We have to make the technical side look like it's just happening by magic..
In episode 01 of series 02 of the Tinpod, Eugene McCrystal, Outer Limits production facility founder spoke to us about the evolution of the colorist, the enduring ubiquity of the Mac, the successful marriage of creativity and technology and how teamwork is still the fundamental key to success.
Daryl: Welcome to the a tinpot, the tinpot productions podcast. And today we have uh, Eugene McCrystal from outer limits. And I’m going to start by saying, firstly, thank you for taking the time to come in to us. We really appreciate it. We know it’s a lot of, a lot of work, a lot of man hours in terms of managing a facility. And one of the reasons that you’re here is when we spoke to Brian from Tyrell. We had asked him as we do who he thinks we should speak to and he had this to say. I’m interested though in the first instance a little bit about first of your, your own background, but secondly, how has the role of a colorist changed in the last 20 years given how much technology has changed?
Eugene: Okay. I think I’ll start off with the background first. So, um, I guess my background is from, I had on engineering a college broadcast studio systems engineering and uh, after college went to work as an engineer and a for Carlton television in London. And from there we built the studio and there was lots of added in. It’s lots of, so mixing, um, going on and once everything was up and running, I got curious, uh, from the creative side because we knew what all equipment was doing and what it did. But some of the stuff that creative people were doing was kind of fascinating to me. And, uh, so at that point I decided to kinda say cross the divide and move from engineering into the editing side. So I, from that point I became, uh, an online editor and kind of work for many years off of that as an online editor. Um, uh, eventually I did move to being a colorist, but that was quite a few years later actually, um, to do to industry demand more than anything else.
Daryl: When would you have started working as a, as a colorist what would have been your first project
Eugene: and started working as a colorist in let’s say about 2005 maybe? Uh, there’s a, me and a couple of fellas set up company, uh, postdocs and company called egg post production. And at that time, the two guys, Gary and Garth were doing a lot of, uh, their editors and bringing a lot of kind of documentaries and drama work. We really needed to color star time and I love experience of grading pictures as an online editor over the years. Um, before that and there’s a few big projects come along and I actually started grading. There is a natural progression from, from online. Um, so yeah, that’s where it started and we started doing projects. We’d kind of, big project that we used to do the clinic there, it’s quite a big drama series at the time and we had done like a Eden, this feature from the road and it’s been a few kind of big enough drama projects over the years there. So that’s where I kind of cut my teeth on grading
Daryl: and editing and grading are our different disciplines in many ways. I mean, how’d you had a background in arts or design or anything that enabled your, or did you just find it, pick up the grading side in intuitively?
Eugene: Yeah. Like it’s, it’s, yeah, I, I, yes, intuitively it’s probably the way you could describe it. It’s more to do with, um, being in an environment of watching good graders, other graders in the past working and working with them closely as an Island editor. You get used to seeing what nice, good pictures look like. So, uh, when you try, you start doing yourself, you kind of start going, Oh, how did they actually get that to look like that? So I have an experience of just viewing constantly good images over the years as a big help. And, uh, certainly when I worked in London, I worked in a place called Mullen. They’re there and one of the big, uh, graders, there was a guy called Aiden Farrell and they, we skate who’s one of the best college round over there and down actually in screen scene in Dublin. Gary Kearn worked there and he’s one of the best colorists around and as well, so here. So, um, so being just an online editor on the end of projects that people like that you just end up, you know, getting in tune of what good pictures look like,
Daryl: you know. And, and how has the, uh, in terms of how grading is done in 2019, how does it differ to how you might’ve done stuff in 2005? The end results are the same, but are the techniques different?
Eugene: Well, funny there was a big change over, uh, and technologies to kind of interested in factor always in these things. So, uh, up onto round that period, we’re talking about a grading that have been done on um, things like things called like a Pogo and da Vinci. And they were kind of hardware color correctors and on an necessarily, they would have been set up directly to a telecine machine, which is a film to video transfer machine. And they been used to grade off film. And at some point in the early, I’d say early two thousands maybe before maybe late nineties, people started plug on video tape machines to these hardware color correctors and the play the video tape through this hardware colour corrector and recorded back into the other side. So, and that started as a new trend of grading rather than just greeting and fulfilling because up until the late nineties as oppose grading was kind of really confined to, film place and as an online editor we did color correcting and video suites, but we really, we didn’t really call it grading per se.
