Anime - Lucky Star Song - Masters of Gregorian Chant - Stairway to Heaven Completed October 2007 Premiered October 3, 2007 YouTube Link My first Iron Chef video, done as a practice video against Kitsuner of Corn Dog Vid Vids, in preparation for the Online Iron Chef Tournament 3.0. By a 3-2 vote, I won this round.
Anime - Idol Defense Force Hummingbird Song - Hirano Aya, Katou Emiri, Fukuhara Kaori, & Endo Aya - Motteke! Sailor Fuku Completed September 2007 Premiered September 30, 2007 AnimeMusicVideos.org Link YouTube Link When in Rome... Peer pressure from the Mastermind and his followers made me do it, and I have no pretensions that this is anything other than a slapped-together job to get in on the fun. And yes, that is the System 7 box, cursor, screen, and sound.
Anime - Kanon (2006) Song - Trans-Siberian Orchestra - The Lost Christmas Eve Completed June 2007 Premiered August 17, 2007 AnimeMusicVideos.org Link YouTube Link Kanon has been in my mind for this song for several years, and I was planning on making an all-girls video using the 2002 version of the series for quite a while. I was looking for a copy of the DVDs for the series for less money than I was finding when the first episode of the 2006 remake broadcast. My plans for this video were immediately put on the shelf until I could get the new version. The first step was shortening the song; I've always hated the middle section with the "Christmas..." chant, so I wanted to take that out, along with the final section after the faded chord, since it seemed superfluous to the song. I ended up also cutting the second verse and chorus, since I was having a great deal of difficulty finding scenes that would fit that section of the song once I decided to focus on Ayu rather than have the video skip among the various girls for different parts of the song (Ayu was always intended for the final section before the instrumental finale, though, which I think is the best segment). The video on the R2 DVDs was insanely high quality; it's no surprise that they retail for 6000 yen each. They were progressive and anamorphic with almost no video issues coming off the disk, so I didn't need to filter a thing, and it allowed me to release an 848x480 distro copy. Whatever KyoAni paid their encoders for these disks, it wasn't enough. Editing was pretty straightforward, without much in the way of effects other than a few white flashes/fade to white moments. I'm still a KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid) editor, and prefer to have the footage tell the story, rather than have the video taken over by effects. Editing this way does make the user have a passing knowledge of the series you use, but it's the way I feel more comfortable. Convention History: AnimeEvolution 2007 - Finalist Anime Weekend Atlanta (Pro Competition) 2007 - Finalist, Best Sentimental Bakuretsucon 2007 - Finalist Another Anime Con 2007 - Winner, Best Drama
Anime - Azumanga Daioh Song - Nakatsukasa Masami - Feeling Heart Completed April 2007 Premiered May 11, 2007 AnimeMusicVideos.org Link YouTube Link YouTube Link (Side-by-Side version) This video was created especially for Anime Central's 2007 Theme contest, "Faux Anime Opening." I went through almost every DVD, tape, and fansub I own looking at openings for ones that I though I could do on a technical level, and that had at least some scenes that I could think of replicating using another series. Ten openings made the list, including a remake of my first AMV ever, and the one that I could most easily see was Azumanga Daioh replicating To Heart's opening. I had to wait for several days after deciding before actually being able to edit, as RightStuf's release of the first To Heart DVD wasn't out yet, and I didn't want to work from a very low-quality VHS fansub copy from 2000. I was able to make a list of potential scenes from Azumanga that would match, as well as generate the credit list that would be used in the video (all the credits in the video are accurate for Azumanga, save the opening theme credit, which matches the To Heart opening credit, thanks to ja.wikipedia.org for providing the correct kana/kanji for positions and names). The final video was made in four parts: the opening, up to the logo, the title logo itself which was made using After Effects on the desktop, the main video, which was duplicated twice for the half-rolled section, each duplicate being sepia-toned, and the ending segment, which was simply a keyframed 4-point matte. Overall, I'm happy with the way it came out, though I'm disappointed by the edges in the masks at 1:25-1:32, Tomo's and Osaka's in particular stand out. Something to work on in future videos. Convention History: Anime Central 2007 - Finalist (Theme Contest)
