Monday, January 30, 2012

Recap: New Stuff on Wednesday or Thursday?



RSS readers: Click on the title above to watch the hidden video.

Facebook Group: http://www.facebook.com/groups/thefrugalfilmmaker/
Twitter Feed: http://www.twitter.com/frugalfilmmaker

Panasonic HX-DC1 (same as Sanyo XACTI VPC-CG20) $168 (pink!)
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/764660-REG/Panasonic_HX_DC1P_HX_DC1_HD_...

Sony Movie Studio HD, $36
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005CGDAL8/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=t...

Sony Movie Studio HD Platinum, $48 (includes color correction tools)
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0051M6I9O/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=t...

PVC ratcheting pipe cutter (Amazon), $8.50
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005519DM0/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=t...

PVC ratcheting pipe cutter (Harbor Freight Tools), $3.50
http://www.harborfreight.com/ratchet-action-hose-pvc-pipe-cutter-39749.html

Sima Quickonnect
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00006JQ6C/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=t...

Rosco Cinegel Quarter Blue (1/4 CTB), 20"x24"
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000B73P7W/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=t...

Roscolux 1/4 tough white diffusion, 20"x24"
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000B73OQY/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=t...

Building a DIY mini camera crane
http://youtu.be/UKuYsBMszJw

60 hours per minute and 4 billion views a day on YouTube
http://youtube-global.blogspot.com/2012/01/holy-nyans-60-hours-per-minute-and...

Rick Dobrowski's stabilizer rig for underwater camera housing
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150537661074731&set=o.3343687560...

Bob Dorn's frugal light stand and "frugalfuser"
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2631123589743&set=o.334368756043&a...

Merlin-style Steadicam part I, the gimble
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HnDsh24gBo0&feature=g-upl&context=G207...

3 simple tips for filming without lights (interior)
http://filmcameracourse.wordpress.com/2012/01/18/3-simple-rules-for-filming-w...

Cheap microphone! Audio-Technica ATR 6250 or ATR 25 (with test)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T-cqfSNHDrk&feature=share

Wayne Poe's PVC stabilizer rig
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=353858447959005&set=o.334368756043...

Building a flexible top handle rig
http://vimeo.com/35578183

DIY cam slider
http://vimeo.com/35630007

Free Filmmakers and Acting Talent Network
http://www.facebook.com/groups/356266777718975/

Noah Goodman's PVC shoulder rig
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=362710560422972&set=o.334368756043...

How to add lens threads to your JVC GZ-MS230
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oHGbX5bsops

Wayne Poe's method for adding external LED light to PVC stabilizer rig
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=356193681058815&set=o.334368756043...

DIY mic blimp rubberband assembly
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gv9-n8CvnMw

Tamara Stampone's PVC stabilizer rig
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=815060430538&set=o.334368756043&am...

DIY hotshoe adapter
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ULUKYJN9f0g&feature=colike

Mike Lefebvre's PVC stabilizer rig
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150515321753742&set=o.3343687560...

43" 5-in-1 collapsible multi-disk light reflector for $12.95
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002ZIMEMW/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=t...

4 sandbags for $22 (sand not included)
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001AHALEC/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=t...

How to create smoke for photography out of liquid
http://fstoppers.com/production-trick-how-to-create-smoke-for-photography-out...

Rui Silva's PVC shoulder mount
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2256586553647&set=o.334368756043&a...

Small LED light panel showdown
http://youtu.be/JvYD4QyqPQM

Donald Wren's FigRig clone
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2971824088665&set=o.334368756043&a...

Olle Aranas' suction cup mount
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150517729629562&set=o.3343687560...

Donald Wren's tripod mount for his PVC stabilizer rig
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2972341221593&set=o.334368756043&a...

Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Making of "Temp Insanity"



By popular demand, here is a "Making of" show covering my last short film, "Temp Insanity". I always learn a ton of stuff on every movie I make and I hope there is something here that could be useful to others. The smartest thing I did on this shoot was secure a real office (one that had been denied to other students previously) for a location. The dumbest? I wasn't aware the sun coming in a prominent window wouldn't be down at the start of shooting, which caused a one hour delay.

I've also included the screenplay in a normal .pdf and Celtx version (which also includes my sitck-man storyboards). If you don't know what Celtx is, it's free screenwriting and pre-production software that runs on any platform.

If you like the title font, here's where I found it.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Recap: Best Entry-Level Camera?



RSS readers: click on the title above to watch the hidden video.

