Archive for November 30th, 2007

Religious fanatism

Thousands of Sudanese, many armed with clubs and knives, rallied Friday in a central square and demanded the execution of a British teacher convicted of insulting Islam for allowing her students to name a teddy bear “Muhammad.” […] The protesters streamed out of mosques after Friday sermons, as pickup trucks with loudspeakers blared messages against Gibbons… […] “Shame, shame on the U.K.,” protesters chanted.

That’s what you get from unintelligent people who are pushed by their religious leaders to go left or right. I mean, think about it. The “official” punishment for this “crime” is 40 lashes. Regardless if this is a fair punishment or not, these guys stormed out of their mosques and demanded execution instead. This just shows people who don’t know what they are doing and are easily convinced by their leaders. They show no personal character.

And no, I have nothing against Muslims. I have everything against religious fanatics though, regardless of religion.

Addicted

I am seriously addicted to this, when it’s prepared like this. No kidding. That’s all I want to be having, all the time.

“A Scanner Darkly” Look

I am sure most of you have heard about the “A scanner darkly” cult movie by now: “A Scanner Darkly” is a powerful dystopic film set in the terrifying near future — a world controlled by high-tech surveillance and ruled by a liberty-destroying police state.

What hits the viewer first and foremost is the look of the film. They used 30 artists, working full time for months, painting over the actor’s faces in order to give it a comic-like look. It took over an hour to paint a single frame for the movie! Check the pictures on the URL above, to have a taste on how the movie looked like.

Before:

After:

Well, we, DV rebels, don’t have the time to do that. Thankfully, there is a plugin, available for various NLEs, that is able to have a similar effect to your footage. It won’t be as “clean” looking as the movie’s frames that were done by hand, but it’s the best there is for being fully automatic. Pixelan’s “Posterwise” plugin, part of their CreativEase “color effect pack” does this job, and it only costs $39. If you are after the comic look, that’s a very fair price.

Before:

After:

I tried doing the job using Vegas’ own plugins, but it’s not possible to achieve the same look. The best you can do is this, which as you can see, it doesn’t even compare in terms of quality. With After Effects it’s a bit more doable, but it’s not as easy to do and it’s very laborious.

Plugin settings for the look achieved above (leave everything else unchanged):

Update: A better version, that has “pre-blur” set to 5.5, crop frame edge of 2 pixels, and smart-blur/anti-alias checked. Depending on the scene, modify the settings a bit.