KDMC Final Cut Pro 7 Tutorial in PDF


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Very nice tutorial for beginning FCP users, check it out.

Digital Video Editing & Effects

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If you’re new or relatively new to Apple’s FCP, download this PDF. The Knight Digital Media Center publishes a very solid and free guide to getting started. Download it via the link below or head over to check them out. What I find very useful (and correct) about there work is that it is a soup-to-nuts approach to creating a journalistic video in the digital realm.

FCP7_KDMC_Full

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Happy Chinese New Year!


My friends, it’s Chinese New Year, the Year of the Dragon. In Chinese history, Dragon represents power. But today, Dragon is a symbol of success. I’m here to wish all of you have a prosperous and healthy Chinese New Year, all wishes come true and good luck. Kung Hei Fat Choi!

恭喜發財!萬事如意!心想事成!

Remembering My First Day In The US


I know, for some people, August 9, 2001 was just a normal day, but that was a date that I’ll never forget. Because that was my first day in the US soil.

Someone may ask why I came to the US. Well, honestly, I don’t know how to answer this question, but I think everything has the positive and negative sides. For the past 10 and 1/2 years, I have gained something, but I also have lost a lot of things. When I think it again, I can only — sigh.

What happened on my first day in the US? I’ve already said it’s the day I’ll never forget, so I still remember any piece of memory of that day. On August9, 2001, my parents, my younger brother and I took the flight from Macau International Airport to the San Francisco International Airport. When the plane landed at the SFO, I asked myself,"Is that San Francisco?" Indeed, besides the in-flight announcements and the interactive map shown on the TV screen inside the plane, you couldn’t find an obvious sign to tell that you’re in San Francisco. Our flight arrived at SFO around 7:30 pm, about 20 minutes later, we off boarded the plane and proceeded to the path connected to the USCIS / US Customs and Border Protection counter. (These two federal agencies were then called INS and US Customs Service respectively) It’s also a path that changed my life. What happened inside the terminal building?

Around 8:00pm, all of us arrived at the checkpoint for entry inside the SFO restricted area. We all had our Macau passports and four sealed Manila envelopes with some important documents inside. I should mention that those Manila envelopes were issued by the then INS, and the official from the US Consulate in Hong Kong also reminded us not to open those documents, so we had never known what those were. Whatever, there’s nothing we want to know, at that moment I just want to know how long it could be finished! It took quite long time to process our first time entry to the United States. The INS official (I don’t know if she was the Customs or INS, I can’t even distinguish between an USCIS official and a CBP official) finished processing our initial documents for the first entry to the US, then she asked each of us to sign our names on those documents and passport-style photos. Then the INS official stamped on our Macau Passport, indicated that we’re legal permanent residents, and we’re authorized to work. The stamp also indicated that it should be the legal document to prove the immigration status before Green Cards were issued. Almost an hour later, we were all allowed to enter the US soil. My first time in my life, how’s my feeling? I can tell you, nothing but uncomfortable. I had never felt that stress before I came, but something made me not feeling good.

After we were all cleared at the immigration checkpoint and were issued visas, we approached to the US Customs checkpoint, before we went to the check point, we’d all claimed our checked baggages. We had almost ten baggages, most of them were checked. Almost everything in my house in Macau were in those baggages, crazy! It’s the time for the Lei’s family to be checked by the US Customs, because we’re a family, only one customs declaration form was needed. We got so many huge baggages, so the officer near the screener gestured us to pass the checkpoint, and we were cleared. All we had to do was to turn the customs declaration form to another US Customs official.

“Thank (Sank) you," my mother was speaking broken English. Something funny and embarrassing happened then: when the US Customs officer asked my mother about the declaration form, my mother spoke out a single word, “husband". Of course, the officer didn’t understand what my mother said, then she responded, “Who is husband?" My mother actually wanted to tell the officer that the declaration form was on her husband’s hand, but she didn’t know how to say it in English. It was an obvious case of language barrier, but I was shocked the first language barrier was happened at the airport. Anyway, we officially entered The United States of America new immigrants. We exited from the restricted area, my aunt and uncle were waiting at the arrival lobby in SFO and ready to take us to our new home…

The first night as an immigrant ended with tiredness and stress. But there were even more challenges to come!

Come Check Out My Latest Demo Reels!


Hey people, if you haven’t seen them yet, these are my Winter 2012 version of demo reels. Starting this year, I’ll be updating my demo reels every three months, so you’ll expect another new version this April. Enjoy! If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.

Two More Weeks In SF – Still Working On A New Project


As some of you have known, I’ll be leaving the City by the end of this month, where I’ve spent most of my teenage years and the first five years of my 20s. At the time that I’m writing this post, I have only about two weeks in the City. I can tell you that I really have mixed feelings, it feels like you’re about to lose something, or abandon something, and I certainly feel I’ll missed a lot of things in San Francisco, my friends, (although there’re not a lot) my professional network that I have just built up, and some of the places I love to hangout. Indeed, if you’ve never been a new place or a new environment, you’ll never understand how hard it is to overcome everything. I remember when I first came to the country 10 years ago, everything to me was new. I had no idea what to do and I had no idea where should I go, I was really afraid of the new environment and I felt very very bad. The first few years of my life in the US was a nightmare, and I had to see a psychiatrist during those years. Things were getting better and better after I turned 20 years old, I had a better goal of my life, and I started studying broadcasting and working on the career of media production. Everything seemed heading to a good way, however, the Global Financial Crisis in 2008 and 2009 hit me and my family hard, my family business fell sharply and it has not recovered yet. I always wish I could find a full-time job in the field of media production here in San Francisco, but it always turns out hopeless and disappointment. I have to live, my family have to live. The fact is I can’t afford the living without a long-term, full-time job. If I can’t live, what else could I do?

I know I’ll be missing this City and the beautiful places that I love to go, therefore I’m now working on a new video project, probably this is also my last video project that I work in San Francisco. The working project title is “Best Of SF – Historic Sites", and as the name suggests, it’s a short video series featuring the historic sites in San Francisco, on each episode we’ll talk about a site or building that is either recognized as a historic site by the nation, the state, or the local residents. For more about my production plan you can scroll down to read it in details. My only concern is that I only have about 2 weeks here, I think I won’t have much time to shoot multiple episodes within these 2 weeks. Especially rain may return to the City in next couple of days, (damn it it hasn’t rain for a month, now it’s going to rain!) when the weather is not cooperating, it’s hard for me to do anything outdoor, not just shooting. Anyway, I’ll just try my best, and I hope I could shoot the footage for at least four episodes by the time I’m leaving San Francisco.

San Francisco, a beautiful city, it’s always that amazing.

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