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Art of the Edit
Ten Ways to Avoid Editor's Block

Ten Ways to Avoid Editor's Block

Just admit it. You're afraid of the empty timeline. Maybe you’re one of the lucky few who can dive right into cutting a new project. Then there are the other 99% of us for whom there’s nothing worse than that moment after you’re prepping, and you have to face it: time to start cutting something. As an editor for high-profile shows including Empire and Burn Notice, Zack Arnold has been there. Here Zack, shares 10 proven tips from his own experience for not just beating editor's block, but completely avoiding it.

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
Zack Arnold
Indie Film & Documentary
Tuskegee Airmen 75th Anniversary: A Documentary Revisited

Tuskegee Airmen 75th Anniversary: A Documentary Revisited

When Denton Adkinson and Bryan Williams told us the story of their documentary, In Their Own Words: The Tuskegee Airmen, back in 2011, we were amazed. It was one of the most popular stories we published that year, not just because of the inspiring subject matter, but for the remarkable way it came together as a project, and in post. In the years since then, the film has taken on a life of its own, including national DVD distribution, becoming part of high school curricula, NFL celebrations, museum presentations, and more. Now in 2016, to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Tuskegee Airmen, their film will be presented as a live event on over 200 screens across the US. To get there, though, Denton and Bryan had to update their SD original for the big screen, add a surround mix, and prep it for digital distribution. This is a story of faith, fortitude, upres, ProRes, and the power of positive phone calls that you won't want to miss.

Feature
Denton Adkinson
Indie Film & Documentary
Louder Than Words: 7 Years, 14 Cameras, 1 Surprising Story

Louder Than Words: 7 Years, 14 Cameras, 1 Surprising Story

It took 7 years, and 14 cameras with 3 TB of files for cinematographer and editor Saj Adibs to tell the surprising story in his documentary Louder Than Words. The film's first interview was conducted in American Sign Language, and once he saw the transcript, Saj realized he was going to tell a different story than the one he had planned. This is a story about stories, as well as the challenge of managing lots and lots of cameras.

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
Saj Adibs
Indie Film & Documentary
Advantageous: Jennifer Phang on Making Way to Sundance

Advantageous: Jennifer Phang on Making Way to Sundance

Writer/Director Jennifer Phang's Sundance Jury Award-winning 'Advantageous' provides commentary on class and society that reflects her own experiences in the world through a science fiction story. The collaborative process took Phang from writing to post production in Adobe Premiere, where features like Dynamic Link became essential to finishing the film.

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
Kylee Peña
Indie Film & Documentary
Indie Tips for 4K With Little or No Budget

Indie Tips for 4K With Little or No Budget

4K isn't just part of some theoretical future. 4K production is here now, and there are some very affordable approaches for low- and no-budget indie filmmakers. Veteran producer and professional limit-pusher Al Caudullo put together a piece on the heritage of Angkor, Cambodia, and for us, has put together the list of the tools he actually used for this amazing project that are quite likely well within your reach. Even the photos that accompany this story have a lot to offer!

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
Al Caudullo
Indie Film & Documentary
Thinking Differently to Create Successful Indie Distribution

Thinking Differently to Create Successful Indie Distribution

With the accessibility offered by ever more affordable tools, it has never been easier to make an Indie feature. This essay by President and Co-founder of the Digital Cinema Society, James Mathers, discusses the distribution of an indie feature and how the filmmakers brought "Why We Ride" to life.

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
James Mathers
Indie Film & Documentary
Thriller in the Heartland: Indie Filmmaker Zack Parker

Thriller in the Heartland: Indie Filmmaker Zack Parker

While some would call family life in the midwest a challenge to making movies, writer/director Zack Parker has made deliberate choices in his career and has some great advice for aspiring filmmakers as his fourth feature, "Proxy", hits Netflix and DVD.

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
Kylee Peña
Indie Film & Documentary
Shot Lister App teams up with FilmAid International in Sudan

Shot Lister App teams up with FilmAid International in Sudan

Shot Lister, the successful shotlisting and scheduling app, is teaming up with FilmAid International to raise funds for their South Sudan Refugee Emergency Response Team. To encourage filmmakers to support FilmAid, Shot Lister is dropping the price of their app from $13.99 to $1.99 for 10 days from September 8 - 18th with every cent raised going to FilmAid.

Editorial, Feature
Zach Lipovsky
Indie Film & Documentary
Expert Tips for Crowdfunding Success

Expert Tips for Crowdfunding Success

Film projects are the most unsuccessfully funded of any Kickstarter category -- but producer and crowdfunding consultant Diana Ward Roark has worked on a number of campaigns for independent films that have exceeded their goals. She has the real-world advice you'll need to succeed, including where you can find backers, and how to engage them.

