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URSA Mini 4k Test & Review | Coffee with Yuta

By on Nov 13, 2015 in Corporate, Life, Reviews, Travel, Weddings | 10 comments

I recently made a purchase on the Blackmagic Design URSA Mini camera, after falling in love with the image of the original URSA. I bought it from Videoguys here in Melbourne, Australia. After extensive reading & researching in whether to get the URSA 4.6k or 4k, I decided on the 4k. A large part of this was to do with affordability in the current time, but also one of the stronger features of the URSA Mini 4k – global shutter at 60p.  For me this feature is crucial as a lot of the time I’m doing things on my own, so its useful to have the option to stabilise my footage without the ‘jello’ effect for example. I also make use of a monopod all the time, and tend to do fake sliding shots on it. This is where you use your whole body weight and move the monopod forwards by leaning, then tilting the head upwards so that it stays level. Sometimes you get wobbly, so being able to straighten the shot is useful too. These are just some examples (also the fact that I shoot at lot of 60p too). Anyway, onto the test! I went out with my Japanese buddies here in Melbourne. Yuta works at a coffee shop out in South Melbourne called Clement Coffee. If you haven’t been there yet, I highly recommend checking it out! I wanted to experiment with some indoor shots with available natural & indoor lighting. It also had a wonderful colour palette inside the coffee shop, so it had a nice aesthetic too. I was shooting hand held, to simulate the type of work that I do on a weekly basis. My trusty FS100 is slightly lighter than the URSA, but thats due to the Magnesium build of the URSA I would think. The URSA is light in my hands, but I think the addition of a top handle would be really desirable, as it does strain your wrists after a while of holding the camera from the side grip when on standby. I think I’d be able to shoot a day with it hand held, but it’s going to need to be put down for sure. It’s light, but not as light as a feather. I shot this coffee scene only on a Sigma 18-35mm f1.8 lens. Didn’t need any more range considering it was quite tight for room in the shop. While shooting this, I did notice the skin-tones have a ‘thickness’ to it, like how Daniel Peter’s described it on Dan Chung’s podcast last week. It’s a breath of fresh air after using Sony cameras for so long. Whilst Sony cameras are really great for certain work, the URSA sensor is just far more superior in it’s colour science. Something I’ve been missing for quite some time! The screen is really quite handy, however I think I’ll invest in some kind of EVF in the future. When shooting outdoors in full sun light, it was sometimes hard to judge the exposure, especially if you don’t make use of the histogram as an example. So some shots in a later film I will release seemed to be a little over exposed. Nevertheless, for indoor application the screen is perfect. It’s a great size to look at, you can accurately judge focus especially with the great peaking system that is built into the URSA Mini. The one thing I noticed, which has been an issue with many Blackmagic Design cameras is the fixed pattern noise. If you download the original file, you will be able to see that in some parts, the dark areas have the presence of the FPN. It’s not as bad as it was in the past, but it’s still there. Hopefully this can be eradicated soon enough through firmware updates, and perhaps on the 4.6k sensor it’ll be gone all together! I used 2 Lexar 128gb CFAST 2.0 cards, which both had about 10 minutes each of ProRes HQ recording at 3840×2160. I would definitely recommend buying more of these babies if you are thinking of recording for a long period of time. In the battery department, I used a spare Globalmediapro 95w V-lock battery that I had lying around. It worked perfectly fine, and was only down to about 75% after a few hours. I was of course turning the camera on & off in this time, so it will be a different story if it were on constantly. I think it’s important to note that not all V-lock batteries will read a percentage to the camera (like mine). There is a compatibility list on the Blackmagic website somewhere, so if your battery doesn’t read a percentage, it will show 3 bars instead. Enough of me rambling on anyway, have a watch and see what you think. Will post another test film sometime in the near future!...

A story about building a better life

By on Nov 2, 2015 in Corporate | 0 comments

This project was really unique, in the sense that the story behind the beginnings and origins of this IT company are incredible. You don’t often think of an IT company to be this invested in their culture either. A family from Laos, travelling by Boat, after a terribly hard Journey in refugee camps, are sponsored to come to Australia. All they wanted was a better life, a greater purpose. Finally it was given to them, and they took hold of every opportunity they could get. This film focuses on the story of this family, and how their values have shaped the work culture in the company. We shot this on an A7RII, a new camera released by Sony, one which I’ve been wanting to try for a while. The results were quite nice, however the codec did suffer under some strenuous colour correcting, so use of an external corrector is necessary if you want to take full advantage of that piece of technology. Shot initially in 4k, scaled to HD for web delivery. It was all cut & edited in Premiere Pro. The goal was to make it personal & uplifting. It could have easily been a more depressing & intense styled film, but the goal was to convey a message of inspiration & purpose. I hope you enjoy watching this film, it was certainly a joy to create for us. This was in collaboration with SeeSharp Productions.  On a side note, I have been busy in the background working on some wonderful new adventures that are ahead of me, so I will be revealing this in due time! Enjoy this...

