~ Local Artist January 2012

sacramento_365_visaomedia_artist - alex trujillo

Sacramento’s newest event website, routinely features local artists each month, they we’re very nice to feature our director and artist, Alex Trujillo. The article highlights Alex’s artistic and musical taste and digs a little into what makes him tick. Read the full article here.

Alex’s art can be viewed for a limited time at the new, Broadacre Coffee cafe, located downtown.You can see unique aircraft models on our partner’s website. You can also buy jewelry at Kate Jewelery and Antha Jewelry shop!

Designing Dreams Fashion Show 2011 ~ Visuals

Elegance, style and flair. The 2nd Annual Designing Dreams Show, was a memorable night for charity and couture. Designing Dreams was held at the Sacramento Memorial Auditorium, it was amazing to see a 90-foot runway with vibrant backdrop, projections screens, models, and sexy music. Visao Media played a part to bring a little bit of the magic by programming music and creating an array of couture visuals for the show. This was the first time our music would be along side, Sacramento Opera singer, Carrie Hennessey and pianist, David Lee.

Designers: Tiana Vega, Yennie Zhou, Shirali Singh, Melissa Kay, Vasily Vein, Janelle Cardenas, Samuel Parkinson, Maisha Bahati, Nelli Rosh, Aya Yoruha & Diane O., Violetta Vieux

BAMR ~ Clothing & Art

bamr_shirt_visao_sacramento - demetris washington
Nor-Cal based artist, Demetris Washington isn’t your typical young artist. While most artists highlight their creative outlets through eye-catching imagery, Demetris’ introduces his art through the many life lessons we all encounter from youth to adulthood. Demetris explains, “It is impossible to achieve true happiness and success without learning from your failures.” The alias, BAMR, is a direct result of these failures and life purposes (Becoming A Man Righteously). BAMR is about promoting an awareness of hope and success while positively influencing the world through art and creative expression.
To buy BAMR graphic tee’s email:

2011 Midtown Business Association Annual Gala ~ Visuals/Music


July 15, 2011 l 5:00-9:00pm | Harlows Restaurant & Night Club
The 2011 Annual Midtown Gala’s theme is the crux of all things creative; Fashion, Art and Music. Along with many talented artists, we were asked to showcase our motion graphics visuals and DJ, Alx-T & Erin Best played a great sunset relaxing and uptempo patio collaboration.

For full article visit Sacramento Press.

David Terranova Spotlight ~ the Creative ~ Pt.2 (of 2)


David Terranova: the Creative
Flash Developer/Video/Music Producer/Designer/Photographer

Education? What has been the most shape shifting influence in your artistic taste?
DT: My early education was a mess, I moved a lot, and whenever I was in Italy I was just generally doing bad at school as a form of rebellion as I didn’t want to live there. Which is why I left school at 16 and went to London and 3 years later started my first job as junior designer in an online advertising/creative agency which at the time was a 2-man-band. The work was extremely commercial, building websites, games and online adverts for big movie releases. I taught myself Action-script reading Colin Moock’s first book on the subject, and over time also learned other web programming languages, enough to become Head of Development in the company, which within almost 5 years employed around 50 people. I see real education as the stuff you learn by yourself on the job, which is pretty much the only way I have learned things.

Black Albino by davidterranova

As for the shape shifting stuff, I find that it’s always shifting depending on who’s around me. Styles and moods come and go in cycles. My latest shift has been working with Will Calcutt, an understated artist for Ghostly Intl. who has a way of creating timeless imagery that has really stuck with me and has become something that I’m into at the moment: vintage, twisted, dark, grainy. His concept for the video work for Black City is truly inspiring and I haven’t seen anyone else making anything like it. He’s been working for months on building a complex After-Effects setup that gives everything this really old look, whilst slowing everything down by enormous amounts and morphing it all up. It’s very special and it represents Matthew Dear’s image perfectly.

He also introduced me to the work of Mike Cina (who we’re making a small doco on) who is another artist for Ghostly. His work really blew me away, I’ve come to understand a lot of art that previously meant nothing to me, mainly based on his sleeve designs that are really reminiscent of artworks of past eras that are just timeless. Timelessness, everyone is trying to replicate old technology, whether it’s 20s silent movies, Super 8, 80s VHS, 90s rainbow music videos.

My girlfriend has a great taste in graphic design, photography and movies, so we’re in a vicious cycle of inspiring each other with all sorts of things. Since being with her my taste in things has changed a lot. When you have the right people around you, your influences keep moving.