Anime - Card Captor Sakura Song - Lazytown Soundtrack - Step By Step Completed February 2007 Premiered April 20, 2007 AnimeMusicVideos.org Link YouTube Link This idea came to me while I was digging through my short songs looking for something that might have fit the "Magical and Musical" magical girl MEP. I ended up not joining the project, but the song paired with CCS stuck in my head. The overall idea was to showcase Tomoyo's contributions to Sakura's adventures, which mostly consist of costumes and videotape. The main realization I came to while going through the series: Tomoyo is a really creepy girl at times. Technical Ripped/filtered on my Windows desktop, edited in FCP on my Mac laptop. Digital effects came out in force for this one, especially the opening sequence, which took twelve video layers, and I'm quite proud of how it came out. Each of the "Hollywood Squares"-type also have their own internal linking theme, if you look for it. Convention History: Anime Boston 2007 - Finalist Toracon 2007 - Winner, Sports/Romance/Other AnimeEvolution 2007 - Finalist Bakuretsucon 2007 - Finalist
Anime - CLAMP School Song - Sailor Moon (Sandy Howell) - Oh Starry Night Completed September 2006 Premiered November 3, 2006 AnimeMusicVideos.org Link YouTube Link Created for the Moonlight Melodies project, this debuted separately at my hometown convention, Bakuretsucon. Convention History: Bakuretsucon 2006 - Finalist
Anime - Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha (Original and A's) Song - KOTOKO - We Survive (short ver.) Completed May 2006 Premiered July 7, 2006 AnimeMusicVideos.org Link YouTube Link The first time I watched Nanoha, I remember thinking that the action scenes were better than any other magical girl series I'd seen. That impression was confirmed and significantly enhanced during the second season, which had even better battle scenes (with more than twice as many people involved in the combat, things can be much more interesting). So when I decided that I wanted to do a combat-action video, Nanoha was the first thing that jumped into my mind. The music was much harder. I wanted a fast, driving song, but fairly upbeat, and without long slower sections. I decided that I wanted to use a KOTOKO track after some deliberation, and was having difficulty deciding between "Oblivion" and "Face of Fact," though both had the problem that they petered out pretty badly at their ends. I decided to dig through my collection one more time, and found that I had missed "We Survive," the opening to VG Neo, on the first pass through. The long version, from the GIGA Opening Collection CD, felt like it was too long to carry the action the whole way through, but the short version was still available on the company website, and was perfect for the length and feel that I wanted. Most of the editing was done without a major plan in mind, just general blocks that I wanted certain characters to dominate. My main goal was to make the action flow, and almost every clip was replaced at least once before finding a good scene for the music. The text effects of the characters and their devices were fun to do, as finding a font that looked similar to the official Nanoha font took some time. The spellings of Raising Heart, Bardiche, Laevatein, and Graf Eisen are all official, from the device cards in the Nanoha A's DVDs. The spellings of Chrono's and Fate's last names, Signum, and Vita are all from Triad's subs, as I couldn't find an official spelling. I admit that the actual "light" that reveals the text looks kind of lame if you pause the video and look at it, but my skills at generating my own static images are pretty lacking, and they're only on the screen for about a third of a second at a time, so it still looks okay. Something to work on for my next videos, though. There is one shot at about 0:40 that isn't from Nanoha or Nanoha A's, but from the Triangle Heart ~Sweet Songs Forever~ Soundstage VA, which is a collection of music videos from around the Triangle Heart series, made as a promotion for the then-upcoming OVA series. Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha started out as a sidestory game to the Triangle Heart games, and was apparently vastly different from the series, if the video from TH~SSF~ is any indication, including a distinctly different device, a fairy-form Lindy, and Chrono apparently as the bad guy of the game. Having the DVD available to me, I couldn't resist putting at least one small segment from Nanoha's roots in the video. Convention History: Animethon 13 (2006) - Runner-Up, Best Action Otakon 2006 - Finalist Anime Evolution 2006 - Finalist Bakuretsucon 2006 - Finalist
