Neil Armstrong's Space Suit
Valley of Fire Panoramic
Rapunzel at Rest
Young Woman in Israel
This week Kanen sits down with Richard Harrington. The two discuss everything from Post Production World, held annually at NAB, to self publishing and the world of new media online.
- web http://www.scruffy.tv/thatpostshow/2013/3/26/post-harrington.html
- iTunes http://www.tinyurl.com/TPS2012
I was recently a guest on Ron Dawson's “Crossing the 180” podcast.
Apparently I let loose a few pearl's including this one:
“If you don’t practice your craft at least 20 minutes a day, you’re going to become a dinosaur.” ~ Richard Harrington
Here's the official blurb:
Today on the show we have world renown instructor, author, successful businessman, social media master and award-winning visual communicator, Richard Harrington of RHED Pixel. From CreativeCow to a #1 iTunes podcast, Richard brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the scene. Today on the show we learn about how Richard got his start in communications, his company processes for working with clients, his philosophy on how to deal with criticism (constructive and otherwise), as well as how he chooses the technology he uses. You’re going to want to take notes for this episode.
I don’t usually do this on my blog, but I am stepping onto my soapbox. I am not going to talk about the causes of violence, constitutional amendments or civil rights. I have my feelings about all of those, but this is not the place.
What I am going to talk about is the obligation that I share with many others... that of being a professional communicator. I studied journalism and worked in the field for many years. I left in part because I became frustrated with the path that it was on (and have since become even more frustrated). Journalism is about reporting and discovering the truth, not spewing opinions and repeating the same images repeatedly until they imprint upon the brain.
Many of you reading my blog have the knowledge to create. Perhaps it’s graphics, photos, or videos. You know how to tell a story and show meaning. I challenge you to do so for something that matters.
Right now we have a world that is racing towards ignorance. In the last few weeks I have seen the following acts occur.
- A sensationalized story milking an act of random kindness between a homeless man and a police officer. Where is the social justice of staffing and supporting shelters for those who’ve lost the path to self-sufficiency?
- A newspaper running a photo and story of a man pushed to his death on a train platform. Nothing was to be gained by running the photo except pure profit.
- Politically chest puffing over a country that continues to plummet towards greater financial instability.
- The refusal to pass a UN proclamation protecting the rights of those with disabilities.
- A rush to dissect and blame the horrible deaths of school children and teachers. Everyone offered up solutions and things to blame. So few mourned or took time to experience grief.
Here is my challenge to you. Start showing the world what type of place it can be. Document the good works that happen in your world. Showcase the causes and people that need volunteers and money. Give of your time to help others, but most importantly your talents. Help spread the word through the power of photos, videos, writing, and viviid imagery.
You have talent.... Please start making a difference with it. Choose clients wisely, donate your time and skill where you can. Think before you repost something rooted in hate. The ability for humans to show kindness and compassion still exists.
I know we can be better... I know I can be better.
Please let’s start working together to make the world better.
Use the comments below to offer stories you know of or causes that can use help.
Here are a few groups that I’ve interacted with that make a difference. You can get involved with them or another.
- NOW I LAY ME DOWN TO SLEEP — https://www.nowilaymedowntosleep.org
- AMERICAN RED CROSS — http://www.redcross.org
- ONE LAPTOP PER CHILD — http://one.laptop.org
If you need to find other causes, this site is good at understanding charities and their efficiency in getting their work done.
- CHARITY NAVIGATOR — http://www.charitynavigator.org
This is a repeat.. but its useful info (especially this time of year). Join me as I tackle 12 holiday images. This in-depth class will show you how to fix both standard and advanced problems that often plague holiday photos. If you like my training be sure to check out my book, Understanding Photoshop CS6.
This morning I started to think about the little things as I packed my bag for work…. "Dang, I sure have a lot of cables and dongles in here."
Apple seems to be leading the way in "innovation" on this front. If you want a smaller, thinner device, then those old bulky cords must go. After all, the whole world is wireless… right?
- DVI + VGA — If I want to hook up to a projector, I'm carrying two adapters. One for DVI and one for VGA. While I'm happy HDMI is built-in… I still need to carry adapters to connect to 90% of the conference rooms and projectors out there. $29 + $29
- FireWire — Remember FireWire? That connector that Apple told us for years stomped USB. Well I need to carry an adapter for that too. Except when you plug it in to the Thunderbolt port on the Mac, it doesn't put out enough bus power for most of my FireWire drives… meaning I also have to carry a power supply (and find another outlet) for my G-Tech portable drives. $29
- Ethernet — Still relevant. Go to any hotel and the WiFi networks are often slower than a swamp in December. Want Ethernet… there's an adapter for that. $29
- MagSafe — If I want to use any of the numerous power supplies I have, there's a $10 adapter for that. $10
- iPod Cables – Why didn't I buy the iPhone 5? Well besides that fact that as a 4S owner it would cost me nearly full price (and the bump wasn't very big) I'd have to get all new cables. I'd need one for the car, work, laptop bag, and home. Add in the wife and suddenly that's 7 to 8 cables at $20 a pop. Want to adapt all those devices you have that use the old connector (from my heart rate monitor to a speaker dock)? Well those adapters cost $29 and $39. Yes the adapters cost twice as much as the new cables…. huh!?! Of course I still need to carry the old ones for the iPad since they won't make an adapter that goes the other direction. $19 + $19 + $19 + $19 + $29 + $39
- Thunderbolt — This has been total vaporware. Try to buy a dock or port extender... nope. The cables are $50. The drives cost $100 more for the chassis. All for a 10% speed boost over USB3 for standard hard drives. Sure there are some desktop solutions that rock on the high end… but as a "universal" adapter that's "perfect" for drives, adapters, and displays… it just sucks. $150
- Optical Drive – Need to get a DVD to install something (or burn a backup?) Nope. Gotta remember to pack the external drive and bring that too. $79
Oh… and what's really missing? The fact that I can't even connect a security cable to the laptop. There is no slot to attach a Kensington or other style lock to the device. So if you're on the road and need to walk away from the machine… don't.
Apple seems to be on a quest for thinner and lighter… but we're to the point where this means sacrificing core features. I'd like to be thinner and lighter too, but I can't think of any limbs or appendages I'd be willing to chop off so save some ounces and fit into a smaller space. Just like camera manufacturers are getting silly with the megapixel wars… Apple needs to slow down and actually look at what their customers need to do to get their jobs done.
Those cables and adapters I mentioned above add up to $500+. None come in the box… that's all extra cost. And if you do what I did, drop your adapter bag at home before you go on a business trip… prepared to be screwed. Even the Apple retail stores can't keep these things in stock. Apple you're missing the mark… start listening to what customers need and stop "saving us from ourselves."
It's that time of year for Scott Kelby's worldwide photo walk. It's an incredibly fun event.
Q. What is a Photo Walk?
A. It’s a social photography event where photographers get together (usually in a downtown area or trendy section of town) to walk around, shoot photos, and generally have fun with other photographers.
Q. When is the 5th Annual Worldwide Photo Walk?
A. This year’s Worldwide Photo Walk will take place on Saturday, October 13.
Q. How do I sign up to participate in a Photo Walk?
A. Go to the Find A Walk page, and search for the location where you’d like to participate in a Photo Walk. Click on the Photo Walk you’d like to sign up for, and you should be taken to its location page. Once you’re here, you should see information about the leader and the walk, including a map showing the exact location. Just above this map will be a button that says “Join This Walk.” Just click that, follow the instructions, and you should be all set! If you don’t see any Photo Walks happening in your area, keep checking back. New ones are being added every day!
I will be leading a DC-area event for the Worldwide Photo Walk. The event is a fun few hours of shooting pictures and meeting other photographers. There's a few spots left for the July 24th event (it's free).
Meeting Location & Time
Vienna Community Center (9:30am - 1:00pm)
120 Cherry St SE, Vienna, VA- USA
After the walk, meet at: Church Street Pizza- 115 Church Street NE, Vienna
Sign up here.
Sign up in your neighborhood too
Yes, I had hair once. Lots of it.
I come from a family of teachers... I have seen my loved ones shape the lives of so many and truly make a difference. I was blessed with the ability to teach. I have an obligation to make the world a better place.
I love to teach creative pros and enthusiasts
For me a big part of that obligation was publishing a body of work that helps people. I sought to give professionals and enthusiasts the ability to solve their problems and understand their digital tools.
I truly believe in the power of creativity. This is why I write books on topics ranging from video editing and photography to motion graphics and presentation design. Visual literacy allows the creative people to inform, inspire, and shape the world.
