Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Slow but steady

It's been an interesting time since my last blog entry. Since my last entry I have finally gotten my HD video editing capable Linux PC and ADSL and an iPad, for other extraneous creative things, mostly musical though. 

So now I have 6 Canon Powershot A480's and 3 Powershot A1200's and I just love the super macro focus on those little A480 cameras. I also have CHDK installed on them (that's Canon Hack Development Kit for the uninitiated) which allows soooo many other functions beyond the camera's initial design and its scriptable and controllable via various pulse widths on the USB port. 

Now today I tweeted about having a breakthrough drilling 20mm holes cleanly, and that was on two pieces of 20mm thick aluminum bolted together for exact hole registration. This is for a motorized camera slider I've wanted to have for ages. So now I am substantially closer to that goal having milled the ends of the two blocks nearly identically the same and also having drilled two 20mm holes exactly in register in both pieces. I have two 20mm stainless steel rods fitted nicely through the drilled holes and 2 linear bearings sliding on each rod. Next to machine a little platform, and bolt a threaded bold to the base of the plate for some kind of makeshift rack that a geared motor on the platform can track on.

I have some tiny PC boards that fit into the plug end of a Nintendo Classic Controller and it is my hope to make an arduino based programmable LCD driven interface, with the classic controller for programming the interval shooting and speed of the platform movement, including pan and tilt and perhaps focus too. But this is phase one, building the hardware.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Fresh blood in the creative membranes

Its always awesome for me as a screenplay writer to find good solid scientific elements that can make a more believeable "hard sci-fi" story and today I have found two such elements to strengthen two stories, so I guess I'm throwing myself back into the screenplay writing mode.

I've used Celtx until now, and recently I've found Trelby as scriptwriting software for Linux, but very recently I've found a great free collaborative writing tool called plotbot.com and I'm very excited about that. I just hope other writer folks are not paranoid about their scripts being stolen because its a collaborative cloud solution.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Ok, scratch that off the list

Yes, I can rig a lattice modifier. Some time later and many tutorials watched it's all coming into focus.
More significantly I have a new desktop pc and ADSL so now I'm Linux enabled, and I must say I like it. No GPU yet but that will follow in time.

Right now I'm enjoying the idea of dreamy focus pulled images in HD - video shot with my DSLR. And if it weren't for the fact that my sennheiser headphones are in for repair under guarantee, I'd be familiarising myself with shooting and recording separate audio too.

My itch that remains unscratched is for an automatically motorized camera slider or dolly and it's driving me crazy. I have a nice stepper driver board nearly populated and having cheap components but one or two component absences are still there. More delays. Eish

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Blend it all together

This year I made a switch to Blender 3D from Maya. Quite simply I was tired of looking for ways to make maya talk to external renderers just to get the look I wanted. Now I'm happy to say I'm glad to be learning Blender's other superb built in features too.

I was initially attracted to Cycles, Blender's unbiased renderer that is GPU enabled. Whilst I don't have a GPU enabled pc yet that is on the list for 2014. I am very excited to see the results of what I plan to shoot and matchmove, combined with what I can model and render in Blender.

My major headaches currently (as blender is known for its interface quirks), are getting materials looking the way I want, and understanding how, and becoming comfortable with all the rigging and animating tools.

Also I wonder if its possible to rig lattice modifiers with splines like a circle.
I could in 3DSMax....

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

A busy year - 2013

Well it seems Christmas is nearly upon us again and as regards this blog not much documented for the year.

As the year winds down I'm getting time to do a bit of spring cleaning in a number of ways.

I suppose since December last year I've achieved the following things, of which I feel very good, given my current financial ham stringing.

I got a Canon 50mm F1.4 FD lens that I have been able to do some great tilt shift photography stuff with, as well as a proper Canon 50mm F1.4 USM lens. The latter lens needs a repair folllowing a small accident that damaged the autofocus. I have also gotten 2 M42 to EOS lens adaptors and use one for a Russian Helios 44-2 lens I bought and the other for a fixed 500mm F8 hanimex lens a friend gave me. That aside I also got a 28mm F2.8 for next to nothing and a 58mm variable ND filter for the (currently damaged) 50mm USM lens. Finally in the camera department I have also got a battery grip for the Canon 550D and a magnetic screen viewfinder.

My CNC router aspirations are as yet incomplete but I have learnt much on both the electronics side (how to etch a pc board), and the chassis side and hope to complete my cnc in 2014.

This year also marked a transition from Maya to Blender 3D for me and I am enthralled with the possibilities that Blender offers now particularly in GPU rendering.

I've come to really love GIMP as a photo editor and slowly forage ahead in my android development learning.

That's all I can think of right now, but one thing is for sure. More posts will follow more regularly

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

time to MOVI it

Every now and again something comes along that changes, or seems to threaten to change the face of a particular field of work. This year at NAB the MOVI handheld gyro based camera stabiliser was such an item. It took me a little while to comprehend how it actually works but now, as usual, my improvising brain has had a look at it, and decided it a worthy pursuit to try realise for my own aspirations.

Where to start I asked myself. Then I remembered I had motors I removed form a bunch of old Compaq 80/20 tape drives. So right now I'm trying to figure out how those coils are wired and if they'll be suitable for my purposes.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Cheap Cheat

I've hacked apart an old 50mm F1.4 Canon FD lens. It works well so far its just I can't use it for video like I want until I have made a DIY variable ND filter which I learnt how to do yesterday on youtube. So now the. big wait is for payday yet again... Sigh.