Spring Double Eagle M41A G36 Rifle Airsoft Gun
http://www.hobbytron.com/SpringDoubleEagleM41AG36RifleAirsoftGun.html

Best entry-level filmmaker camera for $80 (Sanyo XACTI VPC-CG20)
http://filmflap.blogspot.com/2012/01/best-entry-level-filmmaker-camera-for.html

800 watt portable generator
http://www.harborfreight.com/800-rated-watts-900-max-watts-portable-generator...

Noob shockmount adapter
http://www.dslrfilmnoob.com/noob-store/

Cowboy Studio professional tripod dolly
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002UA2H9A/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=t...

Getting better as a director: The power of collaboration
http://nofilmschool.com/2012/01/director-power-collaboration/

Rode introduces two microphones with built-in recorders
http://cheesycam.com/rode-introduces-two-new-microphones-built-in-digital-rec...

Camera Flo Pod
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-G7_18Eiu2M&feature=g-u&context=G27555...

PVC to camera shoe adapter
http://filmflap.blogspot.com/2012/01/pvc-to-camera-shoe-adapter.html?spref=fb

Justin Loga's PVC stabilizer "battering ram-cam"
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=1774908108150&set=o.334368756043&a...

Halogen work light for under $10
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Bayco-500-Watt-Halogen-Project-Work-Light/14003469

Sima Quickonnect for $8.57
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00006JQ6C/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=t...

Vivitar Steady Pod (mini-tripod/hand grip) for $5.40
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0046SKZ1G/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=t...

$25 DIY double shoulder mount
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xOVswSEXsYk&list=UU6P24bhhCmMPOcujA9PKPTA

David Stembridge's DIY shoulder mount
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2894456794890&set=oa.1015048516848...

7 tips for HD and DSLR color correction
http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/HurlbutVisuals/~3/Cj20Qf_PADw/

Cowboy Studio shoulder mount for $16.44
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0036NMQ7S/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=t...

DIY ring light - $20 filmmaker
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZIeLyeWplJU

Humphrey Bande's PVC track dolly
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150492981493364&set=oa.101504862...

Really cheap microphone bracket
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FF8bG5xn_fQ&feature=share

Andres Alonso Larrea Burneo's DIY crutch cam!
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150543971058917&set=oa.101504870...

YouTube's "Your Film Festival"
http://nofilmschool.com/2012/01/enter-short-youtubes-your-film-festival/

Chris Butterfield's Pocket Cam Crane
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=351216361556190&set=o.334368756043...

Collin Baker's Cowboy Studio shoulder mount
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150717438404554&set=oa.101504855...

Andrew Seitz' PVC stabilizer rig light
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=256131591127202&set=o.334368756043...

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

PVC to Camera Shoe Adapter



One thing I've always wanted to make was some way of connecting my DIY mic shockmount directly to the top of my camera. Sometimes you need a full rig of stuff to complement your camera and sometimes you just need one thing. This is a case of a simple adapter to hold a mic (or any PVC project) to the top of a camera. It can get more complex, of course, but that is up to you.

PARTS LIST

Opteka Canon Mini "Advanced" Shoe to Universal Shoe Mount
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0047V5NM8/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=t...

1/4"-20 Tripod Mount Screw to Flash Hot Shoe Adapter
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Pro-1-4-20-Tripod-Mount-Screw-Flash-Hot-Shoe-Adapter-...

1/2" PVC plug
http://www.lowes.com/pd_22679-1815-449005RMC_0__?productId=3371454&Ntt=1%...

1/4" hex nut
1/4" lock washer

Monday, January 16, 2012

Weekly Recap: What should I do with Twitter?



RSS readers: click on the title above to watch the hidden video.

Sanyo XACTI VPC-CG20 AC adapter
http://www.ebay.com/itm/AC-Adapter-4-Sanyo-Xacti-VPC-CG100PX-VPC-HD2000GX-VPC...

"Temper" Kickstarter page
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1277013484/temper-0

Armalite Rifle font
http://www.1001freefonts.com/afonts7.php

Shotgun microphone shootout
http://www.dvcreators.net/shotgun-shootout/

Sima Quickonnect back in stock!
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00006JQ6C/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=t...

DIY lav mic - iPhone earbuds
http://cheesycam.com/diy-lav-mic-iphone-earbuds/

All about lightstands
http://frugalphotog.blogspot.com/2012/01/all-about-lightstands.html

Jeffrey Collins PVC stabilizer / shoulder rig
http://duochromefilms.blogspot.com/

DIY QuickTip - cheap greenscreen
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fw7Ej4zNyWY

DIY QuickTip - composing for 2:35:1 widescreen
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=95A_m5Ug0rU

Humphrey Bande's PVC stabilizer rig
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=95A_m5Ug0rU
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150471980778364&set=oa.101504660...

