Drain.

Every once in a while I write or say that my life seems to be a loop and never elaborate on that. Let’s try that for today, and let me be specific about my creative process.

The loop usually goes like this. It starts with an awful boring lack of will to start working on something new. This is what I’m starting to define as the “absorption stage”. I usually watch a ton of movies, series, read like a maniac, good and bad things, there’s not much judgement about what I’m ingesting. Some bits of this overload of information are picked from their original source – a specific shot, a camera move, a particular vfx, the way a sequence sounds, the visual style of a game, the plot that interconnects multiple characters in different situations, that kind of thing. Every once in a while I come across a piece of entertainment which I can’t seem to make up my mind whether I liked it or not, so it sticks to the brain and I can’t think about anything else BUT that movie/game/book/song. These are the best ones. It happened with Nightcrawler, Life Is Strange and at least one or two songs every week. These ones are stored in a special place, and will very likely be used as master references for a particular project.

At this stage I feel like I can’t come up with anything new or original. Later on, all those small selections and master references will be mashed together and recombined somehow. This is the tricky part, when I have several ideas which I like. I have to write them down so they don’t vanish completely. Some seem doable, some sound more like dreams. I say it’s tricky for a few reasons. Number One: I don’t feel like I can start developing them all, which leads to number Two: which one is the most doable with what I have and what I know? Most of the times I can’t focus or start any specific idea so there’s a constant feeling that, at any moment, a brilliant plan will show up, which never does and the loop restarts.

When I’m more grounded I have the clarity to sit down and take a look at the possibilities. It’s always a matter of practice. If I give in, I’ll end up doing nothing. After one idea is picked, there’s still some mental wrestling while the other ones try their best to be convincing and doable and I have to keep it under control. Then the real hard part starts, when I have to bring it into reality and deal with all of its limitations. Sometimes this completely defeats the purpose of the idea, and the loop restarts.

If not, if it still seems doable, comes the part of going out and doing it. Shooting, or animating, or drawing, or whatever, something practical. And then it’s never how I expect it to be so there is some more time to fine tune it. There’s also the danger of everything that I thought would be hard simply worked out perfectly. This is dangerous because it puts the plan in a pedestal and I feel afraid of pushing forward and discovering flaws or hitting unexpected problems. When this happens – before the flaws and problems – it’s usually late at night and I’m working on my own. Something unpredictable comes out perfectly, or someone gives me a very positive reply, or the universe simply converges onto making that work, and that drives me into a state of super excitement in which I can’t stand still. This is when life seems to be absolutely perfect and everything means something, and that something is good. When it happens, I can’t keep working and have to go out for a walk, or bike ride in amazement. Yeah, it’s very self-centric, I know. This is also another trap to restart the loop.

There are at least a few times along the process when everything seems to be going right. These always act like pitfalls and I have to stay alert whenever it happens, clearing my head and getting back to work quickly.

WHEN I eventually get to the end and avoided restarting the loop midway through the process, I get to the results. Sometimes the entire process takes less than a day (like the Little Talks project), sometimes a few months (Zona SSP), and once in a while, almost an entire year, such as Hovering Lights. Finishing something, for me, is MUCH MUCH harder than starting, and that’s why I tend to make the start so rough. I feel bad for any project I drop along the way, I know I learned with it, but it didn’t get to where I wanted to go. So, if I’m very careful with what I start, I make sure that I’m going all the way with it. Of course, this also leads to the risk of never starting anything, but lately I’ve been having so many new ideas that at least a few of them have to be worthy of some time. Time is pretty much all I have now! So, after the cycle is completed, it restarts.

It has got to a point that I know what’s going on when I start to just watch too much TV or play for too long, so I start going through the ideas to get to the next stage and not get stuck enjoying other people’s work but having none of my own.

Here’s a little story about adapting my work to fit the rules.

About ten months ago I started to develop my demo reel, Hovering Lights. It started out as a found footage project, much like Cloverfield, Chronicle and such. Following that line, my original plan was to shoot it all 16:9, like a handycam and have all the overlays on the screen, which would be another thing I wanted to learn how to script. In the first presentation people said it was too outdated, looking like something from the 90s. At some point one of the instructors suggested that I made it all look like it was shot with a phone, and uploaded to Instagram. That idea clicked pretty well with my crazy-experimenting side and I decided to set that as a goal.

