Archive for July, 2010


Weightbot

I train a couple of times a week and the only way I am able to do that is by doing it nurd-style. I use a lot of apps to record my training sessions and gather statistics. Not only is it helpful, but more importantly it works as motivation. I basically use three different apps. One to track my weight (more interesting than useful perhaps), one to track my wight training and help it and one to track my cycling and running (actually there are two, but I’ll come back to that later). I use an iPhone and I’m not sure if all the apps are available on other platforms.

The first app is WeightBot which let me track my weight. It doesn’t do it automatically (unless you have this 160$ weight..), I have to manually enter my weight every day. You can set a target weight and how many days to achieve that goal. You get a nice graph and you can view it by week, month or year. It also gives you a BMI or Body Mass Index, but it may or may not be accurate, depending on how fit and how much muscle mass you have.

I have to admit I use it more out of a curiosity than as a tool to actually lose or gain weight. You’ll be surprised how a weekend of partying and drinking affects your body…

GymGoal

Want to know how to train a specific muscle in GymGoal? Just press it and the app shows you how!

GymGoal is your substitute to pen and paper at the gym. You can choose from a mixture of pre planned training programs or make your own custom ones. The app has a library of hundreds of different exercises, using free weights, cables, machines or just your own body. Each exercise is shown by a step by step walkthrough. Keep a record of your training sessions, how long they last, how much you lift, how many sets and so forth. Make notes to your self and time your breaks in between sets. There is even information about nutrition and how to reach your goal, whether it is muscle-building, weight loss, stamina or endurance.

Of all the training apps I’ve come across, GymGoal is the most extensive one, covering almost all aspects related to indoor gym training. You can also back up your information to a server in case you lose or have to restore your phone. It even has a built-in music player, though you can use Spotify, Wimp or the iPod in the background.

Cyclemeter

Cyclemeter is one of many GPS tracking apps in the App Store and I have not tested all of them. It’s similar to MotionX GPS, but without all the annoying sounds and

Cyclemeter maps your track.

all the useless graphics bullshit. Cyclemeter gives you all the obvious functions of course, a map, graphs, average speed, max speed, time, altitude and so forth. You can automatically send updates to Twitter, Facebook and email. Cyclemeter can even read any replies you get out loud if you use earplugs while cycling (which I don’t recommend).I don’t see the use of this, unless you are doing something crazy like cycling from Trondheim to Oslo. Then your friends or anyone else remotely interested could keep track of your progress and encourage you underway. I would say the main purpose is to save your trips and over time improve your time and speed. There is also a nice calendar that shows all your trips and whether they were better or worse than previous trips.

Cyclemeter can of course be used for other things than biking, like running, walking, skating, skiing or swimming(!), but for some reason there is apps for that as well. I guess there is economic gain in having three identical apps, but with different names and icons..

The last app I use is the Nike+ app for running indoors, on a treadmill . Free to download, but requires the Nike+ sensor in, or on, your shoe. It works well, but the results never quite match the ones on the treadmill itself. What makes Nike+ cool is the web-integration. Set goals, look at you running history, compare times, pace and length of your runs. It has turned out to be a nice community and it’s excellent ¬†if you’re a group of people training together, whether your competing or not ūüôā

Get a nice overview with Nike+ online.

I mentioned in an earlier post that I like colors, so I’ve been looking¬†trough my stuff to see if that’s actually true. So here is a couple of stills from some ads I’ve directed, shot by different photographers.

Lydverket 1

The first one (Lydverket) is actually shot by me. It’s a no budget “stand up” done in front of a green screen, shot on a Panasonic HVX200. It took about 30 min to shoot and another 30 to edit. I hade done a previz, so I more or less had the edit ready. I keyed the green screen in FCP which is not very smart if you want a nice smooth key, and I wasn’t planning on using it, but I liked the rough look it gave som I kept it.

Lydverket 2

The background¬†stills are taken by various photographers at various festivals and concerts. My orignal plan was to have the stills in color and the talking head in black and white, but it turned out strange and awkward¬†to look at when I cut from “face with background” to just “face without background”. It sort of¬†became like jumping back and forth between color and B/W which was just annoying. So I experimented with different¬†sepia/color wash solutions and ended up with this blue look with fake lens flare..

Olympics 2008

The next one is an ad for the Summer Olympics 2008 shot by Thomas L√łkkeberg. This was the first ad I ever directed and we did it old school and shot on 16mm. I would choose 16mm over any digital format any day, I like the ¬†dust, scratches and burns. It just feels more real. Of course, my big dream is to shoot an ad using 70mm, wich is ridiculous, but I don’t think it’s been done before. If it has, please tell me!

We were going to shoot five kids playing football (no gun involved) on a playing field during a

Mud football.

sunny day, but the weather forecast looked grim so we decided to use it instead of working against it. To make sure it rained all day we hired some FX people with rain machines to cover us in big, cold rain drops, 12 hours at end. It looks awesome, but in reality it’s a pain in the butt. The fake rain is not “warm” like regular rain. It’s icy cold. And there is a lot more of it than during a regular rain shower.

Being my first shoot, I ended up shooting way more than I needed. I had never made anything

I like rain.

as short as an ad before. This one ended up being 40 seconds long and I only used half of the shots we did. You usually never have more than a day or two when shooting an ad, so planning is important. It could very well be the most important thing you do in preproduction. That being said and if time permits it, I would rather come back with more shots than I need. Or end up using.

Continues after break.

We love rain.

The next one has a Blade Runner/C.S.I inspired look and is an ad divided into 6 parts. I co-directed with my colleague Leon and it’s shot by Tor Eigil Scheide. The “story” stretches over 3 different locations, the 2 first ones are the most interesting; “the crime scene” with the film noir, Blade Runner-inspired look and the “crime lab” with the CSI-look. This was an ad for the Norwegian

Big lights pan through the windows creating columns of light in the smokey interior.

finals of Eurovision Song Contest, or Melodi Grand Prix as we call it. Lot’s of colors, lot’s of glam and lot’s of really bad taste. But we had fun making the ads none the less. I’m a huge fan of Ridley Scotts Blade Runner and to get to play with big lights and smoke all day hardly counts as work.

Picking up evidence.

We found a great location in Oslo with a fantastic red and white checkered floor and some big great looking windows. Outside we put up a pair of lights and some guys swinging them back and forth, the effect was pretty amazing in the smoked filled room. It’s pretty dark, but still a lot of colors. Mostly dark, pink, purple, blue, red and silver and gold. The set looked quite different in regular light. Below are some more stills, I may even post the videos later on.

Look out!

Cliché.. P3 Sommer.

Lydverket (DoP Håvard Byrkjeland)

P3 Sommer, another cliché.

Hot water on cold ground makes damp. Nice.