Day in the Life – in Post Production!

Hi All,

We just got back from a week’s location shoot in Somerset with awesome models Scarlot Rose, Ariel Anderssen, Hannah Claydon, Sophia Smith, Anita deBauch and Temptress Kate. As part of our trip we shot a feature set in the world of “Slave Auction”, provisionally titled Day in the Life.

Post production will take us a considerable number of months- even transcoding the footage so we can edit it will take two solid weeks of CPU- but to give you a taste of what’s to come, here are a few framegrab stills from the film!

Cheers, Hywel.

Hannah Claydon, Sophia Smith, Scarlot Rose and Ariel Anderssen

Slave Auction is done!!

Wheeee! It took an extra three long days at the computer and a couple of burnt DVDs to check out how it looked on TV to fine tune the rough cut, but I can finally declare Slave Auction to be done! There’s one or two things could still do with polishing, but without shooting more footage, I think I’m happy with how it has come out.

Hooray! Just in time for a much deserved holiday, too. My poor Mac won’t be getting a break though, it is hard at work number crunching to export the video and encode the MP4 and DVD versions. Should finish overnight, ready to upload tomorrow.

Here’s a few extra frame grabs to whet your appetite…

Progress report – Haunted and Slave Auction

Update… Steve, Ariel and I just had a viewing of the rough cuts of Haunted and Slave Auction.

Both are looking good, but Steve and I both ended up with two pages of notes for fine tuning, and Slave Auction needs finishing the rough cut as well. Steve’s got everything he needs to finish hopefully, so that should come along as soon as he has time, but I need to shoot a few inserts and record some more soundtrack stuff as well as editing the last few scenes of the films.

So we’re hoping to get the films out on a timescale of a month or so, but we’re definitely going to take the time to do it right so don’t hold us to that!

Cheers, Hywel

10 minute rough cut

And at the end of a day of editing, I have a rough cut of the first 10 minutes of the film. At this rate it’ll take me the whole of next week to do, which is a shame as I have an exam and a few other minor things to do that week!

Still, it usually goes more quickly the further through it you get. I now have the basic soundscape sorted- orchestra and choir, quite dreamy for the more sensual sequences. Katy’s character has a fairly brash, blues-y theme, Janey’s starts off with a LOUD rock chick but will show her softer side. Ariel gets to be overblown and indignant like a movie trailer with full orchestra (Drama! She’ll like that 🙂

Just editing an insert showing Janey making music videos of herself… self-referential multi-layers of flashback starting to do my head in, but hopefully it’ll all make sense when you see it!


Music for a slavegirl…

HI All,

Just managed to get the Restrained Elegance July updates done, freeing up a few days to get started editing Slave Auction. The automated stuff getting the footage in is all done, looking through it all now. The first thing one always has to do when editing is to look through all the raw footage- which for Slave Auction runs to a couple of hours. I’m looking for the best takes, the best angles, beautiful shots but also for shots that didn’t really work.

Here’s an example- a lovely framing of Ariel in the mirror, about to get flogged:

As a standalone, this is a lovely shot- good enough to open the film with, I initially thought. Unfortunately, because the shot doesn’t show enough content of the room to reveal where Ariel actually is, when you cut to any of the rest of the footage we have of that scene, it gives unpleasant “jump” (for techies, the mirror causes a line cross for Ariel when you cut to another angle. If you flop the shot, it causes a line cross for the rest of the room geography).

I’m still attached to the shot, it is a lovely one, but I’m not sure it will even make it to the rough cut.

What I’m doing now is adding the latest batch of Audio Network music to my hard drive. These most awesome people supply the huge music library on which all our RE and ES productions depend. 564 CDs worth at present time, to be exact! Waiting for the latest batch of 11 DVDs to copy over suddenly made me realise I should blog 🙂

With big productions where the music is scored afterwards, it is common to edit first, then fine tune the music to the movie. For small productions, using music which is fixed, we often work the other way around. Dramatic moments in the film work so much better if they come along with a crescendo in the music, so much so that it is worth stretching and trimming the scene to make sure the most important bits happen in time to the music.

So before editing a rough cut, I usually like to have a clear idea of what my soundtrack is going to be. So this morning’s job (after copying all the new DVDs) is to audition dozens of tracks and decide which ones “feel” right for a couple of key scenes. That will give me a theme or two for the movie, and also set the overall musical style.

Which leads me to wonder… what SHOULD the musical style be? I sort of imagine the Slave Auction story being a bit retro, even though it is clearly set in modern times it has a lot of look and feel of the 1950’s about it already. Should the music emphasise that? Should I go with classical and orchestral music, or something a bit more intimate feeling? I don’t think I want anything pop/rock/indie feeling, but maybe solo piano would be a good timeless way to begin? I’ve not done much with Jazz, maybe some classic-era Jazz would sit well?

So excuse me, must turn up the volume and listen to a few dozen music tracks along with some of the shots and see what floats my boat!