Category: Video Production (Page 1 of 3)

Editors are storytellers – A tribute to Taylor Hawkins

Editors are storytellers.

Post production editors, mixers, motion/graphic artists, animators, composers, cinematographers, directors, and other creative technicians often work in secluded rooms using creative vision as a compass. It’s not for everyone, but for some, it’s the only thing they could ever envision doing.

Please excuse the sharing of someone else’s work, but when I saw this tribute piece for Taylor Hawkins I was floored. I don’t know who produced and edited it, but we rarely do, do we? It hits all the right notes and deftly combines the emotional impact of losing such an inspirational figure with the artistry of this production to generate a visceral reaction. The rhythm, the shot choices, the length of each shot, the song, the timing, all of it comes together to say what words never could. It tells a story succinctly, passionately, honorably and completely.

Music is what got me into this business and it’s what prevents me from ever leaving. I have to be close to it. It’s the same for many of us. As a vo artist/audio post mixer (and drummer) navigating a career path through the intersections of creativity and commerce, it hasn’t always been an easy business to be in. But I couldn’t imagine it any other way.

RIP, Taylor Hawkins. Thanks for the music and the joy. And thanks to the lifers in this crazywacky business who remain unsung, which is most of us. And we’re fine with that. #postproduction

The Genius of Jonny Greenwood

You love film scores?  You love the music of Radiohead?  You love the musical compositions of Johnny Greenwood, guitarist for Radiohead?  Ok then.

Ashton Gleckman is a composer who produces a series on YouTube call “Art Of The Score”.  If you’re a film score nerd you’d love it.

This episode is all about Jonny Greenwood and features analysis of and commentary on his compositional approaches and techniques used in scoring films such as Paul Thomas Anderson’sThe Master” and “There Will Be Blood“, “Spencer” about Princess Diana, “The Power of the Dog” and “Phantom Thread“.

Also, Johnny’s solo album debut and soundtrack to the documentary Bodysong.

Rugged Ridge’s AmFib Snorkel System – Jay Smack VO

I voiced this spot for Rugged Rugged Ridge in which they are (or, rather.. I am) talking about their AmFib Snorkel System. It allows off-road vehicles to aspirate their engines when crossing rivers and creeks while venturing off-road. Looks like a hell of a lot of fun. I asked for, and did not receive, a testing of the product in the form of an off-road adventure, backcountry-style.  Check out their bad ass products and find a local dealer here: Rugged Ridge.

Video Game Promo for “Hidden Deep” – Jay Smack VO

This is a recent promo trailer I voiced for the video game “Hidden Deep”.  Video games and the media associated with them are a massive industry and a huge part of the voiceover and post-production world.  It’s always a blast to work on a new project with game developers.  Their imagination and vision is incredible.  When you first receive a script for a part, whether it’s a trailer like this, or a part for a character, you don’t always have the benefit of a treatment, a video or even an illustration.  It’s up to you to interpret their vision and bring it to life while enabling it to match what will eventually be a (virtually) living, breathing character with a backstory.  It never gets old and it’s always a challenge.

Another interesting aspect, as an aside, is the audio, music and sound design.   As a post production mixer and musician, I hear elements of Ableton Live in the production.  If you work on Ableton you’ll hear some of the sounds and instruments.

Hidden Deep website

Steam online gaming platform

Good Eye Podcast – Dan “Gravelthroat” Wright – Voice Actor

Dan Wright, a.k.a. “Gravelthroat”, is a working voice actor and one-time vocalist for hardcore and metal bands.  His raspy, gravelly vocal tones can be heard on national commercials for ACE Hardware and hockey broadcasts and promos on ESPN as well as other places in the media and internet universe.  We talk shop about all things VO including breaking down copy, finding the sweet spot in your reads, coaching and gear.  We stray a bit too and get into music-related topics and our past histories.  This episode is something of an experiment as we’ve talked about starting our own podcast.  Join us, won’t you?

Gravelthroat
Jay Smack VO
Good Eye Podcast

From The Booth – Shakespeare – Hidden Agendas

Today’s wisdom comes from The Bard of Avon himself, William Shakespeare who has all kinds of wisdom cleverly implanted in his many works of comedy, tragedy, history and poetry. The quote is “The devil can cite scripture of his purpose”.

It’s the classic wolf in sheep’s clothing scenario. Beware of hidden agendas and be aware of those who see the world through convenient filters in that they tend to justify behavior under the guise of belief systems.

We should be equally aware of these filters in ourselves. Sometimes, what we take on faith or mistake for fact can be a lack of intellectual honesty and authenticity.

The full quote from The Merchant of Venice as uttered by the character Antonio:

“The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose.
An evil soul producing holy witness
Is like a villain with a smiling cheek,
A goodly apple rotten at the heart.
O, what a goodly outside falsehood hath!”

― William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice

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