a TigerRAWk Film

Saturday, September 23, 2017

LaLaJPUSA 2017

LaLaJPUSA was a communal music and art festival held for the first time this year at JPUSA in Uptown Chicago over the Labor Day weekend. I attended on Saturday September 2nd, 2017 to see the bands. I was a little late due in part to public transit so I missed Bird and Herd unfortunately so when I created an intro video, I decided to go to Stasia's bandcamp page to find some music to use. I also used the song in the video where the art exhibition was displayed that I put in the playlist in place of a dinner break. I decided to utilize my Canon Rebel T6 for the third time on this day. I did not use a tripod so there are points where the video footage is a bit shaky.

I used the show flyer and the posted schedule as an intro for each band instead of using text in the "music video" formatting style. This also is how the DvD version is opened up and used as a menu. This was the first time seeing and in some cases even hearing about a number of the bands on the lineup for this event. My plan was to film a song from every band and I decided that I would get the full set performed by Leper.

The artists performed in the JPUSA sideyard in the basketball court throughout the afternoon until the dinner break. Those bands were Bird and Herd (which I missed), Discoverer, Qajaq, NAAL, Christian Welch, Katamalinga, Endolphins, The Ghost Servant, and Families.

After dinner, Parental Petulance kicked off the evening in the sideyard. They would be the last outdoor set due to some unforecasted rain that arrived when Leper was scheduled to start. Folks who had a hand in making this event happen as well as others who were just there worked together to rearrange to make the rest of the evening work while Teel Short finished his set in the Garden Room. It was decided to have The Psalmist play next in the Garden Room as folks set up the dining room (which is currently being renovated) so that some of the bands could play in there. Christina Sawyer played in the Garden Room as this was going on as well.

Leper played the first set of the night in the Dining Room. This was the set that I filmed in its entirety other than a few quick stops due to that dang "12 minute limit" I still have yet to figure a bypass for. The set was a shorter one to fit with the rest of the days event. The songs that were played were Beneath The Sun, Gathering Darkness, and Take What You Want From Me. I put the Leper set last in the playlist because I included in the video file my "credits" clip so I figured it made sense to close the playlist with that.

After Leper, MC Foucault did some hip hop in the Garden Room then Jazz Robots played the Dining Room. Aracely played the Garden Room next followed by Sam Arias in the Dining Room. The night was closed out by the Brittany Briggs Band.

LaLaJPUSA was a cool event. Brien Cron, Charity Taylor, and Justin and Meghan Filizola put it together and seemed to roll with the punches as needed to pull it off. Other folks seemed to enjoy it and gave positive feedback. So thank you guys for putting on a good day of music as well as the rest of the event!
Filmed during LaLaJPUSA 2017 at JPUSA in Uptown Chicago, Illinois on Saturday September 2nd, 2017 using a Canon Rebel T6. Edited using Final Cut Pro on a Mac Mini.
Filmed & edited by Joel A. Swanson

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Wilson Abbey Punk Show (12.09.16)


This Wilson Abbey show, featuring 2Minute Minor, The Festal Shout, FBS, and October Bird Of Death, was the first show where I attempted to use my newly acquired Canon Rebel T6. I had also purchased a tripod to  help hold the camera steady. I learned a couple things. First thing was that the tripod was not strong enough to handle the camera, even though the box indicated that it could handle the weight. The other thing I learned was that the Canon Rebel T6 has a feature where it stops recording at about 12 minutes. I brought along the old JVC HDD Everio which I was replacing because the view finder was no longer functional when flipped out the normal way. Elphie ended up manning that camera the rest of the night once I found out about the "12 minute limit" but I had just hoped to have different angles to use when editing.

While it was filmed in December, I was very frustrated by these technical difficulties and I may have somewhat subliminally put it on the back burner. I also had gotten quite behind in the editing of video footage due to various reasons so here it is, the middle of September 2017 and I am now finally finished working on all the video footage from the year 2016.

Another thing I learned is that the technical difficulties of the JVC HDD Everio camera also affected moving the footage from the camera to the computer for editing. The very same part that is damaged that screwed up using the viewfinder also screwed up the "laser touch operation" which is necessary for the operation of transferring the video from the camera to the computer. Somehow, getting this footage (as well footage for other projects) worked out on my work computer so I have been able to finish off these projects finally.