First things first, I needed to figure out Instagram’s limitations. Maximum length: 15 seconds. Video dimensions 640×640 px, square format, 29,97fps. So even my longest shots needed to fit in 15 seconds or less. That kind of solved the problem I was having trying to figure a way to make it all look continuous while hiding several cuts along the way. Getting adjusted to the square aspect ratio was the hardest part, and I started my Instagram account two or three days after that presentation. I posted daily: old photos, new photos, some assignments, tests and whatnot, building up my audience in the months before the reel was ready to go.

Of course, I shot it with the 5D3, raw, and got me some extra resolution to finish the project at 1080p Square – no way in hell I was going to have my final output down to 640 Square! – cropping information on the sides and adjusting my framing along the each shot by manually moving the crop around the original shots. It turned out nice, dynamic and still holding LOTS of information for post. Then I went forward working on the shots through the remainder of my program. In term 6 I hit a speedbump and went back home for a while, getting back to work on my final shot with class 3D112, kind of restarting my Term 6.

Following a schedule different from my original class, 3D112′s graduation won’t happen until September 18th, which should be the time I’d have the final sound for my project – there has been some more interesting developments on this part, though – so I had to wait before officially releasing it on Instagram. At some point I decided “you know what, fuck that, no matter how amazing this sound will be, it won’t be noticeable on a phone’s speakers”, so I started posting the first part last Sunday (August 23rd).

Second part went online on the 28th…

HOLY CRAP! WTF?! Did you see that???

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And then, coolest thing ever – not to say otherwise -, on the 29th, Instagram decided “ehhh, fuck this square aspect ratio thing, you know?” and removed restrictions so anyone can post whatever pictures and videos taller or wider than the original 640px resolution. Boom, that was it. What’s the point of having square footage now? My single salvation is the fact that this is too recent and the majority of users is still posting square stuff. So today I uploaded the rest of the project – even more luckily, everything that was left to be uploaded should happen in a single straight sequence of posts, unlike the two first parts – and watched my followers count drop by EIGHT people not ten minutes after I was done. Seriously? But, ok, I’m fine with that. I already got seven new ones to fill in that hole.

I got lucky that the whole thing was already going on, but if that change regarding the aspect ratio had happened in the middle of my development process, man, I’d be pissed for weeks. What did I learn from this experience? If I ever adapt my work to fit something else’s rules, I better release it faster than 10 months, right? Hahaha!

This post links up with something else, but it’s an entirely different subject, so I’ll just stop here. Enjoy all the clips, and follow me, if you still don’t!

FUCK, RUN!!!

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GOGOGOGOGO

A video posted by Tito Ferradans (@tferradans) on

THEY'RE STEALING CARS NOW???

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GODDAMNED SLOWEST FUCKING GATE

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NOOOOOOOOOOO

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WATCH THE VIDEO HERE!

OVERVIEW
Hello guys and girls – I like to think there are also girls watching these videos – I’m Tito Ferradans and we’re on for another Anamorphic on a Budget Video Review. On this week’s episode I’ll talk about a very uncommon lens, which I heard things about but had never seen one until I got mine. Isco-Optic’s 16:9 Video Attachment, mark I. So what’s up with this guy? Long story short, it’s an Isco 54 with 1.33 stretch. Actually, this is not short, this is EXACTLY what this lens is. It has the exact same metal body of the Iscorama 54, same size, same weight (900g), same alignment mechanism by pushing this button here and rotating it. Focus also ranges from 2m to infinity and you need to focus your taking lens to infinity and just focus on the Isco. Front thread is 95mm and the rear is 77mm. You can use redstan’s clamps or just go with a bunch of step rings.

So, where did this guy come from? Well, at some point Isco started making home projector lenses and the traditional Video aspect ratio was 4:3, which needed to be stretched out to 16:9. There you go! It’s good to know there are two other versions of this lens, mark II and mark III, but they’re much bigger and way heavier than this one, to a point which is impractical to use them.

PRICE and AVAILABILITY
I just saw this one I got on ebay, and one that sold a few years ago for over 6000 euros, including a bunch of diopters, so all I can say is it’s a very rare lens and it goes for a load of cash…

RESOLUTION
Outstanding results, at even the fastest apertures. Edges are very slightly compromised, but this thing is razor sharp, so much that the quality cap is probably set by the taking lens instead of the anamorphic. If you have great taking lenses, you don’t need to worry at all. Again, due to it’s big front element I had to tape a diopter in front of it and this caused some vignetting on the edges for the 58mm charts.


