Q4 2018

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136 CINEMONTAGE / Q4 2018 CUT / PRINT Stock Footage + Everything Under the Sun: Using Archival Material to Make Your Good Film Great by James Forsher Michael Wiese Productions, 2019 Paperback 244 pages $29.95 ISBN # 9781615932955 by Betsy A. McLane C reative editing of archival material, both sound and picture, can be great fun, a great challenge or both, depending on what material and what expectations a filmmaker brings to the editing room. Studying James Forsher's new book, Stock Footage + Everything Under the Sun (due on shelves in January 2019) makes it highly likely that the challenge will be fun, and that the edit will produce a satisfying film. This compact and clearly written volume considers virtually every type of archival source likely to be used in media production, and offers practical approaches to finding, selecting and licensing it. Forsher's introduction begins with a definition of archival material that may surprise some: "Archival material constitutes everything that has been created up to the second you are reading this… One second old. One hour old. One hundred thousand years old. It's archival material." With this delightfully broad approach in mind, a filmmaker is freed from possible preconceived visions of grainy news film or old still photographs subjected to the "Ken Burns Effect." The book is divided into four logical parts. Each of the 16 chapters in Part One, What to Look For is devoted to one type of archival resource; for example, short films, the Internet, recordings, artwork, radio, etc. The chapter then explains the type of medium under consideration, the years it was (is) in use, its audience and its potential copyright status. An example from Part One is a consideration of animation, summarized in seven short pages encompassing the type of medium (film and digital), years in use (late 1890s-present), audience (worldwide), copyright status (pre-1920s, public domain; 1920s-1970s, mixture of public domain and copyrighted; post-1970s, copyrighted). Forsher then discusses early animation technologies, including trick photography and miniatures, cel animation, and sound and television — including commercial and the digital 2D and 3D universes. He ends with words of caution that although pre-television era films are often in public domain, famous characters such as Popeye or Betty Boop were exploited as brands and are therefore still protected for commercial use. Part Two takes the study further, explaining where stock materials are held. Among the seven categories listed is the invaluable The Most Affordable Sources of Archival Material. These may seem obvious to anyone who ever watched the credits of any film using archival material, but along with the well-known National Archive and Library of Congress, Forsher outlines the resources available at NASA, which includes much more than space shots, with films going back to the first manned flight of the Wright Brothers in 1903. These images at NASA are in the public domain. The collection also includes audio recordings and some computer files, along with other How to Correctly Raid the Lost Archive of Assets

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