Manchester Passion – live BBC event on Friday

At 9pm on Good Friday, BBC 3 will broadcast ‘Manchester Passion‘ live from the city centre. It’s a ‘contemporary retelling of the last hours of Jesus life told through the music of Manchester’.

I’m not exactly a big fan of religion (or Manchester pop bands), but you have to admire the BBC for taking a chance with something different like this and that alone makes it worth supporting. It’s being made by the same people as FlashMob the Opera — which I enjoyed.

Hopefully I’ll be there shooting some video to put up here next weekend.

More info on the Manchester City Council website.

 
 
 
 

A special video for the start of Videoblogging Week

Our contribution pokes fun at the fact that no one seems to be making any money from videoblogging, despite some having hundreds of thousands of viewers.

Story links:
Rocketboom

Last Thursday evening we were standing in an underpass next to the motorway, during a thunderstorm, filming for this. That was just the start… We had a load of fun and there are some very amusing out-takes.

EDITING
The editing took a l-o-n-g time. Even though I’m quite organised, it’s still not enough. I ended up rendering the same effects several times as I made a couple of different versions (and needlessly so, as the effects were unchanged). It can take hours to produce a minute of special effects. So, I need to rethink my workflow: work on the effects separately and then include those prerendered versions on the main timeline in Vegas Video.

HUFFYUV CODEC
I use the free HuffyUV video codec to render archive versions of finished productions to store on disc. The video is uncompressed but HuffyUV gives a smaller file size.

That way I avoid DV compression artifacts on graphics and effects. So, I could also use HuffyUV to render the effects and then drop them into the timeline. Finally, I make DV, MPG2 and online versions from the HuffyUV master.There’s more information about the various tools I use on my favourite software page.

Though overall I’m really delighted with the Sony camcorder, its performance in low-light isn’t too hot. We used my old Canon Hi8 for the shots walking towards the subway and the colour balance and brightness are much better than from the Sony under the same conditions.

We shot a lot of different stuff last week. I have three other things ‘in the can’ to edit, not including the out-takes.

UPDATE (September 2012): a slightly re-edited version of this video was put back online.

 

Singin’ In A Puddle

In this video Peter tries to cheer me up as I wait for an engineer to come and fix my central heating, which is dribbling hot water onto the walkway…

After we had the genuine spur-of-the-moment shots of him dancing, we wondered what else could we add…

My heating's broken and Peter tries to cheer me up as I wait for an engineer

I like it when we brainstorm and videos develop in this way. There’s a funny behind-the-scenes out-take too, which I’ll put up in the next few days.

TRIVIA

‘Jollywood’ was the nickname of Mancunian Films, which had its studios on Dickinson Road in Rusholme in the 1940’s.

 

Rhode Island Coffee, Bolton

Update: 3 April 2009

The original post had been up for three years and I’ve decided to take it down. No one asked me to do that.

Two of us didn’t have a very good experience at the coffee shop. When I got home I was furious and wrote about it here. But it’s a long time ago and eventually the staff posted some apologetic comments under the article, which I appreciate.

At the time of writing this update, the article is at number three on Google for a search on the name of the company. In fact both of us who were in the cafe that day run websites for a living and are clued up about search engines and we had met there to discuss business.

So in that sense the shop had a lucky escape as only one of us wrote about our experience online!

There’s an obvious moral to the story for all businesses: you don’t know which of your customers might be a blogger and search engine expert, so be nice to all of them…