Adapting Your Leadership During Change

first_imgBy Karen Shirer, PhD           Understanding the nature of changeNo matter what organization we work in, we deal with increasing complexity and on-going change.  In my own work, one of our largest Extension programs in Minnesota, SNAP Education, experienced a 30% budget cut during 2013.  We continue to deal with the effects of this unexpected change today.  How do we become more resilient in the face of these kinds of on-going change in our organizations?A first step to building our resiliency involves understanding the kinds of change we deal with and how the kind of change determines how we respond.  Some changes seem to come out of nowhere, like the funding cut to SNAP Ed on January 1, 2013 that came as a result of federal legislative maneuvering. Other changes are more predictable or routine (e.g., people leave and create openings) but still require us to manage the response to it. Still other changes are a combination of routine and unpredicted changes.  For us, the loss of SNAP Ed funding was this latter kind of change.  We needed to first figure out how we were going to cover our costs for the last 9 months of the fiscal year while at the same time designing a new structure that the reduced resources could support (i.e., staff reductions).What is your change?On June 25, the Minnesota Family Learning Network, Lifestyle Transitions Team offered its first webinar, focusing on Building Resiliency during Change – Finding Courage Within. You can view this archived webinar at https://youtu.be/Hnjdur_rxvM.  During the webinar, military Family Service Providers identified a number of challenges that they faced in their organizations and their work with families, including:  A lack of staff to provide services and turnover of staff, reduced funding levels, too much paperwork and red tape, and challenges getting information out to families.  At the same time, service members and their families were seeking services for reintegration problems, financial challenges, the emotional wounds of the service member, feeling isolated, and difficulties seeking employment.This feedback confirmed what I already believed:  military family services organizations face challenges on a number of fronts in their organization and with the families they serve.  The webinar provided valuable information on how to begin to address the personal stressors caused by these change. If you have not viewed it, please take some time to do so.  This blog adds to the webinar by providing you with information to help manage and lead change in your organization.Types of change that will help us understand what is happeningA popular saying is “nobody likes change except a baby with a wet diaper.”  Even if we do not like change, our work requires that we address it in effective ways.  Heifetz, Linsky & Grashow (2009),  researchers at the Harvard Business School, developed a model that outlines three kinds of change or challenges/problems that leaders and managers face in their organizations and strategies for responding. These changes are labeled as:  technical, adaptive and a combination of technical and adaptive.Technical problems are well defined and their solutions are known. Those with adequate expertise and organizational capacity can solve them.  For example, a father of young children seeks help with finding high quality childcare for his children so that he can continue working during his wife’s deployment. His care provider unexpectedly quit. The service provider consults available resources and connects the father with them. Solutions to technical problems are often straightforward.Adaptive problems are much more complex and not well defined. The answers are not known in advance but require innovation and learning. For example, a service member and his/her family may come in for service for multiple issues – PTSD, housing insecurity, job seeking help – for which you have few existing resources to offer them. You have resources to deal with one of these issues alone but the combination is beyond your organization’s ability to manage. There may not be established models and resources for working with this complex set of issues, especially in an environment where there are reduced resources. You need to find new models, partnerships and approaches to meet this family’s needs.Many times the challenges faced by family service providers involve a combination of technical and adaptive problems; sometimes described as complicated problems. These are still tough challenges but you can more readily define them more than adaptive challenges. But their solutions may not be clear and learning is required. Much of our work tends to fall in this arena. For example, the homeless family above may live in a community where there are complex array of services available but you may not be knowledgeable about them. Learning about them helps you point them in the right direction for addressing their issues. In addition, you learn in the process the importance of helping community resources understand the unique needs of military families.How to apply to your workThese three kinds of change are often placed on a continuum with complicated problems wedged between routine and adaptive problems (see figure 1).  Heifetz, Linsky & Grashow (2009) go on to describe the kind of leadership needed to address complex problems or changes as adaptive leadership.  Basic to this model is the idea that a leader understands the nature of the problem or change – whether it is routine, complicated or adaptive – and applies the appropriate strategies for addressing the problem.  We do not want to apply a technical solution to an adaptive challenge (i.e., it is not strong enough to effect change) nor do we want to apply an adaptive solution to a technical problem (i.e., it is over kill and wastes valuable resources).My experience is that the bulk of our work with organizational change lies in the middle of the continuum. At first, the situation seems overwhelming and very complex – adaptive.  But as we begin to learn more and work with others to address the situation, routine or technical problems emerge for which we can begin addressing. Oftentimes, though, we need to take adaptive approaches overall to effectively weather the changes.   These approaches involve thoughtfully defining the problem, changing our relationships and approaches to the work, including the people with the problem in the work of solving it, and experimenting with solutions (and permitting failure).Figure 1If you are interested in learning more about adaptive challenges and adaptive leadership, please see the resources listed below:Five Steps for Leading through Adaptive Changehttp://www.forbes.com/sites/brentgleeson/2014/08/10/5-steps-for-leading-through-adaptive-change/Technical Problems vs. Adaptive Challengeshttp://www.groupsmith.com/uploads/file/technical%20problems%20vs%20%20adaptive%20challenges.pdfPerspectives on Change:  Ron Heifetzhttp://changetheorists.pbworks.com/w/page/15475038/Ron%20Heifetz To end the story I began with …The budget cut for SNAP Ed I referenced at the beginning of this blog ended with the funding being reinstated in early 2014. Of course, this news was wholeheartedly welcomed but today we still are practicing adaptive leadership to invest the funds and deal with the negative fallout from staff layoffs. To address the budget cut, the program re-organized and down-sized its staff to meet the decreased resources. Now we are ramping up hiring of new staff to improve the quality and reach of the program.  This ramping up brings its own set of challenges and stressors. I’ve learned losing resources and gaining resources require adaptive leadership to address the challenges.  Take a few minutes to post your thoughts about your adaptive challenges and your experience addressing them.ReferencesHeifetz, R. A., Linsky, M., & Grashow, A. (2009). The practice of adaptive leadership: Tools and tactics for changing your organization and the world. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Business Press.last_img read more

