Diary Archive - 2005


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20th December 2005

A rough version of the ad has arrived in. It has some voiceover and no music. This is excellent for timing. We have rewritten the script and will re-record the voiceovers tomorrow and re-edit. Click on the image below to view the clip in a new window.


15th December 2005

John from Screenscene has sent on a clip with wireframe background. Click on the image below to view the clip in a new window.


14th December 2005

I have uploaded notes and quotes from two more books in the Research section - under Research Notes. The books are 'Narrative as Virtual Reality' by Marie-Laure Ryan and 'In the Blink of an Eye' by Walter Murch.

I am expecting some footage of the Concern ad today from Screenscene (including CGI backdrops). Need to record the voiceovers with Esther and Fionn and finalise the screen text.

An excellent script for the split-screen film has been written by NMTC Film Production student Christelle Stander. This project will be shot in Lisbon and Dublin. The script will be available soon on the site. Casting will begin early 2006.


6th December 2005

I have uploaded a new photo essay titled 'Lisbon' in the photography section. You can view the photos here.




5th December 2005

I shot the first Concern ad today. John from Screenscene fixed markers onto the green screen to enable camera tracking. The first batch of shots did not work with either of the two actors. I was tilting the camera during the track to reduce head room in the shot. However, this just led to focus and camera movement problems. For the second batch of shots we set the camera at the childrens' eye level, left it on autofocus and simply tracked in and out. The shots last about 15 secs each.


2nd December 2005

This site won the Golden Spiders Irish Internet Awards 2005 Best Personal Website / Blog Award. Special thanks to Dave Walker (site designer) and all the staff at NMTC.


30th November 2005

I have uploaded an example of a linear film re-edited as a 'spatial montage'. The narrative plays out on multiple screens. The screens fade in and out, zoom in and out so that that presentation style becomes a component of the narrative itself. It's in the Research section of the site and you can view it by clicking here and selecting 'spatial montage test'.


29th November 2005

Work has started on the green screen section of the Concern ads. We shot test clips using the Panasonic AGDVX100 on '25P' mode and 'Cine' mode. The 25P mode is progressive scan and should give an image that is closest to film. However, the aim of the test is to find the most suitable mode to use for removing the green screen and replacing it with a new background image. In the actual ads the camera will be (ad 1) tracking forward and backwards and (ad 2) tracking right to left. The computer generated backgrounds will need to move relative to the live action forgrounds in order to maintain perspective. John O'Connell at ScreenScene has produced a test composite image from the DV footage.


'Cine' mode

'Progressive scan' mode
Composite image (test)

25th November 2005

This site has been shortlisted for Best Personal Website / Blog Award in the 2005 Golden Spider Awards. Details available here.


20th November 2005

New test animatic published in the Research section.'The Last Hurrah' Embedded Narratives (EN) 1 and 3 are presented spatially with the Primary Narrative (PN) Scene 2. View it in quicktime here by selecting 'Play Animatics' and then 'PN and ENs together'. Edited by Jason Higgins.

It is clear from this animatic that there will be problems with dialogue overlap when presenting different scenes in spatial montage. The only real solution (apart from slowing down and speeding up clips to suit) is to block each scene with the actors so that when the scenes run together the dialogue from each clip does not conflict. This will either restrict actors or perhaps give them greater freedom to develop their characters beyond dialogical exposition.


25th October 2005

Published photo gallery 'Sarah [Crew]' in the Photography section. These are cast and crew shots taken from the film 'Sarah'.


20th October 2005

Published 2 new photo galleries in the Photography section. They are Americana and Alcatraz. Also working on three short commercials for Concern. These ads will focus on raising awareness of the Millenium Development Goals.


16th September 2005

Teaching on ITAP (Interactive Teleivsion Authoring and Production) course in Lusofona University, Lisbon, Portugal.


The students on the course are preparing 2 interactive programmes for distribution over iTV and mobile networks.