MIR 1b CENTER

MIR 1b CORNERS


Helios 44-2 CENTER

Helios 44-2 CORNERS


Jupiter 9 CENTER

Jupiter 9 CORNERS


Tair 11 CENTER

Tair 11 CORNERS

DOWNLOAD ORIGINAL SAMPLES HERE

FLARES
Being newer than the Iscoramas, these are multicoated lenses to reduce flare. That being said, it shows a faint greenish-blue flare when a strong light source is pointed directly at it.

SENSOR COVERAGE
Just as its older brothers (or sisters? are lenses male or female?), anyway, just like them, this one is vignette free from 50mm and up on full frame. You can see the inside of the barrel when I’m using the Mir 1b, 37mm.

WORLD TEST
As easy to use as an Isco. Actually, I should be saying this is an Isco and be done with it. Focus at 2m is the single issue I have with this lens, but you can get around it with diopters. Images are pretty and clean, if you’re not a fan of the anamorphic artifacts, such as bokeh, flares and crazy distortion, this would be a perfect pick since it stretches 16:9 to 2.36 Cinemascope and introduces very few artifacts. This world test was shot with my Contax Zeiss set and look at how nice and clean it is!

A short review for an uncommon lens, but you can get almost all of its information from working or reading about any Iscorama. I think this is the first time where the anamorphic look isn’t that much emphasized, but hey, no problem with that. There are plenty of people who like Cinemascope and think flares are extremely overrated! Subscribe to the channel for next week’s video and check our archives as well as my blog in order to read the Anamorphic on a Budget Guide! See you next week, Tito Ferradans signing out.



TCUITF Syndrome.

Yeah, it’s true, I suffer from the Too Close Until It’s Too Far syndrome, an uncommon photographic condition regarding longer focal lengths. While you’re testing the lens on your own, at home, it seems to bring everything up close but as soon as you go out to the world you realize people are too small and far away in your framing.

If I had to choose between shooting with a 20mm or a 200mm for my entire life, I’d pick the 200mm in a heartbeat. I LOVE telephoto lenses. That relates to a few things in my shooting style that I’m still working on, such as “I’m never comfortable taking pictures of random people”, I tend to think they noticed me and will be pissed about being on camera. Add on top of that the fact that I like observing the world from a distance, without being a part of what goes on around me regarding people I don’t know (like when I’m biking on my own, taking the bus or walking around town). This strengthens my bond with longer lenses.

I’ve always wanted a 300mm. The second lens I ever owned was Canon’s 75-300mm, the cheapest modern telephoto zoom around, I think. It had terrible image quality, no stabilization, it was way too dark (f/4-5.6) and it was SUPER FUN to shoot with. That was the moment I started to fall for these huge things. Afterwards I had the incredible 70-200mm f/2.8L IS Mk II, which I ended up selling when moving to Canada, not because I didn’t like it anymore, but because the money was more useful at that moment. And then I played low for shortly over a year, with my longest lens being the Tair 11A, which is 135mm. Then came the Contax Zeiss 135mm which is an absolute killer, and not long after that my long-awaited Tair 3 (300mm f/4.5) arrived in the mail.

I can literally spy the people living in the building across the street if I wanted to. This lens is humongous and every bit as amazing. When I started testing it out at home, I felt it was super long and that I could finally snap those nice golden hour decisive moments of random strangers just stopping my bike for a few seconds. Then I took it out for a ride and my syndrome came into play. Everything and everyone seemed super-far-away, small in the frame and not helping me with good compositions at all. I kept it cool and snapped some pictures of strangers anyway for the Tales of the Seawall series. Focusing is fun (I’m being sarcastic, the lens has marks for 100m before infinity plus the focus ring has almost 360 degrees of throw) and the setup can get quite heavy after a while if not handled properly, so I decided it is time to practice shooting through the viewfinder again, instead of relying so much on the LCD screen and digital magnification.

I took it out a few other times since that first day and it’s growing on me. I started to chase birds again and will soon start doing the same thing to people. I mean, if the birds won’t fly away, why the hell would a person 60+ feet away notice me? Besides, I can always crop in, if my resolution is high enough. For example, I was around 100ft away from the couple in the picture below. Turned out nice, right?

