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Wouter du Toit
Paris, FR

Articles written by Wouter du Toit

Casey Neistat Hides an Ad Behind His Vlog

One of the latest vlogs from Casey Neistat was a little different to the others. If you are like me, you have subscribed to his channel, and have noticed that his approach and energy towards it has changed quite significantly since he took his break. But now it’s become a marketing platform, and his vlogs are just marketing brands and products. This vlog especially, with a teenage fantasy that he’s always wanted to experience during summertime as concept, and him pursuing it. At the end of the video the sponsorship messaging, which is obviously great from the brand’s perspective, but not so much for the viewer. We watch vlogs because of its candid, honest nature. With this vlog, it’s not true anymore.

Adobe Lightroom Now Has an Instagram Account

You might say they are late to the pack, and it's quite ironic. One of the largest photography communities in the world and Adobe Lightroom, the software many photographers use to make the photos look the way they do. I'm glad they are doing it, but why now? I mean, Fstoppers has over 325,000 followers on Instagram. It's because of the love of photography and the community that we form part of. And I am not sure I can say the same thing for Adobe Lightroom starting up their profile now. Instagram just became a very viable marketing platform too, so it makes sense for brands to come into the fray, especially brands who make products for the photographic market.

Neill Blomkamp's New Short 'Rakka'

Neill Blomkamp directed "District 9" and "Chappie" and now he's released a short film of a dystopian future where aliens have taken over earth and the humans have to fight with whatever they can to survive and before it's too late. It's done in the style you kan expect from Blomkamp, in a way I believe only he can do, and it's got all the action, suspense, and gross details of brain implantation and alien creatures that he's become known for.

The Smartsuit Pro Adds Characters in Real Time for Motion Capture

Our blockbuster action films have become so advanced with regards to the 3D and special effects that I'll go watch a movie just to watch it, and forgiving the lame dialog or bad acting just as long as the movie pushes the barriers to what I've experienced. Now Rokoko has made a suit that someone can wear that can generate a character of any kind to embed into a realistic computer generated space in real time. It removes the cameras and the time it takes to add in these characters in post production, and it happens in real time, so it's a massive saving for the production houses. It leads to new possibilities with regards to character movement and creating something that looks indistinguishable from reality.

Making Something Cool When Your Environment Is Boring

Have you ever felt that certain photographers and film makers just get the great shots because they get to go to some super locations? Or because they get commissioned by the top brands to have all the best lighting and equipment? A guy called Brandon Li had almost the same experience. He travels to some amazing locations, but decided to make a short film taking place in his hotel room. He sets himself a challenge to make something interesting from a boring space or location to push his creativity and think about ways to make it in to something more appealing.

Apple Uses Carl Sagan's Narration in Their New Earth Video Campaign

You can't go wrong with the narration of Carl Sagan or Alan Watts when it comes to making a video and showing scenes of the great places such mountain ranges, lakes, beaches, and landscapes we have on this planet. Apple took it upon themselves to use this narration in their latest ad campaign. I am impressed with the quality of the footage. The color, the slow motion shots, and to a degree the dynamic range which handled the situations very well.

How to Shoot With a Song as Inspiration

The one thing we as photographers and videographers do is tell stories. That's the main reason we do it. Whether it's a story of fantasy or a shot documenting a moment in the real world, it's done to make the viewer tell themselves the story they see in the picture. In this video, Mango Street break down how they tell their stories. Instead of focusing on the moments as they organically happen, like shooting a wedding, they took a conceptual idea that inspired them and directed a shoot to execute their interpretation thereof. They used song lyrics as a concept and took it from there. I must say, inspiration can be found anywhere, but this was a very well executed idea that will certainly play part in my next shoot.

Six Tricks to Shoot Better Video With Your Mobile Phone

This video displays basic tips for a person looking to start vlogging or capturing video to showcase their skills. It's aimed at beginners, although there are some great tips for the avid shooter too. How to create a dolly-like effect using only your body, and how long a shot should last to make it something the viewer can actually focus on and absorb is included. It's practical and the video is only two minutes long.