While I am here we are shooting test footage on HD for a NMTC/Lusofona film production proposal. The idea is to shoot a film about one night in Lisbon and Portugal. The film will follow a couple, seperated geographically, but presented to the audience in spatial tandem (see below). The Irish girl is in Portugal and the Portugese man is in Dublin. They phone each other on their mobiles during the evening and get increasingly frustrated by what they each perceive as their partners' potential to be unfaithful. Their jealous comments fuels an argument between them which makes the 'risk' all the greater. I will be bringing the test footage back on DVD in MPEG 2 format to test on our edit suite in Dublin. The production will require a crew in each country. The NMTC Learning Management System will be used as an online production tool to coordinate activities.

Split Screen Film


10th September 2005

Published TLH animatics online. The Primary Narrative and 12 Embedded Narratives are are now available as Quicktime movies on the Research section of the site. Will start work this week editing the PN and EN scenes into a spatial and temporal montage.


September 2005

Completed siginificant part of this web site. 10 galleries and most PhD research/production materials now online. 'At Debt's Door' materials also published, including new poster for this film. 'The Last Hurrah'' interactive film script uploaded, includes one 'primary narrative' and 12 'embedded narratives.' Currently working on edit of the animatics. This is proving to be time consuming as there are up to 3 'narratives' or 'scenes' on screen at the same time and they have to be edited so that they do not overlap and confuse the audience. This also creates an opportunty for the 'overlap' to create a 'rich' and engaging narrative.


August 2005

Jason Higgins has edited the animatic. He has used some stock sound effects. Dialogue was recorded at NMTC by Diarmuid Slattery. Recording artists are Esther Doorly, David Harrington, Fionn Doorly-McErlean, Diarmuid Doorly, Niamh Murray and Dan Rogers. The edited animatics will be imported into Macromedia Director in order to build the interactive version of the animatic film.


July 2005

Completed work of previous film 'At Debt's Door' while on holiday in France. Good practice using Final Cut Pro which 'The Last Hurrah' will be edited with. Read Walter Murch's book on editing 'Cold Mountain'. An inspiring book to read while editing a film.Re-recorded much of Esther's dialogue in the café (the accent was wrong and was clashing with previous dialogue delivery) and added 2 voiceover lines at the beginning and end to clear up some plot points. Added background
sounds for café and Margaret's house (all recorded in Monaco!!). Generally tightened up the whole film to make it shorter.The film has been uploaded to nmtc.ie and also to this site. This site has been designed and coded by Dave Walker. It will be used to showcase my research, film and photographic work. Jason Higgins developed an interactive DVD for 'At Debt's Door' containing productions stills, storyboards, cast and crew images and a deleted scene.


June 2005

Peter Donnelly has delivered full storyboards for the PN and ENs. Some changes were made to show Sarah's character as being less of a victim and more in control of her destiny. We have tried to build into her character development the fact that while her life is a bit of a mess, she is still driven by money and material things. Peter has recommended that the storyboards be made into an animatic of the film. This will be used to time the scenes and to test how scenes will playon screen at the same time. Issues such as dynamic control of audio levels will have to be considered. We will have to record all dialogue and cut the storyboard into a kind of animated version of the film (includes PN and EN in spatial montage).


May 2005

I outlined each scene. I had to use music note paper to explain how the scenes run in tandem with each other (an idea I got from Mike Figgis's 'Timecode'). Esther Doorly completed the script. It contains 1 PN and 13 ENs. The dialogue is good but needs to be slowed down a bit. Snappy dialogue will reduce the impetus to 'interact' with the narrative. I think the film may have to shot a bit like a Bela Tarr or Tarkovsky film. It needs to be meditative so that the audience has time to consider interacting and viewing alterative perspectives on the story.


May 2005

'The Last Hurrah' is an interactive film that will be shot on DV, edited in Final Cut Pro and built in Macromedia Director. The film will contain a 20min 'primary narrative' (PN) that will run continuously in the bottom right hand corner of the screen. 'Embedded narratives' (EN) will be offered to the audience in spatial montage format around the screen. The ENs will play only if clicked and will give the audience alternative perspectives on the story and characters. The ENs will not alter the storyline. The only changes to audience viewing will be the availability of alternative perspectives.