Archive for the 'Travel' Category
I recently came back from a 1 week trip to Utah. It was everything you can ask for in a snowboarding trip. The grins on our faces coming out of powder stashes got larger and wider as each day went by. Park City. Snowbasin. Powder Mountain. Snowbird. Solitude. Thank you snow gods for letting me end the season the way it should be.
The annoyance of carrying around a backpack with lenses, batteries and memory cards soon became forgotten as the amazing conditions and picture perfect scenery turned into endless opportunities to capture footage. I shot over 500 clips and have been busy making notes, editing, sound mixing and everything else. An epic trip deserves an epic video.
This past weekend was our first snowboarding trip of the year. It’s been a very late start to the season due to the erratic weather. It’s nice to get out on the mountain and it feels really good to finally get behind the camera after months of waiting. I had a bunch of shots in mind that I wanted to try and get. Of course, my ideas on paper looked drastically different through a lens. Regardless, I think I came pretty close in what I wanted to achieve with a few surprises and luck thrown in between. It’s essential to tell the story through each frame and I really wanted to capture the excitement of snowboarding as it is to myself and my friends. Everything from waiting in the chairlift line to strapping into your bindings represents what the sport means to us. Nothing else makes you feel as free and detaches you from the “real world”.
I really wasn’t sure what kind of results I would get so I used this weekend to experiment. There’s been numerous complaints about the weak codec but everything seemed to hold up fine for me, probably due to the fact that I shot entirely in 720 to avoid the dreaded ‘MUD’ that I’ve read on countless forums. I should really aim to shoot with a lower shutter but with the snow and bright sun, it was a bit unavoidable, even with an ND9. I don’t get as much grading flexibility in post either and it’s tough to get the fine detail in the shadows and highlights. Either that’s a technical limitation or I need to work harder in properly exposing my scenes. Also, my $50 “steadicam” isn’t very steady so a lot of footage looks like I’m shooting during an earthquake. Slowing it down in post helps but a lot of my footage I found unusable. Oh well.
After finishing my final edit and watching it countless times, I can say I’m pleased. Does the quality compare to that of a full sensor? Definitely not. Does it look like film? Perhaps. Does the camera perform exactly how I expected in those conditions? Absolutely and it actually exceeded my expectations. I purchased this camera for its size and versatility, knowing I’d have to carry it around while snowboarding. I’d much rather have that flexibility than compromise size and a few other luxuries like a more robust codec.
Screengrabs below. View the final edit here on vimeo.
1) Went to Bermuda in early April. Captured some great footage and had an awesome time. Still doesn’t compare to Hawaii though..
2) Attended the Industry Spotlight VII hosted by Siggraph NYC at FIT. Seemed like the usual talks from all the nyc big shots. Nathan Love however were hilarious! They showed a studio project they were working on about some horror animation movie. It was amazing and grossly entertaining. Curious Pictures are also working on a 3D short.
3) Had to say goodbye to a wonderful coworker/friend and what better way to do that than drunk bowling! You will be missed..
4) I used to hate indexhibit sites. They seemed to all look the same and lacked any sort of personality. After installing it and messing around with the CSS file, it’s hard NOT to love this little tool. It’s an easy, efficient way to create a portfolio site. I work in Flash all the time but sometimes, it’s just not the right tool to use for a website. Sure, it’s flashier (no pun intended) and more engaging, but when I have to wait 3 minutes for a site to load, that’s 2 minutes too long of wasted time. I never thought I’d say this but I may cross over to the HTML side…
5) Wrapping up (finally) some big projects at work which I hope to include in my portfolio soon. And of course, more new and ongoing personal projects to come as well…
1) I recently came across a great article by Michael McDonough featured on designobserver.com entitled “The Top 10 Things They Never Taught Me in Design School”. He hits on a number of very useful and valid points regardless of your profession. Two that really struck a cord with me were:
• “You must decide what is important, and then attend to it first and foremost. Everything is important, yes. But not everything is equally important.”
• “Start with what you know; then remove the unknowns.”
Read the full article here.
2) I just came back from a 7 day trip to Whistler, Canada. They are consistently ranked the #1 resort in the world by major publications. Amazing terrain, amazing views but not-so amazing powder (this has been a horrid winter for Whistler). I promised my friends a documentary considering I have 160GB worth of footage from the trip. We’ll see how that goes… 😛
3) Thew new issue of Fortune came in my mail the other day. Mark Zuckerberg, CEO and Founder of Facebook is on the cover. He has a net worth of $1.5 billion. He’s also only 24. 😦
Facebook is surely the face of Web 2.0 along with the youTubes and Twitters of the world. This brought up an interesting topic at work. What is the next big thing? Paul Newnes, one of the owners at Last Exit where I work, shed some light on the topic with his presentation on Semantic Web 3.0 at our Last Exit Lecture Series. Semantic web is an advanced framework of information and services on the web, making it possible for the web to understand and satisfy the requests of people and machines. Read more about it here.
What is the next big thing???
I’ll never forget the feeling…or the view. Getting off the tram that friday morning at the summit of one of Brighton’s peaks was an exhilarating experience. Being from NY, I’ve gotten pretty accustomed to long lines, short runs and icy terrain. Utah was something else. As I stood 11,000 feet high overlooking Utah’s mountains, I thought to myself, how could it possibly get any better than this. Before us was a good half foot of light, fresh, champagne powder that had fallen over night and a gigantic open bowl that felt the size of the grand canyon. I could literally ride half a mile horizontally each way and not be obstructed by boundaries. Utah claims they have the greatest snow on earth and after spending one weekend there, I am definitely a believer. This was in APRIL mind you. We were lucky to have great conditions and got a chance to visit three great resorts in Brighton, Snowbird and Solitude.
There are certain moments in everyone’s lives where they feel completely in utter peace. This was one of those moments.
Just got back from Costa Rica and I must say, it was an amazing experience. 10 days of ziplining, surfing, hot springs, ATVing, and exploring can leave one dazed from reality. I’m now back in 40 degree, gloomy nyc where everything seems rushed and hurried. It was a perfect escape from my daily grind and I very much look forward to crossing off another one from my list of travel destinations in the near future.Pura Vida! Costa Rica 2008.