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Fix It In Post: Solutions for Postproduction Problems [Paperback]

Jack James

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Book Description

March 25 2009 0240811240 978-0240811246 1
This book provides an array of concise solutions to the wide variety of problems that are faced by postproduction artists in the post process. With an application-agnostic approach, it gives proven, step-by-step methods to solving the most frequently encountered postproduction problems. Also included is access to a free, password-protected website that features application-specific resolutions to the problems presented, with fixes for working in Apple's Final Cut Studio suite, Avid's Media Composer, Adobe Premiere Pro, as well as other applications.

Lessons are enhanced through eye-catching 4 color illustrations throughout. Solutions are provided for common audio, video, digital, editorial, color, timing and compositing problems, such as, but not limited to:
* automated dialogue replacement, adjusting sync, and correcting pitch
* turning SD into HD (and vice-versa) and restoration of old film for video
* removing duplicate frames, repairing corrupt frames, and anti-aliasing
* maintaining continuity, removing soft cuts, and troubleshooting timecodes
* adding vignettes, removing color casts, and legalizing color
* speeding shots up or slowing shots down, and smoothing timelapse
* reframing shots, sky replacement, and object addition or removal

The book is presented in a "cookbook" format, allowing you to reference your exact problem in the TOC or index, go to that section, and immediately implement the solution featured.

* Concise solutions to a broad range of problems commonly encountered in postproduction, with solutions for problems with video, audio, compositing, color, editing, timing, and more
* 4-color presentation engages and provides vibrant visual guidance to solutions
* Application-agnostic approach provides solutions to problems regardless of the software being used

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Review

"Finally!  A well-written software agnostic guide to fixing common problems in post ranging from shaky camera to film look!"

-Jerry Hofmann, Apple Certified Trainer; FCP Forum Leader, Creative Cow; Owner, JLH Productions

About the Author

After working for some time in the field of computer animation, Jack went to work for Kodak's brand-new Cinesite Digital Lab. It was the first of its kind anywhere in the world, the aim being to reproduce all laboratory processes in the digital domain. It remains one of the leading post-production houses that uses digital intermediates. While at Cinesite, Jack worked on HBO's "Band of Brothers," which incorporated 10 hours of finished film, all to be scanned, edited and finished digitally. He was a member of the team that established and designed procedures and protocols which later became industry-standard. His core expertise is in establishing workflows of data management, film restoration, and conforming (making sure the final edit matches exactly what the editor of a film has cut--procedures which have widely been adopted elsewhere. Since leaving Cinesite, Jack has worked on the digital intermediates of many feature films including Miramax's "Cold Mountain."

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  33 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Fix it in Post" A book for every video editor July 9 2009
By Kel - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Mr. James puts together a really great book on some of the technical tricks to help fix video footage in the post production phase of video content creation.

I have been in the industry for 23 years, and have read many books on all parts of the production process, but "Fix It In Post" is one of those wonderfully rare books that targets a very specific niche in the video work flow. Many people, from students to professionals have access to very powerful software to create videos. Either on a Mac or in the PC environment. They all come with an extreme amount of very solid tools. But which ones do you use? How can you identify specific problems or correct those problems if/when you are faced with them? Mr. James shares his wisdom to help you with the tools presented in most common editing software applications.

The book comes highly recommended because:

It is not software or computer platform specific.

Many other books covering software versions from various manufactures and the CDs and DVDs that come with them are large texts, that take a long time to work through, and cost a lot to purchase. This is NOT the case with "Fix it In Post." The book is an quick and easy read, without complicated steps.

The book is written clearly, with outlined approaches to solving problems. If you are a student, and you begin working with non-linear editors, this book will assist you in discovering what tools are available to fix and enhance your footage. It is like the additional college class that most institutions don't offer.

If you are a more seasoned professional, this book will offer you ways to modify your footage that you may not have tried before. (If you're like me, you learn ways that work for you, and don't always try new approaches to things.)

The book is written in a way to encourage you to try some of those buttons in your NLE you haven't tried before. In fact, the encouragement is in some ways a support avenue - to get your material to be the best that it can be and know that you have used the tools commonly available to move your project from a possibly ordinary one to an extraordinary one.

This is the kind of information many of us try to read blogs on various websites to obtain. Understanding interlaced and non-interlaced footage, compression, film look, framing issues, pixel formats, audio calibration, masks, layering, field dominance, simulating camera filters and much more. "Fix It in Post" answers so many questions it truly is a help reference guide.

