Behind the scenes of “Scotlands DNA Secrets”

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Me & Lorraine

Paul & John8.15am Driving through Glasgow heading for Scottish Television, the day started with a good cloud base, this was handy as we were shooting out of a window overlooking some of the city’s landmarks.

8.50am We are now setting up each to his own discipline, Paul the Director gives John (Cameraman) some last minute ideas about how he wants the inserts to look. John has been a freelance cameraman for a few years now and used to work as a lighting cameraman for Scottish Television before being given the golden handshake by the company. This is a move that has enhanced his career and taken him all over the world. Today he is using his trusted DigiBeta camcorder.

Our shoot today brought many disciplines together, sound (George), lighting spark (Willie), Autocue (Philip), make up artist (did not catch the ladys name) and Lorraine Kelly (Presenter).

10am Lorraine arrives and is taken to make up, we are almost ready to roll, the track, which is a Wally Dolly is set up, HMI lighting is in place and the director Paul discusses some tracking moves with cameraman John.

radio mic10.30am Lorraine gets her radio mic “pulled through” which causes some laughter, George uses an “Audio” radio mic but tells me that it will become redundant next year. If you have a UHF Wireless Microphone licence or have had frequencies licensed in channel 69 in the past two years you will already have received a letter from Ofcom regarding the proposed changes for PMSE. The letter informs licensees of Ofcom’s proposal to include channel 69 within the Digital Dividend which will be auctioned for new uses in 2010.  It also details their proposal to replace 69 with channel 38 by the end of 2012. Ch 69 is to be bought over and run by a mobile phone company.

So if you have a radio mic system you could find it is useless at some point late summer 2010.

DigiBeta V211am The first piece to camera (PTC) is in the can and we all move to a new position, this goes on for the rest of the day till we film the last PTC is finished.

Lorraine was great to work with she is as friendly and bubbly as you see on GMTV, the programme we were working on goes out in August 2009 on Scottish Television called Scotlands DNA Secrets which is made by SMG Productions, part of STV, DNA Stories sets out to help people find answers to unresolved family issues. If selected, STV will come to film you in the comfort of your own home where the DNA sample will also be taken. When the test is complete, Lorraine will where possible bring family members together, in private, to reveal what could be life-changing results.

Lorraine last shot
Lorraine says: “DNA testing is an intriguing subject and I’m very excited about filming another series of DNA Stories. I have no doubt the second series will be as successful as the first.“

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

The New iPhone 3Gs

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Apple iPhone 3Gs By Philip Johnston
View in HD Download Version Visit Philip Johnston’s ExposureRoom Videos Page

The new iPhone 3G S, priced beginning at $199, is the first Apple model to offer video recording, editing and the one-button ability to transfer the finished product to YouTube or another Web site for viewing. Other smart phones have offered this feature set before, but the iPhone is far more significant because it is the market leader with more than 6 million phones already in the field.

The implications are huge for a mass-market smart phone with a built-in three-megapixel camera that shoots both still and 30 frame-per-second VGA video. Coupling that recording/editing capability with automatic transfer to YouTube and other Web sites makes the iPhone a potentially empowering tool for further democratizing newsgathering.

The iPhone’s new autofocus camera adjusts focus, exposure, color and contrast and includes an automatic macro focus for close-up shots. A new “tap to focus” feature allows the user to touch the display to select an object or area of interest, and the camera automatically readjusts focus and exposure.

Advocates of citizen journalism applauded the new iPhone. Rachel Sterne, founder and chief executive of the citizen journalism site, said the new device would make it easier for average people to gather and distribute video footage. Many are still learning to independently document news, and the simplicity of the new iPhone will help train laymen to be reporters, she said.

YouTube added a “citizen news” channel to its Web site last year, but so far it has not had active use. There is hope the new iPhone with video recording will change that.

Even before the new 3G S model went on sale last week, the iPhone had distinguished itself among newsgatherers. Last Christmas, the Knight Digital Media Center said the iPhone was closer than other device to being the “Holy Grail” for digital journalists.

“A single handheld unit that surfs the entire Web, including audio and video, that allows you to update Web sites, to shoot photos and send them to the Web, to record and post audio, that supports e-mail and includes a phone, and that offers a GPS with maps and directions to help you find your way to wherever your reporting takes you,” the site wrote about the iPhone 3G model.

When video recording is complete, the new iPhone 3G S features simple editing. Using a finger to drag video while viewing a clip, the user can trim the “in” and “out” points of the video — essentially deleting unwanted footage.

In addition to the “Send to YouTube” tab, the camera allows users to send video or still images to their MobileMe account, an optional Apple Web service, via MMS (when exclusive U.S. carrier AT&T activates this feature at the end of the summer) or as an attachment to e-mail.  Users must set-up accounts with YouTube and MobileMe in advance of sending video or still content.

When the iPhone syncs with a Mac or PC, the video or still images are automatically moved from the phone to the iTunes software on the larger computer. There they can be edited with either typical video post-production software like Final Cut Pro or iMovie, or photo editing software such as iPhoto, Lightroom or Photoshop.

