Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Aperture 3 - and Holt County, Nebraska

Apple Computers just released a new software product - Aperture 3 - a professional photography application- and they used images from Holt County to promote its new features. Last year Apple commissioned Sports Illustrated photographer Bill Frakes to create a video testimonial about the slideshow creation features in the Aperture software. He could go anywhere in the world to do the photo shoot to gather the images to tell his story, and being a native Nebraskan he knew he wanted to do it somewhere in our state. Although Bill currently lives in Florida, he has previously produced numerous multimedia stories for Sports Illustrated including the Nebraska State Wrestling Tournament and a feature on Arnold, Nebraska’s 6-man football team. (See http://www.strawhatvisuals.com/multimedia.html) Frakes was a featured instructor at the Apple Distinguished Educator Institute held in July 2009 at Full Sail University in Florida. It was there that he crossed paths with Katie Morrow, technology integration specialist at O’Neill Public Schools. He inquired about events near O’Neill occurring in early August that would be suitable for photography/video documentary purposes and agreed to come out to O’Neill during the weekend of the Holt County Fair. Along with Bill Frakes and his assistant Laura Heald, came a 4 person production team from Apple Computers. Due to the secrecy of the software development by Apple, little could be said about the true purpose of the photo shoot. Katie, along with huge help from her husband Kevin Morrow, arranged for local ranchers to film a sunrise scene on horseback at the Carson ranch, cleared for photographer’s access to the Holt County Fair and Rodeo, and obtained releases from all individuals photographed for possible inclusion in the piece. “Everyone was so agreeable and willing to help out- from the Holt County Fair Board to the Carson family to Elsie Eiler, owner of the Monowi tavern,” said Katie Morrow. “This was even more amazing since we weren’t even really being told what all the photos and interviews were for! The people of Holt County are a very generous people and Bill wanted to feature that in his story.” The piece was originally expected to be published before the new year, but delays in the software release date held it back. Currently the finished product is featured prominently on Apple’s website at http://www.apple.com/aperture/action/frakes/ and more Holt County images can be viewed in the movie clips http://www.apple.com/aperture/whats-new.html#slideshow. Numerous Holt County residents who provided portrait releases should soon be receiving prints by this famous photographer in exchange for their help with the project.

UPDATE: Bill and Laura's Holt County piece published on their own blog: "Strawhat Visuals" http://strawhatvisuals.blogspot.com/2010/02/holt-county.html

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