So now on to blog about the actual show!

This show was part of the (semi)annual Christmas Toy Drive tour that FBS has been doing. This show didn't end up having a Christmas Toy Drive for some reason but it was a fun show. I always enjoy seeing the guys in FBS and The Festal Shout as well as the other folks who will come out for one of these shows.

1. Change My Life
2. One Step At A Time
3. Stand Firm
4. It’s A Disease
5. Prime!
6. What's The Use!?!
7. Follow Your Own Path
8. Unwritten War
9. Smash The Discos
10. We’ve Had Enough
11. We Will Prevail
12. Goon Crew

2Minute Minor opened the night. It was their second show ever! They had a camera crew out to get decent pictures and video for promotion.

1. If The Kids Are United
2. Power In The Blood
3. Incredible
4. Victory
5. Pounding Waves
6. Rot-N-Rock-N-Roll

The Festal Shout was next. they opened with a Sham 69 cover then closed with a cover of The Last Hope which was Justun's former band. The Festal Shout was an idea Justun had to do a form of worship music that he could enjoy. The rest of the songs in the set were those songs that came from that idea. the guys from FBS joined Justun to be his band.

1. Faster Than Before
2. Black Leather Jacket
3. Hammerfist RocknRoll
4. You Can’t Hide
5. Consumed
6. All I Wanna Do Is RocknRoll
7. In Your Blood
8. Out Of Control
9. Ace Of Spades

FBS followed naturally since the band members and equipment with The Festal Shout. It was a fast, loud set like they've been doing for years with a couple of Motorhead covers.

1. This Is Our Lives
2. Goons
3. Uproar
4. Fire In Those Eyes
5. Shed The Grave
6. Art Deco Skull Fracture
7. Shadows Like Teeth
8. Hell To Pay
9. Sid Closing & Prayer

October Bird Of Death closed out the night. Wiley Willis had issues with an ulcer and while playing "Hell To Pay" he had to leave the stage to deal with that. Sid closed out the night leading a prayer for Wiley.

Elphie ran around with the JVC HDD Everio running after the show was over. She got a bit of silly footage of hanging out and shenanigans before we left for the night.

Filmed LIVE at Wilson Abbey in Uptown Chicago, Illinois on Friday, December 9th, 2016 using a Canon Rebel T6 and JVC HDD Everio by Elphie and Joel A. Swanson. Edited using Final Cut Pro on a Mac Mini by Joel A. Swanson.

Monday, September 11, 2017

A TigerRAWk Film Equipment Update (2016)

I think it was late in 2010 or early 2011 that I made my last camera purchase. At that time I acquired a JVC HDD Everio and you can see my thoughts if at that time if you're so inclined here. In the time I had that camera, I ran into issues of the camera shutting off in loud environments. The error message (that I can't quite recall the exact words) led me to believe that a built in "drop protection" was triggered by the vibrations of the loud music. When most of what you film is LIVE concert footage, this feature can come to be a disservice to what you are doing. At the time though, I spent my money on the camera so I would have to just deal with it. Sometime that spring, the camera was stolen during a basement show at the house I where I lived...I ended up replacing it. I lost whatever show footage that I had between the end of 2010 and first half of 2011 to whoever stole that camera. I don't know if this was a problem across the board with the JVC HDD Everio but I learned, after filling the hard drive at Cornerstone 2011, that there seemed to be bad spots on the drive which made it difficult to move some of the footage to my computer for the purpose of editing. I persisted in using this camera for the next five years in spite of these technical difficulties, again because I made the purchase. I don't have a lot of expendable income to buy things then not use them so I tried to make the best of it but all these things would frustrate me.

During Take Hold Fest 2016, which was the most recent video project that I was able to complete, the view screen stopped working. This of course made things difficult to film but I would learn just recently, it also made it almost impossible to get footage off that camera due to the "laser touch operation" buttons. I wish this wasn't the case because I would like to still use that camera as a secondary option on occasion. Perhaps I will look into the fixes I found online recently.