Newton 2 Is An Incredible Physics Engine for After Effects

first_imgMotion Boutique has released Newton 2, a physics engine for creating realistic motion and animations in After Effects.Creating realistic motion in After Effects can be tricky.  Adding keyframes and modifying interpolation can be time consuming and requires an experienced user to make it look smooth.  Enter Newton 2, the new physics engine for After Effects that can automate the process of creating slick motion in AE.  From the MotionBoutique site:Newton interprets 2D composition layers as rigid bodies interacting in a real environment. Newton provides many simulation controllers such as body properties, global properties and allows the creation of joints between bodies. Once simulation is completed, animation is recreated in After Effects with standard keyframes.Newton 2 is available for purchase at aescripts.com and retails for $249. Take a look at this demo video to get a sense of how it works:To get a sense of real-world application of this AE physics engine, check out the Newton channel on Vimeo.  Here’s a few favorites that showcase the tools capabilities:last_img read more

Creative Inspiration: Nearly No Dialogue Films

first_imgCreating a film that works beautifully with (nearly) no dialogue is a great example of pure filmmaking at it’s best. Be inspired by these excellent shorts and features!To me, some of the ‘purest’ filmmaking is when images alone are telling the story, rather than the dialogue. That’s not to say that snappy dialogue isn’t an inherent part of cinema, of course it is, but there’s always something rather special about any silent film that can hold your attention without words. Here are some inspiring examples of just that.Vodaphone Kiss & Vogue ShortsThis stunning advert for Vodaphone recently won the best colorist award at the British Arrows for MPC colorist Jean-Clement Soret and features lovely music from Italian composer Ludovico Einaudi. What I love about it is that the end caption is what tells you what the whole film is really all about.Global fashion magazine Vogue has produced a series of short films staring celebrities like Jessica Chastain and Kate Winslet as themselves. It’s an interesting concept that playfully paints a picture of what it’s like to be a celebrity in today’s world. Fast Co Create has a nice write up of the project here.One Line FilmsImage from NYTMSteven’s Spielberg’s cinematographer of choice Janusz Kaminski has directed these 11 stunning short films featuring ”11 of this year’s best big-screen performers” over on the New York Times Magazine interactive site. Starring Cate Blanchett, Bradley Cooper, Chiwetel Ejiofor Adèle Exarchopoulos, Greta Gerwig, Oscar Isaac, Michael B. Jordan, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Robert Redford, Forest Whitaker and Oprah Winfrey.The lines have been written by Lake Bell, Andrew Bujalski, J.C. Chandor, Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke and Richard Linklater, Greta Gerwig, Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen, Nicole Holofcener, Spike Jonze, Jeff Nichols, Sarah Polley and Danny Strong, so it’s a pretty spectacular and eclectic line up. Each of the films are only about a minute long, so take 15 minutes and be dazzled. Check out Oprah’s short below plus a nice 5 minute behind the scenes featurette:Silent Feature FilmsOne of the most famous silent films of recent years is obviously the 5 times Oscar winning The Artist. This year another ‘nearly silent’ feature film is director J.C. Chandor’s All Is Lost, which stars Robert Redford as its only character. It will be interesting to see if this ‘existential-action movie’ can hold up on screen for the full running time. If anyone can, I’m sure Redford can.Have you been inspired by a silent (or near silent) film? Share your film suggestions with our community in the comments below!last_img read more

Quick Tips for Premiere Pro CC Switchers

first_imgSwitching to Premiere Pro CC for the first time? Here are 5 quick tips to get you up to speed on Premiere.If you’re new to Premiere Pro CC or switching to it from something like FCP 7, there are a ton of great resources right here on PremiumBeat that can help you get started. For starters, you should definitely check out Danny Greer’s post on 10 Tips for Premiere Pro Editors, and Clay Asbury’s post on Ten New Features in Premiere Pro CC, FCP Editors Will Love for a great orientation lesson with the software.I thought I’d add my thoughts to the mix to help you make the switch by focusing on a few things that Premiere does differently that might catch you out the first time around.Getting Set Up in Premiere Pro CCFirst of all you should know that you no longer have to manage your Scratch Disks every time you open or switch projects. In Premiere Pro CC  you’ll automatically switch to whichever project is currently open and the destination you selected when you set it up. You can set all of these with one click when you setup your new project (top drop down menu in the image above), or toggle them to permanent destinations in each of the relevant drop down menus.Next, you should be aware that Premiere (unlike Avid Media Composer) really doesn’t mind what NLE you used to edit with, it’s just glad you’re here. So in a come-as-you-are approach you can easily set your keyboard shortcuts to FCP7 mappings…or Media Composer for that matter. To do this, or to create your own custom keyboard shortcuts, click on Premiere Pro > Keyboard Shortcuts to open the keyboard shortcuts window.One thing that I’ve found (am I doing something wrong?) is that if you load a custom preset (for example Jonny_FCP7, as shown in image below), and then change something inside that preset, Premiere Pro will default it the [Custom] setting. The only way to update your custom preset (Jonny_FCP7) is to then ‘Save As…’ over the top of it. This is kind of annoying.Tidy As You GoA handy thing that Premiere Pro does, that I prefer to the way Final Cut Pro 7 used to do things, is that it will automatically tidy any new asset you import or create into the bin that you had selected when you imported it. This a great way to keep your files tidy as you go. The only downside is that if you forget that you had a certain bin selected, and suddenly you can’t find your file, you’ll just have to remember to go back and find that previously selected bin.Three Tips on Working with TitlesThe text and title features in Final Cut Pro 7 where never very good (ok, they were downright terrible). One of the benefits of switching to Premiere Pro CC is that you have a much, MUCH more fully featured text function within the app and you can easily dynamic-link to After Effects for even more sophisticated functionality. That said there are a few things that Premiere Pro does differently.First of all you can’t simply copy and paste a text clip on a timeline to make a new fresh independent text clip. You will merely make a duplicate of it. This is one of the ways Premiere does things differently. So you need to create a new title every time you want another piece of text in your show.A good way to do this, especially if you have spent time finessing a particular font selection, size and design is to use one my favorite buttons in Premiere (which is highlighted by the top arrow in the image above). It’s the ‘New Title Based on Current Title‘ button. This will create a new copy with all the same text and details you can then edit. An alternative, if you Alt (or Option on PC)+ drag a text element in the timeline it will make a new independently editable version of the text clip. Just like FCP7 used to do.The second arrow at the bottom of the image above, is highlighting another great feature in Premiere Pro CC. With a few clicks, it will auto-center your text on the horizontal or vertical axis’ or both. It’s the little things that matter most!One final point about working with text elements in Premiere Pro, which may hang you up if you are used to FCP7, is that whereever the playhead is on the timeline, that is what you will see in the background of the text editing window. So if you have duplicated a text element and your playhead is still sitting on top of it, you will see it in the background but you won’t be able to touch it. The very first time I used Premiere Pro confused me a lot. It seems pretty obvious now, but at the time I just couldn’t figure it out!Anything Premiere Pro feature you like more than it’s FCP 7 equivalent? Got any tips to share for new Premiere Pro editors? Share your thoughts in the comments below!last_img read more

The World of Diffusion Filters

first_imgA diffusion filter softens your image and generates a haze around bright objects. Learn how this can add style to your video project.Top Image via Tiffen.Some filmmakers and videographers think you shouldn’t add an effect in-camera that you could easily take care of in post-production. However, filters can help you capture a broader range of visual information without the sacrifices you might have to make to your image to get this same effect in post.For example, years ago I won a filter pack from Jessops and quickly learned that a gradation filter would allow me to capture more detail in the sky without distorting the highlights from the color profile in post. It changed everything. Over the years I’ve now collected a good range of filters that have different properties and effects. One type of filter that I’ve come to love is the diffusion filter. An image captured through a diffusion filter looks hazy, dreamlike, or even romantic.How Does It Work?The diffusion filter creates a haze by spreading out the light across the etched filter surface. It’s entirely different from blurred or out-of-focus images — a diffused image retains its contrast and sharpness. This is the effect of bending a percentage of the image-forming light from its original path to defocus it. The minuscule patterns on a diffusion filter will also help alter the bokeh.Image via Tiffen.There are many Brands to choose from, but the most reputable are Tiffen, Hoya, Promaster, Sunpak, Fotodiox, and Cokin. They come in grades of 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 or 1/8, 1/4, 1/2, and so on. Different brands use different strength systems.The following is the Tiffen Black Pro-Mist in use. You can see on the right that the image has a beautiful haze around the light and softens the details of the actress while retaining the sharpness of the individual hairs and details of the eye.When To Use a Diffusion FilterOften, in contemporary media, cinematographers diffuse an image to inform the audience that we are no longer watching a film set in the modern time or the real world. Even those who are not versed in the language of cinema can subconsciously pick up on these visual cues.Many films from the Golden Age of Hollywood have a haze to the image because of the lighting, film stock, lenses, and the use of netting. Replicating that by using a diffusion filter can simulate these motifs for the audience.Image from The Furies (1930).Inside Llewyn Davis (2013) is set in the early 60s, and it makes use of diffusion to create its look.Is this to say that all films set in the past need diffusion? Absolutely not. Many, do not. However, it is a beautiful aesthetic to call upon if you need to enhance the periodic elements.Likewise, it can also be a useful tool to create a dreamlike scene.Image from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2.Lower-strength diffusion filters can soften wrinkles and give the face a more flawless look. Many people will simply rely on After Effects to correct these imperfections, but if you’re pressed for time, getting the shot in-camera is always the best, and perhaps the purest, option. There are specific filters, such as the Tiffen Softnet, specifically for this purpose. The Softnet filter mimics the use of placing a net behind the lens, which was an early way to diffuse an image.Some of the earliest ‘portrait’ diffusion filters still in use today are ‘nets.’ Fine mesh, like a stocking, stretched across the lens, has made many a face appear youthful, flawless. The Tiffen Softnet filter series, a modern update made of special fine net laminated between clear optical glass, provides a greater effect on small details, such as wrinkles and skin blemishes, than on the rest of the image.You can also produce the diffused look with a plug-in such as Magic Bullet Looks. While it produces a similar result, it’s not unlike trying to make digital footage look like 35mm film — there’s nothing quite like the real thing.How to Use a Diffusion FilterFocal length will affect the level of diffusion. Using a ¼ Promist on a 180mm lens will result in more diffusion than it would with a 24mm lens. For this reason, it’s advantageous to drop down a level of diffusion when substantially increasing the focal length. In addition, make sure your talent is well lit. As you can imagine, the haze effect is all but lost on a dark set.If you’ve ever used a diffusion filter outside with a wide angle lens, you may have noticed that smaller details tend to become lost in the image. This is because the diffusion pattern tends to become too strong for small details when shooting wide angle. You should use the lowest level of diffusion for an extreme wide shot, or keep your shots tight.Image from Inside Llewyn Davis.Further, while the effect works best when used with a well-lit subject, you want to avoid strong light, especially harsh sunlight. Excessive light will wash out the image.For more insight into which diffusion filter to buy, I highly recommend reading through Tiffen’s lengthy but educational post about their diffusion filters and what they do. Each filter type has an accompanying video that demonstrates the effect of the filter in action.Do you have a favorite diffusion filter? Let us know in the comments.last_img read more