I wrote my first book in 2002. 10 years have passed and a lot has changed. Book stores are closing, tablets are booming. Creative people seem to learn best with a multi-sensory experience.
The Apple Store used to sell three of my books. Now they sell zero books.
So its time I make a change. I have decided to stop writing new printed books. I will no longer write new books for traditional publishers (including my current publisher, Peachpit Press). It is time to embrace the digital platform and do the project that are important and essential without the constraints traditional publishing brings.
I'm going to combine all my skills at teaching into new digital projects. Some will be enhanced eBooks, combining text with video and interactivity. Training apps are underway too. There's even a few special projects for those looking for year long experiences.
I've been shooting photos for 35 years, creating video for 25, and publishing to the web for 15. I think its time I made a change and I'd like you to join me.
I will now be publishing through Think Tap Learn which is a new group formed with my good friends and trusted colleagues. If you'd like to keep up with what we're up to, I invite you to follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/thinktaplearn or just keep an eye on my blog here.
Thank you for all your support through the years. You'll still find my current books in stores and I have contractual responsibilities to perform… but I have changed my focus. I hope to bring you whole new ways to learn and appreciate you taking this journey with me.
A Time-lapse series from the Valley of Fire in Las Vegas.
A new time-lapse from the Panama Canal. Shot on a Nikon D800 in the rain. Shot in raw and developed in Adobe Camera Raw. Post processed with adjustment layers in Adobe After Effects.
I've taken some of my best panoramic photos (and the tutorials I made about them) and bundled them into an iBook.
It's free, it's currently the #2 photo book on iTunes in fact (sweet!).
It only works on an iPad (sorry everyone else, but that's how iBooks author works for now).
I hope you enjoy and are inspired to start shooting your own shots. I'm working on new stuff for this platform and would love your feedback. Please post reviews on iTunes and comments here.
Download it here – http://itunes.apple.com/us/book/panorama/id497463957?mt=11
Join me as I tackle 12 holiday images. This in-depth class will show you how to fix both standard and advanced problems that often plague holiday photos. If you like my training be sure to check out my books, Understanding Photoshop CS5 and Photoshop for Video.
HDR is in this strictest sense, the merging of multiple exposures to show a wider dynamic range than a traditional camera can capture. It can be used to create photorealistic images that closer match what the eye sees. It can also be pushed for an artistic effect.
I'd like to offer five reasons why HDR photography is a useful tool that you should seriously consider adding to your toolset.
1. Lowlight ImagesWhen working in tough lighting conditions, HDR Photography really comes through. This image was created by merging 3 exposures. It was shot hand-held at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC at 10:30 pm. Need to shoot in lowlight, try HDR.
2. Dramatic Sepiatones and Black and Whites
Do you want to create black and white photos that really pop? How about truly dynamic sepiatones? I find that the use of HDR gives greater depth to my tones and makes more compelling images.
3. Details are Revealed
If you have architectural details that need to come through, HDR works wonders. I took this photo laying on the floor shooting up into the ceiling of a church. The subtleties of the architecture really stand out and I enjoy poring if the finer details of the original artist.
4. Painterly Effects are Fun
The use of HDR toning can create a painterly like image. These options can be fun with certain images and really open up narrative approaches.
5. The General Public Loves HDRWhile photographers may complain… the general public loves HDR. The colors pop, the images are compelling… there's just something that stands out.
This is one of my most popular photos. Gets great reactions and comments from just about all folks. It's several images merged together. Here's how I made it in fact.
So love it or hate it… you should really give HDR a try. Have a look at my other blog – Triple Exposure – www.3exposure.com – which covers the topic in-depth.
For most of us, we got into photography or video because it was fun. Sure the prospect of making a living off something we enjoyed was exciting; it was a dream job. But then reality set in… what was once fun increasingly became work.
I liken the entire dynamic to that of a marriage. I started dating my wife almost 15 years ago. What started as young romance, turned into newlywed bliss. Add in two jobs, two kids, and other pressures and its easy to find yourself sleeping next to a stranger.
What we figured out a few years back is that we were better parents the more we were in love with each other. Hence our standing tradition of having our own date night at least every two weeks. We step away from all the parts of the relationship that are work and instead work on our relationship. We’re happy, we’re in sync, and we’re a better family.
What’s the lesson here? Are you married to your job or do you love your job? By taking the time to make photography fun again and giving you a chance to grow and explore that relationship, you will be far better off.
Take on some personal projects. Do something because you want to and not because you have to.
For me, that’s time-lapse photography. Capturing scenic views and letting the passage of time get recorded.
- I walk out with two camera bodies and two tripods.
- The process of finding the shot (which often involves the quiet of a sunrise or sunset) relaxes me.
- I find a good view and set the cameras up.
- After carefully composing both shots, I meditate. If I’m not feeling introspective, then I read comic books on my iPad. Both help me relax.
- I then get some fun time in Adobe Camera raw and After Effects to make beautiful images that others enjoy.
I’ve started sharing my techniques through Triple Exposure, which has been socially fun and let me meet some great colleagues. I find the end result and the creative process beautiful and rewarding. Photography is fun… the images I’m creating cause a reaction. I am proud of the work, but the only person I need to make happy is me.
Just as my family is stronger because my wife and I love each other… so is my work. I enjoy what I do and on those days when there’s a gap in work it doesn’t seem so depressing and worrisome. Even if I’m busy and I’m on the road for clients, I still find myself getting up early to catch the sunrise. Worst case scenario… I can even just set the camera on a timer to shoot out my hotel window.
But I’m having fun and making time for me… and my client work is all the better for it.
If you would like to share your thoughts, memories, and condolences, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
I just heard the news… and it hurts. I find it strange that I am fighting tears over the loss of a man I've only met in passing.
But the truth is that I owe much of my professional career to this man's vision.
The first computer I learned on was an Apple. I had a Mac from day one in college.
I built my company around Macintosh technology.
I've used the portals Steve built to reach so many others. From the books I write to the podcasts I publish, Apple technology helps me reach the world.
I think at all the people who have captured and shared their memories thanks to Steve and his concept of the Digital Hub.
His move to put iLife and iWork into the hands of so many has changed the way people communicate.
So while many will remember his technology genius…. I remember a man who believed that the world could be a better place.
One where everyone's voice could be heard.
One where sharing video and photos was as easy as pushing a button.
One where the boundaries of cost wouldn't prevent creatives from achieving their dream.
One where students could learn and be better connected.
One where people could use technology to create better experiences and interactions.
Thank you Steve for all that you've done.
Please share your thoughts below as well as send them to email@example.com
What I remember most about today was being in a classroom teaching 1 mile away from the Pentagon.
We were just taking a break and a student said that a plane had just crashed into New York City. We were all confused and concerned.
This was before the news groups put much on the net. This was before the web video revolution. We just didn't know.
The first plane hit New York and we were stunned. Then the second and we knew something was terribly wrong.
Soon we could see the smoke and hear the sirens. Rumors that explosions and fires were throughout DC spread. Students were panicked and we had to keep them calm. I had to hold that classroom together and make sure that people didn't leave.
Eventually we all went home... numb. Everyone was driving about 3 miles and hour. All I could think about was my family and loved ones. We couldn't really talk much, couldn't get a phone line. Somehow I let people know that I was OK.
Got home to my wife... we all just sat there in shock. I had to stop watching TV. I couldn't stand to see what was happening.
Through work, I got to help a very important client. The American Red Cross was my client and we put together several important commercials to raise money and help the healing. I remember waiving most of my billing so I could help.
These are real people… not actors. These are true stories that I had the honor to edit.
It was hard to see the pain. Even harder to look at the footage from Ground Zero that the Red Cross had and couldn't share. About a year after the event, I was asked to edit together footage to honor the first responders.
Here is a link to that video... it is very painful for me to watch. But I think it helps people rise above.
What we need now is for the good in people to rise. We need a nation that is united in the belief of making a better world and not one where people just look out for themselves. We need to move past hatred, past partisanship, past economic inequity, and all of the things that just lead to greed and evil.
Now is the time to remember and rise.
What's cool is they let you do business cards with 100 different images on the back. Photogs love em as they're a great way to show off their work.
Here are my 100 selects… hoping they all work at a small size.
100 Minicards En Route by Richard Harrington
As a book author I find this sad… and a very scary warning…
More than 10,000 people just lost their jobs from one book store chain alone. (Here's the whole note).
