The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

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The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby CodeZTM » Mon May 21, 2012 4:07 pm

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Disclaimer: These interviews are not associated with A-M-V.org or its administration. The Lip Flapper is not meant for interstellar travel. You may end up in an alternate carnival universe.
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Description

Welcome to the Lip Flapper! Each week, we delve deep into the community and get a look into both individual members as well as group discussions on various issues that surround our hobby.
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This Week in "The Lip Flapper"

This week, we speak with newly retired editor Pink Haze, who is a highly regarded editor in terms of concept/storytelling.
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Interview Spotlight

Pink Haze has made two very highly acclaimed videos in the past few years. Dead Moon Masquerade and Trial By Drowning, both of which were VCA contenders.

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The Interview

Q: Thanks for joining me today Pink Haze. How about we start things out and let you introduce yourself and let us know a little bit about how you like to edit?

Thanks Code~ I'm Zara Stanley in San Antonio, TX. I've been video editing for about four years.
In real life I'm writing for a comic/manga illustrated by my sister Allison Stanley (pink nib on a-m-v.org). ~So my perspective on video editing has been heavily influenced by my interest in art and storytelling, especially what I've learned from the sci-fi/fantasy art industries. I like to plan things out, and edit with some scratch paper on my desk where I can sketch storyboards and brainstorm ideas.

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Q: So what got you involved in editing AMVs?

Technically I 'got involved' back in '04. Pretty much from infancy I've always had my hands in arts & crafts of all kinds (see my dragon helmet? =P). Add anime fandom to that and you have 15-year-old pink haze's foray into AMVs.
Also add stubbornness. You see, I had no editing program at the time--wouldn't for a few years--but I did all I could without one: gathered footage, wrote up detailed planning documents, searched through anime and wrote down timestamps for the clips I wanted, read theory guides, etc., and built a lot of castles in the air. I didn't have the resources, but it was something I really wanted to do. ^^

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Q: I noticed that you seem to have a group of siblings that edit with you? What's it like having people so close to work with you in the hobby?

It's what sisters do! =O You blaze new frontiers and give your siblings all your second-hand life experience! And all your prepared footage.

Ya, my three sisters have edited on occasion. I don’t let them work with me on my own projects though (actually, pink nib did beg me to let her edit a section of Trial by Drowning once; I deleted all her work without mercy). But teaching the younger two has been a learning experience--they say when you teach once you learn twice! ^_~
It's interesting watching someone work using a completely different style and method than your own. It’s changed the way I look at beta-testing quite a bit--now the first things I want to know when I critique a WIP is, what is the editor’s unique style, what is their past work like, what is their vision for the project and their goals, how can I help them play to their strengths?

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Q: Something I read from you in a journal of yours (which I found interesting) stated "After all, art is creativity, bringing ideas that only exist in your mind to life. Artists in all fields need to know how to increase their skills, find motivation, get exposure, etc., regardless of their medium." Care to expand on this a bit, and offer some advice on how you think AMV editors can improve their skills and find new motivations?

Ah, wonderful question~! Here are a few ideas to consider that I don't hear suggested very often:

Look at the experts:
One thing aspiring creatives always want to know is, how did the experts do it? You look at your heroes and try to learn their tricks. Further, you look at your heroes' heroes--who inspired them and what did they learn from when they were at your level?

But with AMVs there's a little catch. Humans have not been making AMVs for very long; this is a young medium. Further, while it's often competitive, it's noncommercial, and kind of underground because of the legal ambiguity. So you don't have a lot of true experts--no one whose work is in museums or who's made a living doing it all their life.
That is why I encourage people who really enjoy the creative aspect of video editing and who want to improve their craft to search for knowledge in other fields as well as AMVs. You might not be writing or painting, but writers and painters deal with a lot of the same problems you do. For example, all creatives face creator's block. They all have to deal with time-management and critique. What do professionals say about these things?

