Friday, December 16, 2016

Fish Bass

Designing an ergonomic bass. The thing I don't dig so much about the bass in that article is that it's designed for your right hand to sit in the middle of the bass. And my interest is in playing near the bridge more comfortably.
Huh. In the early 70's Fender moved the bridge pickup somewhat closer to the bridge.
I found a piece of old pine in the dumpster behind my apartment building. I thought it would be funny to make, instead of a "tonewood" guitar, a trashwood one.
This graphic is relevant to my needs.

Allen Eden guitar neck. Pre-cut bone nut. Massive blank headstock. I need an 11/16 drill bit for the tuner holes.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Make a bass drum

So I've had this idea, after seeing the Turangaleela at the New York Philharmonic earlier this year and also having seen the Kachanov Singers, that the orchestral bass drum is actually the most expressive drum there is.
And honestly I'm not getting a lot of push-back from drummers on this idea. The drum can be quiet and round. It can make delightful little "canks." It can be muted, it can be resonant, it can be sharp, it can be LOUD. I mean freaking LOUD.

And if you're going to have a concert bass drum, it should be 40" by 20" deep.
Thing is, they cost around $2700.  Also note, though, one of the big tricks is that those come with a sweet stand which completely suspends the drum and lets you tilt it at any angle you want. Which kind of rocks.
But let's experiment with the mind for a while, shall we? Mind. Experiment.

There are some resources on the interwebs for building one's own drums. Thing is the pre-built easily-available drum shells don't get as big as 40".
But there's another way -- building a drum with staves instead of a bent shell.

Stave calculator by Uniontown Labs. It's cool but it doesn't actually go up to 40". And you know you need a 40-inch concert bass drum. But still, it does a lot of the calculations (even if there's a seeming limit in the numbers somewhere which make it output "infinity" in some fields.)

But. Again. Decimal inches? I ain't got time for that. I mean unless we really started making decimal inch rules. Which. I mean I guess I have to be able to find one. But. Ugh. Millimeters. I'd so prefer to work in millimeters.

Decimal InchesFraction InchesCentimeters
Rough Diameter42.1250"42 1/8"107.00cm
Finished Diameter41.8750"41 7/8"106.36cm
Shell Depth22.00"22"55.88cm
Number of Staves20
Joint Angle18.00°
Bevel Angle9.00°
Stave Outer Width6.672"6 11/16"16.95cm
Stave Inner Width6.434"6 7/16"16.34cm
Stave Thickness0.750"3/4"1.91cm
Rounded Thickness0.369"3/8"0.94cm
Board Length Required800"Infinity"Infinitycm
Staves per Width1
Staves per Length20
Board Feet RequiredInfinity'
Cost Per Shell$Infinity

Saturday, December 10, 2016


Among thing I am doing in my copious spare time is building a short-scale (30") bass guitar.

Not on purpose but it turns out I'm making a guitar that kind of looks like a fish.
It starts with a piece of wood I pulled out of the dumpster behind my building. I went to FabLab and planed it (the jointer there ain't working because it has an unusual 220v plug so it doesn't go into the socket. I really wish it only had a 110v motor -- or its own transformer. Ugh. I don't want to play with 220, but I'm an American, more on that later) and the piece of wood seems to be a piece of pine.
I thought that instead of making the bass out of "tonewood" I would make it out of "trash wood" and therefore the instrument would be a
Trashwood Guitar
Which amuses me but I don't know how that's going to turn out. I have this idea that the contours of the body will encourage playing near the bridge. Furthermore I (perhaps mistakenly) think this is a good thing.

I so wish we could just use the metric system here. Unfortunately all the rules at the Lab are Imperial and so all the detail work needs to be done Imperial. But adding and subtracting 9/32 of an inch from 4.183" (yes, we flop back and forth into decimal inches) is just too much for my little brain. I mean come on, if we're going to use decimal inches can we puhleeze just use millimeters?

Anyway, I get to go on a journey of discovery where I learn how to rout a Strat-style neck pocket. Also I have to figure out if the wiring all goes under a pickguard or if I rout from the back of the bass so that little holes poke up through the wood for the volume controls and jack. I dunno.