It quickly answers so many questions you either may not know, or need to refresh your memory about certain procedures or details. In this world where so much of everything is on the internet, This book is a little treasure, and I am very glad it was published. You will surely want to keep this book handy in the edit room, you will reach for it often!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very good introduction to what can be done in post production. Aug. 3 2009
By Paulo Leite - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product
I am a screenwriter/producer and I found this book to be a very good introduction to many of the problems we try to fix during post. When we shoot a film or a video, not everything goes as planned (and that's IF you are lucky because usually there are lots of things that defies your best planning). So once the shooting is in the can, there are many needs and options facing a) producers, b) directors, c) postproduction personnel.

So this book covers a relatively wide and vast number of tricks, solutions and answers to many issues. Starting from the simple explanation of semantics the book puts us all speaking the same language. It explains what several key words mean and (plus) it explains the importance of several elements (hardware, software, peripherals, etc.) in post production.

After that, the book progresses from easy stuff (like removing flares, sharpening images, color corrections, etc), to harder, more intensive work (like extending framing, patching frames and retiming the image). But the good thing here is that the book never gets too technical. It does not work as a manual (with endless snapshots of software menus) but as a reference for work flow or process - the usual steps one must follow in order to get to a certain solution to one given need.

Now... how useful this book is will depend on your knowledge of postproduction. In a nutshell, I feel this book is best suited for those who have some minimal understanding of the filmic process. Someone who never had any contact with post will probably find the book too hard to grasp as it advances into more specific issues. On the other hand, a professional who works in post production on a daily basis will probably find it too simple. For someone like me who falls in the middle, the book is perfect.

The only problem I found with this book is that some of the photos given as examples of "before" and "after" are too small for me to see a real difference. But in the end, I think is is a matter of taste. Postproduction is a universe in itself. While this book is not the only book you need (because the subject is too vast), it is certainly one of those you must have in order to better understand it.

I do recommend this book.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great problem solver Jan. 24 2013
By Ernest Friedman-Hill - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product
Shooting film for a movie can be expensive and difficult. There are many people involved that must be paid, including both actors and technicians, and you may have limited access to locations and equipment. If, after filming, you find that your footage isn't perfect, it's often prohibitively expensive to reshoot it; instead, you have to work with what you have. That's where this book comes in. In an easy to use cookbook format, it presents more than a hundred problems you might encounter, and clearly describes reliable solutions for each of them. Digital techniques are described in a clear but general way that doesn't depend on your using any particular software, so no matter what your postproduction environment looks like, this book can help.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars if it is not a classic yet, it will be April 21 2010
By fatmav - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product
This is a rare book in my collection of graphics software books because it has timeless value. By being software-agnostic (i.e., not relying on features only found in a specific vendor's software), this book presents its readers with a long list of problems encountered in postproduction together with their solutions. Note that since the book is software-agnostic, the solutions themselves are all given in a general level. For example, it will tell you to decrease the contrast in a particular step, but it won't tell you which key to press or what dialog to use. (It is assumed that you already know how to navigate your software of choice.) It is by doing so the author manages to keep the book thin (much appreciated) yet still contains a large amount of useful information (see the TOC in the Amazon preview). I especially find the chapter on compositional problems useful since I have been dealing with a lot of reuses of old material from the past. It kicks me out of the bad habit of relying on only the features found in my production softwares and instead ask what is the problem that I really wanted to solve. I really feel that if this book is not a classic yet, it will be.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book for the intermediate and advanced users March 27 2010
By Inna Tysoe - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product
Coming from a game development background and typically rendering directly without Post processing. I've tended to stay away from this area of video post editing however this book has changed my mind. It provides a wealth of information great for someone like me. I used Photoshop for years to edit images because I know how to use Photoshop. Still trying to figure out how to use to do a video where there are 30 frames a second seemed quite daunting.

This is where I found this book very useful. It methodically takes you through a series of common but difficult problems and solves them for you. I use a PC and Adobe Premiere which is one of the applications used in the book. Just recently I have had access to a Mac and Final Cut Pro too.

I found the tutorials very useful, laid out in easy to follow steps in full color. The book expects you to have some basic knowledge of the tools you are using, so it doesn't go into detail about interface and using the computer. For me at least this was a plus. I just wanted to recognize a problem, or get an idea of how I could improve the visual quality and enhance mood, atmosphere and drama. Or remove annoying problems like interlacing lines that are common with digital video cameras, enhance or subdue the lighting naturally, or remove lense-flares and average out the lighting when light conditions change. All these things are covered in Fix it in Post.

I think this book is excellent for Intermediate to advanced users, but a beginner might want to get to grips with the software and interface first before plunging in.

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