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I am the worst cameraman in the world.

Or at the very least, in America.

A friend on Facebook tipped me off that there would be a Battle of the Bands at the local college. Its been a while since I’ve been to a band battle. Matter of fact I used to be quite involved with the local music scene when I was in high school, but fell out of the scene when I went to college. I decided this would be a nice exercise in seeing how I would fare in recording live concert events.

It was a learning experience to say the least.

[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CqMktXS1lVw%5D

 

First band up is a group of High Schoolers calling themselves “Aggro”, they mostly did covers. I actually cut one of their Nirvana covers cause the video was pushing past Youtube’s 15 minute limit (there’s a way to extend it, but I didn’t feel like messing with that with my channel being so young). I took a vantage point on a stone bench thing. In hindsight it probably would have been better from the other angle, but oh well.

You’ll probably notice right away that I have Camera ADD. I wanted to try to make the videos interesting with various zooms and pans, but I think I failed at that.

There was a friend of the band filming them who decided to set up shop right next to me on my stone bench thing, so if there’s another video floating around the Internet that looks almost the same as this, that’s why.

[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IeQFhEvcO2Q%5D

 

Soul music! I liked these guys. As you may notice, I moved over to the ground. I couldn’t see the keyboardist due to the amps, and no one was standing there anyways. Everyone was off to the sides. Fact, I didn’t have to edit this video at all beyond slapping the flag in front and converting it to the appropriate formats. Nice and easy.

I don’t know who won (it rained and some of the later bands had to cancel), but I voted for these guys. I have a soft spot for soul music. And not spending a bunch of time cutting up videos in WMM.

[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OfTdsae4SBU%5D [youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eFRlHl5Iu3U%5D

 

More indie rock, with original songs this time! Like the first band West City Avenue had a long set, but I didn’t want to cut any original songs so I split it into two. There was also a Red Wolves mascot running around at this time for some reason. I don’t know why, made for some funny random moments, though.

Also, a group of ladies with a fancier camera than mine set up shop next to me, so if you see a similar video to these two floating around the Internet and possibly in better quality, that’s why.

There was a band that played after them called Silent Secrets and I did shoot some footage of them, but I’ll be honest it didn’t turn out good. People starting standing in front of my camera, and for some reason I decided to run to a stone bench thing while the camera was running, and it was a worse angle than before. I have some standards when it comes to my film shooting, and my camera battery was running low. My apologies, Silent Secrets. Another time, perhaps?

[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JLWkRNLwspA%5D

 

The girl side of this band is the aforementioned Facebook friend that tipped me off about this event in the first place, so I wanted to make sure I got her and her boyfriend’s full set of songs. Alas, this is around when the camera battery died. I tried to fight it a little at the end, but only so much you can do with a dying camera. You missed like a song & a 1/4.

And yes, I did charge the battery to full before leaving.

I don’t know exactly was up with the focus in this video, but I think I’ll make a note to turn off auto-focus should I ever record at night with flashing lights in the future.

Oh, and those girls with the fancy camera showed up next to me AGAIN. Who knew the field of local music concert filming was so competitive?

A metal band played after them, but it started to rain during their performance and the rest of the show was canceled. I left early so I don’t know who won (go Soul House!)

All in all this was a nice learning experience. Things I learned include.

  1. Be prepared for anything. Dead battery, rain, dancing red wolves…
  2. Complete strangers like to hug me. And my camera.
  3. Never pay $7 for outdoor buffet at ASU.

I may record future events like this if there’s a demand for it (or if I just feel like it). In completely unrelated news my gaming vlog is still a thing that is happening randomly, just so you know. /shamelesssidepromotion

Keep rockin’ folks!

– Al


It Begins! Again!

And you thought this blog was dead! Ha!

I’m here to present my first post-school Black Hat project. A vlog!

 

 

Yes, not a crowning achievement in video editing, but I’ve been wanting to start a gaming blog for a while. I got a fancy video camera for Christmas and figured I should be using it!

By the way, I miss Final Cut. While I was able to put together that video blog with Windows Movie Maker, it was tedious. That and I had to convert all my video clips into a file format that WMM would read. Note to self, when I get enough money, get a copy of Final Cut Pro…

As for the vlog itself, its gonna focus on Gaming. I’m a gamer, I like video games. I might also cover cartoons since I’m a bit of an animation buff (especially in recent months), or as I said in the video whatever I like. I”m trying to be flexible with this whole thing. Hopefully this is the first step to many fun adventures on Youtube.

Or a reason for people to gripe at me. Most likely thing to happen, really.

– Al

 


I used to make videos for class, then I took a stick to the knee.

And we’ve come to my final project for Video Post Production! The last assignment was to make a music video with a song of our choice. Sounds fun enough. I’m sure most people would be happy to pick their favorite rap or country song and make some silly video with cheesy lip syncing. Me? I chose something different.

I decided to do a fight scene with fake bamboo sticks set to “Gerudo Valley” from The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. The version used in the video is from the 25th Anniversary Soundtrack that came with Skyward Sword. I thought it was suitably¬† epic (not that the original version isn’t epic, but this is a full blown orchestra as opposed to the old N64 sound).

My original plan was for it to be in a forest in the middle of the day. The weather and friend’s schedules forced me to change plans. I also came close to not having enough footage to cover the length of the song. Some of the shots drag on simply for the sake of padding, and there are some inconsistency issues (who knew editing fight scenes would be so hard?), but overall I’m happy with it.

Also, to make up for the lack of an outtakes reel last time, here’s a extra long one. Features lots of dirty language and sex jokes. Enjoy!

These are the people I hang out with.

By the way, I really did take a stick to the knee. There’s like, a nasty bruise there.

– Al


How to not pick up chicks.

This one was a bit different. A dialogue scene. Two people talking. I even wrote a cheesy script!

I also ran into a problem.

The weekend I wanted to check out a fancy HD camera from the school to shoot this. They were all checked out. Even the mics and tri-pods! I had to improvise and use my dinky little digital camera. You know, the kind you buy at Wal-Mart to take pictures on vacation that just so happens to have a video feature. I had to get my mother to play camerawoman thus the shaky-ness. Half the shots were unusable due to breaking continuity too much (and some of the finished product still breaks continuity a little). And I had to slap on a music track (bonus points if you recognize it.)

It was an interesting exercise in improvisation, to say the least. The idea is two guys are at a party and go ask out a hot chick (who does not exist, I can only afford so many unpaid actors!)

No outtakes reel this time. Not enough funny to warrant it, I felt. Hope you enjoyed this silly little video!

– Al


A Special Message About Laziness.

The first project for my Video Post Production class that required shooting my own footage was a 30-second commercial PSA. Since I’m…oh how to put this politely. I’m a procrastinator. I’m in college! Its a common thing! Anyways, I thought it’d be humorous to make a PSA on laziness. I called upon a friend to be my underpaid (read “not paid at all”) actor, and this resulted.

I also have an outtakes reel for your enjoyment.

– Al


Hello world, for reals!

This is a test of the Al-using-Word-Press-for-the-first-time-system!

This blog has been created to share college projects I’ve been working on. Partly because I’m required too, but I may use this blog for future projects as well, thus the founding of (read “came up with the name five minutes ago”) of Black Hat Productions! The production company of choice of Al Fedora (that’s me)!

As soon as I figure things out around here, I’ll rapid fire share the videos I’ve already made for my Video Post Production class. Stay cool, friends!

– Al