Two humbucking pickups. And they should be at 25.25" and 27" from the nut. Just like Ethan says.
I'll be experimenting with the MM 4 string bass humbucker by Warman in the neck position. The website says it is "Overall size, excluding the 3 mount holes is 90mm x 48mm and 20mm overall depth."
And the bridge position will be their Jazzbar.
So 25.25" is 641.35mm. That's where the neck pickup wants to be.
The bridge pickup wants to be at 685.8mm.
We will round these numbers off.
The neck is 762mm scale.

The ideal neck pickup position is therefore 121mm from the bridge.
The idea bridge pickup position is  76 mm from the bridge.

My calculations show they will just barely fit.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

EB0 2 pickup demo

It's all good times. New pickups in the EB0.

I wired the guitar like a Jazz bass but without a tone control.
I routed freehand without any damage to the finish. I went to drill the hole for the wire from the pickup to the volume pot and I punched a small hole all the way through to the back of the guitar. I'm not showing you that.
Conclusions? The position of 25.25" from the nut on a short-scale bass is the best "neck" position. Putting another pickup even closer to the bridge will get more of that midrange honk the kids love so much these days.

Bassic Testing

I made a little rig. I swept a DiMarzio One pickup across the strings of an Epiphone EB0 bass. I learned things.

I learned mostly that Ethan was right about the pickup location.

Conclusions? Best pickup positions on short-scale bass are at: 25.25" from nut and 26.75" (or 27")from nut.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Putting pickups on basses

Following is an email (between the "§§§'s") with Ethan regarding the positioning of pickups on short-scale basses.
Well, I did some thinking and I did some measuring.  Many people feel that the "sweet spot" for a 34" scale bass is where a standard P-bass pickup resides, which is 28.6" (or close enough) from the nut.

First I did some measuring to see if all my P-basses were the same, and they were.  Then I measured some other, non-fender basses to see where they put their neck pickups and, sure enough, they were pretty damn close to 28.6" - G&L, Modulus, Kawai, all 28.6".  One exception was Musicman, who puts the neck pickup on the Sabre closer to the neck, but I never cared much for the neck pickup sound on a Sabre, which leads me to believe that this 28.6" may be something like a right answer.

As it happens, the original, single-coil P-bass places the pickup an inch closer to the neck.  It sounds good there, but it's a very bright sounding single-coil - very UNlike a split P.  Did Leo Fender move it closer to the bridge when he switched to the split P humbucker to reduce the muddiness of the newer, quieter pickup?  Yeah...  probably.  Did he come up with the new measurement scientifically?  Almost definitely not.  Did he just get lucky?  I doubt it.  I'll bet he just tried it in a bunch of places and chose whichever he liked best.

The Jazz Bass, which came later than both versions of the P-bass splits the difference at just over 28", but the pickup splits the difference, too: single coil, but not as bright sounding as a SC P-bass pickup.  I somehow doubt this is all a coincidence.

So, where does that leave you?  Well, a 30" scale length is about .882 of a 34" scale length, so the numbers on a 30"-scale bass would play as follows:
SC P-bass: 24.25"
Jazz Bass:  24.9"
Std P-bass  25.25"

Incidentally, 25.25" happens to be exactly where the pickup is on my vintage Dan Armstrong/Danelectro, which is the only short-scale (30") bass I own, and it sounds really good there.  There's a bass with the same scale as yours and the pickup is placed right where an equivalently-scaled P-bass' pickup would be.  That's a "lipstick-tube" pickup on there, which is an overwound single-coil that sounds like the bastard child of a split P-bass pickup and a P-90.

So in your position, I would probably choose 25.25" from the nut (to the center of the pickup) if I were using a humbucker of any kind (including a split P), 24.9" for a J pickup or any other bass pickup with a bit more clarity (like the newer, full-range Bartolinis, Nordstrand singles, Delanos or lower-output EMGs) and leave the 24.25" position alone, as it's probably not far enough from where your pickup is now to make any substantial difference.