Camera flash bracket from the $100 filmmaking kit
http://youtu.be/57lXbSajZGw

DIY cell phone stabilizer rig
http://youtu.be/B_HCRvRvLsA

Kris Kuhn's PVC stabilizer rig
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151157719535515&set=o.3343687560...

Jared Novakovich's PVC stabilizer rig
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2165972728134&set=o.334368756043&a...

$1 camera slider?
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2862358192073&set=o.334368756043&a...

5 simple ways to make your own light leaks
http://www.freshdv.com/2012/01/diy-light-leaks.html

Best entry-level filmmaker camera for $80
http://filmflap.blogspot.com/2012/01/best-entry-level-filmmaker-camera-for.ht...

DIY shoulder rig
http://youtu.be/RNCwPDXODMs

Jared Novakovich's DIY shoulder rig
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2174422579375&set=o.334368756043&a...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ELaJx176hQ&feature=channel_video_title

Bob Dorn's frugal reflector
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2567807646884&set=o.334368756043&a...

Nicholas Thor Martin's PVC trigger grip
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2749013037545&set=o.334368756043&a...

Digital Concepts wide and tele converter kit
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PokTjyh8d1E&feature=share

Chris Butterfield using the $5 PVC light stands
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=346867461991080&set=o.334368756043...

John Shappy's Frugal Floater
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=3079612713084&set=o.334368756043&a...

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Best Entry-Level Filmmaker Camera for $80

In case you haven't been following the Weekly Recap shows, I wanted to give one last alert about the best kept secret on the internet (too dramatic?). The "secret" is that you can get the now-discontinued Sanyo XACTI VPC-CG20 HD camcorder for $79.97 at Radio Shack. They are only available in stores (which are everywhere) and you can easily detect stock through The Shack's handy CG20 product locator, which is hidden on their website. Enter your zip code and cross your fingers.

Why do I like this camera? Let me give you a few reasons. All manual features (focus, shutter, exposure). Focus and exposure lock. 5x optical zoom lens. 1080p/720p HD video. Records to YouTube-friendly MP4 codec. In-camera video trimming. Macro mode. Web cam mode. Flip out, rotatable monitor. Tripod mount. External battery charger. Records video to an SD card (not included). $80 price tag. Check the online manual for full disclosure.

It does have some cons. There is no mic input or headphone jack. The onboard mics are on the opposite side of the monitor (which is only a problem if you want to see yourself and record sound at the same time). Pick up a Zoom H1 Handy Recorder and snyc in post.

There is no AC adapter. You can only power the camera by battery, which probably last just over an hour. Cheap clones can be found on eBay, however, and you could be shooting while charging another on the external charger (get two for $8.85).

It's small. While the pistol-grip shape does help the small form-factor, it's still a tiny camera that may disappear in large mitts such as my own. Build and use the PVC stabilizer rig or the mini-camera stabilizer which is perfect for the CG10 & CG20 + the Zoom.

This is really a fantastic deal. I hope that any budding film jockeys will be able to nab one of these before they disappear forever. They have so many features and can also come in very handy as a portable "fast cam". I carry one in my backpack all the time now. Oh, and in case you are wondering about video quality, check my last Tip episode or a recent Weekly Recap episode. They were all shot on the CG20's little brother (which tops out at 720p), the XACTI VPC-CG10.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Weekly Recap: Help me spread the word?



RSS readers, please click on the title to watch the above video.

$4 porch tree bags (gear storage)
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=269945696392462&set=a.163836737003359.39766.148065401913826&type=1&theater

Knoptop upgrades the Zoom H1
http://filmflap.blogspot.com/2012/01/knoptop-upgrades-zoom-h1.html?spref=fb

Hope Depot Holiday light changing kit (boompole - $5)
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150548999635516&set=o.334368756043&type=1&theater

Filippo Bortot's PVC stabilizer rig
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=316020125105085&set=o.334368756043&type=1&theater

Ryan Sasinowski's suction cup car mount
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2753227641595&set=o.334368756043&type=1&theater

Great lighting for microbudget video
http://crewofone.com/2012/great-lighting-for-microbudget-video/

Tip: In Camera Editing
http://filmflap.blogspot.com/2012/01/tip-in-camera-editing.html

Getting better as a director: Learning how to talk to actors
http://nofilmschool.com/2012/01/director-learning-talk-actors/#more-17320

