As its well into 2017 we thought an update to our previous Showreel was well overdue. We’ve been so busy over the last year and wanted to share some highlights and of course show what it is we do!
Third Lens produces video for a wide variety of organisations and a wide variety of applications. We make promotional films, we record conferences and we document live events. We can take your branding and animate it, we can make your product shine on social media and we can convey your speaker’s presentation with clarity.
For more information and to come and say hi email firstname.lastname@example.org
Having been inspired by No Film School’s post about a music video made using the Prisma app we decided to have a go ourselves.
Prisma is a powerful tool that transforms photographs into ‘paintings’, not by applying a filter but by cleverly retracing the original picture to a pre-set style.
For the film above we shot a few seconds of Brighton Pier, exported it as a JPEG sequence and discarded every other frame to save some time in what we knew would be a long workflow. Prisma only accepts square images so to preserve the 16:9 ratio we had to shrink the original footage down to fit within a square frame creating black bars at the top and bottom. We then had to use a special app to import the 125 images (for roughly ten seconds footage) onto an iPhone. From there we spent several hours importing each one by one into the Prisma app and applying the Pre-set we thought best suited the original image (in this case ‘Caribbean’) making sure we kept the images in the right order and keeping a tally of how many we had done.
Once that was done we were able to export from the iPhone’s camera roll to our editing software and drop 12 images down for each second of the film. We then cropped out the black bars and brought back the original aspect ratio. We then rendered the images as a video, bringing back in the original sound of the clip and enhancing it a little, adding fades at the beginning and end as well as a slight vignette.
Some of the image quality was lost in the various imports and exports. We could’ve also probably picked a more interesting scene with more contrast and more going on. Using a phone as part of a video workflow like this is also a massive bottleneck. We just did 125 frames and can’t imagine the effort involved in making longer form pieces but apparently Prisma are working on a video app so soon this will all be far easier.
We recently concluded our documenting of the making of a statue to commemorate Frederick Potts VC. The statue was finally unveiled in Reading, Berkshire on a warm and sunny day in October.
It was commissioned by our clients the Trooper Potts Memorial Trust to commemorate the actions of Trooper Fred Potts on the Gallipoli peninsula one hundred years ago this year. The monument also commemorates those from Trooper Potts’ Regiment the Berkshire Yeomanry who lost their lives in the wars of the 20th Century.
It was a privilege to film the statue at each stage of it’s construction. We were made to feel very welcome by the Sculptor Tom Murphy and his family in Liverpool, had repeated visits to watch the skill of the metal workers at the Morris Singer Art Foundry in Hampshire and the artistry of the Stonemasons of AF Jones in Oxfordshire.
We delivered three main 10 minute presentations as well as a full ‘as live’ edit of the service of Commemoration and the Unveiling. Combined bespoke motion graphics and original commissioned music introduce each film with their purpose to document the making of the statue and act as education outreach tools to be shown in schools and colleges. We also created several bespoke edits for use in presentations.
It is our hope these films offer a valuable record not only of the actions of a brave individual from the past but also as capturing an event in Reading’s contemporary civic history.
Despite being the largest town in England Reading is often derided for it’s perceived lack of culture and arts. It’s seen as a centre of shopping for those that like what they are already familiar with in chain stores and for going out in pubs and bars cloned in any provincial town.
Peer under the surface however and you will find a growing alternative scene of music venues, theatre, shops, businesses and pubs. Championing this change to the town is the new website Alt Reading, a not for profit space packed with listings, news, opinion and interviews.
For the first time this year they decided to promote Independence in the town by staging an online vote. With five categories the Alt Reading Awards 2015 aimed to celebrate the best Venue, Business, Individual, Event and Independent.
In lieu of an awards ceremony the site came up with the idea of a ‘virtual acceptance speech’ made on video which would also act as a promotional for the person or business. Third Lens was delighted to be approached and we had a great two weeks meeting people about the town and interviewing them.
Using local musicians and bands to soundtrack each film we hope we’ve captured the nature of the category and the person or business.
Ladies that UX is a global network of groups of women who work in UX that meet monthly to discuss their profession, network and to catch up on life in general. Each group runs differently but in a sector with a high proportion of men in it the groups give women the chance to meet up, get to know and support each other and talk UX.
We were delighted to be asked by LTUX to produce a couple of their films for their website – an Outreach film for those that may be interested in setting up their own group (see above) and a film for their Homepage describing what LTUX is.
We’ve filmed them in London and Brighton (where we filmed a Ladies that UX Brighton talk) and up in Manchester where we also helped film their great new annual Conference Talk UX. We were able to provide multi cam facilities for their conference and talks and shoot 4K interior and exterior interviews plus create motion graphics for their website films.
Lizzie and Georgie, who appear in the film above and who created LTUX are very dedicated and were a pleasure to work with and we breezed through the filming.
This Instagram shows the Ladies that UX motion graphics as well as some recent commissions.
Reading Bicycle Kitchen is a new social enterprise based in a disused department store in Reading, Berkshire.
It was set up to encourage people to repair their own bikes under supervision from experienced mechanics who give up their time to volunteer to work there. It’s a bustling and friendly environment and a great idea too, so Third Lens were delighted to team up with them to produce a short promo film aimed at raising awareness.
The staff at RBK were very helpful and played a full part in making the film. Special thanks go to Lucille who’s expert narration forms the backbone to the piece, Chris for orgainsing our visit and Grenville who gave us an interview and who gamely got on with his work with a camera following him around all day.
Reading Bicycle Kitchen is accessible to anyone on any level of income. Its a fun way of spending an afternoon whist learning a lot about bicycle maintenance.
The film was shot in 4K and graded using Film Convert.
Jacksons Department Store – A history of the building in which RBK are based.