Editorial, Feature
Diana Ward Roark
Indie Film & Documentary
Ten Tips to Indie Filmmaking

Ten Tips to Indie Filmmaking

We love talking about tools and technologies, but there's a lot more to filmmaking than cameras and computers. Writer/director/producer Rick Castañeda has made over 30 short films, and just wrapped his first feature. Here, he offers hard-won insights into the practical details of making an independent film.

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
Rick Castañeda
Indie Film & Documentary
With Paul Mazursky, It's All Crap!

With Paul Mazursky, It's All Crap!

When Paul Mazursky decided to create a series of intimate conversations with Mel Brooks, Leonard Nimoy and his many other industry friends, Cinematographer Bill Megalos came on board to produce. In this article, Bill talks about the choices he made with regard to camera, lighting and direction to make compelling interviews with a limited budget.

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
Bill Megalos
Cinematography
Future of Cinematography: Insights From the Rental Houses

Future of Cinematography: Insights From the Rental Houses

Rental houses, which have existed since the 1920s, have all experienced the evolution from film to video to data. Today, the trends that rental houses experience -- from technology to business practices -- are a lens for understanding what's going on in the bigger ecosystem of the film/TV industry. In Part 2, we look at the ways that rental houses have adapted to thrive in a new digital age.

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
Debra Kaufman
Blackmagic Design
Using a Little Blackmagic to Revisit a Documentary

Using a Little Blackmagic to Revisit a Documentary

Pixie Dust flows from Blackmagic Design's Teranex 2D Processor to integrate and upconvert newly discovered vintage SD footage, photographic stills and new interviews into a re-edited and remastered 2001 documentary memorializing the 1963 NCAA "Game of Change" between Mississippi State University and Loyola. Over 60% of the new DVD/Blu-ray includes new footage or pictures, and the challenge was to make the old SD footage look as good as possible in an HD project.

Review, Editorial, Feature
Robbie Coblentz
Cinematography
Iraqi Filmmaking Workshop: Day One London Heathrow

Iraqi Filmmaking Workshop: Day One London Heathrow

In May 2013, award-winning cinematographer Bill Megalos traveled to Iraq to train young Iraqi filmmakers on behalf of a program organized by the Humpty Dumpty Institute. In this first trip, Bill blogs about guiding these filmmakers as they make short dramatic films this year. The focus in May was on their scripts, on story and character development, on working with actors, as well as giving them an overall background in production.

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
Bill Megalos
Indie Film & Documentary
Cinematographer's Journey: Rightfooted in Ethiopia - Goodbye

Cinematographer's Journey: Rightfooted in Ethiopia - Goodbye

Saying Goodbye, April 7th & 9th: Bill Megalos, cinematographer and documentarian, is in Ethiopia with first-time documentary feature director Nick Spark on a mission to "make a film that makes a difference." Raising money on Indiegogo, they're following Jessica Cox, a 29-year old woman without arms who is a black belt in Tae Kwon Do and is licensed to fly planes solo (among her many accomplishments). She is an advocate for the disabled and often spends time in countries where the handicapped are stigmatized. Megalos is keeping a shooting diary for Creative COW readers of their experiences in Ethiopia.

Feature, People / Interview
Bill Megalos
Indie Film & Documentary
Cinematographer's Journey: Rightfooted in Ethiopia April 6th

Cinematographer's Journey: Rightfooted in Ethiopia April 6th

April 6th: Bill Megalos, cinematographer and documentarian, is in Ethiopia with first-time documentary feature director Nick Spark on a mission to "make a film that makes a difference." Raising money on Indiegogo, they're following Jessica Cox, a 29-year old woman without arms who is a black belt in Tae Kwon Do and is licensed to fly planes solo (among her many accomplishments). She is an advocate for the disabled and often spends time in countries where the handicapped are stigmatized. Megalos is keeping a shooting diary for Creative COW readers of their experiences in Ethiopia.

Feature, People / Interview
Bill Megalos
Indie Film & Documentary
Cinematographer's Journey: Rightfooted in Ethiopia April 5th

Cinematographer's Journey: Rightfooted in Ethiopia April 5th

April 5th: Bill Megalos, cinematographer and documentarian, is in Ethiopia with first-time documentary feature director Nick Spark on a mission to "make a film that makes a difference." Raising money on Indiegogo, they're following Jessica Cox, a 29-year old woman without arms who is a black belt in Tae Kwon Do and is licensed to fly planes solo (among her many accomplishments). She is an advocate for the disabled and often spends time in countries where the handicapped are stigmatized. Megalos is keeping a shooting diary for Creative COW readers of their experiences in Ethiopia.

Feature, People / Interview
Bill Megalos
Indie Film & Documentary
Cinematographer's Journey: Rightfooted in Ethiopia April 4th

Cinematographer's Journey: Rightfooted in Ethiopia April 4th

April 4th: Bill Megalos, cinematographer and documentarian, is in Ethiopia with first-time documentary feature director Nick Spark on a mission to "make a film that makes a difference." Raising money on Indiegogo, they're following Jessica Cox, a 29-year old woman without arms who is a black belt in Tae Kwon Do and is licensed to fly planes solo (among her many accomplishments). She is an advocate for the disabled and often spends time in countries where the handicapped are stigmatized. Megalos is keeping a shooting diary for Creative COW readers of their experiences in Ethiopia.