Anyway, with the issues explained above all piling up, I decided that it was time to look for a new camera. For some years, some of my camera enthusiast friends would insist that I should get a DSLR camera. The reasoning was picture quality and that they all pretty much do video these days. I started taking this advice into my search this time around. I asked some of my professional friends as well. It seemed that Canon was a brand that was well respected. As I looked for what would seem to fit my needs for this hobby, I was realizing this would likely be an expensive purchase. I talked to my wife about the possibility of using Christmas present money to cover some of the cost since we do buy each other stuff...from there a discussion was also had with my mother to maybe chip some money in as well. This all was in discussion as Thanksgiving came up on the calendar. We usually travel to Pennsylvania for the holiday but Black Friday shopping isn't our usual thing to do. Nonetheless, we ended up in the local Warren, PA Walmart where one of the big deals of the day happened to be the Canon Rebel T6 DSLR camera with bag, memory card and 2 lenses included. The price was lower than usual. I messaged a few of those whose brains I had been picking...ultimately, we made the purchase.

In this video, I demonstrated the difference in video quality between the Canon Rebel T6 and the JVC HDD Everio. Also included is a live clip from a Wilson Abbey show featuring 2Minute Minor as I put this new camera in action along with the old camera, again to show any differences in video quality.

I decided to purchase a few things that I thought would be helpful for making the best possible video projects that I could. One purchase was a microphone. There is no micophone input on this camera but I thought maybe the "hot shoe" would make it work. I searched for microphones that were listed as compatible. The one I purchased came with a cord and was not compatible so I had to return it. I also purchased some memory cards, a wide angle lens and a few cleaning items that came in a bundle with a flimsy tripod. I purchased a more sturdy tripod from Target the night before going to a show. On the night of the Wilson Abbey show (12.09.2016) where the footage used in the demonstration was captured, I learned a few things about the Canon Rebel T6. First, when built out with the lenses, it is heavy...too heavy in fact for the tripod I purchased at Target. The camera did fall to the ground but seems to still be in working order. I was able to use it the rest of the night. The lenses did not break. I am thankful for that. I also learned about what is apparently known as the "12 minute limit" which I hoped to figure out how to override. It seems I need to learn some coding and download something called "Magic Lantern" from what I am told. At this point I am apprehensive about doing this having no experience doing this of this nature before.

The first project using the Canon Rebel T6 will hopefully be finished up in the next week then I hope to move into 2017 footage...mostly working backwards through the "festival" footage I have waiting to be edited, processed, and uploaded. I hope an improvement will be seen in my ability to use the Canon Rebel T6 over the course of my usage of it so far. In writing this, I think I will look to see if any microphone might be available that can be used with this camera again. I also welcome anyone with any skills at using "Magic Lantern" (or anything else that could work) to break me free of the "12 minute limit" and improve my filming skills. I have purchased a much sturdier tripod that has been helpful.

The plan moving forward was to hopefully continue to use the JVC HDD Everio but as I learned (and documented above) that is likely not going to happen until I make repairs. Also, the plan was to move forward with the Sony HD Bloggie that's taken a beating over the years but I still was able to use occasionally. Unfortunately, during the return trip from Audiofeed 2017 (to be edited and posted eventually), I believe the Sony HD Bloggie was mistakenly dropped in a parking lot and lost forever...maybe even run over. So, moving forward, I still do have my iPhone 6 that will be utilized.

Soundtrack includes “Information Architect” by Norway³ and “Follow Your Own Path” (LIVE) by 2Minute Minor.

Footage filmed using an iPhone 6, JVC HDD Everio, and Canon Rebel T6 & edited using Final Cut Pro on a Mac Mini. Filmed & edited by Joel A. Swanson

Friday, August 25, 2017

Take Hold Fest 2016

Take Hold Fest 2016 occurred at Take Hold in Grand Rapids, Michigan from November 11th-13th, 2016. My wife, Elphie and I drove up Friday afternoon. We got a hotel...I decided to try to surprise her by getting a hotel with a hot tub in the room. In the summer, I had tried the same thing with a planned anniversary trip to Hell, Michigan which had to be cancelled due to car trouble. After checking in at the hotel, we left for the remaining bands of Friday night and to hang out with friends. The bands I filmed were:

We returned to the hotel and tried out the hot tub. It took awhile but we finally had a tub full of water...but then we found out that the jets did not work (or at least we could not figure out the trick to make them work). It was late so when we checked out in the morning, that's when we informed the staff. It was slightly disappointing as you see in the video clip.