Polarizing Filters Are Essential — Unless They Aren’t

first_imgWhat’s your take on polarizing filters? Essential or extraneous? A polarizing filter can add clarity and drama to your image, but when should you avoid it?Top image via Shutterstock.Polarizing filters are venerable tools in every serious videographer’s toolkit. But how do they work, and when should you use one. First, the science.How Do Polarizing Filters Work?Visible light travels as transverse waves. On earth, light comes at us from every direction: reflected, refracted, and diffused. A polarizing filter is a screen that allows only the direct or parallel transverse waves through, while blocking all other light “noise.” This screen restricts the clutter of atmospheric junk that muddles an image. The photographic result of capturing direct light waves is includes clarity, enhanced saturation, and truer tonal response. A polarized image makes for a clearer picture without atmospheric interference, glare or reflective highlights. That makes it great for landscape photography — not so much for faces and hands.Skin is alive! A polarizer cuts the sheen and deadens the natural moisture in healthy skin. Not a great look. It’s why I won’t use a polarizer when filming people that are any larger than half the vertical size of the frame. If a face is too shiny, apply make-up — it’s formulated to look natural while suppressing sheen.So, while a polarizing filter isn’t great for portraits, it brings drama and tone to big, wide landscapes.Polarizing Filters in ActionIn the American West, photographers can frame shots with the horizon fifty miles away. A polarizer will cut through haze and glare, clarifying the image to an almost surreal impression. But here’s the deal: it’s not artificial — the image is genuine. A pola cuts the junk, like cleaning a dirty window. If you need clarity, preview with a polarizer.People talking in cars has been a staple of TV and movies since the 1930s. In the old days, the car was in front of a process screen, but these days we shoot most of these sequences outside. In a frontal two shot where a windshield is between the lens and the actors, the reflections on the glass can be a distraction. You can reduce nearly all or some of these reflections with a polarizer. I tend not to dial out all of these reflections because they often add interest and reality to the shot. As I mentioned earlier, I don’t like how polarized skin looks, but it never seems to be that big of a deal in the case of car shots, especially if used at half strength. Some polarizers absorb two stops of light so make sure you compensate for that on the iris.To see polarizing filters in action, check out this video.last_img read more

The Art of Finding the Right Song for Your Film or Video

first_imgLooking for more video tutorials? Check these out.Create Your Own Opening Title Sequence Using PRISM!How To Create An Explosion Scene + Free Action Compositing ElementsVideo Tutorial: Create a DIY Wireless China Ball LightMinimize Your Lighting Setups For Narrative ShootsVideo Tutorial: Camera Tips for Stabilizing a Shot in Post The right soundtrack can make or break any video project. So how do you narrow down your options? Here are a few tips to make your search a little easier.Finding the right song for your video can sometimes be a daunting task. To avoid hours of searching, here are a few effective methods that filter the options — and some tips on making your life easier in the future.Become a Master NavigatorSites like PremiumBeat.com offer great navigation tools to help you surf through their catalog. By clicking the up, down, right and left keys, you can quickly move within songs and jump forward and backward in your results lists.Know Your GenreA great way to speed up your search is to determine which genre of music you’re hunting for. Is your project creative? Corporate? Are you trying to keep your viewers in suspense? Think about the effect you’re going for while you’re listening to your options. (You can even specify the number of beats per minute.)And if you want more original tracks, don’t use the results at the top of the page. Scroll down, and customize your options for a unique sound.Listen Before You FilmBefore you press record, think about your compositions. Soundtracks are a critical element in the overall success of your scene, so rather than simply finding something after the fact to complement your shots, make the score part of the creative process. Try downloading a sample track or using the PremiumBeat app while you’re on set, so you can get a feel for how the music will affect your visuals.Premium PlaylistNow that you’re familiar with the search, save yourself some time in the future by creating playlists of tracks that you like. Here are my personal PremiumBeat playlists to get you started.Cool CinematicVlog MusicAdventurelast_img read more