Feature, People / Interview
Bill Megalos
Indie Film & Documentary
Save This Script Episode 4

Save This Script Episode 4

In each installment of this series, a writer/producer team is confronted with a creative challenge. The scenario, written in screenplay format, revolves around a typical client management situation that can lead to a problem script. The problem script itself can then be read, followed by some back-and-forth as the creative team rises to the challenge. EPISODE 4 ENDS WITH A TWIST, AND YOU can get involved!

Editorial, Feature
John Morley and Mark Suszko
Indie Film & Documentary
Mondays at Racine Documents Beauty Salon for Cancer Fighters

Mondays at Racine Documents Beauty Salon for Cancer Fighters

Filmmaker Cynthia Wade - who previously won an Academy Award for Documentary Short Subject for Freeheld - has recently finished Mondays at Racine, a moving piece about two sisters who open up their beauty salon every Monday to cater to breast cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. Focusing on two characters, the film delves deeply into the emotional lives of the women and how the salon, Racine, serves as a place of nurturing and companionship.

Feature, People / Interview
Debra Kaufman
Indie Film & Documentary
Save This Script Episode 3

Save This Script Episode 3

In this episode, the Script Doctors' "patient" is a :30 TV spot intended to raise funds for an academic institution. The diagnosis is obesity, caused by passive language and lack of focus. So John and Mark trim the fat to yield a lean and healthy sales message, by applying techniques and idea-starters from John's book, Scriptwriting for High-Impact Videos.

Feature
John Morley and Mark Suszko
Indie Film & Documentary
Film Festival Success

Film Festival Success

In this article from The Creative COW Magazine, J.C. Bouvier gives five tips for getting your film into a film festival.

Feature, People / Interview
J.C. Bouvier
Indie Film & Documentary
Behind the Lens: Navajo Teens Struggle Up Heartbreak Hill

Behind the Lens: Navajo Teens Struggle Up Heartbreak Hill

Two young track stars at a rural New Mexico high school are torn between the lure of brighter futures and the ties that bind them to home. Home for these teens, however, is a small town on a Navajo reservation, and in leaving, they must separate from family, tradition, and the land that has been theirs for generations. Erica Scharf's Up Heartbreak Hill is a moving look at a new generation of Americans struggling to be both Native and modern. We take you Behind the Lens.

Feature
Erica Scharf
Indie Film & Documentary
Save This Script Episode 2

Save This Script Episode 2

Great videos start with great scripts. What you're going to present to your audience should speak to them in a language they can connect with. Writing a PSA to get kids up and moving? Don't say, "Calisthenics are fun!" Watch John and Mark transform this script into one that a kid would actually listen to - and take notes for your own script-writing. Join John Morley and Mark Suszko in this second episode as they Save This Script!

Feature
John Morley and Mark Suszko
Indie Film & Documentary
StorageDNA Goes Down Under with DEEPSEA CHALLENGE

StorageDNA Goes Down Under with DEEPSEA CHALLENGE

When director James Cameron took a solo dive to the deepest spot on earth, he turned to Sydney-based Digital Pictures to deliver a range of post production services. In turn, Digital Pictures relied on StorageDNA to help them create a cost-effective LTO-based conform system that handled massive amounts of 4K data.

Feature
Debra Kaufman
Series


Authors

Saj Adibs (1)
Denton Adkinson (1)
Niyi Akinmolayan (1)
Zack Arnold (1)
Barbara Sumner Burstyn and Thomas Burstyn (1)
Gary Belcher (1)
Jason Bergh (1)
Doug Blush (1)
J.C. Bouvier (1)
Tamera Brooks (1)
Rick Castañeda (1)
Al Caudullo (1)
Robbie Coblentz (1)
Mike Cohen (1)
Steven Galvano (1)
Jiggy Gaton (1)
Joaquin Gil (1)
Rob Gregory-Browne (3)
Noah Kadner (1)
Debra Kaufman (9)
James Kelty (1)
Bryan Kinnaird (1)
Mike Lehman (1)
Ron Lindeboom (1)
Zach Lipovsky (1)
Mark Maness (1)
James Mathers (1)
Bill Megalos (6)
James Moll (1)
John Morley and Mark Suszko (3)
Robert Olague (1)
Des Owen (1)
Harry Pallenberg (1)
Laurie Pepper (1)
Diana Ward Roark (1)
Markus Rothkranz (1)
Douglas Spotted Eagle (1)
Mike Sullivan (2)
John Morley and Mark Suszko (1)
Kylee Peña (2)


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