SHINE Japan (日本)

By on May 28, 2015 in Japan, Life, Travel | 0 comments

I am in Japan once more. Back a year later for Shine Japan, which is a large creative ministry event put on by The 4 Points Japan. It’s been a really wonderful time over here, not because it’s such a different culture to be enveloped in, but also because of what God has been doing over here. From the many visions & prayers that people have declared over this nation, to the various healings & testimonies that have come out of this week, hope is slowly being restored to the Japanese. This is a run down on what SHINE Japan is (english below) SHINE Japanは、祈りと伝道のイベント。ダイナミックにクリエイティブに伝道するためグ­ローバル・ディ・オブ・プレーヤーとグローバル・アウトリーチ・ディと協力します。 SHINE Japan is the culmination of connecting Prayer and Outreach, in coordination with the Global Day of Prayer and Global Outreach Day into one initiative to reach Japan with the Gospel in creative, dynamic ways. I’m really open about what I believe in, and that’s why I don’t really hide the stuff I do in my spare time from all the commercial work that I do on this blog. As Christians, we believe that worshipping God is not simply just an act of singing a song on a Sunday, but it’s a daily commitment to live out like Jesus did when he walked on this earth. It means to truly do everything that you do with faith and with the full commitment to glorifying God. This is why I’ve chosen to fly over to Japan and use my craft to help make a difference in other people’s lives. Capturing and documenting the moments in which the Holy Spirit moves is incredibly important to reach a generation that is so visually literate. 7Media, who I met up with last year in Japan have been here for the last 5 or so years involved in different film projects. With a lot of momentum now, the quality of work coming out of this production company is top notch, and it’s brilliant to be able to work with such like minded people as well as skilled. Every day they have been bumping out these updates on what is happening this week, and with 2 more days left in this event, I encourage you all to keep following along every morning as we bring you the latest from over here. Oh,  I was also involved in a very special project that 7Media produced on the weekend, however I’ll keep this a secret until it’s finished. Lets just say it’s going to involve some baseball. I guarantee it’s going to be very very cool. Be...

J&E A/W Collection 2015

By on May 15, 2015 in Ethical, Life | 3 comments

I spent last Saturday working on some wonderful new projects. One being filming Jacob & Esau’s behind the scenes video for their winter collection which is up for pre-order today. Second, I was also modelling at the same time for this little video. Multi talented hey? I must say this was a refreshingly fun project to work on. I haven’t really done anything fashion related, but it truly came together really well in the end. The girls running Jacob & Esau were incredibly awesome to work with, so it was a breeze to be able to collaborate with them on this project. They also had Big Picture Stuff & Hand Crafted Pictures shoot the collection for them, so that they could put up some beautiful photos onto the webstore. The concept behind this little 50 second video was to just show off the essence of the brand, its style, the character’s that are behind the label & the display the new seasonal threads. Because Jacob & Esau are all about relationships between the makers & the buyers, and are more focused on people, this shows through how they treat those they work with. It allowed for me to capture quite a natural beauty from the models, the photographers and even Esther & Joanne themselves. The music I chose was in the back of my mind the moment I started filming. Something about a hip hop beat and street style fashion that just mixes in so well. If ever there is something you really should get perfectly right, it’s the music & sound in your films. It really makes up half, if not more of your films overall experience. Without further delay, here you...

A collective of creatives

By on Apr 21, 2015 in The Wedding Fair, Weddings | 0 comments

I’ve been apart of a beautiful new venture since august last year with the lovely Tigs & Olivia. It’s called The Wedding Fair! I’ll take a post straight from our site about who we are; We are passionate about weddings and are excited to bring you beautifully curated wedding deals in the Melbourne area. The Wedding Fair was started by us, two sisters  (Liv and Tigs) who wanted to offer a platform for creatives to find opportunities to sharpen their skills and find community in the wedding industry. The group that has formed so far has been an organic growth that has come out of relationship and common values around service and artistry. After shooting heaps of weddings and being asked who could be recommended, the idea came to Tigs (a photographer) to build a one stop shop with excellent skill and craftsmanship. The result, we think is quite lovely! We are super proud of all of our vendors and how beautifully they decorate Melbourne’s wedding scene with their craft passion. We are a collaboration of many vendors. We really want to bring out the best of those within our brand, from those we work with. It’s a great platform to kickstart your business too (that’s the future vision) so that you can get a decent level of exposure from an established brand. We do styled shoots every so often so that we can showcase our vendors and the beautiful photographers which represent our brand. You’ll find them over on our website which has a link at the end of the post. From a filmmaking perspective, I’ve been taking on a more director/editor type roll with The Wedding Fair. Very slowly, but surely, I’m starting to shoot less and edit more. I’m investing some time into a few people throughout this year, so that I can unify The Wedding Fair brand’s vision and style between us all. I do a lot of work outside of weddings as you may have noticed, and I’d love to keep it that way too. Creativity is definitely best kept sharpened when you have constant, ever changing projects.  So hop on over to The Wedding Fair’s website – www.theweddingfair.com.au and have a browse at all our vendors that are available. Everything is there from designs for your wedding’s tableware through to our talented musicians for your day. I’ll leave this video here, our latest, shot by Graham and edited by yours truly!...