The Trooper Potts Memorial Trust is a Civic organisation based in Reading, Berkshire. It was set up to oversee the creation of a statue in the town centre commemorating townsman Frederick Potts and his act of valour during the First World War for which he was awarded the Victoria Cross.
Third Lens Films was contacted by the Trust last year to explore the possibility of making a film or series of films showcasing some of the work of the Trust in realising its aim to create a Statue to commemorate Trooper Potts. We soon settled on the idea of talking to the artist himself about the process of making the statue. For this we traveled with members of the Trust to Liverpool where we were warmly welcomed by the Sculptor Tom Murphy and his wife Catherine.
It was great interviewing Tom, he put us at ease and made helpful suggestions that added to the film. He and Catherine also took us all around the great City of Liverpool of which they are rightly proud and showed us other statues and memorials he had made, including one commemorating the Hillsborough Disaster and another the Liverpool Blitz – both of which feature in the film.
In post we created an Intro sequence using material given to us by the Memorial Trust and licensed from local museums and historical societies. Set to original music we created a collage of images meant to represent the Potts story to the present day.
Shot with a single light and minimal kit in Tom’s studio we hope the film captures Tom’s warm personality as well as his creativity which he has used to great effect in creating this remarkable statue for Trooper Potts.
Siren Craft Brew, a brewery in Berkshire, have won a string of awards for their distinctive craft beer despite only having being in business for just over two years.
Third Lens Films first contacted Siren as fans of their beer and wanting to explore the possibility of producing something that would promote the brewery. Together we produced a promo introducing Darron Anley, Siren’s founder and Ryan Witter-Merithew it’s head Brewer and showing their four core beers they had at the time.
At the end of last year Darron contacted us to explore the possibility of producing a couple of films to promote their upcoming Maiden 2014 beer.
As shown in the film Siren’s Maiden is a Barley Wine, made from storing a base beer in various barrels for a year and then blending the beer from each barrel to achieve a distinctive taste. The barrels used come from various Whiskey distilleries, vineyards, Gin distilleries, Tequila producers and Rum makers. The wood of the barrels absorbs a little of those flavours and then that has the effect of giving flavour to the base beer stored in them. Maiden 2014 would be the product of the beer stored in barrels during that year.
Maiden is important to Siren as it was the first beer they made as a brewery and they have made one each year since opening. It has become very popular and so this year the beer was launched on a larger scale. Siren wanted Third Lens to produce a teaser trailer to tell their customers that another Maiden was imminent as well as a slightly longer form film talking about about the beer itself.
We spent a couple of days collecting shots of the brewery and of the Blending process where Siren were joined by guests from the Whiskey and Wine industries to help them achieve the final product. We also gave a lot of attention to motion graphics – utilising Siren’s distinctive labeling. Maiden is represented by a Figurehead on the front of a ship as it crashes through the sea. We thought it would be fun to bring that image to life and set about animating it. The animation was used in the Teaser trailer and then adapted for the longer film.
We also turned to motion graphics to illustrate the barrels in the brewery – most of which were bare. We motion tracked shots and applied text to imply the barrels held Rum or Tequila. Both examples can be seem above.
Finally in the edit we were lucky to be able to use bespoke music from Tim Corns and Richard Koenig which was made especially for this project.
The goal of these films was to raise awareness of a new product from Siren Craft Brew amongst its existing customers and through high production values to attract new customers as well. They have been warmly received both online and through their use on Social Media helping to strengthen the Siren brand and project a fantastic product.
We’ve been filming the bi-monthly Breaking Borders web development and design talks for the best part of a year now. Each one is curated around a theme with two distinctive talks from two speakers highly regarded in their field.
Working with Ben MacGowan, Breaking Border’s founder we have now made 12 films from 6 different events. Ben works hard at coming up with a theme and finding suitable speakers to match. He even commissions artwork for each talk to help illustrate the theme. Likewise we try to incorporate each piece of artwork into the introduction sequence of each talk. The key is to be concise (people aren’t clicking to see your animation – they want the talk) and to get across the key facts of who’s speaking and the title of their talk. The picture below shows stills from the bespoke graphics we’ve made for each of the events we’ve covered so far.
For the films themselves we work at integrating the speakers media into the videos. Every talk we’ve covered to date has included slides but these may also expand to video and audio. We liaise with the speakers to obtain their work and discuss if anything needs changing or altering before being used.
We often add extra animated elements to the slides to mimic the reveal or display of the software used to ‘play’ the slides during the talk. For example if the speaker is making points by revealing them one by one on the screen then we copy this effect for the video so the viewer has the same impression and understanding of the speakers points as the people did in the room watching them.
Below is an example of one of our films;
And its important to do your bit in promoting it too..
— Kaelig (@kaelig) November 25, 2014
Breaking Borders – The talk and video archive from Breaking Borders
UX Oxford – Films from UX Oxford – a monthly ‘tech talk’ event we also film
UX Oxford is a monthly meet up for UX professionals (and those with an interest) where a leading professional in the field will speak about User Experience and Design Principles. It’s a popular and growing event that we were lucky enough to go along and record at the Old Fire Station theatre earlier this month.
They are a small organisation run by dedicated volunteers so the involvement of sponsors in creating a film is essential and hopefully mutually beneficial both by promoting not only the speaker and event but gaining publicity for the supporters too. We included the sponsors in the bespoke Intro motion graphics we made which you can see below.
Our aim is to make high quality easy to follow films of events such as these. To capture as much about the talk and the media used by the speaker as possible and clearly present these to the viewer. We believe that films for smaller events such as UX Oxford can be made on smaller budgets and still feature high production values. See what you think..
— Al Power (@alpower) October 11, 2014