As a book reader who loves roaming the aisles and touching books, this is a bad sign…
I have so many good memories of taking the kids to pick out a new book (with a great cup of coffee in hand).
I often am disheartened by how intellectual property is becoming devalued.
My books are pirated all of the time. Same goes for my videos.
People record live classes against permission… then post them online.
People complain when I give things away for free that it's not enough (or the right file format, or the part they wanted).
For the record… writing a book for me is typically six months of work.
Yes, I also have a "real" job too. I write and teach mainly because I want to preserve the knowledge I have been given or discovered.
But I also like to take the family on vacation, live in a nice middle class house, and send the kids to college.
I want the film, video, and photo industries to survive. Not just devolve into stammering YouTube tutorials followed with back and forth comments telling me how much I suck/rock (or that my voice sounds like Vince Vaughn… or that I am going bald… or that I used to be skinnier).
The world is changing… stealing has become easier…
But it doesn't make it right.
If you need to keep learning to remain professionally viable (and I suspect all of you do) then support that ecosystem.
Read 6 books a year. Enroll in some online classes. Attend a conference if you can.
Read blogs (there's lots of great ones)… and remember to occasionally say thank you. Complaining is okay too… just pretend that a real person is on the other end and actually reads it.
Karma… Pass it on.
I began my professional career as a journalist. What I know how to do is find answers I also happen to be blessed with the ability to share my thoughts in a coherent way that others seem to enjoy.
In this post I’m going to let you in on where I go to keep up on the evolution of technology. Things move pretty fast these days and if you don’t pay attention, you’ll quickly fall behind. Here are a ten of the resources I use to stay abreast of evolving technology and get answers when I get confused.
Here are my top 10 places to look for answers.
- Creative COW
- Adobe TV
- Photoshop World
- This Week in Photo
- Triple Exposure
- Kelby Training
- Tip Squirrel
Read the whole article for free at the ASMP Strictly Business Blog
What is Your Primary Job?The primary focus of my activities is as the owner of a production company in the Washington, DC area. I started the company in 1999. I have built my company’s infrastructure around Final Cut Pro and have used Adobe Photoshop and After Effects extensively. We also use a lot of other software tools as well.
Our storage networks are primarily Drobo. We use mostly Panasonic cameras and shoot to P2. We do use a lot of DSLR equipment (both from Canon and Nikon). We use AJA hardware for the most part. We are 80% + Mac shop, but we do have some Dell computers (as well as Windows installed on several Macs).
What Other Jobs Do You Hold?I come from a family of teachers. I have taught university. I have taught online. I have taught at conferences. I usually get paid to teach, but I have spoken and done several free events. I have spoken at Apple stores (both paid and for free). I have worked at Apple’s booth at NAB. I have spoken at Adobe’s booth there too. Both of those positions were unpaid (though Apple covered my expenses, lodging, and airfare).
The bulk of my training has been around teaching video pros and photographers. I have an obsession with slide presentations (and a passion for Apple Keynote). My goal with training has first and foremost been to help people. My secondary goal has been to earn money to support my family. It is an economic reality that I need to make money for my teaching as it takes me away from my company.
Over the last ten years I have written approximately 30 books. These have been predominantly on Apple and Adobe software. I have also written about web video, DSLR video, workflow, and even PowerPoint.
I have made money as a podcaster for Creative COW. I have also been paid to blog by ProVideo Coalition. I have been hired to write for DV magazine, Creative COW magazine, Photoshop User, and Mac Design.
In 10 years, I have been fairly visible. The revenue I make is sufficient (although I certainly cannot quit my day job if I wanted to support my family). I have rarely been supported by advertisers or sponsors. I have made enough money from my training efforts to justify the time and effort (as well as to release hundreds of free podcasts and thousands of blog and forum posts).
Which Companies Have Hired You Recently?I have been hired by the following companies to produce training or do video production services. This list is in alphabetical order for ease of use.
- Creative COW
- Focal Press
- Kelby Training
- Pearson Education
I have been approached by several others. I have turned down advertisements on my blog.
I have received products from many companies through the years. This ranges from software to review, to products to test. This list is not complete (as I cannot remember everything at my age). These groups have supported my efforts and training with equipment loans, not for resale software, etc. Most of these items are loaned, and have to be returned upon request. Again in alphabetical order.
- Digital Anarchy
- Redrock Micro
- Red Giant
- Singular Software
What Do You Edit With?I started on Avid at KCCI television in Des Moines, IA. Paid for my own classes out of my own pocket and learned it. I actively edited on Avid for about 7 years. I was an Avid editor at dhg Productions and PCI Communications. Also freelanced using Avid for several years (and still have a respect for the product today).
I started with Final Cut Pro on version 1. I still use it a whole lot (and it is the most popular application with our clients). My company did 90% of its editorial work in Final Cut Pro last year. We are migrating new projects to Adobe Premiere Pro in most cases, but have many clients and existing projects that will need to stay in Final Cut Pro 7.
I decided to get over my snobbishness and learn Adobe Premiere Pro about 2 years ago. I struggled, I whined, I complained. Then it got better. I used it for all my DSLR workflow starting with CS5. I’ve now switched to using it about 50% of the time for my work, and I am excited by the growth I see.
My own company is in the middle of being retrained. Like many things related to video workflow, I wrote it down and sell it as a book. If you buy it... I make 50¢. Let’s just say I live off my client work — my book writing is a bad addiction spurned by being bred from a family with 14 teachers in it.
Do You Have an Agenda?Heck no. I consider NLE choice like religion. That’s up to you. Except when it’s not. Like a client demands, or the shop you work for switches. I helped a lot of Avid editors learn Final Cut Pro (I mean A LOT). I’ve also started helping Avid and FCP users learn Premiere Pro. Use the tool you like if it’s up to you.
If you freelance... know all three (more money). If your job requires you to learn a new tool, do so. I regularly post links to great trainers, conferences, and educational products (not just my stuff).
I use what the job or the client demands. Do I like Adobe... yes I like where they are going and find it reassuring that they lay out a clear roadmap. I also commend Avid for being much clearer about where they are going and opening up support for AJA hardware, etc.
What I would like Apple to do is communicate its vision with words (not just software releases). I’d like to have time to transition and see both roads stay open while the bridge is under construction. As a pro, I cannot accept dramatic interruptions in my workflow. It saddens me that it is easier to migrate to other manufacturers and keep my Mac computers and AJA hardware working, than it is to migrate to the shipping version of Final Cut Pro X.
Do You Hate Apple/FCPX?Absolutely not. When I launched my company I was faced with taking out a second mortgage for an NLE or trying Final Cut Pro. I have been there since version 1. I built my company using Apple hardware and software from Apple and Adobe.
To this day I use both heavily. If you have any doubt.... look at the Final Cut Pro podcasts on Creative COW. I think it's a great tool for some users, really. But its not what I hoped for as it stands now.
I am currently working on training for photographers who want to edit DSLR material in FCPX. I am happy with it for that use, as I know it will be approachable to many photographers who find “traditional editing” confusing. If you like FCPX, I am genuinely happy for you. Getting new software should feel like birthday presents for a six-year old.
Do You Have Agreements with Companies?I have multiple non-disclosure agreements and I honor them. I have never disclosed details about one manufacturer to another. I have (to the best of my knowledge) never disclosed anything improper to end users. This agreements are a necessity as they give me advanced access to the tools we all use.
This advance access lets me figure out problems. Some companies use this feedback and make their products better. I also can work on training products so they can be ready when the application ships (or as close to possible). These agreements are entered in so I can create a product that is ready when you need it.
My opinions have never been bought. I have never been told what to say. I have never colluded with a company to change the opinion of the market. I have been hired by companies to help them understand the end user. I have written and produced as well as reviewed and commented on efforts that impact the professional video industry.
Why are You so Vocal Now?I have always tried to be fair in my opinions. And I always try to give software developers helpful feedback about their tools. I have been blogging for more than 5 years and release approximately 5 posts a week. I’m also active on Facebook and Twitter as well as contribute to several photography and Photoshop blogs.
My opinions raised through my writings and podcasts on the Final Cut Pro X release have been from the point of view of a facility owner who now has to retrain his own staff. I am also frustrated that my investment in hardware and training is currently being wasted by a product that seems to ignore both.
I am vocal because there has not been a clear public statement about the issues many pros are raising. I am vocal because there is not a shared plan to address migration. I am vocal because ten years of my company’s work is frozen to an application that may or may not run in the future.
As a trainer and author... these are good times. Lots of work and consulting to do.
