Monday, February 5, 2007

Sunnyvale Bessey Status 9-Sep-2005

Hello everyone,

If you received this message, then to the best of my knowledge you might be interested in the first of a few progress reports that, time permitting, I may occasionally send out ...

... on my video project about consumer radio sets that were made in Sunnyvale in the 1920s.

Please inform me if you want to be removed from this mailing list, or know someone else who might want to be on it.

Ben Koning



For those who don't know what this project is about, it is a one-hour video documentary (workflow: standard def, DVCPRO -> uncompressed -> DVD) whose "marketing summary" might read like this:

Combining the history of the Silicon Valley city of Sunnyvale, California, with a family's transition from agriculture to technology in the 1920's, "An Echo Of The Future: The Bessey Family Story" reminds us that the bet-everything, cut-throat risks of playing and losing the technology game is nothing new. Along the way, we learn in an accessible manner how electronic broadcasting works, meet interesting people who are Sunnyvale's still-living links to its past, see how old photographs match up with present-day scenes, and encounter some other compelling thing that I don't know of yet that this video needs. Most importantly, we come to realize the irony that Silicon Valley's very first consumer product and the story of its manufacturer would be so unknown.


The Jack Rowe and Ann Zarko interviews are done, logged, color-graded and look great. I've scanned practically every relevant photograph in Jack's and Ann's collections at high res. I've completed iconic schematic symbols in Photoshop for use in simple 2D animations.

See pictures -- Two weeks ago we did a video shoot in my parents' garage to show Jack demo-ing the radios, get the radio beauty shots, and do a bore-scope gimmick. It was hot and crowded but worked well; the enclosed pictures may imply ugly backgrounds and spill light but remember they are flash snapshots. I've imported and cleaned up the bore-scope footage and it's great fun to watch. Next up is to import and log the real camera footage.

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