Here are some neat interviews with visual artists from a variety of industries:
http://www.schoolism.com/interviews.php


And of course, don't be afraid to talk to people you admire. ^^

Use Reference Material:
Begin to build a collection of material you can look at for reference while you're working. It's a given that you should watch a lot of AMVs and constantly expose yourself to excellent video editing and related works--so whenever you run across something you like and can use for inspiration, keep it. Have a directory where you save everything so you can find it easily when you need it.

In my AMV ref folder I have graphics, clips from movies, movie credits, anime & cartoons, music videos & other AMVs; anything that'll give me ideas for effects, sync, directing techniques, etc.

Also, whenever I start a new project I'll create a project-specific ref collection for it and add to it as I go along. I'll make an extra timeline in my project file where I drop all that material so I can look at it as I edit.


I didn't always do this. ^^; But at some point I looked over at Allison doing her ink drawings and noticed how she'd fill her monitors with a giant collage of reference images & photos, and have a pile of artbooks at hand, and I remembered the interviews I'd seen with professionals who did the same thing. And I'm like, "Why don't I do that?!"

Be ambitious:
If you have a dream project but you know you lack the skills for it, don't be afraid to tackle it anyway!
Be aware of your current weaknesses and limitations, but have faith in your potential and believe that you can find ways to overcome obstacles. And even if you don't succeed, you'll learn much more than if you just try to take on projects that only require the skills you currently possess.
Think of a way to make every AMV a learning AMV.

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Q: I hear that you're actually retiring from AMVs to pursue working on a manga. Care to talk a little bit about this, and if we can expect to see from you again? Maybe a little information about the manga?

Indeed, as of April 2012 I've dropped video editing. I don't have time to do it right anymore, and it’s too much of a distraction. I’ve traded PCs with pink sugar. She has all my footage and programs; now I CAN’T be tempted.

As for the manga I'm writing, we're in pre-production so it won't be out for a while. Here's a sample page:

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Our goal is to make a fairy tale that adults can enjoy, where every page is an art piece you'd want to hang on your wall.

Check out my artist's website:
http://www.talantyre.com
http://www.talantyre.deviantart.com/

We're exhibiting at conventions, so you might catch me tabling in the Artists' Alley. ^^

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Q: Your most recent work was Dead Moon Masquerade, which was well received throughout almost all of a-m-v.org. What made you want to put this combination together, and what inspired such an artistic piece?

The song was an obvious choice for Queen Nehelenia--the materialism and vanity from the "Diamonds are a Girl's Best Friend" lyrics; its extravagant and chaotic performance on stage in Moulin Rouge!--even the Hindi singing, mostly nonsense about dancing and flirting, fits the Sailor Moon SuperS villains surprisingly well (not that I made any attempt to lyric-sync). Also, the vocalizing reminds me of Nehelenia's theme music.

One thing I look for when I'm editing is an anime's visual symbols. Since we usually only work with video and discard the original audio, anything in a series that already carries a lot of meaning visually is very handy.
And I've always loved Sailor Moon's imagery. Mirrors, cobwebs, circus performers--it all reminds one of the way Nehelenia is putting on a show, trying to look beautiful forever and never age. She's like this insatiate spider with the world caught in her web, devouring her own subjects.

...Hm, no doubt I was thinking of Tolkien's Ungoliant.

Anyway, I mostly just channeled Sailor Moon.
Even used the old borrow-effects-from-the-series ploy (if you're making an anime-centric AMV and want a fitting effects scheme, looking at the series' original effects can be helpful).


About the jellybeans-in-a-blender climax...
Ever since I watched I really liked chaotic overlays, and introduced me to the aforementioned chaotic seizurific climax. Evangelion Opus has one. FMA and Death Note do it at key points; the American remake of Pulse has a nice specimen when someone gets eaten by an internet zombie.

That editing technique is just undeniably cool. o_o It has a legitimate reason to be so hectic that it cannot all be taken in at once, so on subsequent views it continues to entertain (provided it is executed well enough to be entertaining the first time).

~Trial by Drowning has one too.

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Q: A while back you also created Trial By Drowning, which was a powerful piece that showed viewers all about divine judgement of guilt and innocence. What inspired this AMV, and how'd you manage the visual effects in the AMV so well?