Take a Bite: 10 Tricks Advertisers Use to Make Food Look Irresistible

We all know the pictures on the packaging of food you buy usually is a lie. It's not how it's going to look when you open it, and it's not going to taste as good as your imagination was telling you it would based on the photo of the package. But it surely works to get people interested and buying one product over the other. How do they do it? This video shares 10 tricks food advertisers use when shooting the images to be used in advertising and packaging. A picture of a piece of bread being broken open, hot and steaming out of the oven, sure looks delicious. Did you know wet cotton wool will steam longer than bread would? Yes, me neither.

How BBC Films Animals At Night

The animal kingdom does most of its activities at dawn or at dusk, and many only hunt when they can hide in the darkness that the nighttime brings. This video showcases how BBC went about capturing the animals using artificial light at first, and how they do it now using infra-red and thermal cameras.

Adding Color - Changing History or Making It More Relatable?

At first black and white photos were the only way images could be developed, printed, and shown to the world. With digital technology and having all the information at our fingertips allows some obsessive artists delve into the past to bring the past to life by adding color and making the images more relatable. Or does it? Some people have argued that the past shouldn't be altered, and that it must be left as is, preserved and untouched. They argue that the images shape history, and should remain as factually correct as possible. However, when watching the video and seeing the way the images are transformed surely adds another level to the ability to relate to the images.

Does the DJI Spark Have What It Takes?

DJI recently launched the DJI Spark drone. It's their smallest drone yet, and is aimed at the beginner drone flyer. But, at $499, it can certainly be used to capture b-roll footage or for behind the scenes shots that can add to your brand and showcase your working style for potential clients to see. The Verge has put together an overall analysis of the drone which is quite informative and showcases what they see as its uses in everyday life.

Will Robots Take Photography Jobs?

I don't know about you but I've been a little overwhelmed about the power of artificial intelligence and the speed it's replacing jobs that can be automated. Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg have recently stated that a basic salary should be paid to every citizen in America to make sure that people who have lost their jobs due to automation can keep on their feet and do whatever it is they've always wanted to do.

Use Audio Swells to Give Your Video Transitions More Punch

I've been focussing on my video transitions lately. I've noticed the big guys like Peter Mckinnon and Casey Neistat use transitions to create interest and make the videos a pleasure to watch. Now I already shoot for the edit, but I've never really focused on what else I can do to give my videos more punch, until this video. Zach Ramelan shows how you can use audio swells to achieve it. TV Shows have been using it for years, and you don't really notice it until you're told what it is.

How To Achieve Flow in Your Shooting

Have you ever been so immersed in your shoot, directing, getting the model to do what you intended and more, and forgetting about time and matter and anything other than what you are doing right now? If not, this video will tell you more about flow and give you some indication of how you can achieve it. Evan Puschak, who is the guy behind The Nerdwriter Youtube channel, really get’s into how you too can benefit from it, create great work and get over a creative block should you ever be experiencing one.

An Agoraphobic Traveller Shoots Images Using the Web

Agoraphobia is the extreme or irrational fear of crowded spaces or enclosed public places. I didn't know there was such a fear, or what it was until this video shed some light on it. Jacqui Kenny speaks about how she can't really function in busy places, almost like her imagination will get the better of her. I never thought having super creative imagination could be a burden, now I know it can be. Because of this impediment she explores the world from her living room.

Social Stories and What to Focus On

There's a trend with our social networks these days. All the networks and apps call it "stories." It's on Facebook now, just like it is on Instagram, Whatsapp, Messenger, and Snapchat. It's a way of showing others your day, or, documenting it with video and photos and making it a story. This media that has been added to our daily feeds of consumption is obviously difficult for people who haven't learnt to filter out information that they don't need. I follow over 400 people on Instagram, so if each one has a story for me to watch my day will be filled up watching stories which is a lot of time to spend on things that might not have a positive effect on our daily productivity or work.