Sunday, 27 January 2008

[1] Cantaloop

Over Christmas, I invested in a Canon HG10 AVCHD digital camcorder. It took me a few weeks, but I'm now used to taking it out into the dangerous, thrilling Real World. I have a few ideas bouncing around, including short subjects and a longer documentary on The Current Birmingham University Generation. Footage and info on these should pop up in the next few weeks; they require PLANNING and PREPARATION.

The first time I unsheathed the HG10 in public was at the university Jazz society's Jam Evening (18th January). I shot some footage, mostly of a jam around Herbie Hancock's 'Cantaloupe Island' featuring my friend Emilio Pierro and jazzers from the university and the Conservatoire. This was also my first time using Pinnacle Studio for editing; I admit that there's nothing too impressive in either the camerawork or the editing, but I think the transitions smoothed over my rough cuts well enough. I could have tried to work out the obstructions, but I'll save those worries for future projects.

Here's the video:

I'll eventually try to upload some more meaty written pieces. At the start of term I wrote an essay on 1960s American Counterculture and its relationship with mainstream and popular forms of distribution/business. I focused on Bob Dylan, with references to Easy Rider, The Monkees and Jefferson Airplane. It needs tidying a little, and I'll have to translate it from Academicese, but it might find its way on here eventually.

I also wrote a Top 10 films of 2007 for CC2K. Once that is up, I'll link to it. I'll try to tackle the backlog of films that I've seen recently. Since term started, I've been aggressively organising film trips on Wednesdays. So far, we've seen I'm Not There, No Country For Old Men, Paranoid Park and Lust, Caution: all highly recommended. I also caught Youth Without Youth before Christmas; even though it isn't of the same high calibre as the previously mentioned films (it didn't make my end-of-year top 10), it was an effective and memorable viewing experience. I was disappointed by the almost hostile reaction by the majority of the film critics out there. I'll have to formulate my own thoughts and write it out, but for the time being, there is a pretty positive, sympathetic and level-headed review on the Film Blog.

I'll try to keep this updated often. We'll see how it goes.

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