Re: [Frameworks] Lookout Mountain films (Pat O'Neill)

From: Aaron F. Ross (email suppressed)
Date: Wed Oct 06 2010 - 14:14:55 PDT


<GEEKPOST>

Pat and George obviously worked very hard on
producing these DVDs. The image quality is,
overall, amazing. No dust or scratches, color is
gorgeous, sound is crisp and clean. Frankly, the
quality is better than a typical 16mm print. But
I *did* notice some compression artifacts in
"7362." Of course I am looking for artifacts,
because I know this material very well.

It is often challenging to get good encoding
results with fast-moving complex imagery. It's a
bit of a shame if a ton of work goes into
production and then the image quality gets
compromised at the final stage. So if Pat and
George do another run, I would recommend using
the maximum available bandwidth for video, and
sacrifice the PCM audio for AC-3. Ordinary humans
cannot tell the difference between 1.5 mb/s PCM
audio and 192 kb/s AC-3 audio. But if they look
closely, ordinary humans might see the difference
between 8 mb/s video and 9.5 mb/s video.

I'm currently working on DVDs of my own work,
which includes a lot of flicker and chaos. I'm
encoding all video at 9.5 mb/s two-pass variable
bitrate, and all audio at 192 kb/s AC-3. These
are the settings I would recommend for all artist
DVDs, assuming a stereo soundtrack. Two-pass
video encoding makes a huge difference.

Aaron

</GEEKPOST>

At 10/6/2010, you wrote:
>I don't know how many individual artists sold
>8mm prints of their films besides Brakhage and Conner, but there must be some.
>
>Pat, with George Lockwood working with him, put
>these DVDs together themselves, totally DIY, but
>at a very high level of quality. They spent a
>lot of time figuring out how the films could
>look and sound their best, and how they could
>deal with the whole process themselves, as I
>think Pat wasn't interested in waiting around
>for someone else to offer to put his films out.
>
>The transfers were done on one of Pat's optical
>printers, which had been modified to take a
>digital camera instead of a film camera. The
>elements (sometimes internegatives, sometimes
>originals, maybe an IP or print in one or two
>cases) were run through the printer and captured
>frame by frame into the computer. Sound was
>captured from the original mags, which are very
>high quality. In the case of Water and Power,
>this process enabled Pat and George to realize
>the intended original stereo soundtrack, which
>had been jettisoned in compromise when the film was initially finished.
>
>I think in a way the whole process he's gone
>through is at least in a small way
>revolutionary, going around any typical process
>or structure for releasing one's work
>digitally/for home use, keeping the whole
>process under the artist's control, which I
>think has been a hallmark of Pat's work since
>the beginning anyway. He has always approached
>things totally independently, for instance
>accumulating equipment over the years in his
>commercial work purely to have all that he
>needed to make the films he wanted to make under his control.
>
>It's a highly suggestive model, and an exciting
>one, although of course one also requiring
>certain resources and a lot of time and
>work. As Bev suggested, an arrangement is being
>made to attempt to get some or all of Chick
>Strand's films available on DVD through the same
>process. Now that Pat has a system in place for
>doing this themselves, the cost should be a huge
>amount lower to maintain the setup, I would
>think. Data storage and labor will always be
>factors, though. Very curious to see how it all proceeds!
>
>Mark Toscano
>
>P.S. The DVDs look excellent, and I hope people
>will support this endeavor of Pat's to get his
>work out there. They put a ton of work into it, and it really shows.
>
>--- On Wed, 10/6/10, Tom Whiteside <email suppressed> wrote:
>
>From: Tom Whiteside <email suppressed>
>Subject: Re: [Frameworks] Lookout Mountain films (Pat O'Neill)
>To: "Experimental Film Discussion List" <email suppressed>
>Date: Wednesday, October 6, 2010, 7:20 AM
>
>Before DVD and before home videotape, film
>artists sold 8mm prints for home use, the
>radical notion being that one could not
>simply <OWN> but repeatedly view a film by
>Brakhage, Conners, etc. I’m not sure how many
>people sold 8mm prints (but it was done,
>right?) or how much (if any) money they made
>but it seems to me that marketing of this Pat
>O’Neill DDVD is very much in the same spirit, and it is to be commended.
>
>
>
>- Tom
>
>
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-------------------------------------------

Aaron F. Ross
Digital Arts Guild

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