‘Getting What I’m Owed’ – Ama Millieir

My latest video, for Irish artist Ama Millieir. Shot on the stunning grounds of Martinstown House by talented young DOP Joesph Ingersol. This was a fantastic opportunity to work with the Arri Alexa Mini LF, and Joey’s collection of Classic Zeiss Contax lenses. Costumes were provided by wonderfully esoteric Irish designer Claire Garvey, while special effects artist Frances Galligan provided art direction, including an enormous ‘medieval’ feast. Amazing crew work by Focus Puller Karl Walsh and AC Greg O’Reilly brought the whole thing together. Starring AMA and the stunning Cece Tiesoh. Titles by my partner Nicole O’Connor.

Particular thanks to the Booth-Keith family at Martinstown who let us film on their beautiful location, at an incredibly delicate time.

I always try to create a ‘pre-vis’ animatic, before I shoot, using clips from movies, sketches and still images to plan out the shoot. Check out the pre-vis for this video. Rough plan below, final video on top. I find planning this way incredibly helpful for figuring out shots and communicating with the DOP.


Credits

Song – Ama Millieir

Model – Cece Tiesoh

Director / Edit / Grade – Gareth Stack

DOP – Joseph Ingersoll

Focus Puller / AC – Karl Walsh

2nd AC – Greg O’Reilly

Art Director – Frances Galligan

Costumes – Claire Garvey Couture

Titles – Nicole O’Connor

Special Thanks To

Andrew, Edward and all at Martinstown House
Alex Kennedy

The Siog String Trio Live in St Patrick’s College

Sióg String Trio play Bach.
Violins: Anna McKenna and Orla O’Hanlon.
Cello: Áine Ní Loingsigh

For bookings email: siogstringtrio@gmail.com 
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/siogstringtrio/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/The-Si%C3%B3g-String-Trio-172590036121762/

Shot and edited by Gareth Stack https://www.garethstack.com/
Sound design / edit – Orla O’Hanlon

DaVinci Resolve has a serious issue. Numerous persistent bugs.

I switched almost exclusively to using Resolve as an NLE over a year ago, after years of using the product on and off. It’s matured into a powerful full featured editing and grading suite. Since I received the full version for free with my black magic pocket camera I’ve had access to the even more powerful tools available in Studio. However… The more time I spend with Resolve, working on professional corporate projects, the more I find myself struggling to work around what seem to be long term intractable bugs with the software. Perhaps some of these are issues with my setup, but they’re just the kind of intractable inconsistent bugs that no amount of updating drivers and reinstalling Resolve can fix. Judging by the numerous threads on Blackmagic’s forum they seem to affect numerous users, and I suspect many of them may be ongoing issues with the software. At this point enough have accumulated that they’re having a strong negative effect on my productivity. Some are minor niggles, some are really serious issues, some can be worked around, some can’t; but taken together they’re making the experience of using Resolve stressful and not something I can easily recommend. I’ve compiled the issues I’ve continued to run into – across multiple computers and ongoing since at least Resolve 13, below. All these issues persist on the latest full Resolve release – 16.1.1. I’ve also posted this to the resolve forum here, so lets see if there are any useful responses.

1. Resolve always forgets which tracks you have muted when you move between sequences with stacked timelines.

2. When working with large projects – even on a system with 32gigs RAM, editing from NVME and using fast SSD caching, switching timelines can take up to 10 seconds. This can make copying footage back and forth between timelines an absolute chore.

3. After shutting down Resolve (and also after a crash), Projects almost always remain active as hidden processes that have to be manually killed in process manager before resolve can be restarted.

4. Resolve has excellent GPU acceleration, but I have to disable GPU H265 and BRAW decoding or suffer frequent crashes (this is on an RTX 2060 with 6gb of RAM and yes, the latest Nvidia creative drivers). This is the official recommended action by Blackmagic support, even though it enormously slows down render times.

5. Often after a render (as in almost every time) subsequent renders will fail and resolve must be restarted to render anything.

6. When rendering to H264 on a video with alpha transparency resolve usually creates visual glitches, especially on white block colour backgrounds. This happens so often I have to always render to H265 – which cant be used for videos intended for social media platforms.

7. Resolve sometimes temporarily forgets clip colours which have been assigned when moving between timelines.

8. Editing videos with multiple audio channels, when skipping around a timeline while playing, resolve will often emit extremely loud high pitch pops and squeals. Sometimes resolve will also emit a constant high pitch noise when scrubbing clips at double speed.

9. When you drop a PNG onto the resolve timeline that’s smaller than the resolution of the timeline, the parts that should be transparent are black – unless you apply even the smallest of crops on any side of the image – in which case they immediately become transparent.

