophy and religion, including Legalism, Confucianism, and Buddhism, which was largely interpreted through the use of Taoist words and concepts when it was originally introduced to China.

Many artists, including poets, painters, calligraphers, and gardeners, have used the Tao Te Ching as a source of inspiration. Its influence has spread widely outside East Asia and it is among the most translated works in world literature.”

Tao Te Ching
  • Lao Tzu
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
  • Paperback: 78 pages
Atlas Shrugged

“Atlas Shrugged is a 1957 novel by Ayn Rand. Rand’s fourth and final novel, it was also her longest, and the one she considered to be her magnum opus in the realm of fiction writing.

Atlas Shrugged includes elements of science fiction, mystery, and romance, and it contains Rand’s most extensive statement of Objectivism in any of her works of fiction.

The book depicts a dystopian United States in which private businesses suffer under increasingly burdensome laws and regulations. Railroad executive Dagny Taggart and her lover, steel magnate Hank Rearden, struggle against “looters” who want to exploit their productivity.

Dagny and Hank discover that a mysterious figure called John Galt is persuading other business leaders to abandon their companies and disappear as a “strike” of productive individuals against the looters. The novel ends with the strikers planning to build a new capitalist society based on Galt’s philosophy of reason and individualism.

The theme of Atlas Shrugged, as Rand described it, is “the role of man’s mind in existence”. The book explores a number of philosophical themes from which Rand would subsequently develop Objectivism.

In doing so, it expresses the advocacy of reason, individualism, and capitalism, and depicts what Rand saw to be the failures of governmental coercion.”

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Atlas Shrugged
  • Great product!
  • Ayn Rand
  • Publisher: Signet
  • Mass Market Paperback: 1088 pages
$9.99 - $0.60 $9.39
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Sapiens

“100,000 years ago, at least six human species inhabited the earth. Today there is just one. Us. Homo sapiens. How did our species succeed in the battle for dominance? Why did our foraging ancestors come together to create cities and kingdoms?

How did we come to believe in gods, nations and human rights; to trust money, books and laws; and to be enslaved by bureaucracy, timetables and consumerism? And what will our world be like in the millennia to come?

In Sapiens, Dr Yuval Noah Harari spans the whole of human history, from the very first humans to walk the earth to the radical – and sometimes devastating – breakthroughs of the Cognitive, Agricultural and Scientific Revolutions.

Drawing on insights from biology, anthropology, palaeontology and economics, he explores how the currents of history have shaped our human societies, the animals and plants around us, and even our personalities.

Have we become happier as history has unfolded? Can we ever free our behaviour from the heritage of our ancestors? And what, if anything, can we do to influence the course of the centuries to come?

Bold, wide-ranging and provocative, Sapiens challenges everything we thought we knew about being human: our thoughts, our actions, our power … and our future.”

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Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind
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  • Yuval Noah Harari
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Siddhartha

“Hesse’s famous and influential novel, Siddartha, is perhaps the most important and compelling moral allegory our troubled century has produced.

Integrating Eastern and Western spiritual traditions with psychoanalysis and philosophy, this strangely simple tale, written with a deep and moving empathy for humanity, has touched the lives of millions since its original publication in 1922.

Set in India, Siddhartha is the story of a young Brahmin’s search for ultimate reality after meeting with the Buddha. His quest takes him from a life of decadence to asceticism, through the illusory joys of sensual love with a beautiful courtesan, and of wealth and fame, to the painful struggles with his son and the ultimate wisdom of renunciation.

This new translation by award-winning translator Joachim Neugroschel includes an introduction by Hesse biographer Ralph Freedman.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines.

Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.”

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Siddhartha (Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition)
  • Penguin Books
  • Hermann Hesse
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics
  • Edition no. 0 (12/31/2002)
  • Paperback: 176 pages
$16.00 - $3.08 $12.92
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The Checklist Manifesto

“In his latest bestseller, Atul Gawande shows what the simple idea of the checklist reveals about the complexity of our lives and how we can deal with it.