Anime - Various Song - Various Completed January-March 2006 Premiered June 8, 2006 AnimeMusicVideos.org Link YouTube Link These are the three entries I made for the AMV Hell: Championship Edition competition. Because I either had no ideas for a song (most of the early rounds) or because I was busy with projects for classes (some of the later rounds), I only created videos for rounds 8, 10, and 13. None of them ended up in the final compilation. Round 8 - The Money Song This was the first round that I had any idea for the song picked, since I've heard the song more times than I can count. The two lines that jumped out at me were "forty thousand French francs in my fridge," which made me think of the C4 packages in Rally's fridge in Gunsmith Cats, and "my dollar bills could buy the Brooklyn Bridge," where I remembered that US dollars are the currency of choice in Area 88. The hardest part of the video was overlaying all the British Pound notes over the love letters in Shiro's jacket for the opening lines. I eventually took the first and last frames of the original pan, aligned and pasted them together in Photoshop, overlaid the notes, and panned the frame across the large image in Final Cut. One of the judges sent me a PM after the round saying how much they liked it, but the other judges disagreed and Fall_Child42's (I admit, very funny) entry won. Round 10 - Wild Card I'm really not sure where this one sprung from, except that I had just hunted down a copy of the music video of One Billion is Big from the old edutainment PBS show Square One TV, which I watched religiously as a kid. The song by the Fat Boys felt like a perfect AMV Hell song, so I went looking for shows with huge numbers of things. The first thing I thought of was the rats behind Yuki in the first episode of Fruits Basket, which reminded me of the explosion of rats in a first-season episode of Sailor Moon. The rat population of Chibi Goddesses rounded it out. This was a quick one-gag joke, and I'm not surprised that it lost badly. Round 13 - I Like to Move It Blame this one on having watched blaidd's Battle Chess video at Katsucon 8. The first thing I thought of with "moving" was chess, and I hunted down what I had in my collection of people playing chess, which ended up including Miyuki-chan in Wonderland's live chess game as well as a second-season episode of Sailor Moon in addition to the Cowboy Bebop that blaidd used so well. Not particularly funny, so I'm not surprised that the Azumanga pigtail-moving video entered by AmPsy won.
Anime - Seikai series (Crest/Banner of the Stars) Song - Trans-Siberian Orchestra - A Final Dream Completed December 2005 Premiered February 26, 2006 AnimeMusicVideos.org Link YouTube Link This video grew out of an utterly failed attempt at a Crest of the Stars video to "If We Hold On Together" from The Land Before Time in 2003. The goal was a Jinto/Lafiel romance video, but the concept died an ugly death from lack of ideas on how to assemble it and the time pressures of graduating from college. By the time I was able to get back to the video, it was long stale in my head and I ended up scrapping it. The idea got resurrected by two near-simultaneous happenings: I picked up a copy of Trans-Siberian Orchestra's Beethoven's Last Night and Banner of the Stars III got released. Banner III had Jinto and Lafiel much closer together than previous series, and "A Final Dream" was screaming for a "looking towards tomorrow" romance video in my head. So, armed with nearly three times the source material I had for my original video (Banner I and II in addition to III, rather than just Crest) to fit a song half as long, I sat down and watched the entirety of the Seikai anime in about three days, taking notes on what scenes I might want to use. The actual editing of the video came together in about another four days, assisted by the fact that no digital effects were used, save crossfades and a few speed changes to fit a lyric. The only major decision I had to make footage-wise was whether to edit fullscreen, cropping Banner II and III horizontally, or widescreen, cropping Crest, Birth, and Banner I vertically. I quickly decided to go widescreen, as I wanted the full span of several scenes from the widescreen series, and I lost very little of the fullscreen footage's scenes' impact by cropping them. Interestingly, unlike the other two times I've cropped fullscreen footage to fit a widescreen project, I didn't need to shift any of the fullscreen scenes up or down to keep the important part in the frame. For some reason, the Seikai series kept the action and focus in the middle of the frame, which worked out admirably for me. Technical: This was the second AMV that I editing using Final Cut Pro on my PowerBook laptop, and has seriously hooked me on FCP over my old standard MediaStudio Pro, especially as the latest version of MSP (which I tried the demo of) was very, very disappointing. The footage was ripped, filtered, and cut into lots of uncompressed AVIs on my desktop PC (as AVISynth is an absolutely wonderful tool for that), transferred to the laptop over the LAN, and edited on the laptop. The final export was transferred back to the PC for distribution encoding (XviD for the Org, MPEG-2 for cons). Convention History: Llamacon 2006 - Finalist Animethon 13 - Finalist Anime Evolution 2006 - Finalist
Anime - Card Captor Sakura Song - Whitney Houston - I Wanna Dance With Somebody Completed May 2005 This was my track for the failed Betamax Project. Never intended to be more than a simple little upbeat dance video, I'm fairly happy with how it turned out. I might someday try to extend this into a full video, since it was never released after the project collapsed. YouTube Link