- I recently released a book on Premiere Pro for migrating editors. I had no inside knowledge on Apple’s plans. I decided to diversity my company and cross-train my employees.
- I am currently writing two books on video editing for DSLR photographers. One is on Final Cut Pro X while the other is on Premiere Pro. I truly believe that both are great products for this segment of the professional workforce.
- I have had lots of demands from both Apple and Adobe users to help them with problems. If you look at the training products I’ve released in the last 3 years you will see my focus has always been on collaboration. Helping pros and emerging pros to get their jobs done has been my goal.
- I also weave business ethics and best practices into most of my content as I genuinely want to see our industry succeed.
In ConclusionI hope this post does three things.
- First, I have a legal obligation to reveal my professional relationships.
- Second, I hope it helps readers and listeners understand my motivations.
- Third, I would like the industry and Apple to engage in meaningful and professional conversations to ensure the long term health of the professional video industry.
These are challenging times. The economy is rough and competition is high. Please continue the debate with respect and integrity. Choose what is right for you. My opinions are not very important, I will be here to help in whatever way I can with the knowledge and skills I have built through the years.
Richard M. Harrington, PMP
My Response to David Pogue’s “Professional Video Editors Weigh In on Final Cut Pro X” *Updated June 25*
- David Pogue is a fine gentleman who I have met several times. He is smart, he is generous in his knowledge, and he is fair. He is not a shill and his article was trying to be helpful (I commend him for getting Apple to answer questions).
- He is not a video editor. Nor does he try to pass himself off as one.
- I am sorry this response is SO long. It's technical and it's important I be clear and detailed (I've already been criticized and accused of being an Apple hater or colluding against them).
*Updated – 6/25 5:26 pm (I am adding additional context and links to article). Also be sure to look at the many comments and answers below the article. Please keep posting issues you find (but keep things civil here). The time for anger is past... let's work to get a clear list of issues and give Apple some context as to what we want and why.
Here is the original article – http://pogue.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/06/23/professional-video-editors-weigh-in-on-final-cut-pro-x/
*Updated – 6/25 5:26 PM – I won't call this winning, because it is not about that. But David now says "Having read through hundreds of comments from professionals, both civil and uncivil, I’m now convinced: Final Cut Pro X may indeed be ready for the future. But for professional video editors, it’s not yet ready for the present."
Please read http://pogue.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/06/24/the-quarrel-over-final-cut-continues/. Stop beating up on David... but do head over and read it. If you work in pro video, voice your support for his reversal.
I would like to briefly respond. But before I do, a brief overview.
- I have been a certified instructor for three of the A’s that make video editing software.
- I have produced Final Cut Pro tutorials which have been given away for free for years as podcasts through iTunes.
- I have written several books on Final Cut Pro (as well as other products).
- I do use other company’s tools (always have).
- My opinions here are based on owning a 10-person video production company which has built its infrastructure around Final Cut Pro for 10 years.
- I am not even going to touch on the challenges of completely retraining my staff and myself on something that is so radically different. You thought people whined when Microsoft added the Ribbon to Office...go look at what editors are saying in the App Store reviews. Remember only people who actually BOUGHT the application are allowed to rate it.
Hopefully that’s enough context... Let’s begin. (Red is Pogue’s summary of the complaint. Blue is his answer (with input from Apple). Green is my response.
“Complaint: There’s no multicamera editing. In the old FCP, you could import the footage from various cameras that covered an event (say, a concert) from different angles simultaneously, and then easily cut back and forth between them while editing. It was a star feature of Final Cut, and it’s gone from FCP X.”
“Answer: Apple intends to restore this feature in an update, calling it “a top priority.” Until it does, here’s a stopgap facsimile of multicam editing: If you drag two clips into parallel timeline tracks, you can choose Clip->Synchronize Clips. By comparing their audio tracks, the program aligns the clips exactly. Now, each time you select a piece of the upper video track and press the V key (“disable”), you are effectively cutting to what’s on the lower video track.”
My Take: Final Cut Pro could previously edit up to 128 angles. While that is a tad excessive for most, using three to nine angles is very practical. We regularly cut programs such as talk shows, concerts, and events using this feature. The method described by Pogue is like telling a NASCAR driver to turn over their car, strap one roller skate on, and push as fast as possible with the other foot.
*Updated 6/24 8:27 AM – In order to edit a lot of angles, you used to have to use several hard drives and they had to be really fast. We'd also off the option of using a a flavor of the Offline RT codec, then easily relinking. It was complex (at times), but powerful.
Complaint: You can’t share a project with other editors. In professional editing companies, editors routinely exchange projects. But in FCP X, “all of your project organization is now globally contained in the application rather than in your project file. You literally have to give that other editor your entire computer,” writes one blogger.
Answer: Not true. You can share your project, your files, or both. If the other editors already have the raw video files, you can hand over the project file. The other editors can inspect the Project Library; on its Info panel, they can click “Modify Event References” to reconnect the project to their own copies of the media files.
If the other editors don’t have the raw files, the various commands in the File menu let you move the project file, the media files, or both to another computer on the network, to another hard drive or whatever.
My Take: I am glad that some of my initial fears are wrong. However this command is much less robust than the previous Final Cut Pro media manager. It seems to lack the ability to force a file to reconnect or to invoke a search if the file says it can’t be found. The Media Manager seems to also lack ability to trim media with specific handles to make the media smaller.
Gary Adcock (my genius technical editor) Offers this useful summary
- Duplicate Project — Functions much like the FCP7 media manager did. You can choose the Project only, Project & all References or Project with just used media.
• Move Project — Will move all media and Associated to new volume. This can be used for uploading a field edit to a desktop system. It too can move just project or project and media
• Merge Events — This can combine two copies of the same project into a single Project file. This can be used to bring last night's changes you did on the train into your desktop at the office.
• Consolidate media — The is the clean your desk command.
• Organize Project – This will consolidate media for the scratch disk only.
You also have the ability to transcode to only two flavors of ProRes (a proxy file or a high quality file). Previously you could manage the project to any installed codec (format) that you wanted (including third-party formats). This made collaboration and exchanging media with others much easier. There are five flavors of ProRes... why can I only choose two of them (let alone everything else).
Gary points out that the transcode settings appear to follow logic.
- That 8-bit material and DSLR videos files are rendered to ProRes 422.
- Animation and Uncompressed codecs are converted to Pro Res HQ if 1920 x 1080 or less
- Animation and Uncompressed codecs are converted to Pro Res 4444 if 2K or larger
- Turn off the Optimize media check box to cut your re-rendering in half
"If you start a project by using the “ prefs based on first clip” and then import content, all renders will be based on that content level. I found this out when starting with PR4444 from Alexa and found all of these huge renders on my system."
Complaint: You can’t freely organize your media files. “There is no way to customize the organization of the project media,” gripes one blogger.
Answer: You can customize the organization freely if you’re willing to understand the new keyword tagging system. Dragging a clip into a folder essentially applies a new keyword to it.
My Take: I am glad we have these options. But there are fewer ways to customize the view. You can’t seem to add custom columns. There are collections, but not the simple ability to use folders and nests of folders to organizer. Imagine if you had no folder structure on your Mac hard drive. Just Spotlight. You could only organize by tagging keywords onto all your stuff.
You also can’t organize media while any background tasks are running. Such as rendering, transcoding, stabilizing, etc. Background tasks are frequently happening as things automatically render. Change a color effect, it renders. Adjust the size it renders. In the past you would choose when to render. Now you have to keep opening the Background Tasks panel and canceling.
*Updated – 6/24 8:30 AM – You can make folders in events with a right click on the event in the Event Library. It is very different in appearance than FCP 7, but does seem to work better than I thought. I stand by my lack of creating custom columns as well as the challenges of constantly looking from the far left edge of my screen to the right to see the Events Library and Inspector panels. Wish I could move panels next to each other.
*Updated – 6/25 5:57 PM – Turns out you can also drag keywords into folders (and be sure to learn how to use collections too).
Gary says "I found the keywording for organization is like having Google searching my project, it’s faster and you can sort the materials based on any variety of keywords or even strings of words."
My Take: I agree this is awesome... but I'd also like the ability to use the thousands of projects I've organized already. I'd also like to not let one client see another client's media. The current media browsing seems to be based on the idea that you only have a couple of projects. I may grow to like events... but right now I don't.
Events didn't make it into Aperture (from iPhoto). Projects did. By the way I can have many libraries in Aperture making it easier to isolate client's work from one another (as well as personal projects from work). Maybe FCPX and iMovie could grow a little more distant (as well as over useful documentation like this – http://www.apple.com/aperture/iphoto-to-aperture/how.html that address how to move projects and libraries in).