The modern world has given us stupendous know-how. Yet avoidable failures continue to plague us in health care, government, the law, the financial industry—in almost every realm of organized activity. And the reason is simple: the volume and complexity of knowledge today has exceeded our ability as individuals to properly deliver it to people—consistently, correctly, safely.

We train longer, specialize more, use ever-advancing technologies, and still we fail. Atul Gawande makes a compelling argument that we can do better, using the simplest of methods: the checklist.

In riveting stories, he reveals what checklists can do, what they can’t, and how they could bring about striking improvements in a variety of fields, from medicine and disaster recovery to professions and businesses of all kinds. And the insights are making a difference.

Already, a simple surgical checklist from the World Health Organization designed by following the ideas described here has been adopted in more than twenty countries as a standard for care and has been heralded as “the biggest clinical invention in thirty years.”

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The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right
  • Picador USA
  • Atul Gawande
  • Publisher: Picador
  • Edition no. 0 (01/04/2011)
  • Paperback: 240 pages
$17.00 - $5.02 $11.98
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Dune

“Set on the desert planet Arrakis, Dune is the story of the boy Paul Atreides, heir to a noble family tasked with ruling an inhospitable world where the only thing of value is the “spice” melange, a drug capable of extending life and enhancing consciousness. Coveted across the known universe, melange is a prize worth killing for….

When House Atreides is betrayed, the destruction of Paul’s family will set the boy on a journey toward a destiny greater than he could ever have imagined. And as he evolves into the mysterious man known as Muad’Dib, he will bring to fruition humankind’s most ancient and unattainable dream.

A stunning blend of adventure and mysticism, environmentalism and politics, Dune won the first Nebula Award, shared the Hugo Award, and formed the basis of what is undoubtedly the grandest epic in science fiction.”

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Dune
  • Ace
  • Frank Herbert
  • Publisher: Ace
  • Mass Market Paperback: 896 pages
$10.99 - $2.00 $8.99
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Influence

“Influence, the classic book on persuasion, explains the psychology of why people say “yes”—and how to apply these understandings.

Dr. Robert Cialdini is the seminal expert in the rapidly expanding field of influence and persuasion. His thirty-five years of rigorous, evidence-based research along with a three-year program of study on what moves people to change behavior has resulted in this highly acclaimed book.

You’ll learn the six universal principles, how to use them to become a skilled persuader—and how to defend yourself against them. Perfect for people in all walks of life, the principles of Influence will move you toward profound personal change and act as a driving force for your success.”

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Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion, Revised Edition
  • Collins Publishers
  • Robert B. Cialdini
  • Publisher: Harper Business
  • Edition no. 0 (12/26/2006)
  • Paperback: 336 pages
$18.99 - $6.76 $12.23
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Stumbling on Happiness

“In this brilliant, witty, and accessible book, renowned Harvard psychologist Daniel Gilbert describes the foibles of imagination and illusions of foresight that cause each of us to misconceive our tomorrows and misestimate our satisfactions.

With penetrating insight and sparkling prose, Gilbert explains why we seem to know so little about the hearts and minds of the people we are about to become.”

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Stumbling on Happiness
  • Vintage Books
  • Daniel Gilbert
  • Publisher: Vintage
  • Paperback: 336 pages
$17.00 - $7.09 $9.91
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Superintelligence

“The human brain has some capabilities that the brains of other animals lack. It is to these distinctive capabilities that our species owes its dominant position. Other animals have stronger muscles or sharper claws, but we have cleverer brains.

If machine brains one day come to surpass human brains in general intelligence, then this new superintelligence could become very powerful. As the fate of the gorillas now depends more on us humans than on the gorillas themselves, so the fate..

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If you’re looking to take your filming with a drone to the next level, then we have the perfect guide to level up your drove filmmaking.

Here are 7 mistakes that you’ll want to avoid when using a drone. Whether you’re making a film, or working on a corporate video project, you’ll get something out of these pointers.

Filming with a Drone: 7 Mistakes You Shouldn’t Make When Using a Drone

Drones are becoming catalysts in film making, allowing amateurs and non-professionals to capture jaw dropping and cinematic shots which are only available before in commercial and big productions.