Eugene: And that at that point for me at turned the tooth at that time and we set up, when I started grading a non linear grading was just starting to go mainstream. And at the time we, we were final cut pro based facility and, and everything we used was as kind of computer based. So we didn’t really have hardware machines like that, only the bigger facilities where they had that legacy equipment. Uh, so I guess why I started grading on this thing called final touch. It was a great, it was a software grading system, which eventually got bought by Apple and became Apple color. Um, so thought was, and that was the first kind of desk top grading system. I would say it was available, you know, kinda to have a, a reasonable price. And the final touch at the time was $25,000 for the software, um, an Apple bought it came out bundled with final cut pro studio.
Eugene: So it was quite a big change. And yeah, so that would’ve been one that I’d say desktop, you know, desktop grading system. So I never really used hardware color correctors . Um, so, so grading really hasn’t changed that much fundamentally since I started, but at that point it was a big change and it was, was the same. How restricted where the capabilities, you know, in terms of the equipment that the software had say that, that, that the first nah, you know, piece of software came out in terms of grading. Could you do the same things as you can do today or was it just simple corrections that you can do? No. So it was quite advanced. So at that time, I know you’re probably thinking evolved a lot as a final touch as it then became color was quite a powerful system. And the fact that it had primary color grading had secondaries, you could isolate individual colors.
Eugene: Even at that time at [inaudible] you could window had windows, you could window stuff in. Very, very advanced piece of software for, for what it was, you know, there was other software like I thought time lustre would have been a, a big, um, a color grading system and ruined our time. Then, uh, Nakota was coming along and also, so was a Baselight were coming along, but also in the back one would probably come to an ally lid, DaVinci resolve. Uh, so DaVinci would be in a hardware color manufacturer. How’d this software solution for color grading also? And that was ticking away in the background. Um, so which uh, yeah, which now has kinda changed industry on its own, right. I mean is resolve now the industry standard more or less or close to? Absolutely. It’s so it’s, it’s a no brainer for anybody to pick up.
Eugene: Um, S the developing development of it’s been so rapid. Like I bought Da Vinci, I bought the DaVinci resolve panels back in 2009 or 10. I remember whenever they came out and they were like 30 grand just for the control surface. And the software itself was quite limited. The, it was literally a color grading system, a kind of single layer color grading system to conform to is very basic. Um, but it was very good. A collar cracked in and very fast. I’d used the, the, the graphics hardware very well and very efficiently. So it done what’s it supposed to do very well, but since that um, and I bought it just after black modular bought it, so it wasn’t, I went to see a [inaudible] system the year before and the entry level is a bit 150,000, um, euros say, and that’s the hardware and software I guess. And then when Blackmagic released it, they were sound the software only for nine 99. Um, but by the time you put the equipment system together with the panels, I mean you’re still talking 40 grand, maybe 50 grand. We’re still a lot cheaper and a lot more accessible to a lot of people. Um, so that the, that the was, and then since then they’ve developed it. The add the conforming is really good, aren’t there’s account free effects built in there with fusion. They’ve got fairlight, no audio built in. Um,
Daryl: to really have the ambition is to make it just the OneStop resources and that,
Eugene: yeah, one millions person’s got amazing added edit a twos kind of look. The phone could Axe and looked at all the advance advantages of added in with AF. Um, most people don’t see any advantages in that, but there a lot on there and, and they’ve brought them into the single a cut page. So it’s gonna start knocking the doors of the editing machines.
Daryl: It’s the click pages are simplified. And the idea being that that might be for people who want to cut 60 second video for social media turn stuff for journalists or people who want to turn stuff around quickly. Is that the, is that the principle [inaudible]
Eugene: on a simplistic level less what their selling point. I I see it as you use it all the time. Like you know, a lot of times you need to move a lot of stuff around in a timeline and uh, the companies just mix as simple, simple movement. You can go into the fine detail of the audio tracks and split stuff out , uh, as you go as well. But I think simplistic viewed as just the way it is. But I think mainstream proper editors will use a cut page as much as well. It’s not a, it’s just T is just tidy things up fairly nicely. And especially if you move in large chunks of story around liquor, it’s very good way to do it.