In addition to the video capability, the iPhone 3G S boosts processor speed — being on average twice as fast as the previous iPhone 3G. Web pages can be rendered quicker, applications launched faster, and battery life is much longer. The device takes advantage of the OpenGL ES 2.0 standard for improved 3D graphics. It also supports 7.2Mb/s HSDPA for faster networking speeds.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Folding a Chroma Key background

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Folding a ChromaPop By Philip Johnston
View in HD Download 384p Version Visit Philip Johnston’s ExposureRoom Videos Page

Once a background gets beyond a certain size it becomes a pig to fold it back down…now the Juice Boys up at Digital Juice have made a very cool demonstration video on how to fold such “pigs”.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Panasonic SDHC class 10 PRICES

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Panasonic’s new Gold series Class 10 cards inherit the attributes of the current Panasonic Class 6 line with enhanced speed performance of up to 22MB/s. With Class 10, you’ll also get the ability to write large amounts of data continuously until the card is full without missing any shots or writing stops.

The rating promises a minimum of 10MB per second and is better tailored to high-end compact cameras, entry digital SLRs or HD camcorders where baseline speed is essential: a stills camera with 3MB shots can capture 3 frames per second without the SDHC card becoming the bottleneck. It also peaks at 22MB per second and is about 40 percent faster than a Class 4 (4MB per second) card in sustained transfers of large files.

The new speed specification is designed to meet the requirement for higher resolution consecutive shooting and large-sized HD video shooting but they can also be used in your netbook. Just about every netbook is now capable of handling SDHC cards allowing you to expand the netbook’s hard drive capabilities above and beyond 32GB.

Panasonic are leading the way with their Class 10 SDHC cards, dont be left in the dark, enjoy the speed and consecutive shooting capabilities today!


– Class 10 Rating
– 10MBPS Baseline Speed
– Speed Peaks at 22MBPS
– Write large amounts of data continuously, without missing any shots or writing any stops.
– Designed for DSLR’s, HD Large Imaging Cameras and Netbooks
– 40% faster than Class 4

32GB = £200    16GB = £70    8GB = £35    4GB = £18

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Larry’s Tip of the Day

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For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

iPhone version 3 software is a must

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Iphone findMobileMe helps you find your lost iPhone.

Sometimes it’s your keys. Other times it’s your glasses. Misplacing things happens all the time. Now, if you misplace your iPhone, Find My iPhone can help you find it.

Locate your iPhone on a map.

Network Utility icon

Now, if you lose your iPhone, MobileMe can help you find it. MobileMe includes a new feature called Find My iPhone. Just enable Find My iPhone in MobileMe settings on your phone.* Then you can log in to from any computer to access Find My iPhone and display your phone’s approximate location on a map.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Apple V3 FREE iPhone software today

Categories: Miscellaneous 1 Comment



For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Life’s not always a bed of roses…Support if you can please

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This is the film clip from the upcoming and in production documentary ‘Windows and Corridors’.
Kiaren Grae is awaiting an urgent liver transplant that could happen any day. He is very ill…..and very brave. It was at his urging that I decided to do this documentary. I am his Dad. He wants to raise the awareness of everyone to the idea of organ donor registration. I think this music clip could do the job very well. Please pass it on to everyone you can and help Kiaren achieve his idea. If you are interested in the subject then we hope you will talk with your families about it.

I just know I love this young man and his equally extraordinary brother Daniel who wrote and sang this incredible song. Thanks to you too Travis [guitar] and of course the ever present and fantabulous Mr Donny Gall on drums. The band is called ‘Mondays Not Home’ [check myspace]. What a fantastic recording session….both my sons together for the VERY FIRST TIME in their lives. Extraordinary energy.
The electric rhythm and lead guitars are by my great friend Mike Foster of Avalanche [USA] The bass guitar is played by a great lady player called Stephanie Krowka

All camera work is by me using the JVC GZ-HD7 using all the manual functions. The lighting is [fluorescent] ambient light in all the hospital footage. Some indoor shots are lit with my small light kit, others are natural window light.I edited on Sony Vegas Pro 8 with the Sony colour correction plug-in. I wish I could afford Magic Bullet Looks as I think it would have helped the footage considerably. Maybe I will rework the correction later on. Viewer thoughts on this clip would be most helpful as I am a real beginner in both the editing role and camera operation.
Please leave your thoughts, it is an important thing for Kiaren to be able to read your letters of support.

David Pendragon, Australia
David is just like me and you a dad and a film maker, we all share the same passion but in David’s case he has a very ill son who needs an urgent liver transplant. My involvement is to highlight his plight and hope someone sees his well produced documentary and can help in some way. As a father of a child with type 1 diabetes I have some idea what he is going through.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Sony mobile storage unit for SxS media

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The Sony Mobile Storage Unit is a portable, self-contained, high-speed, mass storage device that allows virtually unlimited back-up of SxS PRO Memory Card content.

  • One-Touch Copy and Verification of SxS PRO™ Memory Cards
  • Fast Transfer of Video Content (Estimated up to 10X Real Time)
  • Removable 240GB Hard Drive Cartridges (PXU-HC240)
  • Uses the same BPU30 Battery as XDCAM EX camcorders
  • Estimated Availability: Fall 2009

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Review of the JVC GY-HM700

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Review of the JVC GY-HM700 By Philip Johnston
View in HD  Download 360p Version  Visit Philip Johnston’s ExposureRoom Videos Page

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

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