As far as a bridge pickup goes, Gibson tended to put them too close to the bridge.  I guess they thought they'd only be used as an addition to the neck pickup.  I'd suggest putting it right between the other pickup and the bridge or maybe even a little closer to the other pickup.  There will be less difference between the two pickups, true, but there will still be a difference and what you'll gain is two, distinct sounds that can both be used as stand-alone bass sounds - something you really can't do with a stock Gibson bridge pickup.

Now, just to muddy the waters a little further (because I can), the Musicman Stingray only has one pickup - ostensibly a "bridge" pickup, although it's far enough from the bridge to still sound like a [neck] pickup.  It sits at 30.6", which equates to 27" on a 30"-scale bass.  A Rickenbacker's neck pickup is really close to the neck and most people use the bridge pickup as the main pickup on a Ric.  Translated to 30" scale from a Ric's 33" the pickup would sit at 26.8".  In other words, if the scales were equal, a Ric's bridge pickup sits VERY near where a Stingray's pickup is, which explains their similar growl.

Jazz basses and G&Ls place the bridge pickup closer to the bridge, just on the edge of usefulness as a standalone pickup, IMO.  They sit at 31.5 or 32", depending upon the year.  That equates to 27.8" or 28.2", give or take.

Based on these numbers, I'd shoot for 25.25 for the neck pickup and then try to squeeze the bridge pickup in there as close to 27" as space will allow (reality would probably push you closer to 27.5).  Sure, it will put it pretty close to the neck pickup, but you'll end up with two really useful pickup positions that would still probably work well together, too.

As far as what pickups to use....  well, shit.  There are an awful lot of options out there.  It really depends upon what you're after.  Do you want your bass to still sound kinda like an EB-0 but on steroids, or are you looking for much more versatility?  There's a pretty staggering array of pickup and electronics options for bass - everything from pure thud to super hi-fi with tons of stops in between, and a lot of ways to get both - or, at least, aspects of both from the same instrument.  A lot of it is just how much planning you want to do and how much you want to spend.

There I go, thinking too much again.
Here for your dining and dancing pleasure is the schematic for wiring a Jazz Bass.
I'm going to try to put my DiMarzio One at the 25.25" position on my Epiphone EB0. More on that in later posts!

Wednesday, November 23, 2016


This is seriously the most unflattering picture of me ever.

And it may not even make it into the movie because we're again altering the way it works.

Saturday, November 19, 2016


Obviously Native Instruments has the sampler world tied up with their Kontakt engine (which is awfully pricey IMHO). And the registration system -- let's just say it's not the best. Some of the official NI instruments I've bought from them work, and some will "say" they're registered but still only be in demo mode which only gives one 15 minutes to work with them.
There are, ostensibly, other options. Plogue makes a free thing called "Sforzando".
As for free libraries there's the Virtual Playing Orchestra and Plogue's own free sounds.

Friday, November 04, 2016

Strings EB0


The order of events is thusly:

  • I got an Epiphone EB0 guitar
  • I put a new pickup in it
  • I changed the strings on it to Thomastik Infeld Jazz flatwound strings
  • I was not really 100% happy with how that guitar sounded on recordings with other instruments
  • I bought an Epiphone Allen Wood guitar from Guitar Center (online, used)
  • The bridge on that guitar decided it didn't actually belong attached to the guitar (even as much as no Epiphone bridge believes it should be attached to any Epiphone guitar)
    I took that guitar back for a refund at a local Guitar Center
    I got a new Allen Woody from Sweetwater
    I took the TI's off the EB0 and put them on the Allen Woody
  • I took the Allen Woody's strings and put them on the EB0
  • I'm much happier now.

Thursday, November 03, 2016

Exotic Dihemitonic Pentatonic Modes

An interesting discussion over on Reddit about exotic dihemitonic pentatonic modes. Ethiopian jazz musician Mulatu Astatke does some very groovy stuff in that, er, mode.

A while back I'd bought a used Allen Woody bass from Guitar Center online. Unfortunately, this was a thing that was true about that bass. Fortunately, Guitar Center lets you return used purchases to any GC store. So I did. And then I bought a new Allen Woody from Sweetwater and never looked back.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Miking and Multipliers

The Nikolai Kachanov Singers are kind of the Seal Team 6 of the Russian Chamber Chorus of New York. They're a smaller group and they have a wider mission of doing more modern music from around the world. Not exclusively modern, of course, that's not Nikolai's style. There's some ancient stuff in their repertoire as well as Messiaen and Arvo Part (and much younger composers). And they are freaking fantastic.