Daryl: And you’re now, um, uh, the, the head of, of your own facility, outer limits. How did that come about? Was it something in the back of your mind that you maybe had an ambition to do or did an opportunity just arise or what was the, the transition into that? Certainly.
Eugene: Um, it’s definitely a subconscious ambition in a way, like a, at back when we set up egg a few years ago, there was an ambition there and, and, but I asked her that egg, I actually just set up a small shop, just a small look myself pretty much. And another young guy Kilian worker, me and Ciara as well. So we had a very small setup, but the industry kind of people just kept asking, well, can you do this and can do this? And the industry kind of pushes you along and you, you kind of don’t like to say no and you certainly don’t like to say no to existing clients. So I’ve kind of grow on it. So we’ve actually grown into like, we’ve got a VFX department, we have now got a signed department. Um, they’ve got, uh, um, editing offline and an online grading. So, uh, so now, yeah, so there’s 16, 17 now for snow and Coleman from, so wasn’t meant to be that way, but that’s just the way it’s gone.
Daryl: It’s been an organic growth though, which is a good way to grow within it. From what you’re saying, it sounds that way.
Eugene: It’s good to grow as long as the work keeps coming. I guess. So, yeah. It’s a good creative teams, great people, you know, there’s a good team spirit and everybody of has their own boss. Really. Every team looks after their own projects and is, you know, so it’s kinda, it’s good for feeling is a good freedom. The thought actually. Yeah. So I think that’s important thing from working in facilities and London and even bigger facilities here. Like you do want to put the time and, and manage the time as best you can for the job because it’s not that generic. Sometimes it needs two hours, sometimes it needs a day and sometimes it’s very difficult to protect what, what, what project needs what. So, um, that’s not good on your own personal time maybe. But it does take Weaver the pressure off the rush of jobs. So, um, but it’s trying to keep that under control and make it, um, financially available at the same time. There’s always a tricky part.
Daryl: Yeah. Yeah. And you had mentioned that kind of, you had started from a tactical background in terms of engineering and then you moved kind of towards the creative side and let’s suppose editing column two is certainly sounding catalog both, but some people have the technical side and the brilliant at it. Some people have the creative side and they’re brilliant at, it’s not always the case that you find people who have both. How important do you think, has it been to you to have a better perspective on both sides?
Eugene: It’s been brilliant. I’m very lucky that I’ve found myself in that position because um, my true definition was engineering was, is to serve as a creative side. It’s to find solutions for creative people and creative ideas on a stuffy goals. I think from an engineering point of view, it’s much easier when you can actually use the tools and, and, and understand the difficulties you get into. And understand the, the, the, the, the client and the room scenario and trying to please, there’s different levels going on there. So I think it’s, it’s very valuable from an, for an engineer to understand both sides of that, uh, that coin. And, um, so there’s been an, I actually, I actually got a kick out of, I do like installing and, and building stuff and planning for stuff, but I actually get a kick out of then going in and using it and creating some nice stuff. So it’s, it’s, I’m very lucky to have that both sides.
Daryl: Do you feel that, and now the way the technology, I mean, OS’s are being released on an annual basis, software updates are now obligatory, their expected, you’ve got subscription licenses with all the main softwares. Do you feel, is their responsibility to upgrade more consistently, you know, to stay kind of abreast of, of industry changes, whereas before, with hardware that might’ve been an investment that you made a big investmet that did you for five or 10 years, that’s not really the case anymore. Is that right?
Eugene: Yeah, as a, again, a stems from, uh, that initial setup back in egg days was we went for off the shelf solutions at that point. But it was a point that you could, uh, I suppose my biggest hero of the year had been the Mac, uh, the, the ma, the Mac platform, the Mac hardware, and there’s been many arguments over the years, all this foster PCs and front ever. And, but the actual OS on the compatibility with everybody in, at, at, at the reliability of the machines, uh, is the most important thing. I think like DaVinci resolve for example, people say, is that the most influential thing happen recently? Well, for me, the Mac being still existing as a viable option for doing high end post on is the biggest thing for me. Um, yeah, you don’t have to like, so the days of spending a quarter of a million on a flame are, you know, million and a Pogo have gone, um, you can rent these things now for it’s very democratic in a way.