Eheh, I don't know if people got that message exactly. ^^; ~But I'm quite content if viewers understand it on an emotional level, even if they feel like they haven't the foggiest idea what it's about.

What inspired it?
I shall not subject you to a lengthy, spoilerific analysis of Casshern Sins' themes. Anyone who wants the long answer may refer to my

Trial by Drowning planning document

In short, I wanted to advertise the series. --Without giving anything away, if possible. That had a big effect on the vid's look and feel.
Hence the mountain of overlays; it keeps people's eyes from settling on anything for too long. I avoided using too much raw footage--seldom used clips from the same episode next to each other--threw most of the big dramatic spoiler scenes out the window--stuck faithfully to the show's message and style but butchered its timeline.

I treated it a lot like collage graphic art (which I do occasionally dabble in for AMV posters & such). Collages are supposed to take existing material, alter and rearrange it into something new and different. I constructed samples of some of the more complicated sequences in Photoshop using screenshots, then recreated them with the same effects in Premiere using footage. ~It's nice to see a shot of what the video's going to look like before you go through the work of editing it.

Which brings me to the effects...
You know the beginning of Whisper of the Beast where it shows this scratchy, abstract jumble of red text? That's not an effect, it's a clip from KareKano with some effects on it.
Now see that long list of "additional footage" in Trial's video description? Some of the parts that look like effects are actually just footage I went out and found or already had collected, though they're all pretty heavily edited. Like the TV grain (from Blame!, Gankutsuo & The Ring). It's just a matter of making the footage look natural together, like in any various AMV.

Besides those two techniques, I managed the effects with much trial and error and watching of tutorials and generally doing it the hard way, because I didn't know much when I started and had to learn. ^^;

Here's my take on the whole subject:
Using effects is kind of like being a magician. Your tricks are a lot more magical when people haven't seen them before--or when they have but don't know how they work--or when they do but they're too distracted by your performance to think about it, or too entertained to care.
The last is the approach you can always count on.

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Q: You seem to have very conceptual AMVs that are very story driven. Is there a particular reason you prefer this type of AMV genre?

I am going to quote poetry at you now.

They are blind and they are dead:
We will wake them as we go;
There are words have not been said;
There are sounds they do not know.
We will pipe and we will sing--
With the music and the spring,
Set their hearts a wondering.

They are tired of what is old:
We will give it voices new;
For the half hath not been told
Of the Beautiful and True.


~George MacDonald, Robert Falconer, Book 2, Ch. 9

I'd like to show people something beautiful. ^^ For now, telling stories is how I know to do it, and AMVs were one way to go about it.

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Q: Anything you'd like to say to the a-m-v.org or editing community in general.

Use more synthpop music plz. *_*

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Q: Thanks for being with me this week Pink Haze. Any last thoughts you might like to share with editors around the globe?

I'm going to steal a tweet from Bobby Chiu: 'You have the most potential at becoming exceptional in the things that you love to do.'
And some advice from my mom: 'It's much easier to pull an all-nighter working on a project you care about.'

So pick the projects you love the most! People want to see that love coming through your work~

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Next Week On "The Lip Flapper"

We speak with Ileia. It's very entertaining. :)
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Re: The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby Fall_Child42 » Mon May 21, 2012 4:18 pm

I first found out about Pink Haze because she drew something totally awesome for one of my Op Exchanges.
And then I found out she made pretty cool AMVs as well! I'll call myself a fan.

A multi-talented person, and a pretty cool interview.

:dino:
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Re: The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby AimoAio » Mon May 21, 2012 4:32 pm

CodeZTM wrote:Q: I hear that you're actually retiring from AMVs to pursue working on a manga. Care to talk a little bit about this, and if we can expect to see from you again? Maybe a little information about the manga?

Indeed, as of April 2012 I've dropped video editing. I don't have time to do it right anymore, and it’s too much of a distraction. I’ve traded PCs with pink sugar. She has all my footage and programs; now I CAN’T be tempted.