The Right In-Air Diffusion for Your Project: Haze vs. Fog vs. Smoke

first_imgToday, we’ll take a look at which in-air diffusion best emphasizes dramatic light in your scene — as well as adding production value to your set.Haze is something that you’ll find on almost every modern Hollywood film set. It’s relatively inexpensive to run, fills up a room very quickly, and is safe to breathe. Furthermore, it hangs in the air for a very long time. Why do filmmakers use it? One reason is that it creates these amazing light streaks — as well as creating a space in the air that captures light, which produces this wonderful, evocative, smoky feeling. It adds depth to your shot because the light has to pass through the haze to get to the sensor, which diffuses the light. The further the light travels through the diffusion, the more color and sharpness it loses. This means that your subject is going to be sharper than the background.If you compare a shot with in-air diffusion to a regular shot, the one with diffusion feels far more cinematic to the eye, as well as more evocative. It allows you to create a setting where it feels like a cinematic story is taking place, as opposed to a converted garage in Burbank.Sometimes, filmmakers go overboard with this technique. Ridley Scott, in particular, is very famous for putting a lot of diffusion into every single scene. He has even managed to get it into outdoor scenes, as in All the Money in the World, where the characters are having a casual conversation in the garden. In order to get diffusion into the air, Scott built a garden of burning leaves in the background, which basically gave him an excuse to put diffusion through the entire scene.It genuinely adds a lot to the scene that you’re shooting and creates the illusion that the scene is taking place in a different world. It allows you to transport the viewer because it looks different from any place we’re used to.Let’s look at the four common ways to add diffusion to your set.1. HazerImage via Reel EFX.The first way is to use a Hazer (like the DF-50), which retails at around $1,600 and weighs approximately forty pounds. It’s not particularly light, nor is it easy to transport. However, if you remember to keep the haze liquid topped off at all times, it doesn’t go through the haze liquid very quickly. The main advantages of the DF-50 Hazer is that the haze hangs in the air very well and fills the room very quickly. You can run it for less than a minute, and once it has diffused though the air, it’ll look spectacular.2. Fog MachineAnother option that filmmakers often try to use is a fog machine. You can get fog machines — often seen at parties and used by DJs — at your local hardware store. They retail for around $25-$100. Fog machines use a different type of liquid, which is far heavier and denser. The diffusion tends to flood into a space, producing a thick, cloudy-looking fog. Filmmakers generally use a fog machine on set to double for smoke. The smoke is not as safe to breathe for a long period of time, as it’s oil-based. It definitely isn’t safe to have around children; however, it does dissipate very quickly. You can fill the room with it and within ten to fifteen minutes, it’ll settle on the floor as an oily looking substance, and then you’ll have to run it again. The reason this system is not recommended for filmmaking is because it’s very hard to level the diffusion throughout the scene.3. Smoke or Dry IceImage via Bondart.If you’re shooting outside, such as the Ridley Scott example, diffusion doesn’t work because the wind takes it away very quickly. One alternative would be to use a fog machine — or smoke. You can use a bee smoker with wood chips that has a slow burn, which leaves a larger trail and can last longer.It’s important to note that you can’t use either of these options when there’s wind. You’d have to wait for a perfectly still day (or a still night) in order to shoot. If you’re using a fog machine outside and want the fog to stay low to the ground, you can fill a little box with dry ice that sits at the end of the fog machine. The dry ice cools the fog as it comes out of the fog machine and keeps it very close to the ground, so you can achieve that ’80s music video horror effect.4. HumidifierAnother way to get this type of effect in a small room is by using a humidifier — or a couple of humidifiers. These are really just machines that use electricity to turn water into vapor. People who have dry throats or trouble breathing commonly use these. If you leave them in a room overnight (depending on the output or model you get), you can actually get a pretty similar effect to a hazer.A humidifier will cost you around $80, plus a bottle of water. The biggest advantage is that you can use this option around kids — even babies. This is the preferred choice if you need to shoot a scene with a child, where the parents don’t want you using something harmful. Water vapor is 100 percent safe to breathe. In fact, it’s actually good for you. The downside is that you may need to run the humidifiers for hours to fill up the space.5. Air in a Spray CanOne final way to create in-air diffusion is to use diffusion in a spray can, such as Fantasy Effects. Diffusion in a can is more of a photography tool than a filmmaking tool. One spray can should technically last one night when used as directed. In truth, it doesn’t really put a lot of haze into the air, nor does the haze last for very long. In any case, if you just want to get a quick shot, buy a couple of cans and spray it right before the shot. However, if you’re shooting longer scenes, that go for a couple of hours, it’s very hard to maintain a consistent level with the spray can option. In summary, it’s much better to get the industrial version and do it properly, which is why it has become a default on set. If you’re interested in creating light beams with diffusion in a can, check out Crimson Engine’s video tutorial, specifically on this technique.Now, you’ve had some insight into haze versus fog versus smoke versus steam versus handheld diffusion. Each one has its strengths and weaknesses. The best approach is to experiment with all of these techniques to find out which one works for you.(If you need to add haze or fog in post, check out our Vapor Elements pack.)Cover image via Roman Mikhailiuk.Looking for more on working with haze or fog in your video shoots? Check out these articles.Add Atmospheric Texture to Your Production with Haze or FogHow to Get The Best Results When Filming In Natural Fog21 FREE 4K Fog Overlays for Video Editors and Motion DesignersDemo Reel Tips: Use Smoke and Fog to Make Your Work Stand OutTutorial: How to Capture Epic Shots Using Smoke and Foglast_img read more

