Thursday, 23 July 2009

You heard it here

In my very first post in May 2007, High Definition, Web 2.0 and a Growing Aesthetic (click to read), some six months before taking up my fellowship, I laid out my understanding of the then current sate of High Resolution Imaging. I call it that rather than High Definition because for me its like calling a vacuum cleaner a Hoover. High Definition was a group agreement amongst a group of manufacturers to promote the next consumer development – High Definition. It soon deteriorated beneath 1920 x 1080 to 1280 x 720 then much worse most of the HD that people see is within the GoP structure of HDV formats and streaming (Group of Pictures, where the image is refreshed every 7 or 15 frames, short or long GoPs, and a lot of info is left out in between). High Definition as a title suggested something above and defining, a title which spoke about what you had come to accept as not being good enough.

Some artists work with a tenth of the pixels of standard PAL or NTSC and make more defining images that 10,000 HD productions.

So currently we’re at the intermediate stage –announced by the recent tests in LA and London that compared Film and Data stocks. These tests were weighted by a process of remediation: that of seeing the new media in the old medias terms and so the new media simply can’t match those terms. Yet the fact is – to my eye – the new media is now adequate to the task, with some reservations.

This is very convenient for me as I can predict that by the end of my Fellowship I’ll be able to announce the fact that Electronic Cinematography has come of age. That also fits my Verbatim History project where I am interviewing a group of practitioners about the Hi Res form. My original argument that as there are hardly any verbatim reports from practitioners on the early history of photo-chemical photography between 1890 and 1910 – I really can’t allow that to happen between 1990 and 2010 in Electronic Cinematography.

So – watch this space for confirmation.