You should take note that for a more complete learning process, especially if you’re a newbie and want to learn to fly safe and legal, taking a drone course and registering as a pilot will definitely be a big help!

When it is your first time to fly a drone, and you are looking for simple tips on how to ace your experience, read on the following to avoid trouble.

1. Shooting video in non-flying zones

One of the basic things in filming is knowing whether the area is allowed for shooting especially for drones.

When you buy a drone, it usually comes with specifications and a set of instructions on how to use the equipment. This can help you to know when your drone needs to be registered or would require you some permit to take shots in a place.

In the United States, for example, every drone that weighs more than 0.55 pounds must be licensed and owner should follow strict aeronautical guidelines.

But in May 2017, Federal Aviation Administration no longer requires owners to have their drones listed. Registration may now be optional yet rules of the space are still applicable. Better fly safe than face penalties.

2. Having No Flight Plan

Drones can be expensive and any risks in flying may end up damaging the entire flight plan.

Always stay clear of things like trees and power lines when flying, as these obstacles can hinder your flight course. Wind is one of the causes of a drone veering off into trees and other facilities.

Other issues may also arise from a feature on many drones called ‘return-to-home’ (RTH). The RTH mode feature usually takes automatically your drone to 60 feet or more. It can have problems when you are flying from very low altitudes, with some high tree canopies above.

Such possible scenario can wreak havoc on your drone, when suddenly it takes off to higher altitude level. No worries, as auto-pilot feature can help you avoid taking off to areas that have obstacles.

3. Flying beyond safe range

In the operation manual, drones have guidelines on flight range that helps you understand its battery lifespan.

When possible, always stay within the listed range and be ready for any peripheral interference. Natural obstacles such as wind and air temperature are the types that difficult to be evaded with.

Wind and air temperatures greatly affect flight plan. As you fly higher, the wind is stronger and unpredictable. It is also faster to drain your battery when your drone tries to fight wind.

Always take note of wind direction and speed before taking off your drone and ensure sufficient battery lifespan.

4. Ignorance of Electronic Interference

In the United States, all radio electronic frequencies are open to interferences. While the Federal Aviation Administration opts for free-sky obstructions, it cannot be avoided sometimes that external obstacles.

The best advice for flyers is to prepare yourself for any possible risks in the field.

5. Power is on when the drone is not level

Many drones have automatic set flying options when it is turned on. When you automatically turn on your drone and it is not leveled, your flight may not be stable because the drone has been set in wrong parameters.

Your drone would auto-correct your parameters when it is power on the even level ground. It will ensure the safety of your drone and you having a stable and smooth flight.

Also, there are some drones that need calibration in every change of location. Make sure to learn how to calibrate your drone and check operations manual for guidance.

When your drone is losing control and drifting on the air, take a gradual landing shift and reboot your equipment on the flat level surface.

Other things like compass calibration, gimbal adjustment and gyro calibration are really important if you want to make sure your flight will be safe and the video is going to turn well.

6. Losing orientation

If it is your first time flying a drone, it is normal to get easily disoriented when flying in ‘normal mode’.

Many drones nowadays have headless mode that mechanically locks in flight orientation despite of its angular position. Amateur flyers are advised to learn to fly a drone in normal mode.

Loosing orientation means losing control over your drone during a flight plan. It happens when your drone is not moving to the direction you intend to fly. When your drone is facing against you, your right control stick would be turned left and vice-versa.

You should constantly keep in mind that of which direction your drone is facing, as it would give idea on your control points.

If you’re not certain about the position of your drone, then move it in the direction where you can see where your drone is facing. In this way, it would help you gain control over your drone in the entire flight plan.

7. Incorrect camera settings

Setting the camera of your drone correctly can also be one of the most important things you have to include in your flight plan. Adjusting the camera settings right is half the battle of capturing and excellent aerial photo and having a successful flight.

The most important thing to have in mind Is having the correct exposure.

I can’t tell you how many times I got over exposed or under exposed footage and it turned out to be unusable.