How to Create a Preference for You and Your Offering

first_imgSales is a zero sum game. Someone wins, and someone loses. The person who wins does so because they create a preference. They create a bias, and that bias block competitors and competitive offerings.The way that you create a preference for you and your solution is by creating greater value. You want to drive a wedge between your customer and your competitors and create a strong bias for you and what you sell.Greater trust creates a preference. Your dream clients are worried about execution, and they worry about risk. Trust is the timeless and deep fundamental that alleviates the concerns that you will fail your client. It mitigates the concern that you might be self-oriented and that you are making decisions to create the greatest benefit for you.You also create a preference through developing a deeper understanding of your dream clients challenges. Understanding your client’s challenges proves that you cared enough to learn about them and their business. It also demonstrates that you have business acumen and situational knowledge, the keys to developing the right solutions and ensuring they fit.You create a bias by having ideas about what your client’s future will look like—or how it might look if they make the right decisions. This future-orientation positions you as something more than someone who sells a product or service. It establishes you as a trusted advisor, someone with the ability to help guide your client’s business into the future.Along these same lines, you create a preference when you take responsibility for a greater outcome. When you handle outcomes instead of products and services, you create a preference by taking on a higher level of accountability. Coupled with your deep understanding, this makes you a more strategic partner by allowing you to become an integrated part of how your client does business. You bring ideas.Economic value creates a preference. One of the most significant changes in sales over the last few decades has been the whittling away of sales relationships that were built only on a personal liking and friendship. Those things are still important, but they need to be coupled with economic value. Your solution needs to create results, and one of the measurements is going to be financial. You create a preference when your value creates a greater economic impact (and you can do this even when you have a higher price).What are you doing to create a preference and bias for working with you over all the other salespeople your dream client could choose to buy from?What are you doing to create a bias for your ideas about what the future is going to look and the decisions your clients should be taking now?How does what you are selling and how you are selling it create a greater level of strategic commitment and integrate you into your client’s organization?How do you become a category of one? Essential Reading! Get my 2nd book: The Lost Art of Closing “In The Lost Art of Closing, Anthony proves that the final commitment can actually be one of the easiest parts of the sales process—if you’ve set it up properly with other commitments that have to happen long before the close. The key is to lead customers through a series of necessary steps designed to prevent a purchase stall.” Buy Nowlast_img read more

Patna holds its breath after day-long CBI raids

first_imgEarly on Friday morning, about two dozen CBI officials in a convoy of SUVs swooped down on 10 Circular Road in Patna, home of Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad, and his two sons Tej Pratap Yadav and Tejaswi Yadav, Health Minister and Deputy Chief Minister respectively in the Bihar cabinet.For over 10 hours, the investigating officials searched every nook and cranny of the spacious bungalow and are said to have interrogated the family members — except Mr. Prasad who was in Ranchi — separately in connection with the corruption charges against them. Entry to the sprawling bungalow was restricted with media persons jostling outside for a glimpse of the action inside. As the day wore on, several RJD leaders and workers gathered outside the gates. Police presence and patrolling was beefed up. By late afternoon the waiting journalists turned restive, impatient for information on events within. Later a scuffle broke out between RJD supporters and media persons. The large police contingent looked on.It was after sunset when the cavalcade of SUVs left the premises and sped away to the local CBI headquarters located in the same neighbourhood. News filtered out that apart from documents, the CBI officials had also seized laptops and tablets belonging to Tej Pratap Yadav and Tejaswi Yadav.Slogans against ModiWhile assembled media personnel dispersed, the RJD supporters remained at the gate, waiting for their party chief to address them. Some raised slogans in favour of Mr. Prasad and against Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Earlier, in the day, the opposition BJP demanded that Chief Minister Nitish Kumar should sack Mr. Prasad’s minister sons and register an FIR against the Deputy Chief Minister.“Now, it is for Nitish Kumar to take a call on whether he should sack Lalu’s sons from his cabinet or compromise with corruption,” said senior State BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi. “What more proof does Nitish Kumar need to be convinced that they were involved in corruption?” However, no JD(U) leader has made a public statement on the raids. Party spokespersons refused to comment, reportedly on the instructions of Mr. Kumar, who abruptly left Patna on Thursday for Rajgir. Officials said he was keeping a close watch on developments in the capital. The district administration has tightened security at the State BJP and JD(U) headquarters. “Security in all districts has been beefed up and patrolling intensified,” said S.K. Singhal, additional Director General of Police (headquarter).last_img read more

In pictures: Kaziranga submerged

first_imgAs the floodwater rises in Assam’s famed Kaziranga National Park (KNP), the animals are slowly being deprived of higher ground. Nearly 75% of Kaziranga, a World Heritage Site, has been inundated, leading to the drowning of two female hog deer and one male swamp deer in the northern range of the park on Wednesday.According to the Eastern Assam Wildlife Division, the animals, including rhinos, have been forced to take shelter at the highlands and at the Karbi Anglong hills across National Highway 37, which passes through the park.The mighty Brahmaputra river and its tributaries have submerged 2,500 villages, destroyed 1.06 lakh hectares of crop-land, damaged infrastructure by breaching the embankments and overrunning roads and bridges, thereby disrupting surface communication, said the Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA).The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), State Disaster Response Force (SDRF), along with the authorities and police, have so far rescued 7,814 people, who were marooned in 16 districts, the ASDMA bulletin said. (Text by PTI)last_img read more

Konkan Railway steps up security for Ganeshotsav

first_imgThe Railway Protection Force (RPF) has taken special measures to beef up the security during Ganeshotsav, the most popular festival in the Konkan region.The measures have been taken to cater to the heavy rush of passengers in the Ratnagiri region, and to make travel convenient, comfortable and safe for passengers, said L.K. Verma, Chief Public Relations Officer of the Konkan Railway, in a statement issued on Wednesday.The festival is set to begin on Friday.A company of Railway Protection Special Force (RPSF), comprising around 100 armed staff, has been deployed in the Ratnagiri region along with the RPF staff for crowd control and maintaining law and order. RPF staff from other Konkan Railway regions have also been deployed at major stations.Extra closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras have been installed at Khed, Chiplun, Ratnagiri, Kankavali and Sawantwadi railway stations, in addition to the existing 151 CCTV cameras across the region.RPF officials are distributing advisory pamphlets among passengers in trains and at stations, warning them about thefts and other dangers.The Railway Protection Force staff have also been sensitised to respond quickly to messages received through social media platforms like Twitter as well as on the all-India security helpline 182.Besides this, 74 home guards will assist the RPF personnel.Police authorities have also assured of assistance in maintaining law and order, said Mr. Verma.last_img read more

