1. Isaac Visaretis - Demo Reel


    from Isaac Visaretis / Added

    215 Plays / / 0 Comments

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      from Ken Simpson | Director / Added

      608 Plays / / 1 Comment

      This is a trailer for the Fall and Rise of Mickey: A Headcase Prequel Produced / Directed and Edited by Ken Simpson

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      • The Fall and Rise of Mickey - A Headcase Prequel (Canon 5D Mrk II - 20:00)


        from Ken Simpson | Director / Added

        9,761 Plays / / 41 Comments

        ****UPDATE**** To read an article listing my top 10 tips to achieve high production values on micro budgets, go here: http://www.chrisjonesblog.com/2012/05/top-ten-microbudget-tips-with-a-crew-of-2-and-budget-of-500-what-can-be-achieved-jaw-dropping-work.html to hear a recent podcast on the making of this short check out Caleb Pike's website: http://dslrvideoshooter.com/episode-007-interview-with-ken-simpson-and-alex-dacev/ Directed / Produced & Edited by Ken Simpson Cinematography by: Alex Dacev BACKGROUND INFO: This was my entry to the third Viewpoint Film Challenge. It's also a prequel to the feature film I directed, "Headcase". PRODUCTION NOTES Shot over nine days, most days were only 4-6 hours long, the longest day was 8 hours. 95% of the time the crew on set consisted of only the cinematographer (Alex Dacev) and myself. Only three lights were used to light any particular setup. 1x 1K Arri fresnel, 1x 650w Arri fresnel, 1x 300w Arri fresnel. A medium flexfil was used on day exteriors. The total cost of the film was approximately $1,200.00CDN The major costs were: $100.00 for a purchased battery for the 5D $100.00 for an 8gig CF card for the 5D $100.00 for pub location rental $150.00 rental for the 24mm-70mm Canon Zoom Lens $200.00 on the replica guns (discounted by the good people at nexus canada) $270.00 for the rental of the Micro Dolly (discounted by the good people at DJ Woods!) $450.00 for the redrock follow focus which we hardly used because we didn't have a focus puller anyway. The rest of the money was spent on cab / parking fares, food /coffee, etc...Everything else was borrowed & begged for. POST WORKFLOW Converted all the native H.264 files into 1920 x 1080 Apple Pro Res (HQ) files @ 23.98 via MPEG Streamclip. Edited in Final Cut Pro Effects: Rain, muzzle flashes, minor roto achieved through Adobe After Effects CS4 All the audio was recorded after the fact with the H4N Handy Zoom sound recorder. My girlfriend and I did almost all of the foley, and the rest was sound effects libraries. All the actors were brought in later to re-record their lines. I would cue the scene up on my laptop and have them say their lines into the zoom. Simple as that! Colour timing done by Alex Dacev through Apple's Color. Filmed entirely in Toronto, Ontario - Canada To see more work by myself and the cinematographer Alex Dacev on the 5D Mrk II visit: http://vimeo.com/7648613 http://vimeo.com/10851781 Ken

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        • [Ri-sip-ruh-keyt] (5D MRKII - 6:42)


          from Ken Simpson | Director / Added

          3,333 Plays / / 9 Comments

          ****UPDATE**** to hear a recent podcast on the making of this short check out Caleb Pike's website: dslrvideoshooter.com/episode-007-interview-with-ken-simpson-and-alex-dacev/ Shot over one and a half nights as part of the second viewpoint film challenge. http://www.viewpointfilmchallenge.com/ I approached this viewpoint in a much more structured manner than my previous effort which was filmed on a hacked iphone. http://vimeo.com/5861892 I didn't want the stress of multiple locations over several days so I decided to set this one in a small bachelor apartment. I limited the camera moves and tried to keep it as intimate as possible. Aside from the actors, it was just myself, the DOP and Kat Reid who basically did a little bit of everything from continuity to the food preparation and even a little hair & make-up. This was my first short filmed with the Canon 5D Mrk2. The DOP (Alex Dacev) bought it the day before and it was pretty much right out of the box when we used it. In fact, it was so new that we didn't have a spare battery or second CF card which cost us about an hour of shooting time with us having to constantly dump the footage off the card and plug in the camera to recharge the battery. Working with the 5D was a terrific experience and gave Alex and I the confidence to tackle a more ambitious short, "Worked For Me" also starring Saffron and Isaac http://vimeo.com/7648613 The focus is sooo critical when working with this camera, the HDMI live view only outputs in 480i (when recording) so you're never really sure about your focus until you play it back in HD, which is what we would do pretty much after every take. The redrock follow focus adapter is almost essential if you're pulling focus within the take itself. I also have to mention that Saffron did a great job with the Russian accent. I had a friend of a friend who was Russian so I had her say all of Saffron's lines into my iphone and then exported those as an audio file for Saffron to study. POST WORKFLOW: The audio was recorded with a lav mic attached to my old Canon XL1s. After filming I had the actors redo all of their lines wild, knowing I could easily synch it up later from the guide track recorded on the 5D. I took the H.264 files into final cut and re-exported them all as Apple Pro Res 1920x1080 @ 30P files. Kat Reid and I re-recorded ALL of the foley you hear in the film, from the rolling luggage wheels to the sound of the cat's paws connecting with the floor. The color grading was done by Alex Dacev in Apple's Color.