You could shoot on manual, but it’s preferable to keep the shutter speed at 1/2xFPS so that the image looks smooth.

In sunny days  you can only do this with ND filters, but with drones like the Mavic 2 Pro, you can adjust the aperture to compensate to a point where the shutter speed is properly adjusted.

There are flying techniques that can help you find the perfect angle, but correct camera settings will you achieve the best shot. So always make sure that your camera is well-adjusted, and you are ready to go.

Make sure you pick the correct drones for filmmaking, as those will give you the most amount of freedom in tweaking things like aperture, shutter speed, iso and so on.

Bonus tip: Make sure you have a good micro SD card

Just recently it happened to me that I recorded with a very important client and because the card used was not high quality enough to capture 4k, the footage turned out laggy and some files even got corrupted.

In this article you can find all the details about micro SD cards and how much data they can handle at a time.

For 4k recording in drones like the Mavic 2 pro with 10bit recording, I definitely recommend a micro SD card UHS type 2 that can write up to 312 mb/s just to make sure your footage will turn out right.

How to film amazing aerials with your drone | DroneFilmSchool - YouTube

Filming with a Drone – Wrapping Up

As a conclusion, you should take note of the specific model of aircraft you’re piloting and especially the environment you’re in, as there are going to be different factors that can change your success rate and how well you focus on the task at hand.

There’s a lot of cheaper, budget drones that can do the job just fine for even under $500 that are really safe to pilot thanks to their GPS systems and other sensors that helps with steady flight.

I personally prefer not to have many people around me asking questions so I avoid crowded areas to launch the drone from, although I typically get a friend with me to help with keeping an eye on the drone while I concentrate on taking the right shots and look at the live feed.

This being said, you’ll definitely get used to respecting a certain flight etiquette that will save you a lot of money and headaches in time. But make sure to go through these checklists until it becomes a habit and you will get one step closer to becoming a true drone filming professional.

We hope this article on filming with a drone was useful to you. What drone no-no did we miss out? Let us know in the comments just below this post.

The post Filming with a Drone: 7 Mistakes You Shouldn’t Make When Using a Drone appeared first on Filmmaking Lifestyle.

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This is the 41st instalment of this feature here on Filmmaking Lifestyle, where we chart the best-of-the-best from around the filmmaking and video production world. This article covers the best posts from May 2019.

Every month, I post a round-up article featuring the best things I’ve found around the web on filmmaking and video production. If you missed one, we have a complete archive here.

We’re talking articles, videos, infographics, all sorts. Anything that stands out to me and that I think is worth keeping in an archive, I’m going to include in these reports.

I post these articles at the end of each month, along with all the regular posts you get on Filmmaking Lifestyle.

The Best Posts Of May 2019

Hey!

We past the 400 post mark last month, which is pretty cool! Special thanks to everyone who’s read and followed Filmmaking Lifestyle over these last years. You’ve been awesome and we certainly wouldn’t have reached this milestone without your support!

We currently have a special 50% off promotion on Video Business Fast Forward right now. If you’re interested in starting, growing and taking your video business to the next level, then jump on over to the page and join!

I’ve been super busy with corporate work lately. Summers seem to be busier than ever with corporate and commercial work. And it’s summer right now in the UK, so things are hectic! Hectic in a good way.

Without further ado, let’s jump into what we have for you this month!

Filmmaking & Video Production

No Film School says: “Indie Filmmaking Is About to Get More Expensive in the U.S.”

Good tutorial on camera angle and position:

Camera angle and position - YouTube

Very interesting development in the news recently: California Bill Offers Tax Incentives To Filmmakers Who Leave Georgia Over Abortion Laws.

Wonder what happens when a movie has no gaffer? Reverse Film School has the answer:

What Happens When A Movie Has No Gaffer? | Reverse Film School | Vanity Fair - YouTube

Cool video article on how to record foley:

How To Record Foley - YouTube

So what did we have on Filmmaking Lifestyle this month? We started this month with an article on the common types of film lighting, where detailed a complete guide to the various types of lighting in filmmaking.