....this makes me so sad yet at the same time I'm happy that you found something worth giving up editing for because I'm having a similar problem myself where I have so many different things I want to do but I just don't have enough time to do them all. It keeps me incredibly busy and sometimes makes me really frustrated but I can't find the heart or the resolve to quit or retire from one to work on another so I admire you for being able to make such a solid decision.

Anyway that sample page looks FANTASTIC. <3 I loved Trial By Drowning and Dead Moon Masquerade and while it pains me a little that I don't get to look forward to your videos anymore, at least I have a pretty manga to read sometime in the future! ^^ Best of luck with it! ^^
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Re: The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby pacotacoshell » Mon May 21, 2012 4:35 pm

Really, really good read! :up:
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Re: The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby macchinainterna » Mon May 21, 2012 4:44 pm

Fall_Child42 wrote:A multi-talented person, and a pretty cool interview.

:dino:


I agree, this was very good and very insightful. Probably my favorite lip flapper interview yet. ^^
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Re: The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby MimS » Mon May 21, 2012 4:46 pm

Interesting read, a bit complicated for a non-native English speaker like me lol
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Re: The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby Emong » Mon May 21, 2012 4:58 pm

Yay it's up!

I agree with the statement above; it was one of the most interesting Lip Flapper interviews that I've read yet. Pink Haze seems to be in connection with her artistic self :3

Q: Anything you'd like to say to the a-m-v.org or editing community in general.

Use more synthpop music plz. *_*

Working on it, working on it...
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Re: The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby Rider4Z » Mon May 21, 2012 5:45 pm

:up: <3
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Re: The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby Scintilla » Mon May 21, 2012 6:04 pm

CodeZTM wrote:Q: Anything you'd like to say to the a-m-v.org or editing community in general.

Use more synthpop music plz. *_*

I'm trying -- not enough time. :P I've got ideas for Parralox and Ashbury Heights, not to mention the chapter 2 to "A Raven's Pride" that I said I would post if I got enough reviews...
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Re: The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby EvaFan » Mon May 21, 2012 6:43 pm

That's a really pretty drawing, prolly be 10x prettier colored. Hope you will give us orgers a discount on it when its published. If its got more artwork like that, I'd be interested. :up:
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Re: The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby Emong » Mon May 21, 2012 7:17 pm

Scintilla wrote:Ashbury Heights

Don't you be stealing mah ideas :nono:
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Re: The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby irriadin » Mon May 21, 2012 9:54 pm

Emong wrote:Yay it's up!


x2

I really enjoyed reading this interview... it's inspiring and makes me want to edit like, right now :o

While it's sad to see such a talented person leave the community, you've got to pursue your passions. Editing is an immensely time-consuming activity, and balancing it with your other interests can be quite difficult; speaking personally, I've got a towering stack of books, games, movies, etc. that are still shrink-wrapped and waiting for me to get to them. I've resigned myself to the fact that I probably will never be able to experience all of them. You have to choose how to spend your time wisely.
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Re: The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby TritioAFB » Mon May 21, 2012 11:12 pm

MimS wrote:Interesting read, a bit complicated for a non-native English speaker like me lol


what do you mean? I'm also a non-native speaker and I got everything :uhoh:

Interesting. Perhaps we haven't talked yet but you were the first editor I faced into the finals of an amv contest. Trial by Drowning was just an elegant video :up:
Making AMVs by day, Going to Gym by Night
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Re: The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby Kazemon15 » Mon May 21, 2012 11:49 pm

Sad to see you go, Pink Haze, but glad you found something you really like to do. =3

Good read. You are and always will be one of my favorite editors. :up:
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Re: The Lip Flapper : Volume 20 - Pink Haze

Postby Hagaren Viper » Tue May 22, 2012 12:38 am

Gaaah, Im kind of considering taking an extended break/retiring from AMVs to follow other goals and I wish people like you and Castor would stop reminding me of that B|

In all seriousness, great read! Hope the manga is going well, considering what you made with other people's sources, an all-original creation from PinkHaze should be pretty awesome~
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