Eugene: Um, so, but still it’s the most expensive thing in, in, in, in any type of process. So any type of credit processes, the actual people so, but the certainly no excuse for anybody know you can get the tools would have been back when I started at it, I was waiting for everybody to finish in the evening and I was going home a T and then coming back when the atmosphere for free getting in there and learning how to use equipment and do that. So you don’t even know certain, there’s certain hardware you still need to use. Like our, our studio would have lots of hardware. We’ve got like, you know, consoles to learn we’ve, you know? Yeah. All sorts of hardware and stuff to look out and you still need good speakers and you still need good monitors so, but you can actually let do a lot of learning from home. You can do a lot of things. The application is the, the, the, the easiest way to learn stuff. And he needs somebody to come to you and say, I want to do this. Can you do it for me? And, and asked what facilities. I see, dude, I’m a see we are a creative technical place to go. You know, so I think these, this way to learn. If somebody come and ask me to do stuff, there’s no point in having all the tools and nobody coming up with us. So,
Daryl: so you then go and figure out because there’s a job that’s paying that enables you to go on and it’s worth your while to figure it out.
Eugene: Yeah, that’s that. So, so the, the technical challenges and to make up a creative processes is a what’s well, I think for [inaudible] we have to make creative processes kinda creative. And we have to make the technical side, like it’s just happening by, by magic really. So there’s no,
Daryl: yeah. So you’re aware of it, but the client doesn’t necessarily the person who has the creative idea, you’re facilitating that sharing of idea? Thankfully, yes. What our job is. Yeah. And I read somewhere somebody had made the point that modern cinema cameras can resemble a computer more than, um, a film camera. And there is this expression I’m sure as you know, fix it in the mix. The idea that what you record on the day in audio terms, it’s fine. We’ll fix it in post production. We use restoration tools, we do whatever. Let’s just do this now. Do you think in in, in terms of production, say over the last 10 years, and particularly on the, the video on cinema side, has there been more of an emphasis moving towards post-production because of the capabilities of software and somebody I think it might’ve been not ready to be interviewed and, and he had said that, you know, colorists other rock stars. Now these are the guys who have the respect. It used to be that the DOP, his aunt was the director and the DOP. We’re stuck together, but now actually the director is more insistent that they work with their own colorist. Is that your perspective or
Eugene: no, I don’t really. I think the focus on fundamentals still, so it’s like, you know, if you’ve got a, it’s like a mic pointed microphone at the right place. You’re not gonna. If you’re not pointing the boom at the, at the, at the subject and the appointment off button, they’re going to sound off Boom. You can, you can patch it up a little bit. [inaudible] same as DOP or DOPs choose the right lens has to actually focus properly expose a properly focused properly and also production site has to have all assassinated costume and everything else correct as well. So, uh, there is a bit of emphasis is on as a colorist, like a, a job can be very creative or it can be very straight forward. It depends and productions and sometimes you have to work really, really hard to make someone look just average. And that’s true. Um,
Daryl: depending on the raw material that’s coming in to you.
Eugene: Yeah, I like it. And there is obviously there is a look, say if you’re doing a TV series and um, are a, a drama or something. There is obviously a colors puts a stamp on the over hope overall looks, but that has to be a collaboration to the whole production, to the DOP and the costume and everybody has to be involved in that to make it look special. Everybody has to be talking. Yeah. Um, yeah.
Daryl: So it’s not something that you can just arrive in, it’s not shot where it looks like shit. You can bring it in and fix it. And, and this does that, uh, restricted latitude you have as a colorist to correct something.
Eugene: Yeah. Like, yeah, you’ve got lots of lights, lunches, technically the cameras of their card roll and the record log. And so you can pull back highlights from the sky and you can lift up things and you can, and the noise slower is much better than the older cameras and stuff like that. So technically, yes you can, but [inaudible] to make something look amazing. It has, everybody has to be firing, uh, at the same time. So I wouldn’t, I wouldn’t say that. Yeah. So the, under some amazing colors, like Gary Kern for example, he works with us, he’s in the amazing Colorado seas. We are creative and he will make a show look a certain way, for example, and just have a flare and, and, and people would recognize work straight away and where they might be sure who the DP is. For example, port, the DP has to be on a very high level as well. And to make sure that everything’s working. Because certainly from my experience, the best, the best stuff I would be proud of. I’ve worked on, I’ve probably done very little in the grid. The level of work was coming in and looking pretty good. But there’s sometimes you do have to see, have stuff on the has to be be pulled out of it might be too dark or you have to help the DP. So I’ve always seen the colors is a, an extension of the camera department. Really.