Saturday morning we returned to Take Hold for the rest of the fest. The bands I filmed were:

Dinner break, we left for Plainfield, Michigan to attempt to get the special venison sandwich from Arby's. We found out that they sold out in the first hour that they were opened. We were given complimentary roast beef sandwiches but once again we were slightly disappointed.

The bands I filmed in the evening were:

Shane Cox spoke for a moment to close out the night and we hung out for a while before leaving for home due to a morning appointment we had scheduled for our cat.

During the Families set, I encountered technical difficulties. The screen to my camera was not working unless I had it flipped entirely around and pushed against the camera. It may have effected my footage somewhat in that I had to hold the camera in such a way to look at it with the screen against the side to see what I was filming.

It definitely made getting the footage off the camera more difficult (check out the previous blog for details on that) but I finally got it done. That is why I just finished this project this week.

I used the song "Raised In Glory" for The Soil and The Sun as an additional soundtrack for some of this footage since that band is from Michigan and would be coming to an end around the same time.

Filmed using an iPhone 6 and JVC HDD Everio. Edited using Final Cut Pro on a Mac Mini.

Filmed & edited by Joel A. Swanson

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

JVC HDD Everio GZ-HD500BU Camera: Technical Difficulties...Help?!

In the fall of 2016, while at Take Hold Fest in Grand Rapids I was filming using my JVC HDD Everio GZ-HD500BU as I pretty much always have done for festivals up to that point since 2010. During the evening of Saturday, the flip out LCD display screen stopped working while out at the usual 90 degree angle. I ended up figuring out that if I flipped it and folded it back in so its back was against the camera, I could see what I was filming at least, though the angle was weird. I decided this was the last straw for this camera. I have had issues of files seemingly being damaged, making them difficult to move to my mac for editing...sometimes being impossible to move in their entirety. Now if the display wasn't working properly, it felt like a good time to move on to a new camera.

I did acquire a new camera...but still had work to do on the old footage from this camera. That is what I have most recently been working through.

Last night, since I had cleared some hard drive space, I decided I would move the footage from the camera shot during Take Hold Fest as well as another show...but I have now run into a new problem. Apparently the same issue that plagues my screen also plagues the "laser touch operation" which is necessary to select the option to upload files from the camera.

Any searches I have done through Google has shown that it is likely I will need to disassemble the camera and either repair or acquire new "flex cable" or worst case scenario, acquire an adapter to access the files on the hard drive from the camera. Replacing or repairing the "flex cable" appears to be the cheapest solution since I don't plan to use this camera anymore.

Basically, I would like to get these last video files of Take Hold Fest and another show off of this camera so I can retire it and move on from both this camera and video footage from the year 2016.

I need help.

Do I know anyone out there that knows anything about this kind of stuff?

Any help is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

Friday, July 14, 2017

A Shared Life: A Pacific Northwest Vacation (September 21st - 29th, 2016)


On September 21st, 2016, Elphie and I flew out of Midway in Chicago to SeaTac in the Seattle, Washington area for a vacation to visit with Elphie's friend Debbie, who put us up while we were there.

On Thursday, September 22nd, 2016, we drove down to Portland, Oregon stopping by Voodoo Doughnut then continuing a bit further to Lake Oswego to see my old youth pastor and friend, Keith Ritter. We had lunch and conversation at Fuddruckers (which prompted "Idiocracy" quotes) before returning to Portland to meet up with Pip, Laura, and later Jason. We checked a few places out and walked around the Hawthorne area of Portland before meeting up with Jason for dinner.

Friday night, September 23rd, 2016 we went to the Capitol Hill area of Seattle where we met up with Debbie's friend and Josh Robieson for Pho and a show at Highline for their goth night called Mechanishmus. The Dead Room, Die Sektor, and AngelSpit played this show.




After the show, we went to a goth club called Mercury for a while before grabbing some pizza and passing a Jimi Hendricks statue on the way back to the car.