Complaint: No Reconnect command when media is offline. When media is offline, you get a red screen with an exclamation point. There is no Reconnect Media command, as there used to be.
Answer: True. Then again, the old Reconnect dialog box got people into a lot of trouble; they often reconnected a project to the wrong files, or the wrong versions of files.
FCP X assigns a unique behind-the-scenes identifier to every single video clip. When you reconnect the missing hard drive, your project reconnects to its original files automatically, even if you have moved them around or renamed the hard drive. You can’t reconnect to the wrong thing.
My Take: I am glad that some of my initial fears are wrong. However this command is much less robust than the previous Final Cut Pro media manager. It seems to lack the ability to force a file to reconnect to a new version (such as an updated graphic file) or to invoke a search if the file says it can’t be found. Finding the information is a little tricky and involves opening a panel. It also appears that you also can’t invoke the re-connect command unless the media is offline.
While the command COULD get you into trouble if you made bad choices. It also gave you important controls that professionals really needed.
*Updated – 6/25 6:10 PM – Gary pointed out to me that this seems to be a huge change. Previously Final Cut Pro just remembered the file pathways. Now it is actually polling and tracking media via a database. (based on SQL actually). Updated files are automatically included as part of the metadata management. This also means that when you add a new volume to your system, X will poll it, looking for FCP event or content flags in the media. (He is still trying to find out what this file is called and where it is hiding on the drive).
My take: Again this sounds better, but we need to ability to force a re-connect. We also need to be able to backup that database for safety.
Complaint: You can’t assign audio tracks. “We send all our audio files out for ProTools mixing,” writes one editor in an e-mail. “We always put narration on Track 1 and 2, interviews on Tracks 3 – 6, and so on. So our audio engineers know exactly what’s on which track. But FCP X’s ‘trackless’ design makes that impossible.”
Answer: For now, you can use a utility called Automatic Duck Pro Export 5.0 ($200 to upgrade) to create and manage these tracks automatically when you export to ProTools. Apple says it will restore this feature to FCP X.
My Take: That’s $200 to upgrade from a full version of Automatic Duck (not a $200 upgrade to FCP). It’s $500 new. Gone is also the version to map specific output when going to professional tape formats (a frequent requirement for professional delivery). In fact if its not HDV or DV, tape support seems to be gone all together.
But it's not just ProTools output. Several of the exchange methods are gone. XML is the biggest deal which would allow this tool to continue to communicate with the now discontinued Apple Color, Davinci Resolve, Adobe After Effects, and many other tools that people use for special purposes and collaboration.
*Updated – 6/25 6:16 PM – Gary says that the XML should work in Lion. Also that the necessary hooks are in FCPX already. He says he can also find output libraries for DPX and Open EXR that are already visible. He also feels that there should be some changes in how hardware can be accessed with Lion.
Complaint: No custom frame rates or custom frame sizes. Editors are complaining that you can’t specify unusual frames-per-second rates or frame dimensions.
Answer: Not true. When you create a new project, you can specify any frame rate or size you want, right in the Import dialog box. You can also change the frame rate or size when you export the finished product — if you’re willing to spend $50 on Compressor.
My Take: Sorry ... you are 95% wrong. If you choose custom in Final Cut Pro 7, you have the option to enter just about any size or rate. When I choose custom in FCPX... I can choose from several standard options. But I can’t enter any value. If you choose Other, your choices are:
- 640 x 480 or 960 x 540
- 23.98, 24, 25, 29.97, or 30
Changing the frame rate on export is not what we’re asking for. Being able to work with a setting that matches footage or lets you work with custom settings as needed is gone. You also cannot save you own easy setups or sequence presets that let you store the settings you’ve made for easy access.
Complaint: No support for RED digital cameras. The RED camera is a favorite of filmmakers; it records incredibly high-resolution video directly to a hard drive. But FCP X can’t import its files.
Answer: Apple is working with RED to create a plug-in that will give native RED support to FCP X. In the meantime, you can set your RED camera to shoot and capture video in the QuickTime format, which FCP X imports just fine. Or you can use RED’s free conversion program, which converts its own files into the Apple ProRes format, which FCP X loves because it’s so much faster and easier to edit than the native RED files.
My Take: David, you don’t understand why people choose to shoot RED. The benefit of shooting raw video is the same benefit as pro photographers choosing raw stills over JPEG. Shooting or converting to QuickTime throws away A LOT of information and latitude in adjustments.
What pros wanted was the same level of control they get in Adobe Premiere Pro or Red Cine X. The ability to truly grade color, work with high dynamic range features and more. They also need greater controls on media management and reconnection. The reason why pros are so furious is that Apple and RED had the closest working relationship in the industry. People don’t understand why the program would ship without support.
*Updated – 6/24 8:40 AM – It's not just RED... it's other Raw formats too (like Alexa). A few pointed out that we have 4K sequence presets, but no easy workflow for getting in 4K footage.
Complaint: No ability to pause or fork the Autosave. Final Cut Pro autosaves your work as you go. Editors complain, therefore, that they can’t save different versions of a project as they go along.
Answer: You can duplicate your project at any time, thus freezing it in its current condition. Just click it in the Project Library and choose File -> Duplicate Project.
My Take: David... have you ever been affected when an application like Microsoft Word crashed? Sure you could open up the last version you CHOSE to save ... but sometimes the Auto-Save comes to the rescue and you get back work you would have lost.
You could choose when and how often FCP auto-saved. It also stored multiple versions automatically. This let you go back in time when clients changed their mind. It also could save you if a project became corrupt. While these don’t happen every day ... they happen more than we like. The new method requires you to choose to backup, not set an interval. Isn’t this why Apple invented Time Machine in the first place (which does let you choose how often to backup). I don’t know how Time Machine and FCP project files will work ... but I am less than confident that I will have the same level of control I do now.
*Updated – 6/24 8:33 AM – Several point out Lion's autosave abilities. I can't comment further as I don't have it running since it's not shipping. What about those who can't go to Lion, however?
*Updated – 6/25 6:23 PM – Also, what's big is the ability to run the Restore command which let you choose which backup to use.
Complaint: Can’t specify the scratch disks. In previous versions of Final Cut Pro, you could choose individual hard drives for storing your project’s render (preview) files. But if you didn’t know what you were doing, things could get messy. For example, you might store the project on one drive, and then render files on another; then, later, you would open up the project when the render-file disk wasn’t available. You would have to re-render the whole project.
Answer: In FCP X, the render files are stored on the same disk as the project, so they don’t get separated. You can still store your files on any drive; you determine that by where you store the project file.
My Take: Duplicate the project also starts to spread files out to more folders. Those renders, pre-computes, and cache files are with the project. You choose to duplicate, there’s more to copy. That means time and disk space. In the past, these render files were in a folder of your choosing. Duplicating the project was no big deal as the project just looked at the files in the same folder that you specified. Less time, less disk space (which in my world means saved money, happier clients, and a greater chance of dinner with the family).
Also this level of control is less than before. I could choose to but my project files in one place and renders on another. Like I said before ... most people choose to split their project files to a different location than render files and media files. This is because the project file is usually small, and you want to back it up (or even keep it on a USB thumb drive for easy portability). The media and render files on the other hand need to be on a performance hard drive.
*Updated – 6/25 6:27 PM – A new issue:
A trusted colleague (who asked not to be named) raised a huge potential issue. Personally, I have not been able to fully test this, but this person would know.
- It appears that the new FCPX doesn't work with Apple's (previous) XSAN system
- You can only save to an HFS+ drive.
- This also means no go for most networked storage systems as Events appear to be incompatible with a XSAN, AFP, NFS or SMB volume
Complaint: Can’t output to tape. Videotape is on the way out — you would be hard pressed even to find a camcorder that takes tape anymore — so it’s not built into FCP X. This is one of several ways that FCP X is clearly a program designed more for the future than the past.
Answer: You can buy tape-deck control programs like AJA VTR Exchange and Black Magic Media Express. AJA and Black Magic are two major makers of add-on circuit boards for professional video editing. These apps work with their boards.
My Take: Tape is NOT dead (although we’d like it to be in many cases). Tapes don’t demagnetize though like hard drives on a shelf. They also outlast hard drives in most cases.
TV stations want tape. My government clients want tape. My nonprofit association clients want tape. Tape is typically required by the vast majority of clients that professionals serve (those that make their living editing video).
