Post Production:

For this section I will just give a highly simplified overview of the post production completed for the film.

Immendiently after backing up the last days data i ensured that the cards are storing in the fire proof safe (filed as "Capture"). At the end of every production day (if i can't back up on set) its the first thing i do when i get back to the office. Also FYI always remove the CF cards etc from camera and travel with them on you in some way to ensure you don't loose them via equipment theft etc. 

I like to have all the required data to hand before getting into the edit so we had organised to record the main characters voice over shortly after wrapping production. Following this "Josh" played by Issacc Money was all wrapped. 

A few days later I received the source audio from my sound guy (Alex Wilson) and i now had everything ready to go to get stuck into the edit. I pieced together a rough cut quickly with assistance from the shot log (it really helps speed this part up). Next i arranged a meeting with the co-director and we managed to refine a few bits that were not quiet as we wanted. This processed turned out to be highly efficient and i will impliment this from now on. It definitely save time to get both heads in at the beginning and work out any work rounds or solutions up front.

Next up i exported from Adobe CS6 Premier Pro to Adobe SpeedGrade (which converts the files to DPX, a common file type used in colour correction workflows). Be wary that some pretty large files start being created as the sequence gets converted into images. At this point i run through with a first pass on the grading paying special attention to some of the shots i knew would be Adobe After Effects compositions (i needed to know how dark the finished shots would be so i knew how much clean up i had to do, more on that soon).  At this time i also sent an un-graded edit to the music composer to work with. Back in the colour grading I then establish most of the "look" settings for all the clips and proceeded to start my After effects compositions. As i mentioned before "Josh's" room originally had posters all over it and when they were removed in the setting up of the scene we saw how ratty looking the wall was but couldn't do much more about it at the time. Enter Adobe After effects! After seeing how dark i would have to make the later bedroom scenes to hide the marks on the walls i set about using a mask from a photoshoped still frame grab and composed that into the scene to do most of the leg work in hiding the wall marks. Unfortunately there was still two shots in particular that this technique couldn't be utilised, due to the actors movement (and hence moving shadows) and as such i had to use duplicated layers (with slightly offset positioning) to mask the unwanted shots combined with tactfully using opacity, motion blur and working spot by spot i managed to fix up around 12 issues in teach shot. This was by far the most time consuming part of the edit process! 
Composition 9 - "As captured"Composition 9 - "After masking and rotoscoping" prior to colour gradingComposition 7 - "As captured"Composition 7 - "Masking completed"Following this i tested the colour grading required for these new compositions and then adjusted the grading of the other bedroom footage to match. I then rendered out the now graded sequence to DPX from SpeedGrade. I chose to render as DPX and bring everything back to Premier Pro so that i could work on the sound and end titles with absolute flexibility.
You can see the imported (colour Graded) DPX files arranged directly above the source files in the time line for simplicityAt this stage it was a matter of adding the finishing touches, the composed music, de-noising dialogue, adding sound effects, room tones, voice over dialogue, voice over tone and playing with levels until i was happy. Overall i didn't have to replace many of the C300 in file recorded audio track with the secondary sound as there was negligible difference which was great. If i had an issue with a sound i found its corresponding file, synced the clap position and then it was subbed in. I used Adobe Audition to do all the de-noising but kept it simple by doing all the sound mixing within Premier Pro.

Following a review for the client who was very happy with the result i produced final rendered digital versions and wrapped the entire project. It was a great experience and the client now has my company lined up ready for their next short story. With so many good times with the crew and lessons learn't on the way i can only see us rising to the challenge more and more.

 

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