So. This concert. First of all, this venue is terrific sounding. St. Ignatius up on West End Avenue in Manhattan. The only downsides are that they have no piano and the heating is... well honestly the heating is a very weird joke as they have these two monstrous and incredibly loud heating units in the back of the church that look... like monsters. You can't see them in this picture.
The pipe organ is wonderful. You can actually hear what's going on around you. But no piano (and honestly I don't see how they could afford to keep a piano tuned due to the, er, vagaries of the heating and humidity situation.)

My sinuses are suffering today from breathing this stuff yesterday.
Ho-ly cats do they pour on the incense on Sundays. Holy cats. I mean, we walked in at 1pm and it was like being on the set of Blade Runner. Like OSHA would insist on respirators. Pretty though.
Looking toward the front of the church.

So the music had a fairly wide range of orchestration. One piece had a lute, one had a harp, one with a percussion section and a string quartet. So we're looking at a fairly wide dynamic range. Also, the chorus moved around a bit depending on the piece. For most pieces the chorus is upstage of that railing in the part of the church called, if I understand correctly, the "choir".
The left Rode NT-1 sat in the first row of the pews on the left. The right one is not visible in this picture.

Other times the chorus was down on the steps and the percussionist was up in the "choir" with the string quartet down on the floor (where you can see the conductor in the rehearsal above.)
Oh, and a quartet of singers was sent off to a side chapel for one piece to be an "echo." I generally don't go chasing after things like that with microphones because the whole point is that they sound far away.

So the basic deal is that my tendency is to want to go relatively close with microphones to pick up the articulation and detail, and Nikolai is wont to put microphones further away because he doesn't want to hear individual voices. So for this concert I was thinking about the details and locations of various instruments and came up with another notion.

1 and 2 are large diaphragm cardioid microphones spaced about 6 feet apart. Number 3 is a stereo pair of small diaphragm microphones up in the air, showing the kind of distance the maestro prefers overall. (Note these numbers are not the channel assignments. If they were 1 and 2 would be in channels 3 and for, and 3 would be a stereo pair in 1 and 2. If you aren't confused, just keep reading.)
Probably 90% of the sound you want is a pair of nice supercarioid microphones in an X/Y pair in the first "sweet spot" you find as you listen to the chorus and start to walk backwards from the conductor's position. It's kind of funny and awesome that I have a conductor who will make that walk and ask for a particular mic placement. I think it's somewhat unusual to have a musical director that sophisticated in recording.

For this recording I wanted some options though. And those options involved having a couple bigger mics closer to the music. And it turned out that except for one piece I was wrong and Nikolai was right but not for the reason I expected. The mix and the blend are vastly better for almost all the music with the X/Y pair set three rows back. So what are those very far apart microphones good for?

When mixed in with the center X/Y pair those far apart microphones add a bit of widening to everything. Which, you know, makes intuitive sense now that I write it down but. Well yes then. And when I say "mixed in" I mean at least 10dB quieter than the center pair. When I recorded I set all the gains to record the sound on the stage at the same level on each recording track. So if somebody sang in the center of the stage, the meters on all four microphone channels would light up exactly the same.*

The percussion setup was really very cool. Not shown well are these sweet little bells. Ooh. I think they're called "crotales".
But in the mix those NT-1's would be 10dB lower. I think I said that.
Pay no attention to the amount of compression and even parallel compression added to this mix. Ahem. That would be illegal in classical music. But note that channels 1 and 2 are the center mics and 3 and 4 are the Rode large-diaphragm mics and that the Aux channels only have 1 and 2 in them.

Actually, in the mix they're significantly lower than that even.  But I think that just the bit of sound we get from them, varying from piece-to-piece obviously, adds enough to make them worthwhile.

The lute. Pretty. But quiet. Insert your own joke here.