Alex Forey's DIY matte box, cage rig, and rail system
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=322701341093649&set=oa.10150455877746044&type=1&theater

DIY filmmaking comes of age
http://news.doddleme.com/equipment/diy-filmmaking-comes-of-age/

Eve Hazelton: Lighting for greenscreen
http://philipbloom.net/2011/12/30/eve3/

Filmmaking tools you can buy #2 - $20 filmmaker
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=WhK-ajGK6gg

DVTV: Action movie BTS, FaderND review
http://youtu.be/JnnwqE-mAE8

Keith Hecker's DIY shoulder rigs
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=320477921308032&set=o.334368756043&type=1&theater
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=323981307624360&set=o.334368756043&type=1&theater

Havard Nordgard's DIY teleprompter
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150572976116357&set=oa.10150461488616044&type=1&theater

Sanyo XACTI VPC-CG10 users manual
http://us.sanyo.com/dynamic/product/Downloads/VPC-CG10_OM_English-33168772.pdf

Sanyo XACTI VPC-CG20 finder at Radio Shack
http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=4094472#stuff-you-want

Hands free tie clip omindirectional electret (lav mic)
http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2102927

Audio-Technica ATR-3350 lav mic
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002HJ9PTO/ref=as_li_tf_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=thefrugfilm-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=B002HJ9PTO

The Frugal Filmmaker - "Episode Workflow"
http://filmflap.blogspot.com/2011/09/episode-workflow.html

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Tip: In Camera Editing



In this tip episode, I cover what will probably interest video bloggers more than filmmakers. I discuss how I came up with a very fast production schedule for my Weekly Recap show, which needs to get out the door every Monday. I details all the ins and outs and how using a cheap $80 camera was the answer over my more expensive Canon.

Sanyo XACTI VPC-CG10 finder at Radio Shack's website
http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=3558934

Sanyo XACTI VPC-CG20 finder at Radio Shack
http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=4094472#stuff-you-want

$5 mini ball head
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Mini-ball-head-camera-tripod-ballhead-Tripod-Head-/23...

Get your own pickle jar!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Knoptop Upgrades the Zoom H1



Recently Zoom released a new firmware upgrade for its popular digital audio recorder, the H1. Knoptop takes us through the basic steps to get the job done. I have the H1 and haven't done the upgrade yet, but darn it if Dave doesn't make it look like fun!

Monday, January 2, 2012

Weekly Recap: Is this show too long?



RSS readers: click on the title to watch the video above.

Sunny Sharif's DIY camera slider & tutorial
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LGp7VPI0Xbc
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GOPdN-xvrQE

Cheap tripod ($10)
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2765184762798&set=o.334368756043&type=1&theater

How to build a $25 boom pole
http://youtu.be/2hTZj5FDnvM

The best video cameras of 2011
http://webvideouniversity.com/podcast/video/2011/12/27/the-best-video-cameras-of-2011/

2 Easy to use camera report templates
http://www.theblackandblue.com/2011/12/27/camera-reports/

Filmmaking tools you can buy - $20 Filmmaker
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dhK4yuJK9tM

Joshua Welker's chromakey paint formula
b-4
114-5y32
113-1y
103-4y

$100 filmmaking kit
http://youtu.be/Tj8ExAYownI

Edward Burns and the socialization of indie cinema
http://mashable.com/2011/12/27/edward-burns-newlyweds-indie/

Travis Scalan's slider dolly
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150494138947384&set=o.334368756043&type=1&theater

Hollywood-style tricks on the cheap
http://pogue.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/12/29/hollywood-style-tricks-on-the-cheap/

Zoom H1 firmware update
http://cheesycam.com/zoom-h1-firmware-update/

Using a seat belt pad as a wind-blocking deadcat
http://www.diyphotography.net/using-a-seat-belt-pad-as-a-wind-blocking-deadcat

Making a scar with glue and tissue paper
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P54kY77vj9E&feature=channel_video_title

Happy New Year!
http://filmflap.blogspot.com/2011/12/happy-new-year.html?spref=fb

Public Domain Pictures - free stock photos
http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/

Paco Warabi's Treepod/Multipod
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ijLM7ZaLZFs
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yineIrXyDjs

1/2" PVC plug at Home Depot
http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-100175956/h_d2/ProductDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=10051&catalogId=10053

Knoptop's DIY deadcat for on-camera mics
http://www.youtube.com/user/Knoptop#p/u/64/zAZSckWorA0

Scott's older short films/'Midnyte' web series
http://filmflap.blogspot.com/2007/01/my-short-films_12.html
http://www.midnyte.tv/

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