I’ll eventually be good enough to focus a seagull on the fly (pun intended), or maybe go into parks and use camouflage until my subjects come close enough!

WATCH THE VIDEO HERE!

I know, Sunday’s passed and I haven’t uploaded a video. I ran into some trouble and couldn’t finish it on time. I’m working to get it up early in the week and wanted to let you in about what I have planned for the upcoming experiments. I mentioned a few times that I’m running out of lenses and that is very true. This week I’m posting the review for the Isco 16:9 Video Attachment Mk I and that leaves me with the Foton-A left and a small focus through Iscomorphot.

I’m trying to get my hands on an SLR Magic Anamorphot (1.33x stretch for now), so I can compare it to all the other 1.33x attachments. Once I have it I’m also doing a shootout mixing ALL the 1.33x lenses to see if the difference between them is that easy to notice. I’m very likely teaming with with Matt Leaf for that so we don’t end up with a pointless test, but something that also has some content other than the test itself. If you have an SLR Magic Anamorphot around that you could send over for a week or two, please drop me a line!

Besides that, which depends on me getting the lens, I have a Helios 44 on the way, for a special Chop Shop on how to open it up and get an oval aperture inside. After that is done, I’m giving the lens away to one lucky random person. I wanted to do the same for the Pentacon 29 (since I did it two years ago and I know it’s possible), but there are no cheap offers on eBay. Once that is out, I’m talking about the cool DogSchidtOptiks, their mods, the Trump and their optical attachments for longer and shorter focal lengths along with what’s the difference between using such thing instead of simply picking a 35 or 85mm. I don’t think it all will fit in a single video so I might have a few episodes on these.

Mythbusters strike again and I’ll test the theory of inverting the rear element of the smaller Century Optics anamorphic to see if it makes the lens any better. I also need to find a decent 3d-printing place nearby for that Panasonic front filter I think I mentioned earlier. If it works, I’m releasing the model/file free here so anyone who owns a Panny can print their own with no fees other than the printing itself.

Then I’ll also have an episode explaining diopters. It’s one of the most common misconceptions out there, how they work, why do they improve image quality and such. Once that one is out I can make another for variable-strength diopters, clarifying how the Rectilux, FM, Rangefinder and Iscoramas work their black magic (black magic, see what I did there?).

As you can see, there’s still a lot of anamorphic subjects even though not having lenses around to test! I’m sorry for not being able to clearly define the order these videos will be released, but my shooting schedule is way too random. At some point I might have a great opportunity with a particular lens and I’ll have to postpone whatever I had planned to shoot that week. I know you all shoot your own stuff and can understand how that works, right?

Subscribe to check the episodes that are up already and so you’re notified as these other ones I mentioned are here too! I’m Tito Ferradans and I’ll see you soon!

I spent the week thinking of what to write, every day shooting down my ideas, not considering anything worthy of sitting down and mashing the keyboard. Ok, there’s that, there’s work, there’s Catan and there’s May. But now I’m here and I’m writing.

Yesterday I went for my daily seawall round when the weather cleared up a little in the morning. After one lap I thought “yeah, maybe it’ll be raining tomorrow, better go again, I’m not even tired”. After the second lap, “Hmm, the weather forecast is saying the entire week will be rainy and the WeatherCaster is crashed due to faulty updates… Three is the lucky number”. And then, midway through I came up on closed gates. Actually, I failed to describe how it felt like a massive storm had swept along the coast. The ground was covered with dead leaves, small sticks, large branches and at some points entire trees had fallen down. Even though it was a Saturday, there was almost no one there and the wind was killer. At some bits of the track I had to gear down almost to the point of stopping just to counter the wind and still move a few inches forward. After getting to the closed gate I turned around and found a park ranger informing people to return to the city because the entire park was closing down due to a windstorm warning issued to coastal areas. I ended up leaving through the most random route ever and had to fight uphills with my already tired legs until I could get home.

After that I felt great, though. I mean, if I can bike under these conditions, the winter can be conquered. I just need to sort out some technical issues such as waterproof clothing.

