80:8 Photography : Video : Sound : Bands : Portraits

Archive for June, 2013

Probably why those Aztec dudes worshipped what they did

Pardon? The sun. Didn’t the Aztecs worship the sun? Or was it the Mayans? Actually the ancient Egyptians did a bit of it also I think? In the era where fibre optics pipe in our collective human knowledge and the relentless barrage and informational bandwidth makes us think we know everything about everything, sometimes it’s nice to go a bit primal. Well, I say primal – but armed not with a spear tipped with a piece of chipped flint, but a digital camera and clad not in a loin cloth of baboon skin, but a pair of Levi’s and a Timberland shirt.


Still. Despite that. Seeing the sun balance like a molten ball of pure gold upon a flat piece of human construction is somehow a link back to those days of wonderment – when what you saw, simply couldn’t be explained. A sunrise is obvious and elemental perhaps, but it’s part of the collective human DNA.

And it’s well worth getting up at 03:30 in the morning.

Here’s Berwick’s version.


In the late afternoon sunshine / @Tashabmusic

Rather delighted to have talented local singer-songwriter and all around good person, Tasha Blackmore at the garden party last week. Of course, there’s no hiding from the all seeing camera eye, even when you’re just looking over your shoulder and wondering whether to go for another breadstick and hummus. And keep an ear out for her new EP coming soon…For which I believe, there could be a video.


80:8 Gear review // Motorcycle Tyres – Maxxis SuperMaxx Diamond & Peroni Gran Reserva

Band and Music photography it says on the tin. Well, the photography is moving more and more towards video and er, well, apart from that I’ve got no other excuse for sticking up a bike tyre review. Apart from, of course, to give the GoPro Hero 3 a quick whizz in a suitably Top-Gear-esque kinda way. If nothing else, the video will provide a nice rolling view of the fields and hedgerows of the Scottish Borders finally bursting in verdant life. All the detail on the video is included in the YT description, so enjoy! Also many thanks to Andy down at Border Bikes for fitting the tyres and persuasion.

A review of my favourite garlic press will be coming soon 🙂


As a slight point of interest, the still above was taken from a segment of 4K video. The GoPro only does 4K at 12FPS so it’s not really video – more like rapid burst stills, but I have to say I’m seeing why there is all the fuss about it. The ability to take a still from any frame and have quite serious quality is incredible and scary at the same time.

A failed paparazzi…

…Gets noticed whilst lurking in the bushes. Another shot from a little old garden party in Scotland.



Monterey….Woodstock…Or just a little garden party in Scotland?

So yes, the sun shone gloriously. The food, company and music were all rather nice. People looked up at the sky, with mouths a-gape. Was there a 3 mile long Vogon space-ship hoving into view, complete with a poetry spouting commander on board? Er no.

Quite simply there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. Here’s Iain Petrie, singing a tune.



Thanks Iain!

Postcard : Croatia / 2

Yeah. A sunset. In my defence though, at the time of clicking the remote trigger, I was on the last page of “Level’s of Life” by Julian Barnes. I read about earthrise, the sin of height and of course, that when you bring two things together, that have not been brought together before, then, ‘the world is changed’.

The setting sun and the ocean are brought together every second of the day, somewhere in the world. Perhaps though, the point is that the very second of witnessing a sunset, is a new and different bringing together each time around and that may be it’s the viewer, in that instant of time, that is changed.

Cavtat Sunset



Postcard : Croatia / 1

Just three hours from Edinburgh and there we were…Sipping a Kir Royale and a somewhat middle-class G&T. Still, the light was and is, sublime. Here’s a view from a cafe overlooking the harbour at Cavtat.  More to come including slo-mo peacocks. No, really, I insist.



Video production notes : Lost In Audio and Angeline

OK, so a few production notes on the recently released video for Lost In Audio and ‘Angeline’. This time around I had to venture out from my usual hermetic existence amidst the potato fields and venture to a city centre club and speak (amplified) to real people from (OMG) the stage. Good grief. Still, it all came off rather well.


Working Footage : Around 42Gb of content between the various camera’s – 5DII and XF100. Why so much? Well, there’s lots of angles and to be honest I couldn’t be hacked with trying to sync lots of segments from different time bases. So yes, all the synced segments (i.e. 99% of it) were recorded for the whole song. It’s easy to cut using the sheer pleasure that is FCP Multi-Clip sequences plus the playback track had clicks either end, so it was a complete doodle to line everything up. And yeah, CF storage is cheap. If I was shooting on Super-8, I guess I would have got four angles 🙂

Cut Ratio : 129 cuts in 159 seconds, so that makes 1 cut every 1.2 seconds. Considering the recent run of slow-paced video’s that’s more like it! Of course some of the cuts are super-duper quick so I’d imagine the actual cut ratio is more like 2 seconds.

Clips : Around 18 complete syncs of the song + some bits of narrative stuff that I never used.

Capture Time : Around 3 hours. So yes, somewhat hectic. Why so quick? Well, the audience were there FOC : No lunch, no drinks and on a Sunday…We needed as many people as possible and some could only spare 2 hours, some had to leave at 1, some had go home for Sunday lunch. So it was two basic set-ups (band on stage + Singer on the floor) and max angles and energy. I got hot. And probably shouted a bit.

Editing Time : Very quick. Two versions were done – one with hyper-cutting and the one you see now. It’s a short, intense punk song so no time for messing around!

Preparation Time : Around 6 hours to get the shot list together.

Video Treatment : Nothing more than a straight performance video in a local club with fans jumping up and down.

Camera’s : Canons all the way – 5DII, usually fitted with the 17-40MM (at around 800 ISO) and XF100 for whizzing around.

Camera Picture Profile : 5DII = Cinestyle, XF = Custom profile based on the BBC dude’s settings.

Workflow : All raw footage converted to ProRes LT @ 1080. Delivered to YouTube as 720P H264 / Max bitrate = 5000Kbs. Left it at 720P so I had some latitude for panning and also that noise was likely to be high-ish due to the low light.

Lighting : Club lighting + trusty dedo-lights.

NLE : Final Cut Pro 7 + Magic Bullet Looks (loadsa flare!)

Other Kit : Sachtler Ace Tripod and Glidetrack Shooter as a basic shoulder rig for the XF. And of course, a water spray for the drums!

What did I learn : Specify a dress code and shout more 🙂

Here ye go: