Final Cut Pro

Over recent years I have been interested in creating films and particular editing the videos I have recorded of the dog, Rio and family holidays. The iMac is so easy to use for this type of work and I found Apple iMovie intuitive and allows the user to create really good looking videos. The templates for making home movie trailers are particularly easy to use and can look quite professional.

My favourites are the Grand Canyon helicopter ride…

and the San Francisco trailer…

But over recent months I’ve been wanting the do more of the editing myself and whilst iMovie is a good package, I really wanted to give Apple’s Final Cut Pro X a go. The problem though was the cost! FCP is a professional package used extensively in the film and video industry and therefore comes at a relatively high price of £199 and so kept me from downloading a copy.

And then a month ago I won an award at work and a prize of £250 Apple voucher. I duly downloaded the trial FCP X, a fully working version and soon got to grips with the new controls. My first effort was the Gran Canaria holiday video…

Having decided that the application was worthy of the price tag I then decided to buy it using my voucher only to discover that I can only spend it on hardware at an Apple store. Doh! Oh well at least I’ll be able to use it for the new iPhone when it comes out in the autumn.

So have I bought the package?

You guessed it, yep and I’m loving it.

Here’s the latest video I have created, updating a film I made last year with new footage.


My next plan is to try to persuade Tina to come with me to do some filming using a second video recorder so I can do some editing of multi-camera shots. Yeah right!

Gran Canaria – Part 4 of 4

IMG_2655The next morning and our penultimate breakfast; fruit and yoghurt followed by fried bacon, egg and beans. Just as we were finishing up, Jen, the lady with coeliacs disease stopped and mentioned that I could get GF bread from the restaurant if I asked. We then went over to their table and I introduced ourselves (we hadn’t actually done that formally) and then sat and chatted for 15 minutes. Norman was recently retired and previously was a BT engineer so we instantly had something in common to talk about. He was also an Arsenal fan (someone has to I suppose).
Tina spoke to Jen about the ups and downs of celiac disease.
Back to the suite to change before hitting the poolside for the last full day. Overnight a note was left under the room door informing us that the transfer coach was departing at 5.35pm leaving much of the day for more sunbathing.
IMG_4456The day seemed hotter than previous days so the brolly was kept up until the temperatures cooled to a more bearable amount. We took lunch at 1.30pm; the usual cold meat and salad followed the now standard dessert choice for me of jelly, fruit and ice cream.
The pool area seemed busier, probably due to the new influx of guests that arrived the previous day. Not sure what happened to the Yorkshire couple, they seem to have disappeared and the Liverpool couple have been conspicuously quite, although we did ensure when we selected our beds we kept well away from them. There seems to be a few more younger people arriving this week although the hotel is predominantly made up of the older generation. Still judging by the ones that were dancing to Elvis on Saturday night they have some get up and go.
IMG_4490We remained by the pool until just before 6pm, making the most of the sun as we know that when got back to the UK opportunities would almost certainly be limited if the usual British summers are anything to go by. For the last hour by the pool there was a live guitarist knocking out tunes, which was nice and different to the normal tunes you hear at the poolside. That said, this particular hotel has no pool music playing all day which initially I thought gave the place a somber feel but with guests relying on their iPods for their own music choice. It actually made for a relaxing atmosphere. In fact earlier today the water park adjacent the hotel had some sort of event going on and with the loud music it felt out of place and even I was thinking ‘turn it down, will you!’
Back to the room and a letter was waiting for us from the management – the second in as many days. The first one we received highlighted the fact that there would be a power cut between 2am and 5am on our last nights stay and should we need it a small flashlight ‘in case of need’ was provided. The torch was miniature and so any emergency would have to be dealt with in the dark!
IMG_2667The second letter covered the situation regarding the late room booking; we knew we would have most of the day at the hotel so wanted somewhere to shower before we headed home so pre-booked this when we booked the holiday, for an extra of course. The letter confirmed we had a room, but not necessarily the one we had been staying in all week. A visit to the reception in the morning of departure would confirm whether we had to move.
We began to pack our cases with the dirty clothing, which didn’t take long as we’d travelled light and then showered and got ready for our final evening meal and, at last, the final time I’d have to wear those damn long trousers.
The final meal was up to the normal standard; considering the volume of people they have to cater for the variety and quality was excellent. The restaurant was getting busier each evening and by the time we had eaten most tables had been taken. That said we didn’t have to queue for any food or wait for a table ourselves. We left and I went and changed out of those white trousers before going on our walk. Back at the hotel we sat watching the day turn into night and then retired to the piano bar for the final time of the holiday, listening to Nico bash out his now familiar tunes.

For me the planned power cut during the night wasn’t noticed but Tina remarked that she heard the phone ‘bing’ a couple of times. We got up just after 9am and went to reception to check that we’re able to stay in our room until the transfer bus arrived – but we couldn’t and had to change rooms by midday. We therefore went for breakfast for the final time before returning to our suite to temporarily pack the cases. The new room, 2012 was two floors below and slightly smaller than our previous home for the week but would suffice for showering. We decamped and made our way to the pool, finding the same beds as the previous day available again. The skies were full of broken clouds, keeping the temperature lower but still warm enough to burn.

IMG_4529The pool area seemed quieter – I assumed many people either were leaving or gone off site on excursions. We went for lunch at the La Choza restaurant for the last time then used the final couple of hours to top up our tans before leaving to get ready for the journey home. For the first time in the holiday I thought about work and what was waiting for me on my return, even though I still had a week left of the holiday albeit at home rather than away. Tina’s sister had confirmed earlier in the week that their dad had found a care home so help was needed to relocate him and his things into his new place so that would keep us occupied for a day or so. We also have our Egypt reunion to look forward to on Saturday down in Dorset.

IMG_2675Just before we were about to leave the pool we saw Jen and Norman and wished them well for the rest of their holiday. It was nice to meet a couple that were friendly to talk and clearly as laid back about their time away as we were. We returned to the temporary room where we showered and pack the cases for the final time.
After getting a quick drink we then checked out at reception and waited for the transfer coach, which turned bang on time. The journey took around an hour or so collecting other holiday makers on the way through. At the airport we were one of the first to check in and then made our way through to security. At Birmingham I had no problem with my carry on bag whereas Tina’s was hand searched. This time around she went straight through whereas I had to re-submit my bag minus my iPads which had to be separated. You would think that security rules would be the same throughout the world. Clearly not.
We bought something to eat at extortionate airport prices then soon boarded the plane, with seats at the rear. Good news was that I watched our cases being loaded into the hold so that would be one less thing to worry about when we landed knowing we would have baggage to collect.

The flight was quicker on the way back despite it being all uphill and we arrived at the airport just after midnight, collected the car and were home shortly after 2am.

As well as the photos taken and posted on these blogs I also put together a video, highlighting some of the more amusing moments of the holiday. Enjoy!