Wearing down to becoming Village Resident

A rather odd week it seems. Several independent things all together just making it odd. Or maybe it is settling into balance #4life by remembering to look up and see what else is going on and other creation possibilities not necessarily tied to No. 6 or tales of fairies.

Video  – a time for definite skill building.

I am starting to enjoy watching the Prisoner episodes – but in no way am I putting it together or carrying story lines from one episode to another. I was not diligent in watching them in order or making sure I finished one before the next either. I did find some episodes uploaded that are in 15 min segments. That has helped in watching. Don’t ask me why – maybe the shrink on the couch can tell me – but watching 4 – 15 minute episodes seems doable when I can’t commit to one 50 min clip. Same amount of time – but different. But it did seem that I am wearing down and becoming okay with being a resident. I think finding the tele-porter and getting back to Bovine might be necessary to stay free.

Which leads to trying to do a video without an idea. I did look through the assignment bank and probably should have stuck to a more direct route. I ended up combing several different strands of assignments and it became one project instead of several smaller ones.

What did inspire me was the music by Iron Maiden. I really like the song and the guitar sequences. It lead me to listening to more of the band’s music this week. During their height of fame I was a country girl listening to Steve Earle, Alan Jackson, the Judds and others. I seemed to miss the heavy metal era.

  • The project started with the song. I wanted to expand past the assignment of just creating a music video. So I used Mac Downloader and captured the song from YouTube.
  • I imported into Audacity
  • Found dialog clips from the Prisoner series at Http://www.moviesoundclips.com and imported them into layers in Audacity
  • I loved @iamTalkyTina ‘s interpretive reading of the opening dialog of the series and downloaded it from the prisoner106 archive.
  • I then worked on the sound file to blend with the music and somewhat tell a story (of a story I can’t figure out)
  • Sound complete

Then it was time to move to video. I want to get back to FinalCutPro because of the ability to really put your own stamp on it. As discussed in the visual week in creating book covers – wanting to start from scratch not edit.

I assembled my “bins” and imported into sequences – all the first organizing for FCP was set. As I started finding the razor blade for cutting etc came back quickly. THEN IT HIT ME! UGH! Rendering is necessary when working in FCP Every time something is added or moved. So using several different clips turned into a 40 minute rendering wait with the first clip. I had no patience for it on that day.

I kept it in the background, but opened iMovie.

  • Choose NO theme
  • imported into library clips, GIFS, stills and audio.

The next wall – iMoive accepted the GIFS, but creates them as a still image of one. To use the GIFs  as video or animated, I would need to covert them all from GIF to video in another program and then re-import. If someone knows the secret to making GIFs run in iMovie please let me know!

I wasn’t really sure which GIFs would actually fit where I might be going with the audio (remember – I said writing and storyboarding first is a lesson learned!) so spending a good chunk of time on converting hit the floor real fast.

I focused on using the clips I found, some stills I had – and now realize I had more that I could have/should have used. It was becoming the project that just needed to get done. Too much invested to leave it unfinished, but not quite compelling enough to turn into losing track of time into wee hours of the night without realizing.

iMovie was working for the most part. As with making art – lots of futzing. moving things and lining things up that most viewers will never even realize. I went back in and added Ken Burns effects to change some focus in hopes it wouldn’t be as noticiable that the video was not the dialog you were hearing. Towards the end I did clip the video and No. 6 seems to have a little tic or jerk as he says he is still himself – I actually liked that and had it repeated a few times as part of the story – so yes it was intended.

Towards the completion it still needed more since I didn’t have much original art included-  so I added title segments in some portions to focus on the dialog. It was like an aha – titles don’t just have to be at the beginning- and I didn’t have to go into a photo editor and make stills with text. The one slip was not having the Village font available in iMovie- and by this time I just could not think of figuring out how to get it installed and available to the program. Not for fear of doing a font install – but the uncertainty of iMovie in the way it saves automatically. After so many hours to get to this point I didn’t want it all to be lost of messed up and have to re-establish it all again. So yes – took the easy way out on this one.

So – still need to work on video skills and more practice to get comfortable and to use features that make sense. I will take this for the units this week.

I am glad I finished it and am okay with the result. I did learn while working on it. I am ready to do video again – but with a story that I may have more internalized.



Passing time in the Village – Chicken GIF

A relaxing day in the Village while No. 2 is missing. Not as productive as @byzantinebooks, I saw that he spent the day working in his bungalow as well. Then I saw @iamTalkyTina posting the catapulting chickens so decided to work on getting my chicken to actually cross the road.

Still trying to figure out the multiple layers of making things look like they weave in and out. I wanted the chicken to go behind the one with the shirt. I would get close and then all of a sudden I would have a frame with 6 chickens in the loop!

Should have went to FireWorks – but needed to stay mobile today.

Rather liking the slower pace – maybe that is a plan. 🙂

Time for some real rest tonight – and a couple of days of some things to catch up on…..hope to not come back to things on Thursday and be too far behind.