The next day, Saturday, September 24th, 2016, we spent some time at the Pike Place Market where we saw the original Starbucks location. We got some ice cream and cup cakes up the street from there before returning to the market where we saw a fish toss and then the gum wall. There was a garden on top of the building where one could write in chalk on a pig. Elphie creatively left Debbie's name on the pig. I found a Ms. Pacman game and played a bit of that in an oddities store. We checked out the scenery outside before driving to the park near where Kurt Cobain's home was located and saw the park bench that serves as a memorial to him. After that, we went in search of dinner, stopping in a soda store. At Taylor's Oyster Bar, Debbie and Elphie enjoyed a platter of oysters then we went to a Starbucks roastery that had a pizza joint inside for dinner. We also stopped at a chocolate restaurant before the night was over.

Sunday September 25th, 2016 was spent in Canada. We crossed the border then went to Vancouver, British Columbia where we had Ramen for lunch. Debbie met some dogs in a window as well. After lunch, we stopped at various shops in Vancouver: Deadly Couture, Venus & Mars, and Salmagundi West. We also saw the Gastown Steam Clock then went to the Granville Island Public Market for a bit before returning to Seattle. On the return trip we had a great view of Mount Baker. We also stopped at a Golden Corral on the trip back to Seattle.

Monday September 26th, 2016, we went to the Crab Pot for dinner then hung around the waterfront area for a bit. We drove to the Space Needle before the night was over.

Tuesday September 27th, 2016, Elphie and I enjoyed the leftovers from Crab Pot. That evening, we visited some halloween shops and got dinner at a nearby mall's food court. We also got some Coldstone ice cream.

Wednesday September 28th, 2016, Elphie and I loaded up for a public transit trip to SeaTac Airport to return home to Chicago. I got a lot of footage of the scenery from the window seat that Elphie graciously allowed me to have after she got up to use the restroom. Back home, Stein greeted us excitedly.

This was a fun trip. We packed a lot into the time and I am glad we got to do this. Perhaps another chance will come in the future.

Additional soundtrack includes “Flying” by Grammatrain, “Borthwick & Failing” by Destroy Nate Allen, “The Exit” by Nyves, “Come As You Are” by Nirvana, “Oh, Canada” by Five Iron Frenzy, “Silence” by Delerium, “It Seems So Far Away” by Ninety Pound Wuss, & “Quit Your Life” by MxPx.

Filmed using a Sony HD Bloggie & iPhone 6 by Elphie & Joel A. Swanson. Edited using Final Cut Pro on a Mac Mini by Joel A. Swanson

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

A Shared Life: Summer in Chicago 2016 (July 8th - September 20th)

This project highlights the time between the 4th of July fireworks after our return from Audiofeed Music Festival and our trip to the Pacific Northwest which ended the summer. Also there is footage throughout of Frank and Stein.

The week following Audiofeed, we went to a few shows. First was in Aurora at Rivers Edge Park on July 7th for the Hollywood Vampires featuring Alice Cooper, Johnny Depp, and Joe Perry (of Aerosmith). The set was a tribute to many dead artists (including some former "Hollywood Vampires") with cover songs but I captured an original called "My Dead Drunk Friends." We got to hang out with Andreas and Amanda Larsen at this show. Afterwards, we got pizza at Doughballs.

Friday July 8th, there was a Catacombs show at Wilson Abbey featuring Exegesis, Leper, and Deborah. The show had an international feel to it with Exegesis coming from Colombia (though they currently live at JPUSA) and Deborah coming from Mexico to join Chicago based Leper.

On Saturday July 9th, we went to Uncommon Ground to see The Castros. We inadvertently went to the wrong one so had to get up and leave embarrassingly in the middle of someone's set to get to the right place. It was good to see The Castros and hang out for a bit. They had someone run into their rental vehicle so they had to deal with that before the set then afterwards had to go to the police station to file a report.

July 10th, some of the folks from Tattoo Church decided to get together at Main Event for Laser Tag, the Gravity Course, and Blacklight bowling. Good times.

On July 14th, while preparing for a trip back to Pennsylvania, I captured some footage of lightning bugs in our yard. The next day I drove the whole trip to Pennsylvania after work into Saturday morning and catching the sunrise to take care of car registration and some other details. After doing that, I checked out some damage done by a tornado. My parents had a morning dove nesting in their flowers so there is a shot of that as well. On Sunday, July 17th, I made my return to Chicago, passing some CTA busses in Ohio for some reason. I got some shots of the sunset & storms as I drew closer to Chicago with a final shot from our yard.

