Saturday, October 27, 2012

Back in the old days, us aspiring filmmakers didn't do a lot of CG, as in any.  We shot stuff that was made of real stuff that we had to make.  We saved up our $2 allowance and bought -- who am I kidding, I couldn't afford anything on that.

We didn't make avi's or mov's or any of that stuff.  We didn't record on digital video, or any of that stuff, because we didn't have computers.

For us amateurs, there was 16 mm and super 8 mm, film, not super 8 video, that came along later.
For us poor amateurs, there was just super 8.  There was also a regular 8 mm film, but that was just slightly ahead of my time.  The 'advantages' of super 8, was that it came in a cartridge that protected the film from accidental exposure to light.  The reality of it for us fx goons, was that you couldn't take the film out and rewind it and do multiple exposures.

My old camera in those days did have a few things going for it ,though, that made it kinda cool.  It could shoot 1 frame at a time, which was great for stop motion.  And it could do an adequate slow motion, which was 30 frames per second, instead of the regular 18 frames per second.  So basically, I was one of those kids who built model kits and put firecrackers in them and blew them up, but all for a good reason of course, for my art.

Special fx film-making in those days covered a lot of disciplines:  model making, airbrushing, painting, sculpting, casting, and all that.  The one place I always got stuck was on anything mechanical.  Basically, I could build a model and a miniature set, but I'd always get stuck photographing things, because I couldn't work out the mechanics of moving the cameras and models around.  Apparently, mechanics is 10% skill and 90% money.  It costs to build stuff out of stuff.

So basically, these days the tables have turned.  Almost everything is done on a computer.  It doesn't cost anything to hit that 'make it move' button.  What it does cost, is time, and energy, and learning, and yeah, sometimes you got to buy the software, but think of what the developer had to go through to start with nothing and make that software.  That's us guys.  The guys who couldn't quite get their little films done.  So we spent our adult lives building the tools that others could use.

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