Now that Don’t Sleep on It is over and everyone has caught up on some sleep, I thought I’d share a bit more on the technical setup and a lesson learned. Witt told me he thought that it was one of the best, if not THE best, event that WACTAC has ever done. I tend to agree.
As I explored in a previous post, we used a digital still camera to take our single frame images, then stitch them together in quicktime as a longer move. For the event itself, we used two cameras. The primary camera, a Canon 10D, was equipped with a 16mm wide-angle lens that gave us a really good shot of the entire space. The second camera, a Canon G9, wasn’t quite as wide-angle, but would be a good backup camera in case something happened to the 10D. A sample of the space:
We taped off sight lines, just out of frame, so the artists would know what was in frame and what was not.
Our events & media production team set up a very nice mount for the cameras, as you can sort of see in this blurry, hastily snapped iPhone shot:
Unfortunately, every good plan has it’s own particular achilies heel. In this case, that heel was electronics’ desire for an uninterrupted flow of electricity. Midway through the evening on Friday night, the circuit breaker that powered the computer and cameras was tripped. Power was quickly restored, and the computers were turned back on. However, the startup procedure to get the time-lapse running was not something that could be scripted or automated, so the capture did not start again until 9 AM the next morning when I cam to check on things.
The lesson here: Time lapse is awesome, but next time, use an uninterpretable power supply. Preferably one that has a loud audible warning. I probably should have thought of this, but it really didn’t occur to me how chaotic and crazy the event would actually be (I mean that in the most endearing way possible).
The fact that we lost 12 hours of the time-lapse does stink, but it also means we still captured 12 hours of the event. I’ve assembled the video, and it has been posted to YouTube, but the quailty is not as good as a quicktime file. Here is a higher-quality quicktime MP4:
[quicktime width=”640″ height=”441″ placeholder=”http://blogs.walkerart.org/newmedia/files/2009/05/dont_sleep_on_it_still.jpg” useplaceholder=”1″]http://walkerart.s3.amazonaws.com/channel/09/dont_sleep_on_it_web.mp4[/quicktime]
Click to play, or download the original file.
To fill some of the 12-hour gap, we hastily collected photos from whoever was available and had taken photos. They’ve been put together as a short slideshow filling a portion of the 12-hour missing period.