Daryl: Yeah. In terms of, and people who are interested in coming into your industry, eh, I mean there are lots of courses out there as you know, kind of communications and video and broadcast and media and digital media courses. If somebody is interested in coming to the industry, what do you think the best route is? Is it, is it to get a degree as a basis or are you better to go to industry and get as much experience as you can and kind of build up through that way? Or do you have an opinion on that? Does it matter?
Eugene: Um, yeah. Uh, it’s hard to say like, what’s the best way to get in? Um, from my ex, I was very lucky to get to college. Actually. I left school early at 16, and I went off Morton and recording studio. But I actually got back and I, uh, and I went to this place called Ravensbourne who done broadcast engineering and I got to know the best skin of my teeth. I shouldn’t have but under qualify but had a lot of practical experience, was very helpful. But it was really good to go to the college route and the fact that they met other peers and shared ideas and we, and we still have out network of friends to this day many years later. And I, so, um, so that was from that point of view is very good and some of the technical stuff we learned there was really useful because the stuff we will never learn again.
Eugene: Um, it really does depend on the course and what you’re trying to do. Um, it’s very, I guess, and I guess one of the things from a few goods like the, I know from the, if you go to the film school, go to Nashville homes to some of the garden, the UK for example, is one of them. And a lot of people go there to hook up with directors and, and, and DPS and they form relationships going forward there for future projects. And I, I think what, for me over the years, I was always very lucky that somebody needed to do something and a problem solved. And I was always good. It started off, I used to discos with my cousin, he wanted, he was a DJ. He didn’t all love speaking no tat, he was not technical at all. And I would have set up all the lights and got all the stuff and he played the tunes and did all the talking. So it was always, I was always, uh, there’s always people looking for solutions for doing creative stuff, I guess. So it, I, I’d say anybody who’s looking to get into the industry, uh, have their creative person try and find a technical person sort out the problems for them and if they’re talking comparison find, try and try to create a person. Um, so you can start to problem say at dots that is different on a practical point of view. Very useful. Yeah.
Daryl: So there is that benefit I suppose. I wish I’d never thought about it as it is a, if you’re doing a course, regardless of the, I mean obviously the cost is good, that’s better, but there’s also the benefits of abandon the network of people, of likeminded people, some of whom will go into the industry. And as you said, we’ll remain friends for or potentially remain friends or peers or colleagues for for many years to come.
Eugene: Oh yeah, absolutely. And I think it is a, it is a bit of a pot that people can, um, uh, it puts like minded people in the same room. Yeah.
Daryl: And do you think kind of in terms of the Irish, the Irish and industry, are there more opportunities in certain sectors in animation and documentary and drama or are there opportunities to kind of arising different times or, I mean it seems to me that, and I’m not really from the, I suppose the film background, it seems to me that animation is a, is a huge area on when it’s busy it employs a lot of people. You know, you pull 30 or 40 people into a project very quickly.
Eugene: Yeah, that’s where it is. It’s like nearly a proper industry. Um, as opposed to [inaudible] cottage is a, she sometimes you, sometimes you get a big job and go, Oh, this is a big job. We have to, you know, get structures and, and teams in place. And then other stuff you have to do it on your own. So yeah, it does. But the, that’s certainly the animation. A sector is really built industreis to people doing cleanup and animation and yeah, they saw as a very structured, much more structured work force as far as post production is less structured because it’s less. It’s just you don’t need an teams of people. Yeah. It’s variable I suppose, isn’t it? It’s variable. You’ll always, it is trying to find, trying to find good people is always difficult and always will be difficult. And especially in post production because it is a, it’s a hard environment, quite a harsh environment to developing a, because people pay by the R and you know, it’s difficult to give people a chance to get up and this stuff, government I started in broadcast was a much easier environment to, to get up to the ladder because you know, everybody you worked for is not a client per se.
