Vancouver—An overflow crowd of producers,
directors, cinematographers, DITs and other pros witnessed a spirited panel
discussion  on emerging workflow
technologies at the recent Digital Days Conference and Expo in Vancouver. Titled
The New World of Post is P.O.D.™ Based
and hosted by Bling Digital, the panel described how film and television
productions are using new, highly mobile digital tools to save time, boost
productivity and reduce costs.
Ken Anderson, General Manager of SIM Digital/Bling Digital,
Vancouver, moderated the panel, which also featured SIM Digital/Bling Digital
VP of Creative Services Chris Jacobson; Bling Digital, Vancouver, Post Services
Manager Mike Ogawa; Cinematographer Michael Balfry, CFC; and Digital Imaging
Technician Mitch Bax.

Anderson began the session by reviewing how motion picture
and television workflows have changed as productions have moved from film to
digital cinematography. “In the days of film, a lot of time and labor were
required to get projects through post production,” Anderson told the crowd.
“Today, time and costs have been considerably reduced. Productions can be much
more efficient. Tools and job functions are changing, and productions who’ve
adapted are reaping the benefits.”
Ken Anderson, Michael Balfry, Chris Jacobson, Mike Ogawa, Mitch Bax
(Photo by David Dolsen)
Bling Digital has been a catalyst for change by developing
solutions to help productions take advantage of the time and cost saving
benefits that digital technologies provide. The company’s P.O.D.™ (Post On
Demand) systems are modular and portable toolkits that allow productions to
carry out, on set or near set, a variety of tasks, such as dailies processing,
editing and color correction, that formerly required complex infrastructures or
outside suppliers.
Digital workflows are not only less costly and more
efficient, they can be tailored to the needs of individual productions. “Film
workflows were very regimented,” Anderson observed. “Now, the workflow is
whatever you need it to be. There isn’t just one way to do it, there are a hundred.
We design workflows based on the production’s budget, timeline, personnel, what
people are expecting to see at each stage of production and many other
factors.”
Following Anderson’s presentation, the panelists described
digital workflows used by such shows as Psych,
Suits and Hell on Wheels.  Jacobson
pointed out that Bling Digital was one of the first companies to specialize in
digital workflow and post production services and, as part of The SIM Group, is
able to offer productions fully integrated solutions from camera through final
delivery.
Jacobson noted that having early access, through SIM, to new
camera systems gives Bling a leg up on other post production services
providers. “We’re six months ahead of the curve,” he observed. “When we test
new cameras, we run the format through the whole pipeline to see how it affects
each link in the chain.”
Judging by the flurry of questions, the topic of workflow
management resonated with those in attendance. “It was a wonderful opportunity
to educate people about solutions that are available now and others that are on
the way,” said Anderson. “We are grateful to Locals 669 and 891, and the
Directors Guild of Canada for letting us have this discussion. To the extent
that it sparked new ideas, taught people something new or increased their
technical expertise it was a big success.”
About The SIM Group
The SIM Group is a leading supplier of technology to the film and television
industry. Its operating units, SIM Digital, Bling Digital and PS Production
Services, maintain offices across the USA, Canada and China. SIM Digital is a
world-class rental facility specializing in digital production equipment and
workflow services. SIM Digital offers one of the largest and most diverse
inventories of the latest digital cinematography tools from top manufacturers
including ARRI, Sony, RED, Panasonic, Canon, Fujinon, Angenieux, Zeiss, Cooke. In
tandem with its innovative Bling Digital division, the company offers the
industry’s most comprehensive workflow solutions for feature and television
production, encompassing cameras, data, dailies, offline editorial, finishing
and archiving.  PS Production Services is
a rental supplier of lighting, grip, generators and dolly equipment. For more
information, visit www.simgroup.com
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