Developing a style for mixing disparate visual media.

Discussion of modular and standalone video generating/processing techniques and associated hardware.

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Developing a style for mixing disparate visual media.

Post by studio460 »

I've been trained in a variety of media arts, including layout/pre-press, photography, lighting/shooting for TV, and now learning about the available tools for video-synthesis. Attempting to develop the template or "style" to combine various media into some kind of cohesive format (just thinking out loud, here). I'm inclined to start with some sort of vaguely narrative structure, then go from there to the more abstract.

My audio Eurorack system is heavily skewed toward voice/formant modules, buffer/recorders, and effects. Primary sources include voice recordings from text-to-speech software with added effects (e.g., time-stretching, pitch-shifting, delay, reverb, etc.), and field-recordings of wild sound. Also own a fair amount of commercial sound effects libraries. All of this was assembled with the idea of someday supporting the media outputs created by the various tools shown below.


• Dreams (e.g., idyllic, ethereal, nightmarish, etc.).
• Perception (e.g., fuzzy/sharp, distorted, etc.).
• Beauty and sensuality (e.g., physical, vocal, breath, etc.).
• Reality (e.g., documenting the mundane).
• Nature (e.g., smoke, clouds, water, etc.).
• Modern transportation systems and industrial machinery.
• Danger (e.g., warning systems, alarms, etc.).
• Time (e.g., high-speed/time-lapse photography + time-stretched/pitch-shifted audio).

Altering reality: For me, the O|D ER-301 was a breakthrough acquisition. Planned visuals include high-speed photography, which when paired with time-stretched audio, can turn the ordinary into the surreal. My 'B' camera, a Sony FS700, accommodates up to 960FPS. My 'A' camera, a Sony FS100, has a large pixel-pitch imager making it an extremely light-sensitive camera. Paired with a fast f/1.2 lens, this camera can literally see in the dark.

Below, a few work samples, and the tools I plan to use:

Type: [Adobe type libraries, faux-Chyrons, distressed type, CRT computer displays, etc.].


Narrative filmmaking: [starting point].


Still photography: [after defining a different motif for "portraiture," suitable for integration with video-synthesis tools].


Glitch-video: [my favorite aspect of video-synthesis].


Analog RGB video-synthesis: [will build on 3Trins until additional 3G LXZ modules are acquired].


OpenGL/GLSL shaders: [good ready-made source, but needs further manipulation/abstraction].


Conventional broadcast gear: [SD gear is dirt-cheap and works great].


NLEs/post-effects: [sort of the anti-video-synthesis tool, but necessary to assemble a final edit].


Given the more organic nature of analog video-synthesis approaches, I don't want to rely too heavily on modern post-effects. However, this project will require some amount of editing in an NLE. Some NLE plug-ins are very tempting (and extremely powerful), but that's not necessarily the direction I want to take this.


[Shotlist notepad:]

• Toasts with glassware, upside-down spills, breaking glass.
• Electronic mug-shots.
• Faber Acoustical SignalScope Advanced 2020 for iOS: FFT, spectrogram, Lissajous-curve output.
• Faux-biometric displays.
• Sprayed fluids: garden-hose spray, Rainbirds, Coca-Cola, champagne.
• Freeways, pedestrian overpasses, etc. (i.e., flow of objects).
• Rain at night.
• Things that are dropped; things that fall.
• Money.
• Women in pumps.
• Gas stations.
• Still-frame to motion-video (i.e, moving portraits).
• Pattern-matching keys/dissolves.


Other areas of interesting imagery:

• Macro-photography.
• Microscopic-photography.

I bought some microscopy footage for a short film once, and it's very interesting looking stuff—especially the live bloodstream stuff. In a previous career, I had some scanning electron-microscope imaging done at a lab in northern California—very interesting.
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