Eugene: This is just another colleague per se. So, so much to as much friendly around a much easier environment to move through the ranks a bit. Yeah. Um, so post is difficult. So um, yeah, I it’s, it’s all about application. For me, it is finding a project is finding something to, you know, exercise your talents on and maybe colleagues is one of them. Things will give you the tools to do that. It may be just, it could be anything. It could be, you know, it’s just finding in this application release, trying to find the right path. You have to have the passion for it as well. Yeah. Well I certainly have, I’m very interested in the industry still am. Uh, I’m, I’m, I’m very technically interested in it, but obviously from a creative point point of view as well. Um, I, I spoke from that time I moved from engineering to auditing was higher. They do not without equipment that I knew. So while I’m, you had it installed, but I don’t understand how they’re doing what they’re doing with it. Um, so that interest is there. And um, so yeah, if I interested in the technology is skating and it’s not getting more simple, it’s actually getting probably pretty much more complicated. Like, like all areas. It’s getting quite complicated. It’s getting more complicated in a way.
Daryl: Why do you think that is? Because there’s, there’s more configurations.
Eugene: It’s more, it’s more options for you can do. For example, we’re building the new Dolby Atmos studio at the moment, mixing room. So there’s like a, we’ve got this round our box, it’s got 120 channels and the node and for mixing stuff it’s like it’s beyond comprehension that many channels to deal with. Like I started off in a recording studio with 24 tracks and that was complicated enough. Yeah. So and then on the video side we’re doing the Dolby vision stuff as well, which is a high dynamic range video stuff. So that’s kind of tricky as well that you have to work out different formats for that and how you bring it down to standard dynamic greens. So the technology is, it’s not simpler, certainly not simpler on the thing for us is that from a, from a post production point of view as well, our jobs is to sell these problems and make things simpler.
Eugene: And especially with cameras, you’re talking about cameras as earlier. So you can have a timeline. You could be a black magic camera in there raw. There could be pro Rez Alexa, there could be a Fs seven S log, three clip, that could be H264 drone shot. And I’m not exaggerating, you could have that all back to back in this timeline. And there’s a, the people just, just creatively, they’ve got a laptop and they’ve got all the tools and laptop, but they actually just, they give up as high. I just don’t know how to deal with this. So the have to give it to somebody to sort it out
Daryl: are the ones you’ve got vast quantities of volume. It’s one thing to do 30 seconds of video, but once you’ve got multiple sources, multiple audio, it gets complicated very quickly. And it’s presumably it’s very easy to lose sight of. The important bit is, is the creative side, if you’re faced with all of the technical glitches and issues.
Eugene: Yeah. S w what looks right and what sounds right and, and that’s a difficult thing to learn I think.
Daryl: Um, on the topic of cameras, so we had Steven Soderbergh on saying shot a movie on, on an iPhone. Um, arguably marketing ploy , who knows. But how, I mean, obviously phone cameras are, are our M eh, increasing in terms of quality. They don’t have the same capability in or near the same capabilities as professional cameras. But how much is that gap closing and how good are they getting as against something once you use professionally?
Eugene: They’re, they’re, they’re excellent. Like one of the biggest problems with phones has been holding them and holding them steady. Um, you know, the, the quality is actually something that’s quite something. And if you get the right, uh, you know, right lighting and the right song, the light start not too dark not too bright you can get cracking pictures of it. Yeah. I’d also holding them. So there’s all the, the, the phones themselves, I get stabilizers on them so that they can stabilize better. And then there’s people like TJ, I’ve got Osborn mobile, you can actually hold them steady. And so it’s gotten to a point, it’s going to be difficult to tell. Um, between, you know, a, a lot of us lands technology though the, what’s the difference between everything is the lenses and, and the stuff that goes to put a proper lens in front of a, uh, F they’re making lenses on cameras.
Eugene: But like I’ve used says there’s people who shot and like, I think there was thing called a day and an iPhone or one day iPhone, whatever, all shot in one day. But there was kind of, I think some of the Scots were involved, not in everything, but they were using big camera rigs and dollies and, and they’ll actually lens the proper lenses mounted in front of the camera and stuff. So, yeah. Um, I’ll let that lens technology inc on a change quickly. Um, the actual sensors are amazing, but the, the lens is what really makes a big difference.