Today I went for an afternoon ride. It’s been little over a month since a small deer was seen wandering around downtown. It seemed to have taken refuge inside Stanley Park. I saw a few photos and news about it, and wondered how come I had never seen it on my 40+ laps while the little thing was living in there. Then today I had the pleasure of meeting him (or her). A random dude closed me off on the regular path and I had to drop to the asphalt in order not to crash. This caused me to switch my route a bit and get back to the seawall a few hundred meters ahead. As soon as I started moving again (after going down some steps carrying the bike) I saw something on the corner of my eye and turned. A few seconds later some more people noticed it and gathered around to take pictures. I never cursed so much for not having the camera on me at the moment. Tried my best with the phone and it turned out no better than OK, but OK is enough.

I stood there in its presence for quite a while, just watching it pick the little yellow flowers among the green grass. There were some kids around too, curious and a little scared at the same time, coming close and then moving back as the creature made any sign of acknowledging their presence. Eventually I realized that I had dropped my bike at some point and it should be there abandoned to its fate since I wasn’t around. The deer decided to take a tour through an overgrown patch and based on that I decided that I should get back to the bike and go about my way.

The fun thing in this whole encounter was how much it brightened my day. The sky was still as grey as it could be, and there were some rain drops here and there, but I was completely mesmerized by how unlikely that was to happen. I mean, what are the odds of having a deer in such small patch of trees, what are the odds of running into it, or the odds that it wouldn’t go away for this entire time or that something bad didn’t happen to it. Still going on the odds, how come it’s not afraid of people, or at least tolerates our presence so close without fleeing right away, and just chill there, doing its business of chewing small buds? Right?

It’s not everyday that I have this kind of philosophical wondering, this kind of thinking needs feeding and random events like these are amazing ways of doing so. Now I think I should go back to work since there are videos to shoot, plates to clean and fake plugins to develop. See you guys soon.

Tales of the Seawall: About Wildly Unexpected Encounters.

A photo posted by Tito Ferradans (@tferradans) on

WATCH THE VIDEO HERE!

If you have no idea of what this is about, you should watch the test video.

Hey guys, welcome back to our Anamorphic Chop Shop, I’m Tito Ferradans and in this episode we’re going back to what I presented last week, about Mark’s video on fixing the Panasonic’s issues with chromatic aberration around the edges, close focus and lowlight performance thanks to a +0.25 diopter. Once again, thanks to Rob Bannister at Creative Camera Rentals – my associate, look how fancy I’m getting! – and Gearhouse Camera Rentals for providing the gear for this video. Thank you all for the comments, some people did pretty good on the guessing and explanation!


Test Video with all specs revealed!

On the shots with the Contax Zeiss 28mm and the Canon 5D3, it’s pretty easy to spot when we have the diopter on because of the massive vignetting the additional rings create. Also, there’s some more spreading of the light around the source, like a haze, but no real improvement in quality. Maybe just a tiny bit. Without the diopter, the taking lens was focused at 1.3m, and then at 2m with the diopter, which means something changed in the system. On the 35mm the vignetting doesn’t appear so it’s a 50/50 change of guessing it right. I can’t tell the difference. We’re really pushing the Panny here at f/2.8 and full frame.

Now onto the 50D shots. The 17-40mm is a great lens and its entire zoom range is covered by the Panasonic. This adapter has a thing for modern wide angles. It pairs perfectly with the 16-35mm f/2.8L as well, and even at the widest end of the 24-70mm f/2.8L. Anyway, back to the test, for me it’s a guessing game. I can’t tell the difference between having the diopter and not having it on!

So, does the diopter affect low-light performance, edge quality and close focus, or is it just one more element in the system? Let’s try some math and see if the initial idea makes sense. First, we have our taking lens, that focus from let’s say, half a meter, to infinity. Then we have the Panasonic, focus fixed from 4m to infinity. The diopter is a +0.25, which means its infinity sits at 4m. Now if we put the diopter in front of our taking lens, we’re limiting its infinity to 4m. The Panasonic’s focus range STARTS at 4m, so this whole thing should only work well at infinity for the taking lens and a subject sitting 4m away from camera, at least, that’s what the math leads us to.

In a straight answer: does this diopter improve the Panasonic’s image quality if sitting between it and the taking lens? Nope!

Of course there are tolerances which allow rack focusing, f/4 improves sharpness overall, by reducing the circle of confusion, so the blurred areas are not that noticeable. Should you put the diopter in front of the Panny, that could bring you some advantage because the combination of the taking lens and the Panasonic is now subject to the diopter’s effect and your system’s infinity now sits at 4m.