Between work and going to Wilson Abbey, I decided to take a quick walk at the Montrose Dog Beach. That evening, Families and The Soil and the Sun were playing a show. It was the first time to see The Soil and the Sun as a four piece band.

Another storm hit Chicago on July 24th. While I was getting some footage of it, Elphie stuck a sticker to Stein. On the way to work on July 28th, for the second time this year, I encountered a semi truck who misjudged the overhead clearance.

On July 30th, there was another show at Wilson Abbey featuring Erin., Families, and 6'10. It was a good show. 6'10 premiered a new song.

October Bird of Death played at Subterranean on August 3rd. It was Sid's first show back with the band and he played half the set with Bryan Gray filling in for the rest of the night. I got clips from both parts of the show.

August 7th was a Nocturna and then on August 8th, Elphie & I went to another Disgraceland Wasteland suspension event. On August 12th, Five Iron Frenzy was in town playing at Reggie's with J Navarro and the Traitors and the Pilfers opening. I got there too late for Still Alive unfortunately. It was a fun show.

I went to An Seanachi on August 14th for another October Bird of Death set. It was a good night of punk rock and a unique filming angle for the clip I captured.

August 21st, Elphie decided to drive a scooter cart at Meijer in from the parking lot. On August 24th, I saw October Bird of Death again, this time at Liar's Club. Another good night hanging out with the guys before the show since it was a late start.

On Agust 26th, Brick Assassin had their album release show at O'Connell's Pub Time. Kyle Bawinkel's other, other band Fuerza B. opened the night followed by Vaporizers and Some Kind Of Nightmare. On request, I filmed "Bonehead Dicks" by Brick Assassin.

On August 27th, Josh held a premiere for Time Toupee at his house. A few of us showed up, enjoyed some Jack's pizza, fellowship, and the movie. I decided to drive to Milwaukee to see the Pittsburgh Pirates play the Brewers at Miller Park on August 28th. The Pirates won! After the game, Elphie & I went to the reception for Sarah & Will who do Nocturna. I am glad I did go to that game in Milwaukee as the next three nights after, the Pirates would play the Cubs at Wrigley and lost all three. I did get to hang out with my cousin and got in on a free ticket to Wrigley for one of the games and the Monday night game went real long...it was quite exciting despite the loss. Elphie & I got dinner and a show at Reggie's on September 2nd. Von Strantz opened the night followed by Mikey Classic then Black Irish Texas. 6'10 closed the night out and I filmed a song about sausage. It was an interesting night overall but enjoyable.

The next night was quite cool but I ventured out to the Burlington for another October Bird of Death show on September 3rd. Jeff Locke filled in this time for Sid who had to be out of town.

On Sunday September 4th, Elphie & I used a groupon for some fun times at Arcade Emporium. I was able to set the high score on Q*Bert. On Labor Day, September 5th, there was a show featuring Il Neige, Infinite Third, NAAL, Analecta, and Mouth Council at Subterranean. Mouth Council was an audience participation and interactive looping experience. It was a cool night of unusual music.

Elphie went to spend time with her family and she flew out on September 8th. On September 11th, I played a softball game with folks from Tattoo Church. A few folks from Risen Savior were there as well. It was a fun day. Elphie returned on September 13th. On September 16th I went the Wilson Abbey to see a show by Teel Short and Maron. I never had really listened to either one before so it was cool to experience new music.

September 17th was a rescheduled event that Elphie and I prepaid for...the Blacklight Slide. It was supposed to be in July but was rescheduled to September. It was much cooler than we'd have preferred but it was fun nonetheless. I filmed while sliding through the ziplock we put our phones in and I messed around a bit with effects on that footage including overlaying my footage while sliding and Elphie's footage from below. On September 20th, there as a work birthday party where Stewart serenaded Courtney. The next day Elphie and I left for a vacation to the Pacific Northwest.

Additional soundtrack includes “Summer” by Travelogue, “The Wind May Be Beautiful” by Timbre, and “Watch Out” by Norway.

Filmed using a Sony HD Bloggie, JVC HDD Everio, and iPhone 6 by Elphie and Joel A. Swanson. Edited using Final Cut Pro on a Mac Mini by Joel A. Swanson