New Blackmagic Toy, New Work

Blackmagic Camera

Here’s our latest video production tool. OK, toy. But a very, very nice toy. I mean, tool. We’ve been testing one of the world’s first Blackmagic Pocket Cinema cameras, as we prepare to do a big project on both coasts of the USA. The camera takes some getting used to, but I love the picture it gives, and being used to the RED world, I’m not scared to shoot in full-manual mode with our lenses. To me, that’s normal. And I’m used to the idea of making the color happen in post. What the Blackmagic gives us is an incredibly small, incredibly flexible tool to capture all sorts of gorgeous images.

If you’re looking for an automatic camera that fixes your mistakes- don’t get this cam. But if you’re looking for a tool that’ll let you dial in exactly the look you want, and you’re doing higher-end pro projects, get one. Or two. They’re tiny.

“Unlaced” Official Selection SoCal Independent Film Festival

Director Patrick Ortman's film "Unlaced" is an official selection of the SoCal Independent Film Festival

Woohoo! The SoCal Independent Film Festival has chosen my movie “Unlaced” as an Official Selection of their 2013 film festival. It play s Saturday, September 28 (that is THIS SATURDAY). If you’re down in Orange County, here’s the link for tickets: http://socalfilmfest.com/2013-screening-schedule/

We’re playing in the “Beyond Intense” section. Which, I guess makes sense.

I continue to be honored and thankful that “Unlaced” has gotten such a good reception from film festivals. It’s a tough story, covering a subject that makes most of our society feel very uncomfortable.

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Keeping Busy

We’ve been busy over here. This morning at 1am we delivered the first cuts of 5 new web videos for a major technology company based in Seattle.We shot on Canon C-series (we’re starting to really love the look those cameras give us), through Zeiss primes, and recorded to an external Atomos Ninja2 to give us a thick, massively gradable image to push around in DaVinci Resolve. Other post tools included the usual Adobe suite of products.

Behind-the-scenes photos and the videos themselves to come later, once the new product is launched.

A Fantastic Yelp Review

“Onto the review:

–Patrick is an absolute pro that has won my business forever.

–He knows what he’s doing. While I plan on producing more commercials with Patrick, I will never again need to worry about what camera we’re using, what shots will look like, how the camera should move, or what should be in a set. Patrick’s on it.

–He is involved in every step of the way. Some competitors pass projects through the production process like an assembly line. I don’t like assembly lines for creative processes. They work for repetitive tasks, but not dynamic, creative projects. In an assembly line, every person on the line puts their part in and, if there’s a problem with the finished product, everyone points the finger at someone else. Here, the buck stops with Patrick. There is no assembly line — he is involved in every step of the way to ensure that the final product is perfect.

–Collaborating with Patrick is fun. He has superb ideas himself, but throughout my project, we bounced hundreds of ideas off of each other. Patrick really has the vision to help determine whether an idea or suggestion has potential or not.

–Actors and production staff love working with Patrick. I tend to ask a lot of questions and I ask the crew how they like working for Patrick. Not a single person had anything negative to say; in fact, they raved about Patrick, especially when comparing him to other producers they had worked for.

I am looking forward to my next production with Patrick. Definitely 5 stars.

To see the commercial Patrick produced, check it out on YouTube:
http://www.youtube.com/w…

(Patrick’s Note: I love what I do, and I love working with clients who “get it”. Working together with Kevin was a dream)

Original link for the full review.

Non-Profit Video Production with Oscar-Winning SFX Makeup Artists

We recently created a video for a Los Angeles-based nonprofit called MPAC. MPAC is an organization that’s dedicated to developing leaders with the purpose of enhancing the political and civic participation of American Muslims. They needed a low-budget, yet interesting video- and didn’t want the same old rah-rah corporate video thing.

So they came to me.

We worked through some meetings, and I came up with an idea: what if instead of trumpeting historical events, we took a look into a possible future? A future in which American Muslims participated more in politics, media, and Hollywood (areas in which the American Muslim community has lagged behind other groups).

The problem became, how do you do this and not look cheesy? From the start, I wanted a Hollywood special effects makeup company on the job. I knew I’d do some digital makeup work, but I needed a great base to start with. I made a few calls, and found the gang at Barney Burman’s B2FX (Barney recently won an Oscar for his work on Star Trek) was willing to work with our tiny budgeted, yet interesting storyline.

The video turned out very well, and is currently part of the client’s marketing as they raise funds to support their ongoing programs in Media, Hollywood, and Politics for 20somethings who want to get involved.

Check out the video on our homepage.

Here’s some pictures we took at B2FX during prep:

 

“Unlaced” Official Laurels from Bel Air Film Festival

I love laurels. But nobody should rest upon them. Here’s the official selection laurels from the Bel Air Film Festival for my film “Unlaced”: OFFICIAL-SELECTION-LAUREL

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Why the Blackmagic Cinema Camera May Not Be Right For You

Photo courtesy Blackmagic

Photo by Blackmagic

I love the Blackmagic Cinema Camera. It’s fantastic. Makes gorgeous pictures. But in doing tests for a possible new project, we found one issue: moire. See, the BMCC doesn’t have an optical low pass filter on it. That manifests itself in some nasty moire if you’re shooting, as we were, architectural shots of a city. You know, situations where there’s going to be a lot of tight, fine line details.

Luckily, there’s an add-on OLPF coming out from a third party that’ll alleviate this problem. That, plus the global shutter of the rumored 4K Blackmagic Production Camera, may actually prove itself to be quite viable for projects like the one we’re undertaking.

 

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A Post About Visual Effects

The best visual effects are pretty seamless. You don’t know they’re there, basically. The fact is, on a decent production- even on small ones- it’s quite common for us to do a whole lot in the visual effects arena that the typical viewer won’t notice, unless you saw the original shots. Don’t like the view out the window? Easily changed. Don’t like the sky above? We can change that. Actress has a pimple? Digital makeup. We’ve created whole worlds on greenscreen stages for clients.

Speaking of small productions, here’s a really simple, low-budget VFX shot for an app promo we did. We didn’t have the budget to bring in a Hong Kong taxicab, but the client really wanted one. So we brought in a normal car off the street, and made it look like a Hong Kong taxi, including putting it into a street in Hong Kong, complete with window reflections and more.

 

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Local TV Commercial Directed by Patrick Ortman

Here’s a fun local TV commercial I directed and produced through my video production company, check out more at patrickortman.com:

 

“Unlaced” Plays Yet Another Film Festival

My film “Unlaced” is an official selection of the Bel Air Film Festival in Los Angeles, California. Yay, us!

For more “Unlaced” stuff, please like our Facebook page: www.facebook.com/unlacedthemovie

 

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About PatrickOrtman, Inc.

PatrickOrtman, Inc. is one of the top-rated video production companies in Los Angeles and New York City. We make high-end corporate videos, and commercials for TV and digital for clients that include 11 Fortune 500s.