Now, this was a more “scientific” video. Do you guys like this kind of subject? Do you hate math? Please comment below so I can work on more ideas! If you like anamorphics overall, then subscribe because this channel is for you! There are plenty of other videos here on this subject! Last but not least, head on to my blog for the full – FREE! – Anamorphic on a Budget guide. See you next week!

The Things We Play.

Actually, it should be “The Things I Play”. I’m always making adjustments or justifying the title in the first paragraph, it’s getting a little annoying and I’ll try doing it differently. Probably going with “MORE ACCURATE TITLES”, what do you say?

I tried to start writing today’s post super early – like mid-afternoon – and wouldn’t settle for any particular subject so I decided to play something for a while, waiting for ideas to come. Today’s pick was “The Vanishing Of Ethan Carter”. During the game it came to me how different my taste for games is nowadays, especially when compared to what I used to play right before coming to Vancouver. I’m not saying I don’t like the games I used to, I still like shooters – a lot! – but I’ve grown pickier about them. Good visuals aren’t enough to captivate me anymore, and decent story is a must, along with not-absolutely-linear levels/missions.

The last good shooter I played was FarCry 4, last year. It might be THE LAST shooter I played, actually. It does have astonishing visuals and a pretty decent story – very similar to FarCry 3, indeed, but that isn’t a bad thing at all. I think I’ve written about this before, how I used to love games that feel like movies and then realizing that games aren’t movies, hence they can share some similarities, but if the narrative is too narrow and the player’s actions and choices don’t affect it at all, what’s the difference between actually playing it or watching someone playing on youtube?

Based on that, I’ve gotten more interested in games that have a strong visual style – not necessarily in a realistic manner – such as Transistor or Limbo. I’ve played A LOT of indie games this year. More than all the years before summed up together. And I’m enjoying it, because they can be bold in ways traditional blockbuster games can’t. They can have ZERO EXPLANATION of how to play, no sort of hints that’ll make you lazier about making choices or figuring out puzzles, strong visual styles, LOTS of dialogue, many different ways of getting to the end, no end at all, tougher enemies, darker themes, real choices that affect how the main narrative will turn out, and so on.

A few days ago I was playing Life Is Strange. It doesn’t have amazing graphics but it’s so stylized that everything looks kind of dreamy. It doesn’t even have lipsync and has a ton of dialogue. The story itself is so compelling that you wanna keep going, exploring each corner of its world. It’s like a mash up of Donnie Darko, Butterfly Effect, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, vintage photography and teenage drama. I’ll probably get back to talking about this game soon, I can’t get it out of my head. It’s the kind of game that inspires you. I’m dying to see some real-life recreations of its universe, like a short movie, photos or something like that. It’s amazing, really.

I don’t know how to continue, since now I’m looking for Life Is Strange fan material. Enjoy the trailer above, and I’ll be back tomorrow with even less important matters!

Little Talks.

I know it’s past midnight and I don’t care, this post is for yesterday – I mean today! oh, crap, I mean August 21st. It’s one English post every day and I’m trying to stick with that. Yeah, I KNOW YESTERDAY’S WAS IN PORTUGUESE, damn! I don’t make the rules, ok? Actually, I do, but I’m still trying not to break them ALL at once. Let’s get to what matters, shall we?

I finally realized that even though this song has followed me the entire last year – through the good and the bad – I never mentioned it here yet. Well, it all started in the Modeling 1 classes, when François would put random indie tracks for us to listen while we tried to understand which poor life choices had caused us to move that specific vertex out of line and fuck up the entire asset – very likely the Chair. So, among these tracks there was a specific one with some whistling (yeah, indie tracks, I know, lots of them have whistling) but also catchy lyrics. It took me weeks to finally identify bits and pieces of words to find its name. “Little Talks” by Of Monsters and Men.

After that, I became increasingly addicted to it. I’ve had days (plural!) which this was the only music I’d listen to, on repeat. I’d bike to and from school listening and singing and whistling to this tune. I thought the lyrics were beautiful, but that was pretty much it. After some time, I started to create some empathy with what it said, for it somehow related to a couple things in my life. Winter came and so did other songs.

Many months ahead, last week, to be precise, Spotify throws an acoustic cover by Julia Sheer and Jon D. in one of my random playlists. What a fortunate reunion. First because their version sounds great, second, its minimalist approach got me. I started listening to it constantly, whistling and singing out aloud while biking on the seawall.

