So how did we scan and create all those movies you’ve already seen, you wonder? Mandi, who works in our archive and tests all our cameras, wrote a little program for himself to speed up the process. We wanted to share this with you, explain how it works, and ask you to improve on it or port it to other platforms.
This little program should help you to save time and nerves when trying to create a movie from your LomoKino scans. Although it works reasonably well, it is exactly what it is: a proof of concept and time-saver.
What it’s not:
- programmed by a programmer – the goal was to get the job done and make a tool that can be used internally
- a software with hundreds of options and a GUI
- running on a variety of operating systems
- able to detect every little hint of slightly exposed movie frame
- working on Mac/Linux (yet!)
What it can do:
- able to detect frames as long as they are properly exposed
- able to cope with overlapping frames
- deal with sprocket holes and even exposing sprocket-hole movies
- run on Windows
- be a pretty awesome little tool
How to install it:
- Download and install a version of ImageMagick
- Restart your computer (we had trouble before doing so, just to be safe)
- Download our program and save it to your hard disk.
Remember: this program is “as is” and definitely not fully tested on different PC configurations. Please do not contact us if you cannot get it to work properly or something goes wrong. Feel free to post questions and feedback in the comments below.
How to use it:
Simply drag and drop the folder with your LomoKino scans onto the autokino program and follow the instructions. After you are done, you will find the movie in the scans folder as well as a subfolder with the single movie frames which you can use for further editing or whatever.
Requirement for scans:
Very important: The image should have good contrast, especially the black between the single frames should be really dark and not contain any noise. There should be no border whatsoever as it influences the image-detection.
The frame detection and order of the movie-frames is from left to right! Do not try to use top to bottom scans, it simply won’t work. If you want to include sprocket holes in your movies, make sure to prepare the scans in approximately the same way as shown in the example. (If you export non sprocket movie from a scan with sprocket holes, it will simply be cropped to 70% of the scan. Maybe semi-automatic detection will be added in a future version.)
If you scan at home with your flatbed scanner, make sure you only scan strips with full frames. Other options are scans from your lab.
- If you get automatic scans, looking similar to a supersampler image, the program might leave out some frames as they might be cut off and the single movie frame would simply be too small.
- The better version, though more elaborative and therefore expensive, is to get manual scans that are longer and might include a cut off frame at beginning or end. You should have no problems ordering this at a Lomolab, but if you’re asking your local lab, explain that you need all frames from the negative and they have to fully include the frame they just partly scanned before. Tell them also that the order and orientation of the scans should stay the same as required (first frame is on the far left).
Are you interested in writing a program for Mac or Linux? Then please read this article as well!