It could have been much worse, says Haryana CM Khattar

first_imgHaryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, who has been facing heat over his management of the Dera issue, on Sunday said the violence by the sect’s supporters could have turned much worse had the government not been alert.Mr. Khattar told reporters that the State government had taken steps after due consideration in compliance with the directions of the Punjab and Haryana High Court.“Had the government not been alert, the situation could have been much worse,” he said in Karnal.The Haryana government had come under attack for allowing a huge build-up of Dera Sacha Sauda followers in Panchkula.Violence broke out after Dera chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh’s conviction in rape cases, leaving 35 people dead. Six others died in related incidents of violence in Sirsa.‘Acted with restraint’On August 30, Mr. Khattar had ruled out his resignation after meeting BJP chief Amit Shah in Delhi, saying his government had acted with “restraint” in handling the situation.Mr. Khattar said he would contest the next election from Karnal as the people of the constituency had accorded him a lot of respect.last_img read more

Mayawati flags ABVP setback in varsity polls

first_imgBSP chief Mayawati on Sunday termed the poor showing of the BJP in the recently held student union elections as a “good omen for political transformation”. She added that the people of the country were now making up their minds to show the saffron party bure din (bad days).“The BJP leaders have shown achhe din (good days) to the people of this country by misleading them. Now, the people have made up their minds to show them bure din (bad days),” the former chief minister said in a dig at the BJP’s popular slogan promising better times. In a statement released by the BSP here, Ms. Mayawati said the electoral loss suffered by the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), the students’ outfit associated with RSS-BJP, in the student union elections in Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), Guwahati University, Delhi University and Hyderabad Central University was a “good omen for political transformation”.Anti-Dalit activities “The massive loss for ABVP and the grand victory of Alliance for Social Justice is indeed a befitting tribute to Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula. The BJP government at the Centre must learn a lesson from this…that it should stop indulging itself in anti-Dalit activities, so that no other Rohith Vemula is forced to end his life,” the BSP leader said.Ms. Mayawati also alleged that the Centre and BJP-ruled States have adopted an “indifferent approach” towards sky-rocketing prices, unemployment, illiteracy and health issues.last_img read more

Agitating OSRTC employees call off strike

first_imgAgitating employees of the Odisha State Road Transport Corporation called off their three-day strike that began on Monday following an assurance from the State Commerce and Transport Minister.The State-wide strike call had been given by the All Odisha State Road Transport Staff Association over their demands vis-a-vis contractual employees.Due to the strike call, no OSRTC buses plied on the roads in Odisha from morning till afternoon on Monday. The agitating employees of the State government-owned transport corporation held demonstrations in front of major depots throughout the State, including Berhampur.The strike impacted south Odisha as OSRTC buses are a major source of transportation in underdeveloped districts like Koraput, Nabarangpur, Malkangiri and Rayagada.Demands of the OSRTC employees include regularisation of all contractual employees, same wage for same work, dearness allowance at par with government employees and scope for promotion.According to OSRTC Staff Federation (Berhampur) general secretary Arun Kumar Padhi, during a discussion with leaders of AOSRTSA in Bhubaneswar, the State Transport Minister promised to raise the monthly wage of contractual employees by 20%.That apart, the Minister also promised to hold a high-level meeting to chalk out the process of regularising contractual employees of OSRTC. Following the promise, the agitating employees called off their strike.last_img read more

Haryana: Rural students outshine urban counterparts in Class 12 exams

first_img He said that overall toppers in the examination are Naveen and Heena from Hisar. The board chairman said that 2,22,388 students had appeared in the senior secondary examination of which 1,41,973 have passed, 49,163 have got compartments and 31,252 failed.A total of 1,24,242 boys had appeared in the examination of which 70,936 have passed while 71,037 of the 98,146 girls have passed. Mr. Singh said that the pass percentage of government schools was 63.62 and that of private schools was 64.06.The result of private students was 47.44 per cent. As many as 19,076 such students had appeared in the examination of which 9,049 have passed. Education Minister Ram Bilas Sharma said here that this time the pass percentage of rural areas was 64.75 whereas it was 62.04 per cent in urban areas in the 12th class examination.Congratulating the students and the toppers, Mr. Sharma said in a statement, “The credit for this goes to Haryana government paying more attention to the school education and the hard work of the teachers and the children.”Mr. Sharma said that overall the girls have outshone boys with a better pass percentage of 72.38 as against 57.10 per cent of the boys. For the first time, the board has decided to keep safe the certificates and result of students in a ‘DigiLocker’ which could be downloaded from its website when needed, he said.The candidates’ result and mark sheet would be uploaded on the same locker. Subsequently, after the announcement of the results, it would provide the hard-copy of the marks sheet. Along with this, all the mark-sheets and the results declared from 2004 till date would also be uploaded on the digital locker, the Education Minister said.He said that the digital locker would be maintained on the basis of candidates’ mobile number and the Aadhaar card. Resultantly it would be easier for any recruitment agency to verify any result or certificate of the applicant through this, he said.After this decision, a code would be released to all the Sainik Boards, Haryana Public Service Commission and Haryana Staff Selection Commission so that the marks sheets of the candidate can be seen. “The concerned authority would be able to verify the application. It would save the time and would also avoid the possibility of any kind of fraud,” he said.He said that result can also be checked on mobile app developed by the Board which could be downloaded from Google Play Store by searching Education Board Bhiwani Haryana. Students from rural areas in Haryana have performed better than their urban counterparts, while girls have outshone boys in the Class XII state education board examinations, results for which were declared on Friday.The overall pass percentage for the Class XII Haryana School Education Board stood at 63.84 per cent.The result was declared jointly by Chairman of the Board, Dr. Jagbir Singh and Secretary, Dhirendra Khadgata in a press conference organised at Board office in Bhiwani on Friday. The students can check their results at website www.bseh.org.in and www.indiaresults.com, Mr. Singh said.Also Read Haryana orders probe into exam question rowlast_img read more

