A Release and a Small Secret Revealed

Men Can’t Make Beds

I have a few announcements I just wanted to get out into the public domain, and two of the three relate to Men Can’t Make Beds. Firstly, on Monday 11th March, Men Can’t Make Beds made it’s premier screening as part of the Borderlines Film Festival, at the The Courtyard in Hereford. This was a huge deal for all involved as it was a project that ran for about 18 months, and for some/most people involved in the project it was the first time having work shown to the public (at all, or at least in such a fashion).

Personally, the first film I worked on was screened at a cinema as part of a showing of students’ work – this was completely different, and nerve-racking, because it was the first project that I had done 100% of the audio post-production work. I couldn’t help but listen intently to the audio track, waiting for a mass of problems. I was quite relieved to find that there weren’t any glaring mistakes, and I relaxed all the more when people started to laugh (at all the right moments, I might add). It was also rather strange to hear such a round of applause afterwards, but it’s a feeling I think I could easily get use to.

The second announcement is that on the day following the premier, director David Jones released the film to the public! You can find it by following the link HERE or, to make it even easier, you simply watch it below:

 

TOP SECRET

At the start of 2012 I made mention that I had some involvement in a film project, and that I wasn’t allowed to leak any information about it until the film had been released. Well that time has come, and so below I shall give you a small clue:

Clapper

If you didn’t get it, the film was indeed: Cloud Atlas. I do realise it was released last year in the US, and in February here in the UK – with the restriction given to making anything public, I decided to wait a little longer after the UK release before doing this.

Now, I want to make my involvement clear, because I simply don’t want to sell myself on false assumptions. Fiona Johnston (director of Killing Time) was contacted via a UK production company and asked to make a small clip of a news report – this was asked of several filmmakers around the UK, with the idea of only a select few being included in the final feature. So, sadly, I didn’t get to work with the main filmmakers but to get the chance to do something for such a big project was still amazing, as were the team Fiona put together for the making of our clip. When I can, I’ll put out the time within the film where our clip features.

The filming of our clip took several hours during the evening of a very cold December day in Edinburgh, and I was brought in as Boom Operator. Ross Buchanan, of whom I worked alongside for Killing Time, was also present as Sound Recordist.

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Men Can’t Make Beds

Hello ladies, gentlemen, and other.

It has been approximately 6 months since my last post on here, but I would like you to know I’ve not completely disappeared. Actually, I have returned with big news about one of my projects – Men Can’t Make Beds has been completed!

For those who may not have read my previous posts about this project, it is a short comedy film by Wind-up World Films. It was filmed in mid-2011 over three days, and has now taken about a year and a half to finish. This sounds like a long time for an (approximately) 8 minute film, and it is. Sadly, progress was stunted due to various people’s other commitments and unforeseen circumstances. But it has been completed nonetheless.

Now is the time for Wind-up World Films to look into the future. For Men Can’t Make Beds, the first official public screening of the film has been arranged to be at the Borderlines Film Festival (March 2013). In other news, along with several music video projects, they are now planning their next short film. They have uploaded a post discussing all of this (click here).

I am planning to go back over the work I did for this project and put together a post detailing some of the interesting parts (or, at least, what I found interesting). Fingers crossed it won’t take me another 6 months to post on here. Also, toward the end of next month (clue?) I’ll finally let leak what I was working on in Edinburgh for one evening in December 2011.

A Couple of Updates

Men Can’t Make Beds

Over the past week or so I’ve been exchanging messages with David Jones regarding what is left to be done with Men Can’t Make Beds. This lead to a Skype session the other day whereby we further discussed these details. It turns out that there isn’t a great deal left to do as far as the sound design is concerned. A couple of the scenes have been altered so, obviously, the sound has to be edited to correspond with these changes.

It has also been decided that both myself and David have been over-thinking the use of sound in the film, in that we both were thinking that with it being a live-action film all the sounds have to be diegetic and realistic. At the same time, we were trying to create a more cartoony feel to the film and thus subtly adding more cartoony sounds. We have now come to realize that the original idea for this film was to create something of a live-action cartoon and, with this in mind, we agreed that there should be a lot more freedom in terms of how sounds are used. So I am now in the privileged position to go back through the film and be even more experimental – these are exciting times!

It may turn out that only a few things get added and kept, but (as I’m sure other sound designers would agree) its definitely a good position to be in. Besides these sonic tweaks, we are just waiting on the original music to be completed, and the illustrations for the final credit sequence. Once all these are in the bag we will be able to move to the final mix and actually getting it out to you beautiful people.

 
Contamination Europe

The big news for Contamination Europe is that there will soon be an IndieGoGo campaign to raise money toward actually hiring some programmers to work with the current team, so as to increase productivity. The team is still working on a few things before creating a demo video that should be used with the campaign, and an official website is being developed – the IndieGoGo campaign should be live once the website has been completed and put online. Obviously, I will be keeping you updated as to when that will be, and I do hope people will help with whatever they can afford so as to help get this game off the ground, and to further show your support for the team.

Happy New Year 2012

A very happy New Year to everyone! After a refreshing break for the holidays it is time to return to the fun and adventures of sound creation and manipulation. For my first entry at the start of a new year, I thought I would take a moment to give updates on my current projects and talk a little about some upcoming ones.

Men Can’t Make Beds:
This project is currently racing closer and closer to it’s completion. A rough sound mix has been achieved, although there are still one or two elements that are being worked on with regards to my sound design – these being to add more depth and to give a few options of how the sound could be used in particular moments. Once the film is finished I plan to post an article going into further detail about how sounds were created and used.
The major announcement for this project is that it now has an official trailer with a mention of a release date! This was uploaded yesterday and features music composed by Christopher Blake. You can watch this trailer below, or you can head over to the official page where you can also read more details about the film.


Hollow Village:
With this being a student project, within two weeks of filming being completed a video edit and rough sound mix was completed so as it could be handed in by the students. Despite it originating from an assignment from their university, it is hoped that more work will be carried out on the pilot episode (particularly in it’s sound design) with the possibility of presenting it to TV networks. A timescale has not been discussed as of yet and the further work has yet to have started, but once there is any further news on it’s development I will be sure to mention it here.
Director, Ian Vaughan-Jones, has created a teaser trailer for this project as it currently stands – this can be viewed below:


Betrayal’s Wings:
This is a PC/Mac-based game currently in development by Sausage Pie Entertainment, and I have recently been welcomed on-board to create sound effects. I am not at liberty to give out many details about this game at the moment, although I will be sure to give updates about it’s progress. What I will say is this is something that I am very excited to get my teeth into.

Misc:
In other news, the Killing Time project is still in post-production, with the work being carried out by Ray Bird. No release date has been announced as of yet, but I’ll be sure to keep you posted.
Over the past month there has been some other work I’ve been doing – one being film-based, the other for a game. Sadly, I am unable to give out any information about either until they have been released but, again, as soon as I am able to I will give full details.

A Quick Update

Hello there! Just thought I’d give a quick update about what I have been up to since my last (and first) post…

Men Can’t Make Beds is still ongoing. Another day of shooting took place on the 29th October for pick-up shots, which means the final cut of the film is currently being put together (including VFX). While the visual side of it has been progressing, I have been keeping busy fleshing out the sound design – this has mostly meant recording foley, which has included flicking an elastic band at the shock mount holding the microphone, being found in my kitchen amongst my equipment with the microphone aiming at a cupboard door, and recording the sound of screaming while gagged (OK, this is ADR not foley) – see the pic below:

Hollow Village is at the tail end of shooting – in fact, November 15th it was it’s 11th day of filming. Most of the footage has been captured, with possibly only one or two more days left. I have been working for most of the days as the location recordist with help from Derek Smith (the writer of the project) and Andrew Campbell, both of whom has assisted on days when I have been in attendance and taken over when I have not.
Most of the days have used rather standard techniques with a boom microphone and radio microphones – the only acception (so far) being on the evening/night of November 9th, when a place for the boom couldn’t be found for recording/filming interior car scenes and the solutions included using the one radio microphone at hand at that time on one character, placing a handheld Zoom recorder on the dashboard, and (later) taping the radio microphone to the ceiling of one of the cars.
This project should enter post-production next week, while some video editing is already taking place.

When I have time I plan on doing a post (or a few posts) to discuss some of what I have done in terms of foley recording and creating sound effects. Both projects mentioned above are currently full-steam ahead and there is a chance that there is more on it’s way, but that is for another time.