Now I made one exception to the general "don't move microphones" rule. That was for the piece with the lute. I scooched the NT-1's to where you can see them here for this one piece. And when I listened to the quick temp mixes I made today, I favored those mics over the ones about 30 feet away just because... because.

But now I'm all down with how I've got an 8-channel Zoom recorder, I may as well go crazy with microphones and track counts. Right? Right. I'm thinking a very wide modified Decca Tree. Because the fact is, if we don't like a mic placement -- we can just mute it in the mix.

*Yes, this is technically only true for a single point source and would fall apart as soon as someone changed position, but I had a chance to come up with an average and that's what I stuck with. Let's just pretend that all the microphones were getting the same amount of signal onto their respective tracks and leave it at that.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Friday, October 21, 2016

Blue Gears

I kind of like this very blue environment for a fairly post-apocalyptic city. I'm thinking I want a semi-apocalypse for our next movie. More "Stalker" than "Mad Max". Like there's a working society in walled cities but there's still a dangerous wasteland. With tele-k's and alien technology.
CG Aircraft Flyby from Steve Burg on Vimeo.

Also, Filmcity makes an even less expensive geared head than the one several posts below. Their DSLR Geared Head is $590.  I believe that other than the weight-bearing differences, the main difference between the DSLR version and the bigger one is the lack of multiple speeds on the cranks. But I will say that having two pan cranks is pretty nice.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Color film was built for white people. Here's what it did to dark skin.

Oh yes, the racism of film stock has been an open secret for years. Yet I think they missed the lede here. Primarily (as shown in the brief Amy Schumer snippet) it's light meters which are racist.

But that doesn't excuse Kodak at all, especially because of the iterative nature of what is labeled "normal" and, you know, white people.
The thing in the Vox video which talks about reds -- I think what they really mean is that the low-density resolution of reds were not so great in negative stocks. Or something like that. Maybe it's in release prints? Hmm... Yes, I'm going to guess that's what they mean. Because, as we all know, humans are all the same color, just with different amounts of saturation.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Carbon Copy Second Day of Second Reshoots Wrap

These directions for building your own Pip Boy are a little vague, but he does excellent work. The key is really the weathering isn't it?
I do feel my next movie needs a Pip-Boy of some kind.
Oh. We wrapped on Carbon Copy.
The beautifully feral Kate Britton going all Ghost in the Shell on us.

Saturday, October 08, 2016

A Pandora Semioticry

A new semiotic standard. Duplicates are unavoidable.
So I have 5 days to make five more 2' wide panels. And also do some routing on the device device.
Do you have any idea what I'm talking about? Of course not.
Now I will embark on a journey of discovery about turning bitmaps into vector graphics. Wish me luck.

Friday, October 07, 2016

Do we say "duh" or "about time" or "that's cool and different"?

Non-spoiler reactions to Luke Cage:
You know you got some white male privilege in you when you watch a scene and realize that it's probably the only time you've seen three African American actresses in the same scene on television.
The trope of The Detective, the Lieutenant, and the pain in the tuchus Internal Affairs Officer, is a dynamic we've seen before. But we just never get to see ALL THREE OF THOSE ROLES PLAYED BY BLACK WOMEN. Yeah, yeah, I know, we can find some earlier exceptions. But they're mightily rare on TV. 
Sure, we have seen that dynamic before. The Detective, the Lieutenant, and the IA officer. But I can't think of a show where all three of those characters would be black... women. I mean. And they're not 18-year-old models. The majority of the black women are just that, ponderable women.

One thing that's really great about it is that anyone could be anything in that scenario. Like we can have a black woman play any sort of character we want because we're free of worrying about "What does that say that we put a black woman in that role?" You mean the role of a pain in the tuchus IA officer? Dramatically it's so dang freeing

Are there dramatic problems with Luke Cage? Oh yes. Yes there are. Mostly in that our protagonist is so hesitant that everyone else is vastly more interesting. 
I mean, it's like putting Hamlet and Macbeth in the same play. Hamlet is moping around and Macbeth has unseemed some dudes from nave to chops before the first scene. 
But the soundtrack is absolutely fantastic.

