Old Blog

Homes for Our Troops

Sarasota Hotel Pano Over the next few posts, we'll reflect on our experiences from 2012. Looking back in retrospect allows us to find the common thread that connects all of these stories, sometimes seemingly unrelated at the time.

We may have a vision for our future, but we usually have no idea how we will get there. That's why when asked if we can shoot in a way far beyond our experience or technicality suggests, we always answer 'yes' and then figure out how.

Last February, a close friend and marketing consultant to Endless Abilities recommended our commercial work to Homes For Our Troops. The Massachusetts based organization builds accessible homes for disabled veterans and their families, and came to us to develop media for their new website.

At our first meeting with them, we quickly realized that 'media' meant not video, but an interactive virtual tour of one of their new homes. With no idea how to create a virtual tour, we immediately agreed to the job and spent the next month figuring out exactly how we could create the product we so easily promised.

Meanwhile, the client decided to send us to Sarasota. They booked flights and a hotel room, and budgeted for taxi fare to the model home (somehow they seemed okay with the fact that we were too young to rent a car).

Whether we were ready or not, we soon found ourselves shooting a virtual tour of a brand new home for a wounded veteran. The home was bare except for his photo and American flag waiting on the counter. Here's the link to the tour: http://windpoweredproductions.com/build/virtualtour.html

When we returned we proudly assembled the tour without glitches. It felt pretty good to live up to a new technical challenge. And in retrospect, the job fit into our mission of telling stories with a greater social responsibility. But at the time, the only thing on our minds was not messing up the virtual tour. Here's us practicing in the hotel room before the shoot.

We're Back

So after a few months of silence on our blog, we're back. Our absence comes from not inactivity, just a shift in brand.

At our last post about ten months ago, Wind Powered Productions was editing a short piece on biotech research with the Wyss Institute in Boston, shooting cars for five days with Clint Clemens in San Francisco, and preparing to head to Florida to shoot new homes for wounded warriors with Homes For Our Troops. On top of all of that, we spent much of our free time mini-bus shopping around New England and preparing to shoot our first feature documentary on a cross country road trip in the spring.

Needless to say, we no longer had our long summer days to blog, and the demands of both shooting and school forced us to go radio silent for a while.

Fast forward almost a year, and we've somehow managed to keep both documentary and commercial arms attached to the same torso. We've beefed up our equipment quiver with a twelve foot jib arm, which finds its new home in our production trailer. The mini-bus that we bought from a church in Rhode Island back in January drove us seven thousand miles over seven weeks this spring, leaving us with some of the most amazing experiences of our lives and three hundred hours of footage.

As we approach our fourth birthday, we're proud to announce the launch of our new name: Windy. We go by our nickname now, as Wind Powered Productions felt a bit long. Unintended associations with windmills and potential lawsuit threats from other production companies with similar names motivated us to simplify.

But most importantly, Windy is a new brand that allows us to unite both our commercial and documentary work under a common mission, to tell the stories that matter. From cutting edge science to community service, we believe that financial sustainability and creative expression are not mutually exclusive. More about this later, but in the meantime, we hope you enjoy the next few blog posts, a recap the successes and failures of our third year.

Best,

Windy

The Wyss Institute

Wind Powered Productions has just completed work on a series of promotional videos for the Wyss Institute @ Harvard. The caliber of people at the Wyss is hard to articulate and the importance of their scientific discoveries is mind boggling. Every shoot day was full of gasps and dropped jaws.

It was a great opportunity for us and we happy to except the challenge. Every shoot day posed unique challenges. Every lab was different and every set up had to be created from scratch. We also had to bring in a very stripped down set up as we were shooting in labs that were full of passionate working scientists - it turns out that the cancer vaccine people don't like to stop working. In our time at the Wyss we shot over 50 hours which was all edited down into 8 individual platforms and two trailers videos that give an overview of the Wyss. To see the rest of the videos head over to the Wyss Institute website.

Motion Capture LabShooting in the motion capture lab.

The Mighty PriusThe beloved Prius packed to the gills.

 

Clean the Bay

 

Wind Powered got an awesome opportunity to shoot with an amazing organization in Rhode Island, Clean the Bay. Clean the Bay works with two large landing crafts to remove large debris from the shore lines of Rhode Island, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. Clean the Bay can remove everything from old pier pylons to derelict boats. To see them in action is staggering. They can move single objects weighing up to 3 tons. In the past 2 years they have removed more than 1,400 tones of debris and sadly they have only scratched the surface. The fact that a team of 4 and with only 2 boats can remove 1,400 tons of trash is incredible. As amazing as the Clean the Bay team is they still need your help. If you see debris in your area give them a call. Check out the link below to learn more about Clean the Bay....

 

Apple Store

Wind Powered was lucky enough to be invited to the Apple store on Boylston street in Boston to teach about filmmaking and how we use Apple products in our workflow. Considering out weakness for all things shiny, pretty, and Apple we jumped at the oppurtunity. In preparation for the event we decided to shoot some footage around Boston and cut together a little promo for our fair city of Boston. We scrounged up a few models and proceeded to shoot all the iconic sites that define Boston. The 4th of July fireworks, sailing in the Boston Harbor, an evening at Fenway, and of course stroll down Newbury Street.

The footage looked great and it was a blast for us. Check out the video and be sure to check a few shoots of us in action at the Apple store.

-wpp

The Hump-Cam

We are is pleased to announce that William Winsor Humphrey III is now officially a partner at Wind Powered Productions. Will has been hugely helpful with all things Endless Abilities including skiing backwards, working with sponsors, and organizing a great fundraiser. In addition, Will brings a wide range of talents to the table including his 50 Ton Captains License and an impeccable ear for all things audio. We had an official swearing in ceremony last week. Check out the photos below to see more.

"What was once a wolf pack of two is now a wolf pack of three"

-wpp

 

Final Cut "Pro" XXX

Ways to Piss Me Off We have only just recently picked up a copy of the new final cut and we do not want to rush to judgement but first impressions are worth something. Overall the new Final Cut feels like the awkward step-child in and otherwise Kennedy-esque family. The controls just aren't as fine and the professional features are missing. My beloved friend Color has been given the axe and without XML I cannot use Autodesk Smoke. As follows are my grievances to date... I am sure more will follow:

Grievances:

1. I miss my viewer

2. I need XML

3. I like my audio and video separate

4. Events are just annoying... let me manage my media the way I want

5. I need to import from Final Cut 7... not iMovie

6. I need Apple Color

7. When I mark in and out points leave them alone... Don't erase them

8. Thumbnails are for websites

New Website - ummm Shiny....

As much as we loved the old website it is time to move on and we have made a few changes. Take some time to look around and let us know what you think. This website is for you so please let us know what works and what doesn't.