David... Print is dead. It’s on it’s way out. Could the New York Times stop printing newspapers tomorrow? You may want to (environmental concerns, costs of paper and delivery, those annoying children who throw newspaper and yell that they want their $2 back)? Print is not dead ... neither is tape. Are they dying? Yes... a SLOW and PAINFUL death.
When Apple killed the floppy disk, you could still buy them yourself and hook them up. Even though Apple doesn’t let you burn a Blu-ray disc, they let you buy a burner yourself. The built in the “hooks” that let hardware and software manufacturers connect.
In the past, companies like AJA and Apple collaborated closely. When Apple would ship software, new hardware would be out. In fact, old hardware would have updates that made it work too. These devices often cost $1,000–$5,000 dollars. We have five of these devices in my offices. They are currently serving as paper weights when we launch Final Cut Pro X.
So you say just use the old version. But how long will Apple ship updates and support the old software. What happens when your computer fails and you have to buy a new one. Will you be able to install 5 year old software on it?
Never mind the fact that pro customers feel they deserve to get to use a 64-bit editing application. Why? Because other companies have 64-bit applications on the Mac that edit video quite well AND support the same hardware that Final Cut Pro 7 supported.
Complaint: Can’t export AAF or OMF files. These formats are successors to EDL. They let you export your project to other programs, like Avid, Quantel or Pro Tools, for more sophisticated editing.
Answer: Automatic Duck ProExport 5.0 adds AAF and OMF exporting to FCP X. There will be other companies offering similar export plugins (including EDL, by the way), once Apple publishes its XML programming guidelines (API).
My Take: Why are pros mad? Because all of these formats (as well as EDL and XML were supported). David, how would you feel if you couldn’t get your photos out of iPhoto? You could sync them to your iPad ... you could look at them on your Mac. But printing? Opening the image in Photoshop? Handing it off to a website authoring or page layout tool? Nope.
These exchange formats allow professionals to collaborate. Would you like special effects, great color correction, and a superior soundtrack in your next Hollywood film? Not gonna get it (or at least not yet). We’re told we have to wait for third-party folks. Who all have to rewrite their tools to standards that aren’t even fully clear or released.
*Updated – 6/25 6:28 PM While we're talking about XML export, how about the ability to send to Apple Color?
Commenters on this blog even point out the difficulty in sending clips to Apple Motion (a previously supported workflow).
I also have heard from many plug-in developers crying foul. A couple people seem to have had early access and knowledge. Apple lists two plug-in packages on their site. What about the 100+ companies that had tools working before? We now must wait ... and hope these companies can afford to redevelop and redeploy. We’ll also have to repay for tools that worked just fine because these (often small) companies will have to scramble to redevelop their tools to keep their customers.
*Updated – 6/25 6:29 PM I've been told that some plugins work by "luck" since they were designed with the previous version of Motion in mind. I do not know the validity of this statement. I do know that I have talked and read about many developers who are crying foul.
Speaking of secrecy... there’s a lot of confusion throughout the reseller community that helped ensure local sales and support for Apple products. The training companies seem to be confused and their trainers are too. I am not allowed to say more here.
Complaint: Can’t connect an external monitor. Pros work with Final Cut on the Mac screen, but they prefer to view the actual edited video on a dedicated second screen. While Final Cut Pro X works just fine with a second computer monitor — you just choose Window -> Show Events on Second Display (or Window -> Show Viewer on Second Display) — there are complaints that it can’t connect to an external video monitor (TV), which pros feel offers better color fidelity.
Answer: Just as before, you need a Mac Pro with a video-output card in order to connect a TV monitor. Apple expects that the output-card companies will soon offer the necessary drivers for FCP X; AJA, one of the major makers of these boards, already offers beta versions of such drivers. Apple is working with Black Magic to offer drivers for its boards.
My Take: You have several mistakes here ... but I would make the same mistakes if I tried to talk about the professional printing presses your company uses to make newspapers.
- You do not need a Mac Pro. Several manufacturers made devices that use FireWire connections. They also use the Express Card slot (which seems to be on the way out). We suspect that Thunderbolt will help here too (Blackmagic showed this at NAB this year).
- It’s not a TV. We use higher quality monitors. Often with unusual connections like HD-SDI or professional component connections. We also run the signal out the hardware tools that help us calibrate and legalize the color for broadcast (just like how you have to fix out of gamut images for color printing). The method Apple has now does not let us see a true video signal. It also doesn’t work if you have two computer monitors and a video output card attached. It’s one or the other (at least according to the AJA documentation). Be sure you READ that documentation ... it’s filled with apologies. The signal Final Cut Pro X sends out is not in the correct color space or proper size. David, I’d like you to switch the New York times to consumer inkjet printers... tell me if that would work for you?
- What about the others? There are more companies besides AJA and Blackmagic Design. What’s happening there? The lack of information is what scares professionals. People want a road map ... especially in this economy. I know companies need some secrecy. The keyword is some.
Gary says: "All of the hardware solutions currently available are not of a quality that pros can accept. Without the ability to control audio and video timing signals direct from within the application all anyone is looking at is an RGB desktop preview being converted back to YUV by the hardware to make that signal viewable via HD/SDi.
Adding 3rd party hardware output to previous versions of FCP forced the application to respond as a professional tool in regard to timing inaccuracies, issues with low performance storage or color issues when outputting content. In FCPX we have only Apple’s word that the output files would conform to SMPTE standards and Practices.
My Take: For those of you who just had their heads explode... it basically means don't plan to submit anything you do to a broadcast station or even expect it to look the same when you play it back on a television. This is just huge! Even bigger here is the question of which hardware can work and which cannot. Unusually the support has come for only certain products in AJA's line. Some of the newer products have not had anything said about them yet. I'm still looking for info on other manufacturer's as well.
Complaint: Can’t import old FCP files.
Answer: As I noted in my column, this is true; your old projects are stranded forever in the older FCP program. You’ll have to keep both programs on your hard drive, and edit the old projects in the old program. When you install the new FCP, your old copy is safely preserved.
My Take: This is partially true. Many users have reported problems with having both on the same system. Apple even has a very detailed and useful article on the topic (http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4722).
This document provides critical information. It’s not called out in the App Store. It’s not called out in the installer. Apple could have released it two days before Final Cut Pro X and said “Get ready for Final Cut Pro X.”
Nope... no communication or warnings on how to avoid potentially large problems. In fact I found out about the new software from Twitter. It didn’t even make it to the Apple home page. The article I mentioned isn’t on the product page or even the support page in a prominent position.
The application is also not “safely” preserved as you have to move things back and rename things if you want to actually use the applications in many workflows. Apple says “Note: Final Cut Server, Podcast Producer, Software Updates for Final Cut Studio (2009), and some third-party workflows and tools may require that the Final Cut Studio (2009) applications remain in their original location in the Applications folder.”
Also, would you accept that you couldn’t open up your iPhoto library with future versions of the application? How about if all the music you imported into iTunes would no longer play and all your organization and playlists were gone. Oh, and what if Adobe decided that Photoshop CS5 (the 64-bit version) couldn’t open up files from the past.
The argument of "finish your project before you upgrade" is crazy. Clients always come back with changes. Filmmakers decided to make updates and re-release. Even hobbyists want to go back and look at something they did and potentially reuse some of their editing. Even if both applications are properly installed, you can’t have them open at the same time. Want to look over a FCP 7 project, you can't launch both apps as it will prompt you to close FCP X.
*Updated – 6/25 6:39 PM – Visit https://discussions.apple.com/message/15469892#15469892. Scroll halfway down the page to this post.
FranklyFilm — Re: FCPX, just the tip of the iceberg — Jun 23, 2011 6:35 AM
Mail form Randy Ubillos, the designer of FCP X
“FCP7 projects do not have enough information in them to properly translate to FCPX (in FCP7 all of the clip connections live in the editor's head, not in the timeline). We never expected anyone to switch editing software in the middle of a project, so project migration was not a priority.
Final Cut Pro X 1.0 is the beginning of a road, not the end.”
My Take: I do not know if this is true. It is on Apple's website. I would assume given how widespread it is being pushed around the net... someone would respond or clarify. I hope this is not true, but I have now heard this same information from different sources more than 10 times. This rumor or statement needs confirmation. This is the DEAL BREAKER for many.
The Bottom Line: Apple has followed the typical Apple sequence: (1) throw out something that’s popular and comfortable but increasingly ancient, (2) replace it with something that’s slick and modern and forward-looking and incomplete, (3) spend another year finishing it up, restoring missing pieces.