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          • Worked For Me (5D MRKII - 5:24)


            from Ken Simpson | Director / Added

            111K Plays / / 184 Comments

            Follow me on twitter for tutorials, behind the scenes, etc... twitter.com/_Citizen_Ken_ Written/Directed/Produced & Edited by: Ken Simpson Cinematography/Camera operating & Color Grading by: Alex Dacev THE LENSES: The DP owned one 50mm prime, about as stock as they come and I borrowed my friends 28mm prime for a few shots here and there. I did however, rent a 70-200mm canon zoom lens for most of the shoot and that cost me another $200.00. Later I found out that a friend of mine had the same lens sitting on a shelf collecting dust...Bu Hao THE DOLLY/FOLLOW FOCUS: we used the microdolly for almost all of the moving shots (we used a tiny skateboard for the dolly along the shoes). http://www.microdolly.com/micro_2.html It's a very simple device to use, the kit is insanely cheap ($45.00/day) and comes with a 13 foot track which is like a tent pole design, meaning it's all one piece but you could collapse the end of it to fit into smaller spaces. There is a 45 degree curved track option as well, but we never bothered to rent it. We probably should have had a little more weight on the tripod itself, given that it was only the 5D because the tripod would slip off the track from time to time. You'll notice we had a shitty tripod so we tapped it to the T-bar rather than it fitting in snugly like it would had we had a real profession tripod, ah well. Oh and those foam pads they provide you with to go under the track? We ditched using those after the first day, they just got in the way. This may not be the best option in the world for flexibility, it's more of an indoor dolly for sure but I'd totally use it again if I was on a tight budget. It's a great way to add production value, considering the price. We did use a redrock adapter but for some reason we couldn't figure out how to get the focus ring onto the left side of the camera, so the DOP could pan/tilt with his right hand. Not only that but his lens package weren't very high end so the clamp kept slipping off the focus adjustment on the lens (we ended up using double sided tape to make it bite properly). Focus was such a tricky and often elusive thing, there were several double digit takes done to achieve proper focus through out the whole length of the shots. THE LIGHTING: 1x 1K Arri tungsten 1x 650W Arri tungsten 1x 300W Arri tungsten -for Saffron's day scenes we used a medium flexfill -and for her night exterior footage I used a tiny led (daylight balanced) camera light, the kind that slides into the accessory shoe of consumer cameras. Really cheap, it cost me $69 I think. The light sensitivity of the 5D really is insane. Since it was just a crew of two, the DP and I, it usually fell on to me to provide a little backlight on those night scenes and it was a little bizzare to be 15 feet back and it still be too bright. THE SOUND: I used my old Canon XL1s with a Lav attachment to re-record all of the spoken lines in the film. Basically after the cut was finalized I cued the scene up on my laptop, had the actors watch the takes a few times and then had them say the lines until I thought they matched up well enough. I bought the lav about 6 years ago, it cost about $250.00 or so and it wasn't top of the line or anything. The reason were weren't plugging the lav into the 5D is because you still couldn't control the levels with the camera, so if something peaked, I'd have no real idea until afterwards anyways. You really do need an external device for good audio with this camera, sticking a boom mic or shotgun attachment won't really get you much better in the way of quality especially with that horrid auto gain feature. THE WORKFLOW: Converted the footage in FCP to Apple ProRes (HQ) files. Edited accordingly with shitty guide track from the 5D, then had the actors re-record their lines with my lav attached to my old XL1s running in 30P "FRAME MODE". Cleaned up the timeline then sent it to Color for grading. BUDGET: Other than the one lens and the Microdolly and Redrock adapter, I just spent money the regular stuff like gas and meals. The locations were free, the actors brought their own wardrobe, except for the doctor (the DP has been a doctor for halloween for the past ten years and already had the lab coat and stethoscope!), there was no hair or make up dept. All of Saffron's scenes were shot over one day/night and by luck she had some hair extensions of her own that she was able to put in over lunch to help sell the idea that a lot more time had passed over course the of their relationship - you'll notice she never has short hair during any of her night scenes. Total cost of this film $800.00 (approx.) If you're still interested, you can check out our first short with the 5D MrkII here: http://vimeo.com/6823324

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