Saturday, October 01, 2016

Reshoot 2/1

Julia Rae Maldonado looking quite noir today.
 This is the first day of the second round of reshoots on Carbon Copy.
I thought we would shoot most of everything on a 200mm lens. No no no. That lens was way too close. So I rout around in my bag (is that supposed to be "root"?) and I can't find the regular Panasonic lens. So...
Let me start again. I have a small collection of Canon S.S.C. lenses. They're really quite nice. And before I left for set this morning I was like "I should remember to bring those S.S.C. primes as well as the regular Panasonic lens because right now I just have this 200mm mounted on the camera."
Guess what I did not do? If you guessed "bring any lenses" then you are today's winner.
Joe Chapman, however, (unknown to me) has a phenomenal collection of very fast S.S.C. lenses. I had the FD to Micro 4/3rds adapter on the camera so it all went swimmingly. All of these images were taken with a 20mm... f2.8? Maybe?
Joe Chapman lends and literal and figurative helping hand.
 A family emergency left us down one actor for this MOS sequence. So we re-wrote it last night that it could be played sans that one actor.
Not the first time we've killed Willow Csulik.

Friday, September 30, 2016

Friday, September 23, 2016

Pedal pedal

There are a lot of guitar pedals out there in the world. The thing is that there's actually sort of a limited number of actual usable sounds compared to the numbers of different sounds we can make with our technology or even imagination. I think Casio discovered this in the late 80's with their PCM synthesizers. And especially now -- when we can literally draw any sort of sound we want, we find that by and large there are some usable sounds and other sounds we don't care about. I mean, I don't even have examples of those sounds that are useless because nobody uses them. But go ahead, draw a waveform. You'll hear what I mean. They're pretty useless.
Anyway, pedals. Lots of small manufacturers. Mostly making fuzz boxes. Look, there are and have been some amazing guitar players who used fuzz boxes. You know, people like Hendrix. But personally I don't care for them. Maybe it's because I used to have an MXR Distortion + pedal. But most new pedals make sounds I... just don't care about.

Obviously there are exceptions. Most all useful guitar sounds had pretty much been found by the early 70's. Probably earlier than that even. You could keep adding more gain and fuzz but... after a while it gets kind of boring.
Strymon does excellent work. And if you had a hankering for a vibrato/reverb pedal their Flint seems like it can't be beat.
Lehle also rocks the vole. They just make great stuff. And if I were a bass player I'd be seriously looking into their two-band bass compressor pedal.

Friday, September 16, 2016


The actual connections of the cables into the body are a bit tricky, aren't they?

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Waterfox Picnic

The latest version of Waterfox isn't working for me. I'm finding I have to run version 46 because when my computer wakes up everything's drawn wrong -- Facebook doesn't center and GChat doesn't work because its window doesn't open in GMail's tab.

A list of nicknames which has some surprisingly good names on it.

Roadside Picnic ended up being (sorta) a video game called STALKER.

Space4Shoots is a relatively inexpensive photo/video studio in Manhattan.


Synthia is a free VST version of the EMS Synthia -- the sequencer and synthesiser used by Pink Floyd for "On the Run."

Warm Audio makes an LA-2A clone. The street price for that mono limiter is only $900 which, for an optical compressor is pretty darn good. I think the LA-2A is my favorite compressor. I've never been able to get the (vastly more affordable) 1176 to work for me.
Dunlop makes a couple Echoplex emulators. A preamp for about a hundred dollars.

And the actual Echoplex delay itself. They run new for about $200.
You can add the MXR delay switch for about $40.

I love my MXR Carbon Copy Analog Delay (also made by Dunlop) but boy... Dunlop makes some really great and refined-sounding stuff.  I love my Carbon Copy. It sounds fantastic. But the Echoplex... I'm not saying I don't love my Carbon Copy. I'm just sayin'...

Thursday, September 01, 2016


Sound Devices makes a little free utility called Wave Agent which will split poly .wav files into multiple mono .wav files, or join mono .wav files into single poly .wav files.
Since I derped and recorded a bunch of individual tracks the other day, it was nice to have a little utility to sew them all together again.
Shooting a reel or "demo" for a movie in a very beautiful bar in Astoria.
And also the Zoom F8 worked for two whole days recording 3 and 4 tracks (plus stereo) to two SD cards without failing! Woo! This is with the latest update to their firmware.
I ran a backup to a Tascam handheld recorder anyway, but it was nice to not have any failures on the F8.