These are fair statements. Remember your feelings on iMovie ’08 (http://pogue.blogs.nytimes.com/2007/08/17/apple-takes-a-step-back-with-imovie-08/)? Apple reversed course and continued to make the previous version of iMovie available.
With Final Cut Pro X, Apple discontinued to entire Final Cut ecosystem in one swoop. Final Cut Server, Color, Soundtrack Pro, Cinema Tools, and DVD Studio Pro. "So what" you say ... just use the old one.
- But you can’t buy the old one from Apple any more. In fact I have been told that many resellers were asked to ship their stock back to Apple.
- Many were waiting to upgrade from older versions until Final Cut Pro X shipped. Now they find out their computers won’t work with the new Final Cut Pro.Several computers aren’t supported due to their graphics cards. Even machines that are slated to work on Lion may not work with Final Cut Pro X because they lack Open CL compatibility. Here is the list (http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4664).
- The exact same time the new product started shipping, the old one went away. Yes, some stores still have inventory, but not Apple (apparently). The existing stock will run out and people don’t know if will be refreshed.
- There was not sufficient details warning people about compatibility issues.
- If you go to Apple’s webpage and try to look up old documentation or links about the old Final Cut Pro, it redirects you to the new page. If you visit the support page and try to download an update to a previous version (often needed after changing machines or doing a software restore). Guess what, its sends you to the App Store to buy Final Cut Pro X. I tried several of the links on the support page (http://support.apple.com/downloads/#final%20cut%20studio). Go see what happens
Professional editors should (1) learn to tell what’s really missing from what’s just been moved around,
I agree, but the training and support industry is scrambling to catch up.
(2) recognize that there’s no obligation to switch from the old program yet
That is correct. But pros were told it would be “awesome.” I guess that word means different things to different people. And if you need to update your old software, most of the links on the downloads page keep sending me to the App Store to buy the new one. Subtle, I know.
(3) monitor the progress of FCP X and its ecosystem, and especially (4) be willing to consider that a radical new design may be unfamiliar, but may, in the long term, actually be better.
Most in the Final Cut Pro community like change. They also wish that the investment in time as well as thousands in equipment would continue to be supported.
David, your article was helpful and answered many questions for me. I know you can reach me on the phone. I raise a few more questions that maybe your Apple contacts can answer.
Will I ever be able to import a layered Photoshop file? This is a common workflow that lets editors easily work with graphics.
*Updated – 6/24 8:41 AM – You can import the file (I knew this) but layers are flattened. Motion supports this workflow, but Final Cut Pro X no longer does. This was a common scenario.
What about volume licenses? How do companies buy multiple copies for the employees to use? Do they really need to set up an iTunes account for each and need to use elaborate combinations of credit cards or gift cards?
What about educational licenses? Apple gained much of its success from students who learned it in school then moved into the workplace. Students always got a discount as did schools. What about them?
What is the intention with the apparent decimation of the previous ecosystem? Are the broken links and missing documents temporary? Will we be able to buy the application in 2 months (or next year)? Will there be software updates ... if so for how long?
Will there be physical distribution? Broadband access is not a reality for much of the world. I have interfaced with editors in Africa where broadband is scarce. I have also talked with several who pay by the megabyte for data (and pay a lot). There are many places in the world where the user will pay far more to download the software than to purchase it. What if I need to reactivate (such as after restoring from a backup) but I can’t get Internet access?
In conclusion, I appreciate your article. You attempted to get to the bottom of things. I hope I have opened some new doors here for you to knock on. Keep making the world a better place for techno geeks.
There are SEVERAL posts in the comments about missing and confusing features. Since I have violated every rule about length of a blog post, I will respond below. Apple (or others looking to develop new products) please see the list below. There are also several other places that have good lists going.
Thank you to all my friends for your support and keeping things civil during these difficult times. Remember to keep the focus on Apple (and not attack others in online forums or blogs). Keep posting and pass this article around to those who tell you that you are wrong. Be civil, reversing a "revolution" won't happen with angry words. The initial shock is over... move past anger. Make your opinion known with respectful words. Apple corporate is the one who made these decisions... address the cause of the problem.
And to leave you with a laugh... the issue made it all the way to the Conan O'Brien show. Most have seen this, if not, go laugh. We all need one right now.
I always like creative music videos. This one is very simple in some ways, yet elegant. It's a single take Steadicam shot. Then toss in some really interesting lighting cues. Cool video concept.
Do you need a great mixtape to push through your next creative deadline? The eclectic Girl Talk has released another album called All Day (and its free under a Creative Commons license). The album is comprised of hundreds of samples yet achieves its own unique sound.
Free Music... gotta love it.
BTW... Girl Talk is rarely safe for work (but the graphics department at RHED Pixel listens to it anyway).
While the guild system of old is all but destroyed, you can still preserve its spirit. Seek out others who you want to work with. Ignore their age and instead look at what they have to offer to the creative process. An open mind goes a long way. I continuously learn things from even the youngest employee or crew member. I also have learned to listen when someone else has something to say.
Video is a collaborative medium and one that has undergone a century worth of change in the last ten years. Bluntly... shut up and listen. Put any preconceived notions you may have about age or experience aside and open yourself to opportunity.
For this week, I will be posting several blog entries in advance. I am taking a proper vacation, one that will include little social media, blogging, or email (and lots of rum drinks, sun, and ocean breeze).
It is time for a family getaway... I'll recharge my batteries, get some great photos, and be back real soon.
In the meantime, please enjoy the posts from the future. I've put a particular emphasis on your economic well-being... so I hope these resources help.
- Maximizing the Production Day
- All the Creative COW Podcasts on One Page
- Motion Graphics Salary Survey
- Essential Questions to Ask at the Beginning of a Project
- Five Great Resources on Copyright
- Want Better Web Video? Keep it Short.
- Don't Miss the ASMP Strictly Business Conference
Non YouTube partners are starting to see longer time limits for their uploads. If you have no strikes against you for copyright infringement or other reported issues as well as held an account for some time, then you may get blessed. It doesn't seem to be anything you can request, rather just wait for it to roll out over time.
You can find more details on the YouTube blog.
YouTube won't officially say "how" long the limit is (I've uploaded a clip that was over an hour with no problems).
Here's the official release – http://youtube-global.blogspot.com/2010/12/up-up-and-away-long-videos-for-more.html?
When presented with a challenge in a project, I exude confidence (but not arrogance). I know that showing confidence to my team as well as my clients is inspirational. A clear study of the challenge ahead will lead to solutions. Then I’ll leverage my networks. I have a collection of peers I trust to ask questions of. I can turn to online forums like Creative COW. I can ping my social network through Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. All of these play a part in fining the answer.
Everything I learned in college about video is technologically obsolete. What I learned was how to tell stories and how to solve problems. Every tape format has changed, every software application has upgraded ten or more times. Heck, web browsers didn’t even exist. But I know that I can learn. And because of that I am confident that I can solve any challenge I face and devise a solution that is an effective compromise between the budget in hand and the schedule I have. With a little practice, you can see the world this way too.
Join Photoshop instructor and author Richard Harrington as he tackles 12 holiday images. This in-depth class will show you how to fix both standard and advanced problems that often plague holiday photos. If you like Richard's training be sure to check out his books, Understanding Photoshop CS5 and Photoshop for Video.
I'm really happy with how the compositing and photo restoration in this project turned out.
- Scott Bourne
- Robbie Carman
- Amy Delouise
- Michelle Gallina
- Larry Hawk
- Serena Herr
- Karyn Johnson
- Scott Kelby
- Craig Kornmesser
- Ben Kozuch
- Dave Legg
- Ron Lindeboom
- Dave Moser
- John Pascuzzi
- Nancy Peterson
- Paul Temme
- Jack Tow
- Mark Weiser
Thanks again... you let me do what I do... and have made me better in some way.
A recent spot I got to work on for Constellation Energy. A WHOLE bunch of After Effects and Photoshop Extended work here.
- Match – Retimed stock shot, up-rezzed, luma keyed.