Episode Book Cover – Hammer Into Anvil


Prisoner Episode Book Cover

Design Assignment for Week 4

Out of the two choices of the “to do” assignments – I chose the book cover recreating  the aesthetic of Spacesick .

My first thought was the Dance of the Dead episode and having multiple skeletons, a sample was too close to that content and swaying me in replicating instead of creating.

While the look and feel is replicated – the process did require using design components to create. Space, form, size, color, place, text.

I used PhotoShop as my tool.

  • Paper size canvas – black

  • Brush – Sponge edges highlight then go back in with background color to soften and break up

  • add Gaussian Blur – minimal

  • Use Blur tool – large and draw dark into light colors

  • Add rectangles for heading – fill with color

  • Find camera icon and copy paste into file – Use SKEW to lengthen lens part

  • Add Text Fields with Helvetica fonts Bold and Regular

  • Find copyright free, free icons of hammer and anvil

  • Open in new file and use color replacement tool to add color to each

  • Scale

  • Rotate

  • Copy and paste into new layer in first file – place

  • Duplicate hammer layer to make multiples to set in pattern

  • change opacity for each layer going back

  • cut out shadow of hammer – SKEW, Rotate, Scale,
  • Add Title and tag line

  • Futz around

  • Export as jpeg

  • I am also going to import to my iPad and use some photo apps to add some noise to the finished product to see what that does to age or make it look used. If they turn out  – I will add them to this post.


I used an app called Snapseed. Adds effects. The part I don’t like is the randomness and just flipping from one effect to another. There really isn’t a way for you to create or control it – or get back to one you may have liked. It is take it when you see it. It does easily add some aging. I used the Grunge filter.

Added a filter

#2 in General a Puffin?? Info in Shadows

village-jim-grooms_John puffintransblog I started reviewing the footage from the General to find information on what might have been saved when things blew up. I think it was a plan from the start – who to trust?

Looking at the video – I was able to slow it down enough and see the shadows – look at #2 as his shadow reveals!! and there seems to be some invisible fairytale puffins in the room as well.

Truth in the shadows

Background process:

  • Clipped out frame from The General video
  • Imported into Photoshop
  • Deleted background within circle cut out
  • Used Eliptical marquee tool and rounded out edges of cut out to make it smoother
  • selected with quick select tool
  • Select>Modify>Contract 2 pixels
  • Modify>Refine edge>smooth and contrast
  • Cleaned up #2 with Select>Modify>Contract>Refine Edges
  • Added gray background layer to fill hole
  • Used Rochelle Lockridge”s find of the aristocrat puffin – selected and filled with one color of gray and added noise to create shadow – copied and added to working file
  • Used Transform>Perspective to create shadow
  • Added layers with fairy puffins and lowered opacity
  • Exported and saved as jpeg

AND THEN  – my own mind’s critic kicks in! Needed the context of #6 and the setting! So added it in. 🙂 just went back and instead of erasing all in the circle – I lowered the opacity after cutting it out and then futzed with making it fit in the circle.

Truth in Shadows 2

Penny Farthings and Puffins Everywhere

village-jim-grooms_John  puffintransblog  Penny Farthings  – It is like when you get a new vehicle or a new addition to your life – you begin to see them everywhere when you had thought they were unique.

So goes the Penny Farthing. Since summer of Prisoner106 has started I am seeing the dang things everywhere!

Cathy Jo Nelson – who I follow on Flickr and some ed tech groups posted this picture recently.

Let's go ride a bike...

We were out at a consignment shop we like to browse thru and again!

Then my husband and I are watching American Pickers on TV and they are looking and buying a penny farthing!

Then as I was watching “The General” I kept the stream running when it was over to watch the credits and the Penny Farthing was there again.

Needless to say – this called out GIF to me. Add to it, Rochelle Lockwood created another puffin with a Prisoner106 theme. Puffins are showing up as much as penny farthings and gnomes…..

I downloaded the end of the General, used MPEG Steamclip and trimmed to capture the penny farthing. It turned out to be 450 frames! Wow! At first I thought I was going to have to take each and figure out how to remove the text credits. After going through the clips I found there were at least 1 text free frame between each credit change. So I went through all 450 and came up with about 20 frames – much more manageable.

  • Loaded them as a stack into Photo shop.
  • rearranged layers so they were in the right order of building the penny farthing
  • Created frame animation in timeline
  • set timings to .2 seconds and a little longer at the end to smooth it out.
  • exported for web as GIF

Next was adding the puffin. I duplicated the file and then added the puffins by merging them into a layer. I added the aristocrat puffin as a new layer and chose add new layers to all frames. Worked on some timings again then exported. I also did a little color change. Because of the tones it did not give a dramatic effect but I tried 8 and 16 colors which give it a different look.

I wanted to have the princess puffin flying through the frames – but truth be told – I was tired and not up for the steps at the time….but it may come yet.

%d bloggers like this: