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Saturday, March 31, 2007

Building a Greenscreen - Completed 06-04-07

Okay if you've read this blog well you may have noticed mentions of my filmmaking and wondered to yourself "When the hell is he gonna get to the filmmaking?" If so you're an impatient bastard. But seriously I am working towards becoming a professional director and a big part of my plan is a series of short films I'll be completing over the next few months.

Which brings us to today's little project, building a greenscreen (one of my shorts is a sci-fi). I had previously planned to get a large roll of canvas and paint that but instead I decided on using four large stretched canvases and hinging them together sort of like an old board game.

DAY 1 - The Undercoater!!!

Always make sure you've got the right equiptment.

Stirring paint is important ... especially when it's a few years old.

Now you've gotta unwrap your canvas.

And like all delicate jobs find something sharp (and for non delicate jobs use something heavy and blunt, I suggest a sledgehammer).

Always buy extra canvases or be prepared to go back to the store.

Unwrapped and ready to go.

Sometimes a product just calls your name.

It's time to grab your gear. Roller for a quick cover, big brush for fixing mistakes made with roller and small brush fore edgees and sides.

HINT: Paint barefoot, it's much easier to clean paint off feet than it is off shoes.

Feel free to play around and get into the painting groove.

And then it's on with the paint.

Soon you'll be done with the first one...

...and then the rest.

DAY 2 - The Big Green Machine!!!

Like before get your shit together first.

Grab your canvas.

Again feel free to express yourself creatively....

....and soon you'll be done with the painting.

A quick trip to your local super-hardware while the paint dries.

Pick up some Butt Hinges and a Barrel Bolt (no embarassing names there).

Also grab some pine boards, these are gonna become some handy stands for balance.

Measure twice then ignore measurements and cut anywhere.

A nice straight line for me to miss later when I'm cutting.

Pick up a hand saw, struggle in vain before realising it's a piece of junk.

Then grab the power tools. (no photos of them in use I only have two hands)

Soon you'll have some nice "even" boards.

Always sand the ends smooth I reccomend using a rotary tool like my Colt here.

Nail the stand together like this, then cut off protruding nail points (use your rotary tool) and screw it together properly.

Make your two stands mirror opposites like this.

Line up your hinges and screw them on.
HINT: Use a drill bit to make the right size gap.

First set of hinges are done.

Now the other half.

Use the drill bit trick again.

See told you not to wear shoes.

DAY 3 - Stand It Up!!!

Line up your stands. Do a better job of it than I have.

Start screwing.

Cut off protuding sharp ends with your rotary tool.

Thee Killer Colt is Legendary.

And thy engraving skills sucketh.

Lay it down to attach the stands (you may need help as this is a bitch to do).

Both stands attached and you can see mine are a little crooked but who cares.

A barrel bolt will help hold it all together (but attach it on the back not side as done here I learnt it the hard way).

Now stand it up (it was too windy to stand it up flat).

The completed masterpiece.

Tae Kwon Do Tiger volunteered to test it.

But then he buggered off to work with Keiko.
Yeah it's badly done but I was using a photo editer instead of my vid program.

Things I Learned:
- Rollers soak up more paint than they put on the canvas.
- Canvases make good kites.
- Screw with pressure on top to avoid crooked screws.
- Don't wear loose clothes when painting, you'll always get paint on them.
- Power tools are your friends and like friends don't mess with them when they're working or it could get messy.
- You will always lose at least one screw.
- Cutting disks get very hot but the cut off nails/screws get even hotter.
- Next time I gotta get a friend to take the photos

Alright it's all done now, soon you'll see a real test of the greenscreen.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

New Toy - TV Tuner

First I'd like to apologize to my readers (all three of them) for lack of updates recently as I've been busy with work lately (the boring servo job not the film stuff), so "sorry".

Okay just a small one for now.

Today I was out buying some stuff for my various upcoming projects when I saw a usb TV tuner for only $99, I've had some trouble setting it up though and gave up while watching Home and Away ..... Okay to be honest I was distracted by Indi Evans looking real cute in a short plaid skirt (I'll post a pic when I get one).

Now I'm off to my schoolgirls annonymous meeting.


As promised (although crappy quality):

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Changing Street Signs

Okay the area I live in is made up of lots of little winding streets that really go nowhere. In fact at a roundabout section that I have to go though on the way home there is a No Through Road sign, at least there was until a few weeks ago now it says Local Traffic Only. So thinking it must now go all the way through (cutting a few minutes of my journey) so deciding to check it out I went through the intersection instead of turning right as always.

What did I find out?

Was this a miracle new shortcut?


No it was still a fucking No Through Road.

So I turned around and headed home the normal way wondering why they bothered to change the sign. Then I forgot about it until last night when I had a customer who was telling me about his job - Changing Street Signs. Not even thinking about my shortcut dilema I asked him what his most annoying job is (expecting to be told about replacing some sign that's always stolen like Nirvana Cres on the Sunshine Coast [don't ask how I know]) but instead he told me that in the last few months he's had to change a lot of No Through Road signs to Local Traffic Only.

The reason?

Well it seems residents in certain (mostly upmarket) areas have been complaining that the signs make the areas sound too dodgy.

What the fark?

Oh well people are idiots.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Robotech Reflections

Robotech is one of the great cartoon series I grew up watching and even now I still like to watch it when I get the chance (courtesy of the DVD collection). There is something captivating about the show that sets it apart from most Americanized anime of the 80s and that is the unflinching attitude it shows to the deaths of main characters, compare it to the other big 80s Americanized anime Voltron where the heroic deaths of three key characters were written out completely. Robotech always seemed to hold storytelling at a much higher level than it's contempories, building on the firm stories of it's anime counterparts the series became something special.

Today I finally got to see the new sequel movie - Robotech the Shadow Chronicles.
My opinions on this new movie are rather mixed. My one big complaint is that it is too short, it feels like the movie-length premiere of a new series (and I certainly hope they follow-up with a series) and leaves more unanswered questions at the end. Other complaints I have are the lack of many favourite characters from the original.
But it's not all bad, the animation rocked and the new character designs are awesome, the storyline was cool if a little predictable and the action was great.
The new characters were extremely likable, Marcus and Maia are sure to become fan favourites if the series continues.

But now comes the major downside, it took 20+ years for this sequel, how long do we have to wait for another?

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Putt Putt and the Feeling of Condfidence

Well on Friday me and the dudes went to a brilliant little Putt Putt place up the Sunshine Coast.
Line up for the day was:
"Victa 2-Stroke" Reilly
Sheppo "Mr Confident"
Steveo "Under 4"
and of course "Pinball Putter" Robbo
It was a mostly great day except for one little incident where someone couldn't take a joke.

Each of us got a hole in one except for Sheppo but he got a course record so boo hoo for him.

Reilly was the undeserving victim of violence (what kind of guy scratches in a fight anyway?).

All about the confidence.

Thank god for velcro thongs.

And all of this brings us to another little video - "The Feeling of Confidence"

Well I'm outta here