Friday, August 19, 2016


One Cut Vinyl is a print-on-demand record cutting service. Expect to pay about 20 British pounds each for a run of 10. Doesn't come with jackets.
Vinylify specializes in 10-inch (!) records. About 60 Euros a piece. But that includes a spineless jacket.

These German dudes at VinylRecorder have made a 3200 Euro vinyl record cutter. I mean. That's crazy. Brilliant. It fits on top of a Techniques 1500 turntable.
Custom Records also does one-off lathed records for $150 plus labels and jackets.
Vinylondemand does $50 12" records.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Both of your things for today

Brewster Jennings was the company the CIA had which was dissolved after the Valerie Plame affair.
How long should a science fiction book be? According to this post -- about 100,000 words.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Geared Head

Proaim Orion Geared Head.
Just under $2000.
This is what I need. And a decent dolly too. With a realistic way to pull focus. But yeah, somebody finally realized how we all need a good geared head for less than $15000.

The End of August at the Hotel Ozone

The bar code for the new Diatomaceous Earth album is 763591005228
The last 8 is the check-sum.

Sunday, August 07, 2016

Oblivion Status Update

Bob Teague asked me for a status update on Oblivion.
This is where we're at. We have a cut. We have a lot of visual effects. But Ian Hubert is em-bettering the effects and adding our giant robot Henry.
This actually means there's a lot of paperwork for me. I am labeling all the effects and making sure the background plates are properly labeled and rendering out files which have "context" so Ian can see what happens before and after the effect. The effects numbering is like "1401 02.100 downed drone series" and the like.
Huh. I just now realized I'd made an error in my numbering. The "1401" is correct because that's the number code of the movie. But the "02" should be for a visual effect in act 2, not act 1 as shown here. Oops. As long as no visual effect is given the same number though, that's the key.

There's going to be some ADR. The stuff outside was never properly recorded, but that was by design because the park rangers would have busted us on day 1 if we'd showed up with recording gear as well as a camera.

Now, I'm also in post on two other pictures. And I have to build sets for the reshoots on the movie which was once called Android Masquerade but is now called Carbon Copy. And then there are about a million things I have to do. I'm sure.

EDIT: my above mistake has been fixed. We're back to project number/act/shot number. Whew.

Monday, August 01, 2016

Root Orchard School

My eldest brother, whose birthday is today, says that The Best Damn Root Beer is in fact the best root beer.
He also says that the Summer Honey version of the Angry Orchard hard cider is the best hard cider.
My niece is involved with the charter school drive. I don't know or understand anything about it.
It's important for you to read and memorize my birthday's horoscope.
I dig this oil slide video and will likely use it in a video one day.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016


Krylon vs Rustoleum spraypaints. I'm using Rustoleum for metallics and Krylon for flat colors.

I'm thinking Masonite rather than MDF. Another thing I'm thinking is flats that are 24" wide rather than 48". Actually I'm thinking that 18" on center is more amusing to me but for practical purposes that may not work. From what I can gather Masonite is a tad more practical than Luan.

Blick actually sells 24" by 30" panels. I know I could cut the panels myself but that would be really irritating work to do.

I learned the difference between a Hollywood and a Broadway flat.

A guide for making corrugated cardboard set pieces.

Monday, July 25, 2016

These shots.

    • Running into position
    • Shooting at oncoming
    • Approaching Wall
    • Side View
    • Chaos
    • The Wide Shot of Stuff Exploding
 I think I have all those shots. These are things I think. Yes. This blog is just a notebook which contains information that only makes sense to me.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Slide Tab Tension

Custom waterslide decals for guitars.

Just reposting this tab of Jethro Tull's Bouree'. It's still really difficult to play.

This isn't really the best-written treatise on string tension and honestly I still don't understand it after having read it a few times.  Apparently having a minimal angle after the nut and the bridge makes bending notes more pleasant. Hmm... that makes sense to me actually.