St Andrews Night viewing

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Something to watch

St Andrews Night 30th November

Coltrane’s critical evidence

Just a wee series I was editing on starting tonight.

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The power of the edit

I was laughing the other day when I came across a blog (google sh*tting sparkles blog) where the details of working in post production are mulled over.

I am an editor. 

Not a comedy editor, or a documentary editor, or a music video editor.
I am an Editor. I train myself in telling stories in different forms. At every editing seminar I attend, the question of avoiding being pigeon-holed is always asked. It’s hard to avoid being pigeon-holed. Producers want someone proven in whatever style they are looking for. I am constantly proving myself with each new producer and each new type of show. I have been able to figure out different editing styles and have been successful at being hired on different types of shows such as documentary, scripted, reality, package editing, and multicam studio show format. 
But here’s the thing, each type of editing has its own unique techniques. Each show requires a different approach and works different editing muscles. So if I practice in one genre of editing, then I am going to be better at that particular style. There are lots of editors out there known for a specific genre of editing such as cutting promos or reality tv or scripted narrative. That is great if that is their specific editing passion, but I hear stories about how very few editors are able to go back and forth between reality and scripted and thus are not able to get as much work as they would like.
I often work on shows with very fast turnarounds. My average gig is 3 weeks. Sometimes in between my longer gigs, I fill in for other editors on different shows for a day or two. So in one week, I will have worked on a multicam studio show, a documentary, online editing for another show, and doing a recut on an old show that requires me to punch into program masters and make big changes seamlessly without changing timing. Within that week of one day gigs, I will have done music editing, dialogue editing, picture editing, mastering, color correction, multicam editing, and worked with 5 different producers each with their own personality quirks and preferences. My unpredictable work schedule requires me to keep every skill I acquire sharp. 
And I still have so much to learn. I approach everything with a beginner’s mind as much as I can. Being open to new ideas helps me think outside the box and keep my creativity going. Every project is a new adventure to explore the possibilities of storytelling.
What are your thoughts on that? Precious Productions is in the business of corporate advertising, factual entertainment and documentaries. We like it that way.

Drift Girls of Palestine

Amber Fares’s rubber-burning documentary follows an all-female Palestinian motor racing team (the first) as they compete with and against each other in wheel-spinning time-trials. “It’s like we put the pepper on the food,” one petrolhead explains. “The race without girls – it’s no fun.” Social conventions are overturned (one internet troll describes the women’s success as a sign of the apocalypse) as the Speed Sisters carve out their own space in occupied territory. But things take a turn for the dramatic when Israeli soldiers take aim at the women en route to a training session, and alarming injuries are sustained on-camera. There’s some nail-biting internecine tension as a climactic race result goes down to the wire, but the overall tone is celebratory and affirmative.

Rapha Core

Great cinematography and bikes – what is not to like. A film for Rapha cycling to promote their new Core Brand

 

Dunblane: our Story

I was lucky enough two weeks ago to attend the premier for this film. Showing on BBC now it is a powerful moving tribute to the people and events of Dunblane.

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LINK

This was a story of lives shaped around voids. Round the grief of parents; the empty kitchen tables with siblings fighting;  a town where a generation of children were taken in a moment of evil.

Stephen Bennet and the makers (STV for BBC) did what good documentary makers should do in the face of such overwhelming stories: recorded the words of those involved simply, edited unobtrusively and didn’t give way to sentimentality. Most important is they didn’t pander to a sensational recreation of the killer and his motives, which makes for easier if not cheaper TV

The power of image

It is all in the eyes.

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“The eyes are the windows of the soul” – this quote has been attributed to countless different historical figures. In the first split-second that we observe someone, our gaze often snaps directly to their eyes – in an attempt to figure out who they are and what their intentions are. The eyes can often communicate truths about an individual and about their soul that cannot be fathomed by something as inadequate as human language.

Memorable Ads of 2015

It’s been a complicated and exciting year in advertising. We’ve seen marketing campaigns masquerading as products, sculptures and even entire shops, but the traditional worlds of TV and film have flourished too. Here are our favourites this year.

Diesel launched a new brand language this year, which emphasised its irreverent heritage and was used across posters, print and also in unexpected media such as Tinder and Shazam.

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Other ads that resonated where CH4 clever ad campaign for Humans – where they even had eBay ads and a shopfront in London for a fictional company selling synthetic help …

Lastly Shiseido’s short film is remarkable because it is so risk taking within the quite traditional and regimented beauty sector. The film is cleverly shot too – apparently filmed in one take over several hours, its reveal keeps you gripped until the end. Compelling film.

Worth watching

Watched a film on Netflix the other night.

  
This is a story based on groups like Boko Harem, lords resistance army and more lately ISIS and the Kurdish YPG. It tells the story of a young boy acted by Abraham Atta (who gives the best performance of any actor I have seen in years) whose father and brother are killed and flees only to be captured and indoctrinated into a rebel group.

Harrowing, violent, disturbing, compelling. Definitely puts Hollywood fluff and films like the awful recent James Bond to shame.

Find more about child soldiers HERE

Blood and Glitter on BBC

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There is still time on iPlayer to catch Blood and Glitter – 70 years of the Citizens theatre.

In September 2015, the innovative Citizens Theatre in Glasgow marked its 70th anniversary. Blood and Glitter looks back at seven decades of pioneering productions and goes behind the scenes as the ‘Citz’ brings classics including The Slab Boys and Lanark to the stage.

Featuring contributions from some of our most successful stage and screen actors, including Mark Rylance, Glenda Jackson, Pierce Brosnan, Ciaran Hinds, Gary Oldman, Bill Paterson, Roberta Taylor and Blythe Duff.

I did some shooting for Kath Pick the Director/Producer on this show. It’s a well put together film highlighting the history and importance of this cultural landmark.