- Painting – Timelapse sky, 3D photogrammetry, Compositing, Color Grading, Virtual Cameras
- Cable Shot – Restoration, Hand-Tinting, 3D photogrammetry, Color Grading, Puppet Tool, Virtual Cameras (look for the horses to move)
- Lightbulb – Rotoscope, Color Grading, Glow
- Washing Machine – Heavy cleanup in Photoshop Extended and Color Grading
- Welder – Color Grading and Compositing
- Streetcar – Heavy cleanup in Photoshop Extended and Color Grading
- Phone Pole – Recomposing shot by selective stretching
- Switch – Compositing
- Valve Turn – Compositing and Depth of Field Blurring
- Employee Shots – Color Grading
- Meter Shot – Keying, Painting, Compositing, Rotoscope (it's 8 layers)
- Phone Shot – Retiming, Compositing, Screen Replacement
- Solar Panel – Timelapse sky, 3D photogrammetry, Compositing, Color Grading, Virtual Cameras
It was a fun spot... thanks to all who worked on it and for bringing us along.
@rhedpixel | @psshortcuts
Richard Harrington | Video Made on a Mac | DSLR Video
rhedpixeltv | rhedpixel
AE Basics | Photoshop Basics | Photoshop | FCP Basics | Podcasting | DSLR Video
I will be walking October 24 to raise money for the American Diabetes Association. If you are able to, would you consider making a small donation to the cause? Every dollar raised goes to help in the fight against diabetes. Someone is diagnosed with diabetes every 21 seconds, this is quickly becoming the leading cause of death in America. America's Walk for Diabetes is my chance to give back (and yours as well). If you find this blog helpful or entertaining, please consider making a $5 donation. Thanks!
I will be walking this month to raise money for the American Diabetes Association. If you are able to, would you consider making a small donation to the cause? Every dollar raised goes to help in the fight against diabetes. Someone is diagnosed with diabetes every 21 seconds, this is quickly becoming the leading cause of death in America. America's Walk for Diabetes is my chance to give back (and yours as well). If you find this blog helpful or entertaining, please consider making a $5 donation. Thanks!
Here's my latest iMix, a collection of songs posted to the iTunes music store for others to enjoy. Just click this link to visit the iTunes music store and you can here a little part of the soundtrack of my life. Music from 20 artists and the first part of 2009. Visit iTunes to listen to the tracks, pick up the ones you want, and vote for the iMix in the rankings.
[never mind the music, cue the video intro] "It's time once again to ask a well-known photographer, instructor or otherwise interesting person the same 10 questions and ask them to Finish the Sentence! This week the sentences are finished by.... ...
Check out this fun interview at Dave’s blog.
What almost two year’s means to my little girl’s feet.
Children are a blessing... make sure you remind yourself of that every day and keep children around (they make you a better person).
“The NIN/JA 2009 tour site is now live at ninja2009.com and features a FREE download with exclusive, previously-unreleased music from Nine Inch Nails, Jane's Addiction, and Street Sweeper. You can also browse tour dates, photos, videos, and listen to streaming music.
Additionally, starting today you'll have the option to remix two Jane's Addiction tracks and one Street Sweeper track on http://remix.nin.com
I will be walking on October 25 to raise money for the American Diabetes Association. If you are able to, would you consider making a small donation to the cause? Every dollar raised goes to help in the fight against diabetes. Someone is diagnosed with diabetes every 21 seconds, this is quickly becoming the leading cause of death in America. America's Walk for Diabetes is my chance to give back (and yours as well). If you find this blog helpful or entertaining, please consider making a $5 donation. Thanks!
I often find myself working around my kids... which means we share things like music and television. Every once in a while you find something you don’t mind sharing with them, such as Jack’s Big Music Show or Chuck E. Cheese.
Today, we saw a great concert for kids... by a rapper called Secret Agent 23 Skidoo. The show was great (the rapper has a long career of doing alternative rap with Granola Funk Express).
We bought the CD, checked out his MySpace page. Its nice to find music you can blast without teaching your kids words you’d rather not like. Perfect music for working on deadline or just a long car ride with the kids.
Standout tracks include
2 Gotta Be Me
7 Family Tree
11 The Bluegrasshopper
1. Some new photos from Red Rock National Park on Las Vegas.
2. The new graphics plug-in Sliver Efex from Nik Software.
3. Animoto Music Videos.
4. Photoshop Express Slideshows.
Enjoy and be sure to check out #2 - #4... if you are in Vegas... set aside half a day and visit Red Rock as well.
I’m not sure about the Digital Music category... but it also took top spot as the best selling Mac book as well.
You can check the book out here... if you’ve gotten the book and enjoyed it, can you please post a review as well.
Eighteen months after its enactment, the Federal Communications Commission must set up regulations and deadlines for "an appropriate schedule of deadlines for the provision of closed captioning of video programming distributed to the public over the Internet."
Three kinds of video would be affected:
- Material that has already been captioned for TV viewing
- Live programming
- Video that is "generally considered to be comparable to programming provided by multichannel programming distributors."
How about instead of sending money to worthless causes... they actualy fund this requirement.
A few folks have commented on the length of the article... here’s the Spark Notes version:
- Flash Video is getting really popular
- The Adobe Media Player will be easier for corporations, schools, and government to use due to Adobe's greater acceptance over Apple (and especially iTunes).
- The media player supports several models that are attractive to content creators
- The media player supports very rich statistics on media consumption
- The application is going to move onto all sorts of devices and platforms in the near future.
- If you are a podcaster... I predict the Adobe Media Player will have as great of an impact as iTunes did on podcast consumption.
The article is long... but worth the read... I promise.
My company helped produce this video about an important public issue. Please watch.
You'll need to log on with your Adobe ID (they're free). This is important to check out for mobile content creators.
If you are not familiar with Device Central, be sure to check out this overview.
- Coby Rich – Sorenson Media
- Larry O'Connor – Other World Computing
- Richard Harrington – RHED Pixel
- Jon Schilling – CalDigit
- Marlon Braccia – Shiva Entertainment
You can listen to the show here
If you’ve wondered why things have been a little quiet... it’s because my life is anything but! Welcome to Colleen Ann Harrington. She was born 5 weeks early (and no... we weren't ready). What started as an evening of Thai Food and a Movie Date (to see Knocked Up of course), turned into an early delivery.
Born – June 2, 2007
21 Inches – 6 Pounds 11 ounces
Mother and Child are both doing well.
Thanks for the kind words and well wishes.
Here's my latest iMix, a collection of songs posted to the iTunes music store for others to enjoy. Just click this link to visit the iTunes music store and you can here a little part of the soundtrack of my life. Girl Power – Songs for my Daughter is a collection songs that I'd like my daughter to hear. I think these artists offer a lot to think about and some good advice. Visit iTunes to listen to the tracks, pick up the ones you want, and vote for the iMix in the rankings.
Here's my latest iMix, a collection of songs posted to the iTunes music store for others to enjoy. Just click this link to visit the iTunes music store and you can here a little part of the soundtrack of my life. Music from 2006 is a collection songs that I discovered in 2006. I've limited it to one song per artist (but I recommend checking entire albums). Visit iTunes to listen to the tracks, pick up the ones you want, and vote for the iMix in the rankings.
I will be walking this weekend to raise money for the American Diabetes Association. If you are able to, would you consider making a small donation to the cause? Every dollar raised goes to help in the fight against diabetes. Someone is diagnosed with diabetes every 21 seconds, this is quickly becoming the leading cause of death in America. America's Walk for Diabetes is my chance to give back (and yours as well). If you find this blog helpful or entertaining, please consider making a $5 donation. Thanks!
So iTunes and ABC are doing something cool. You can download the season finale of Lost (as well as Grey's Anatomy and Desperate Housewives) for free. The first Million viewers can pull down the show as well as "The Lost Survival Guide" so you can catch back up.
As a podcaster, it's an interesting concept. Making something free, but 'exclusive' (if you consider a million to be exclusive). Still, I like free TV as much as the next creative type.
Be sure to check it out.... it's free after all!
Designers will throughly enjoy two temporary exhibits, on one concert posters allows for great exploration of typography and print-making, while Double-Take counters classic artists like Van Gough to moderns such as Lichtenstein. The museum also offers some innovative computer technology that allows all-ages to get hands on with instruments as well as receive some digital tutoring in musicianship.
The building itself is even a piece of art and is a Frank Gehey master-piece that encourages you to explore. Even if you're not a passionate audiophile, the technology and design aspects of this museum make it a must-stop for those passing through Seattle.
Radio & TV features some songs for those who work in the film/video/broadcast industry. A little satire, a few good beats, and some nice instrumentals. Seems that all my iMixes run with a theme... but I guess all good mix tapes do.
"1980's Rewind" features Some songs that pulled me through the 1980's. Some alternative and pop classics as well as a few 'guilty pleasures.' These are the songs that don't embarass the decade.
To get it for your system, visit Amazon.