10. Resolve’s OFX Deflicker plugin is fantastically effective at removing flicker. However it’s incredibly unstable. Scrubbing or playing back footage that has the plugin applied to a node will often lead to ‘out of GPU’ memory bugs, this can also happen just attempting to render. Once this bug is seen, resolve renders will always fail until the programme is restarted.

11. When a whole sequences is selected, often cuts / pastes etc will affect locked channels – even though they were locked prior to selection. This can lead easily to accidental deletion, particularly of audio.

12. Resolve frequently renders footage darker / more saturated than it appears in the preview window.

Non Je Ne Regrette Rien (Robot Dream Remix)

For the second time this year, a chance encounter led to a music video. I was in Paris, shooting for a corporate client (oh the glamour). Walking around the city, which is I have to remark – utterly diseased with automotive traffic, I struggled to shoot good B-Roll. Magnificent buildings everywhere, under that kind of hideous grey pall which is at once too dark and two bright to film. I stumbled across a photo session in action, an American woman was shooting a man with a robot head as he mimed playing saxophone. Naturally I filmed for a couple of minutes, and ended up chatting to the pair.

After I returned to Ireland, I made a quicky edit for instagram of some of my favourite Paris GV’s. The guy with the robot head – a musician, comic book artist and DJ called Robot Dream, liked the cutaways so much he asked if he could make a piece to go with them. Above is the result. Making music videos – even if they’re made from corporate cutaways – never gets old.

Romances – The Late David Turpin

Irish writer, musician and filmmaker David Turpin asked me to pop by the photoshoot for new record ‘Romances’ several months back. I caught some footage of photographer Dorje De Burgh shooting for the book that accompanied the record. In hindsight we had enough for a very barebones video, a kind of no budget promo for the record’s title track.

4 Lights – Shy Mascot

I directed / edited and co-shot this video for Dublin band Shy Mascot. Previously we’d worked together on the video ‘Pardon Me‘.

4 Lights, the new single from Dublin band Shy Mascot. All the incredible moving shots were carried out by cameraman Sean Bond on his electric skateboard. The video stars the incredibly talented young actor, Lorcan Strain, who recently guested on Game of Thrones final episode.

The video was inspired by my experiences working as a delivery cyclist on the dangerous Dublin city roads during my masters degree.

Director – Gareth Stack
Starring – Lorcan Strain
Costume / Design – Francis Galligan 
Action Camera – Sean Bond
Camera – Gareth Stack
Lighting Assistants – Greg O’Reilly, Fearghal O’Mahoney
Producer – Stephen Dalton 
Late State Capitalist – Aidan O’Sullivan
Human Horse – Shane Conneely

Background artists – Nicole O’Connor, Greg Young, James Van De Waal, Dave Rowe, Kyle Cheldon Barnett, Niamh Reddin, Ellen Mee, Michael Marshall, Kevin gibbons.

Special Thanks – James Galvin, Cian Brennan

Campaign for Martinstown House

I created a series of videos last year for Martinstown House, a beautiful 17th century strawberry gothic manor house in the Curragh. Martinstown House is owned and managed by the Booth family who run the property as a spectacular wedding venue and guest house. I spent three days shooting in the house and gardens, and created these videos interviewing the family and highlighting aspects of the business, from Weddings to fine dining.

Campaign for Sonairte Eco-Centre

I created this series of videos to promote the ecology centre Sonairte. The centre is located less than a mile from the seaside, close to where I grew up in Laytown, Co Meath. Founded in the 1980’s, it was set up to promote hands on learning about the environment, and to exhibit alternative energy, a radical idea at the time. It’s a remarkably tranquil place, where visitors can walk a nature trail or learn sustainable growing techniques in a seizable Victorian market garden.

I shot these videos over two days at the centre, and developed the campaign around promoting the distinct experiences available, from Yoga classes to delicious organic fruit and veg. I may have stolen a few apples, hanging from the heavily laden branches of Sonairte’s twenty-seven distinct species of apple tree.

Sonairte are actively seeking volunteers, especially people with experience in organic horticulture or fundraising at state and European level. You can contact them by phone on 041 982 7572 or by email at hello@sonairte.ie.

Production Details

Everything was shot on the Panasonic G80, with a Sigma 18 – 35 Art lens. Most shots were captured on the Crane 2 gimbal. Editing and grading was done in Da-Vinci Resolve, and titling in Final Cut Pro. 

All music is by Alexander Kyd, donated with kind permission, from his records 51 Pegasi and These Waters Remember, which are available to purchase on bandcamp.