It’s been more than a few weeks since I started to feel an urge to play with After Effects. The hunt for good audio to make a kinetic type video was going on and last night I realized that this one could be a good call. I was too worried about making something outstanding and amazing when I should just worry about DOING ANYTHING AT ALL. For that I picked the last verses and chopped them in three blocks, each one under 15 seconds. Throwing that into After Effects with a square aspect ratio, I had decent instagram projects that could be finished in no longer than a couple of hours.

It was nice to remove some of the rust over the commands and effects, and remember how to do things working in layers instead of nodes. There are plenty of things I learned this year that I could port into my workflow. Since this was supposed to be simple, and match the song, I didn’t go crazy and kept it all minimalistic, black and white, without excessive movement or lens flares.

Tomorrow I’ll post the last piece. Then I’m restarting the hunt for interesting chunks of recorded voice in order to have a next project.

Ah, how I missed this. "Little Talks" cover by @juliasheer and Jon D.

A video posted by Tito Ferradans (@tferradans) on

Yes, this song still says a lot to me, and I try to always be inspired by it in positive ways.

No Escuro.

O mundo acabou à meia noite de Sábado para domingo.

Ok, isso ficou um pouco sensacionalista. O “Mundo” não “acabou”. As leis da física que dizem respeito à eletricidade é que resolveram tirar férias. Nada mais produzia corrente. Nem turbinas, nem painéis solares, hélices, nem aquelas lanterninhas mecânicas que fazem um barulho desgraçado produziam qualquer ampére, volt, watt, nem um mísero joule.

Pilhas e baterias não perderam suas cargas num passe de mágica, mas era impossível recarregá-las. Geradores viraram pesos de papel exageradamente grandes. A única eletricidade que ainda existia eram os raios, mas ainda vamos chegar nesse ponto.

A gente sempre acha que tá preparado pras coisas, quando na verdade a gente tá “mais ou menos” preparado praquilo que podemos imaginar, prever. Te digo que não tve um cientista prevendo data de validade pras teorias dos titios Faraday, Tesla, Franklin e por aí vai. A “Fé na ciência”, haha, prevejo um grande aumento na religiosidade ao redor do mundo depois dessa pegadinha científica que praticamente sustentava a sociedade.

Aquela primeira frase foi tão exagerada que vale a pena colocar mais um aviso: esse não é um conto megalomaníaco. Não tem guerra, zumbis, aliens, nem esses clichês de fim de mundo – Mad Max, Eu Sou A Lenda, Guerra Mundial Z, Walking Dead, The Last Of Us – ou sociedades totalitárias – 1984, Admirável Mundo Novo, Equilibrium. Se você está ok com essas informações, vamos adiante.

Por motivos de exaustão e tédio, Pedro deitou para dormir às 20h30. Desde que chegara em sua cidade natal, três semanas atrás, não tinha conseguido acordar depois das 4 da manhã nem sequer uma vez. Suas olheiras eram profundas. “Melhor dormir cedo pra tentar descansar um pouco mais”. Ele sabia que iria acordar às quatro e estava determinado a continuar dormindo. Essa decisão lhe custou a primeira chance de entender o que estaria acontecendo.

Dito e feito, como máquina, seus olhos se abriram às 4h15. O quarto estava claro, iluminado pela tela do notebook. “Alguma coisa deve ter desativado o descansador de tela”. Ao fundo os apitos do nobreak da casa perdendo carga preenchia o silêncio. Levantou-se, foi até o computador e abaixou a tela. Aí é que percebeu como o mundo estava escuro lá fora, sem os postes para iluminar as ruas do condomínio. “Falta de luz de madrugada? Essa é nova…”

Depois de sucessivas tentativas fracassadas de desligar o nobreak para fazê-lo calar a boca, resolveu que fechar a porta do quarto teria que bastar. Voltou e deitou-se para continuar seu sono. Se tivesse aproveitado aqueles últimos minutos de bateria tanto do notebook como do nobreak, poderia ter descoberto na internet que não era uma mera falta de luz. Pela manhã ambos os aparelhos já estariam sem carga e sua chance escorregou por pouco. Bom, ele teria que descobrir as coisas no caminho. Que história chata seria, se o herói já soubesse tudo de partida, não é mesmo?

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