Nocturne by Vincent Laforet

I *loved* the visual style of this short film made by acclaimed filmmaker / photographer Vincent Laforet. It was shot with the brand new Canon 1D Mark 4 at 1080p and ISO6400. Brilliant work.

It also highlights what utterly amazing work you can do these days with < $10,000 in digital camera equipment and Macs running Final Cut Pro. You still need the talent, you just don't need the bankroll.

Technology frees the artist to create, ever more unencumbered. That's real empowerment.

EDIT: As of this afternoon, Canon asked Laforet to take down the video. Wow, right as it was going viral? Someone doesn't understand social media.


More by Mark Osborne was a short film nominated for an Academy Award in 1998. It was one of Osborne's first works. Posted to iFilm, it quickly became the site's #1 video for over a year. Osborne directed recent hit Kung Fu Panda last year.

It's an entrepreneur's story -- both the film and its creation.

Alive in Joburg: The short film that inspired District 9

The actor Sharlto Copley (Wikus in District 9) makes a great appearance in here too. You can absolutely see how the concept built out in this short 6:30 piece was just born to be created into something bigger.

There's a political message in here too. The footage of South African locals talking about aliens was actually footage of director Neill Blomkamp interviewing Soweto residents about other Zimbabwean and Nigerian migrants.

Kind of an obvious allegory going on here-- aliens being a stand in for the 'other,' even among South Africans who suffered under apartheid.

District 9 was mind blowingly awesome. Can you even believe this is Neill Blomkamp's first feature film? I'm blown away, impressed and inspired.

Filmmaking advice writ large: Tarantino's advice at ComicCon applies to all creative endeavor

I love these kinds of questions posed towards filmmakers and media creators of all kinds. Like Ira Glass on creativity.

Great auteurs answer these questions about specific industries but they're broadly applicable to everything, including my favorite topic, creating Internet startups.

There's a certain auteur aspect to it that translates precisely. It's a business, no doubt about it. But you have to appeal to people, even change people's lives -- the way they think and act. You have to understand and communicate visually, spatially and emotionally with your audience.

There's a technical element, substitute filmmaking and editing and cinematography for software engineering, scaling, and tech architecture / ops.

How you start is the same. You create. You create until your fingers bleed, and then you create some more. Iterate and don't worry about creating crap, because at the end of it, you'll have made a movie. Or a site. Or a story. Whatever it is.

The final part spoke to me the most. Yes, it's harder than ever to become a filmmaker or an Internet entrepreneur, or an author-- a creator of any kind. There is so much competition. But that competition sucks so fucking bad, that it will be plain as day when you've created something good.

It can be done. Today. Now. Go.

Surprising side-by-side documentary footage by a $169 Flip Mino vs. $3500 Canon XH-A1

Wow, Kirk Mastin taped a Flip video camera to a $3,500 Canon XH-A1 + pro mic, and filmed a mini-short with both of them filming identical footage. He then runs through it one after another, and you can barely tell the difference. The main difference actually is the sound quality, and even that isn't significant at all.

This is apparently the video blog entry that caused the NYTimes to pick up the Flip camera. Anyway, Kirk Mastin, your blog rocks.

And also I just finally ordered a Flip Mino HD myself. I'm absolutely inspired by the storytelling possibilities.