Daryl: How important do you think is the, the space that people work in as in, you know, the facility, the environment? How does that help to foster creativity?
Eugene: Yeah, I think it’s important. I, in fact. I, I was kinda got it wrong for you. I would have thought at this point. And, uh, that a lot of people would have worked in their own production offices and their own and even from home. And some people do work from home and some people do work in their own production co but we still have a need for people to come and edit and they need edit suites sweets in the want. And uh, I think it’s, do the, do want to create a space where other people are creative people around even it’s just start accidentally meeting in the corridor, having a cup of tea, having a charter. I think people need a space where they can go to work and, and feel that they are part of a, there’s a, there is a definitely some type of community, uh, around them for working. Um, I certainly got it wrong. I thought technology would change up, but actually no, people do need to seem to need that. Definitely a tribe of that. Um,
Daryl: Is it something that you have to give consideration to as a facility owner in terms of how you, the space that you’re creating and how you feel. It’s kind of, you know,
Eugene: yeah, certainly. Like, we’ve got a big space in the middle of our facility design. Poland is quite an open space and we keep running out of rooms and we’d just love to make that into a room, but it’s better to keep it an open space and people do stop and have a chat there and people do have tea there and have a chat and, and bump into each other and, and take a break from what they’re doing. And yeah, people do like to be around at and yeah, whatever. And some people just like locked themselves away for weeks. You never see them but the make about once or twice and whenever. But um, yeah, I think a, a kinda community, the community, a better community is, is actually quite nice for people just to shoot the breeze.
Daryl: Um, what would you, I think you may have answered this earlier already. If I were to say to you, what is your piece of killer kit that the, the equipment that you think has been most universally useful? Hardware. Software?
Eugene: Yes. And it’s the Mac. Yeah. Like, you know, you can go into software with chains and software has changed over the years. Uh, the Mac hasn’t changed for me. Um, uh, as a, as a solid, it’s the keep the, the, Apple do all these ups and downs and whatever, but the remained there and remain relevant and people say they don’t have pro machines. We’ve got iMac pros and their most powerful machine I’ve ever used. So like they are fast enough and there mightn’t be as fast as somebody, you know, kinda hot, rounded or some type of PC and whatever. But, um, but they’re actually really good. Um, so yeah, that would be, that would be the, the piece of hardware for me over the years. Um,
Daryl: um, so as we did at the start with you, um, we’d ask Brian who he thinks we should interview next. I would say the same thing to play it forward. Who do you think we should interview next? Yeah, it’s hard question to answer. Uh, it is, I accept that from an interntional perspective grand petty from Blackmagic design. If you never get, who is the CEO of black magic. Okay, we’ll certainly give it a go. So let me give it a go. He’s trailing dash.
Eugene: He’s done lots of, um, uh, there’s a, there’s a guy called Mark Wooderson who runs a production company called a another Avenue. He’s an interesting guy to talk to because he’s of great technical as well, but, and he’s more extreme than the me and the fact that he will, um, he uses the technology is very good technically, he actually is, I a good editor, he’s kinda good at graphics and stuff and so on. Same Maxine, but they also directs and multi camera directs, so he does everything. Um, so, eh, so very interesting how he’s used to technology over the years and he very much adopted the Apple thing as well. And went the Final Cut Pro route and [inaudible] back up at that period. So East Nevison chapter talk to from a broader perspective, from an insight color correction of you’re just like a grading, kind of my, my, uh, my partner, uh, fellow director, um, Gary in Outer Limits. He is, um, he’s a really good colorist, is have worked on really big shows. Um, he’s a person that go into the detail off actually the dynamics of making a good look and show. So
Daryl: just on the, on that point, I mean obviously 4k I mean not many people are, very few people have a sixK round aK television. So what, what are the benefits then of of shooting at those kind of very high resolution format
Eugene: not so much so. Uh, unfortunately there’s not that big an advantage in lots of ways. The reason why they’re there, what they are, what they are is because they’re the, one of the big problems on video is digital, digital photography and a even 35 mill film has quite a large get like a window. You could say a kit for film are you say a sensor for, for video. So the video cameras over years and we’re kind of small sensors 2/3 inch sensors. So they’re kind of small sensors. So they never had the same size sensors as film cameras and you get a really nice depth of field when you use bigger sensors. And it looks at the picture quality seems to improve, but with the way they’ve seen to increase the pixels are the, the actual image size is also the consequences. They’ve also increased the amount of pixels.
Eugene: Um, and uh, the sun, the sensor, the hence like the fourK camera and the sixK camera that the pocket, the black magic park camera, it’s actually, uh, you know, physically bigger sensor and you get more pixels with that. Yeah. It’d be actually better if they could make bigger pixels and less resolution, but a physically larger sensor. Right? Yeah, yeah, yeah. The, the Ari up until recently the Arri Alexa had quite a big sensor and not so many pixels, which was advantages. Yeah. Does a signal to noise. But the seem to be the general trend is the bigger the sensor, the big, bigger the pixels. Yeah. Um, we’ve, we don’t really have the technology to actually see that in the pixels at the moment. Um, uh,
Daryl: so what are the, like are there any production benefits then to be pulling in AK footage?
Eugene: [inaudible] he had taken it in because that’s the size of the sensor. And so if you want the lands to suit that and it’s got to look better. So the big advantage is on a Saxy the size of Sansar is actually the difference here. So we asked you 8K, it’s not the 8K is the advantage it’s just that the sensors bigger? So it helps the DP for stopped the fees and stuff. Yeah. You know, if you had the same size sensor of half the pixels, that will be better for me anyway because it’s less data to move around.
Daryl: Yeah. Because if the storage files, the file sizes have become, well not unworkable but pretty difficult.
Eugene: Pretty difficult. Yeah. Certainly big. Yeah. So, so yeah, so the pixels [inaudible] contrast is King as they say. So the, the, so if you looked at a fourK television in front of youand you looked at the same TV, I’ve had a [inaudible] TV, uh, I fed a four K single TV, you’re going to have difficulty telling the difference, um, from, you know, from a, from that point. Now if you’re really close, you’ll see the difference. But, but the contrast, you will tell the difference. You can see where the blacks and the whites are. So just better definition of the color and yeah. So when you call it about a fourK or six K camera, so black magic have the pocket camera at four K the the got 13 stops of dynamic range. And that’s the most important thing really. I’d say the four K and six K, you know, you know, you can’t, you’re not gonna see it easily, but, um, if you’re reframing, you know, if you’re zooming then the afterwards, that’s handy. Yeah. But, uh, yeah,
Daryl: well, it’s partly a marketing as well though. It’s not to say that it’s six K or eight K, it’s a nice
Eugene: label to hang it on. Yes, that’s just a bit of a marketing thing, but they, yeah. And uh, it’s, but I think that’s the reason why it’s driven us because they can’t, if they can make sensor bigger without making a picture, there’s more, I think would be better.
Daryl: Yeah. Is that a, it’s a, it’s a, it’s a bit like the smartphone thing where maybe there aren’t the capacity of devel. You know, there’s only so much further they can go. I mean, if you’re 12 K there’s absolutely no Ben and you know, you just can’t, you can’t see the benefits. Really. Yeah.
Eugene: We’ll just send some more. Like, you know, it gets a lot, that temporary solution you’re talking to. Maybe if you’re designing a theater park theme park ride and you’re like a whole wraparound on, you know, you know, many years ago there was a film called How the West was one and it was shot on, I think it was three 35 mil cameras and there were, there were minded together. So they’ve got triple the resolution, right. Uh, you know, uh, horizontally and they projected them off three 35 mil projectors in the cinema. So it was a big kind of wraparound. So that was, that was beyond six K, that’s for sure. Like, that’s more like us, more like 12 K. yeah. You know, so, but that’s not a common domestic [inaudible] that’s us. That’s a theme park. I say a theme park ride daily. Um, so, but the full and everything.
Eugene: Yeah. So the Apple did the same to call it a retina display, so they have more pixels and then they double up. They’re made. So the things look smoother. So that, yeah, that does look good. And I guess, you know, in a few years’ time you might look back and look at hasty and got all this horrible, or not quite there yet, but maybe we will. Um, but it looks pretty good for an eye underrated hitch D Eugene, I want to thank you very much today for coming in. Appreciate it. Your insights and your thoughts. And I know you’re a busy man, so thank you very much. Thank you very much. Yeah. Thanks for the pleasure to be here. Thank you.