Next up, we had articles on the best drones for under $1000 and how to make sure your videos are shown in the best quality.

And then we had articles on the how to shoot a movie with an iPhone, the best finance books and how to be a screenwriter.

We rounded out the month with pieces on the best cryptocurrency books, an article explaining when is golden hour exactly and the best trading books.

Software, Hardware & Visual Effects

News that Panasonic S1H to debut. Full-frame 6K cine Hybrid camera with built-in log profiles.

Interesting news with Adobe telling users they can get sued for using old versions of Creative Cloud applications.

News that DJI raises price of Smart Controller to $749.

In more very interesting news, DHS warns of ‘strong concerns’ that Chinese-made drones are stealing data.

And this is cool: Unreleased 8K Canon used for capture at WWDC.

Fantastic breakdown of gear for a GH5 rig:

GH5 - Sigma 18-35 - Mirrorless Rig Overview (2019) - YouTube

Picture of the Month

This month’s Picture of the Month is a cool infographic showing all of Steven Spielberg’s cinematographers and the aspect ratios they used:

Video of the Month

For this month’s Video of the Month shows how Christopher Nolan writes and directs a movie:

How Christopher Nolan Writes and Directs a Movie | The Director's Chair - YouTube

Have you found anything else in the filmmaking / video production world online? Let us know in the comments right below this post!

Catch you soon!

The post The Best of Filmmaking & Video Production May 2019 appeared first on Filmmaking Lifestyle.

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If you’re looking to take your filming with a drone to the next level, then we have the perfect guide to level up your drove filmmaking.

Here are 7 mistakes that you’ll want to avoid when using a drone. Whether you’re making a film, or working on a corporate video project, you’ll get something out of these pointers.

Filming with a Drone: 7 Mistakes You Shouldn’t Make When Using a Drone

Drones are becoming catalysts in film making, allowing amateurs and non-professionals to capture jaw dropping and cinematic shots which are only available before in commercial and big productions.

You should take note that for a more complete learning process, especially if you’re a newbie and want to learn to fly safe and legal, taking a drone course and registering as a pilot will definitely be a big help!

When it is your first time to fly a drone, and you are looking for simple tips on how to ace your experience, read on the following to avoid trouble.

1. Shooting video in non-flying zones

One of the basic things in filming is knowing whether the area is allowed for shooting especially for drones.

When you buy a drone, it usually comes with specifications and a set of instructions on how to use the equipment. This can help you to know when your drone needs to be registered or would require you some permit to take shots in a place.

In the United States, for example, every drone that weighs more than 0.55 pounds must be licensed and owner should follow strict aeronautical guidelines.

But in May 2017, Federal Aviation Administration no longer requires owners to have their drones listed. Registration may now be optional yet rules of the space are still applicable. Better fly safe than face penalties.

2. Having No Flight Plan

Drones can be expensive and any risks in flying may end up damaging the entire flight plan.

Always stay clear of things like trees and power lines when flying, as these obstacles can hinder your flight course. Wind is one of the causes of a drone veering off into trees and other facilities.

Other issues may also arise from a feature on many drones called ‘return-to-home’ (RTH). The RTH mode feature usually takes automatically your drone to 60 feet or more. It can have problems when you are flying from very low altitudes, with some high tree canopies above.

Such possible scenario can wreak havoc on your drone, when suddenly it takes off to higher altitude level. No worries, as auto-pilot feature can help you avoid taking off to areas that have obstacles.

3. Flying beyond safe range

In the operation manual, drones have guidelines on flight range that helps you understand its battery lifespan.

When possible, always stay within the listed range and be ready for any peripheral interference. Natural obstacles such as wind and air temperature are the types that difficult to be evaded with.

Wind and air temperatures greatly affect flight plan. As you fly higher, the wind is stronger and unpredictable. It is also faster to drain your battery when your drone tries to fight wind.

Always take note of wind direction and speed before taking off your drone and ensure sufficient battery lifespan.