Swami Agnivesh attacked in Jharkhand

first_imgWell-known social activist Swami Agnivesh was beaten up by a mob in Pakur district of Jharkhand on Tuesday. Chief Minister Raghuvar Das has asked the State Home Secretary to order a probe.“I’m 80 years old and this is the first time something like this has happened to me. I don’t know who the attackers were, who their leader is and which organisation they belong to… the government should investigate and take action against them,” Swami Agnivesh told local journalists. “I was told that people from the BJP Yuva Morcha and ABVP [student wing of the RSS] were protesting outside the hotel against me… I told them they could come in and talk to me, but nobody came. And when I came out of the hotel they attacked me.”Swami Agnivesh was injured and his clothes were torn. He was taken to a local hospital.“I’m alive today by God’s grace… it was a murderous attack… I don’t know why they assaulted me,” he said.The activist was on his way to Litipara in Pakur district of Jharkhand to participate in an event organised by the Pahariya tribal community. The mob raised slogans like “Swami Agnivesh wapas jao” (Swami Agnivesh go back) and “Jai Sri Ram”. He was also shown black flags. The assailants were reportedly upset with Swami Agnivesh’s visit to the State, believing him to be hand-in-glove with Christian missionaries to instigate tribals in the State. They had been camping outside his hotel since morning.“What I gather is that this was not a planned protest,” said the BJP Yuva Morcha’s Jharkhand president Amit Kumar Singh. “I can comment only after I get all the details,” he said. Pakur Superintendent of Police Shailendra Kumar said the district administration was not aware of Swami Agnivesh’s visit. “As soon as we got the news that he was being attacked we reached the spot and detained some people.”A two-member committee comprising Santhal Pargana Divisional Commissioner and Deputy Inspector General of Police have been assigned to probe the incident.last_img read more

Security stepped up ahead of local body polls in Kashmir Valley

first_imgSecurity forces have intensified checking and area domination as part of an elaborate plan to provide a sense of security for the smooth conduct of local body polls in the Kashmir Valley, officials said on Sunday. The first phase of the polls start Monday.“An elaborate security plan has been put in place for the smooth conduct of the polls, a senior police official said. He said security forces have intensified vehicle checking, frisking and area domination in the city as well as in the other areas of the valley in the run up to the polls. Many check-points have been placed in the city where vehicles are being checked. Sniffer dogs are also being used to check vehicles. We are making sure that no untoward incident happens, he said. The official said while providing a secure atmosphere for the polls was a challenge, there is a good synergy between various security agencies and several steps have been taken to provide a general sense of security in the valley.“We are providing cluster security. Most of the candidates have been taken to secure locations and some have been given a security cover. The areas are being made safe through operations and increased presence of forces as well as through area domination,” the official said. He said deployment of forces has been worked out and sensitive areas have been taken care of. The official said polling booths have been secured and a thick layer of security has been thrown around them.The focus is to keep trouble makers at bay so that there is untoward incident and people come out to vote without any fear, he said. Inspector General of CRPF, Kashmir, Ravideep Singh Sahi said the “environment” in the entire Kashmir Valley is under control and the endeavour is to create a sense of security so that the people come out to vote.“We have made elaborate arrangements for the security. Whatever force was required for the elections, has come and they are being deployed. They have been here for some time and they are adequately familiarised with the area. We have started area domination, check-points have been installed in various areas and we are working in close coordination with the police and army,” Singh said. He said operations were being conducted to arrest trouble mongers so that a secure environment is provided to the people.“We have made adequate arrangements for the security of the candidates, their personal security as well as the accommodation arrangements, we have elaborate plan for that. Area domination, checking and operations have been going on so that trouble mongers are arrested and there is a general sense of security,” the IG CRPF said. Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik Saturday made a detailed review of the security situation in the state ahead of the first phase of the municipal elections. The meeting was attended by Northern Army Commander, Lt Gen Ranbir Singh, Director General of Police Dilbagh Singh, GOC 15 Corps, Lt Gen A K Bhat, and top officials from police, CRPF and civil administration. The meeting discussed security arrangements made for the smooth conduct of the forthcoming elections to urban local bodies and panchayats and the need of a safe environment for the elections.last_img read more

BJP leader seeks ban on film

first_imgA senior BJP leader on Saturday demanded a ban on Kedarnath, an upcoming film set against the backdrop of a deluge that hit the Himalayan shrine in 2013, alleging that it hurts sentiments of Hindus and promotes interfaith marriages.Ajendra Ajay, who is part of the State BJP’s media relations team, wrote to Central Board of Film Certification chairman Prasoon Joshi that despite being set against the backdrop of one of the worst human tragedies, the film directed by Abhishek Kapoor makes fun of Hindu sentiments.“By setting a romantic love story against the backdrop of a huge tragedy that occurred at Kedarnath, a centre of faith for crores of Hindus, the filmmakers have shown great disrespect to the followers of the religion,” said Mr. Ajay.Objecting to the film depicting the love story of a Muslim porter and a Hindu pilgrim, he said, “Couldn’t the makers of the film find a Hindu character for the lead?”last_img read more