4. Ignorance of Electronic Interference

In the United States, all radio electronic frequencies are open to interferences. While the Federal Aviation Administration opts for free-sky obstructions, it cannot be avoided sometimes that external obstacles.

The best advice for flyers is to prepare yourself for any possible risks in the field.

5. Power is on when the drone is not level

Many drones have automatic set flying options when it is turned on. When you automatically turn on your drone and it is not leveled, your flight may not be stable because the drone has been set in wrong parameters.

Your drone would auto-correct your parameters when it is power on the even level ground. It will ensure the safety of your drone and you having a stable and smooth flight.

Also, there are some drones that need calibration in every change of location. Make sure to learn how to calibrate your drone and check operations manual for guidance.

When your drone is losing control and drifting on the air, take a gradual landing shift and reboot your equipment on the flat level surface.

Other things like compass calibration, gimbal adjustment and gyro calibration are really important if you want to make sure your flight will be safe and the video is going to turn well.

6. Losing orientation

If it is your first time flying a drone, it is normal to get easily disoriented when flying in ‘normal mode’.

Many drones nowadays have headless mode that mechanically locks in flight orientation despite of its angular position. Amateur flyers are advised to learn to fly a drone in normal mode.

Loosing orientation means losing control over your drone during a flight plan. It happens when your drone is not moving to the direction you intend to fly. When your drone is facing against you, your right control stick would be turned left and vice-versa.

You should constantly keep in mind that of which direction your drone is facing, as it would give idea on your control points.

If you’re not certain about the position of your drone, then move it in the direction where you can see where your drone is facing. In this way, it would help you gain control over your drone in the entire flight plan.

7. Incorrect camera settings

Setting the camera of your drone correctly can also be one of the most important things you have to include in your flight plan. Adjusting the camera settings right is half the battle of capturing and excellent aerial photo and having a successful flight.

The most important thing to have in mind Is having the correct exposure.

I can’t tell you how many times I got over exposed or under exposed footage and it turned out to be unusable.

You could shoot on manual, but it’s preferable to keep the shutter speed at 1/2xFPS so that the image looks smooth.

In sunny days  you can only do this with ND filters, but with drones like the Mavic 2 Pro, you can adjust the aperture to compensate to a point where the shutter speed is properly adjusted.

There are flying techniques that can help you find the perfect angle, but correct camera settings will you achieve the best shot. So always make sure that your camera is well-adjusted, and you are ready to go.

Make sure you pick the correct drones for filmmaking, as those will give you the most amount of freedom in tweaking things like aperture, shutter speed, iso and so on.

Bonus tip: Make sure you have a good micro SD card

Just recently it happened to me that I recorded with a very important client and because the card used was not high quality enough to capture 4k, the footage turned out laggy and some files even got corrupted.

In this article you can find all the details about micro SD cards and how much data they can handle at a time.

For 4k recording in drones like the Mavic 2 pro with 10bit recording, I definitely recommend a micro SD card UHS type 2 that can write up to 312 mb/s just to make sure your footage will turn out right.

How to film amazing aerials with your drone | DroneFilmSchool - YouTube

Filming with a Drone – Wrapping Up

As a conclusion, you should take note of the specific model of aircraft you’re piloting and especially the environment you’re in, as there are going to be different factors that can change your success rate and how well you focus on the task at hand.

There’s a lot of cheaper, budget drones that can do the job just fine for even under $500 that are really safe to pilot thanks to their GPS systems and other sensors that helps with steady flight.

I personally prefer not to have many people around me asking questions so I avoid crowded areas to launch the drone from, although I typically get a friend with me to help with keeping an eye on the drone while I concentrate on taking the right shots and look at the live feed.

This being said, you’ll definitely get used to respecting a certain flight etiquette that will save you a lot of money and headaches in time. But make sure to go through these checklists until it becomes a habit and you will get one step closer to becoming a true drone filming professional.

We hope this article on filming with a drone was useful to you. What drone no-no did we miss out? Let us know in the comments just below this post.

The post Filming with a Drone: 7 Mistakes You Shouldn’t Make When Using a Drone appeared first on Filmmaking Lifestyle.

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