You come from a demographic of graphic artists/web developers, freelancing, or working for agencies for clients such as MTV, Pixar, Playstation, Disney. Did your experience in video direction/editing come from all these jobs?
DT: Not really. I consider all of that commercial web stuff a completely separate life to what I’m trying to work towards. My two brothers own a TV production company so I’ve always had the good-fortune of being able to use their equipment when available. At 22 I was going through a huge life-change one day: I broke up with my girlfriend, quit my full-time job (the one as head of development) and pulled out of a house mortgage that we were about to sign the following morning. I decided to shave off all my hair and film it that evening, and that was my first experience of Final Cut (See Below), using my brothers’ edit suite with them showing me how to use the keyboard shortcuts. I remember getting really excited when I discovered Apple+J (speed control)!

This transition as Creative Flash Developer into making random experimental videos has really taken its toll. Going from working for advertising agencies on a juicy day rate doing Flash work, to making videos for struggling record labels means that I’ve taken an enormous pay cut which has affected my lifestyle in a big way. This also means that I’m stuck with a dinosaur of a laptop that I can barely use Final Cut with, keeping open only one program at a time. As I work with Final Cut and Ableton Live together at the same time, things get extremely slow.

On the side I have to take on the occasional commercial project that enables me to afford getting coffee every morning from, for example I’ve just finished a micro site for Volvic, or before that I was filming and making backstage videos at X Factor (not sure if you have that in the US yet, it’s been going on for years in the UK), which is all a reminder of how fluctuating my position can be. Rebel Rave has given my name a certain amount of presence online, which was really exciting at first. But then things happen that make you realize that the value of your name being on the web doesn’t mean much at all, and within a couple of months it can just disappear into the depths of page 100 of Google, while you’re still stuck in your little room on your aging equipment struggling to get a decent paid job.

Creative process?
DT: I don’t really have a process. My friends and I are connected through party scenes, which in my opinion is the thing that drives most people’s careers in this field: everyone I do the cool work with (outside of RR) are people I go to parties with, it’s where you find lots of talented people doing really cool things who eventually you cross paths with during the day for work. It sounds weird, but techno music has been the thing that moved me away from commercial web work and drove my career forward as an artist, all thanks to connections made at parties. So I guess part of the answer to your question, which is only specific to my own personal experience, is working with talented friends who I find are on the same page as me.

When it comes to dealing with a performer though, I don’t like to pre-plan too much. I like to sit down with them and explain what I’m after. The last thing I worked on was with a very cool contemporary dancer called Rob Davidson, he’s got a really specific style of using his body, so I gave him the lowdown of what I was after, and together we agreed on various elements of his performance, mixing his own style in performance with my own style in video. This is just an uncut version of what I’m working on:

The last 10 years, in your observation of interactive media, working in music and fashion, what do you see as being the best advancement and trends?
DT: Well I think everything at the moment is connected to the fact that regular people (like me, self taught non-professionals) are more and more able to download software with which they can create content that is at the same level as the larger establishment, whether it’s in music, film, fashion, photography, visuals etc. And together with the advancement of web and social networking, regular people can get launched into worldwide stardom in a matter of minutes… this is old news, but it’s definitely because of this that trends are where they are today. There’s just so much content being pumped into the web every single minute, most of it is really bad, but it’s the bad stuff that pushes things forward. For example when photographers started buying the 5D to film their photo shoots, all you saw all over the net were these bad videos of models pouting and touching their hair not knowing where to look, cross-fading on top of some pop/folk music. I found this particularly frustrating, and it was for this reason that I wanted to get into fashion films: because I saw what was being acclaimed by the fashion industry and I think I and a lot of upcoming film makers could do better. Fashion videos are going through a really interesting period now, every magazine is going crazy for them, especially with the new possibilities of distributing via the iPad. I’ve always loved Show Studio’s video work, although it was only recently that I figured out it mostly came down to Ruth Hogben, another self-taught filmmaker.

To answer your question, I think that there are lots of interesting trends being pushed in various directions, all of which comes down to “regular people” making enormous amounts of professional content that is pushing the boundaries at such high speeds. Every few weeks something arrives that make everything before, look dated. In a very vague comparison, this is probably something that used to only happen once a year of even once every few years.

VJing? Software? Controllers? What do you consider comprises of good/original visual elements for a 1-2 hour set?
DT: I forced myself to learn VDMX in a month for Damian’s live tour. I’ve played around with Quartz Composer, but never used any of my Quartz files when VJing live. Before all of this I’d played around with Modul8, but found it a bit rigid to use. I got onto VDMX it just felt so fluid and flexible, I love just being able to build your own interface inserting whatever tools you need and removing the tools you don’t. I particularly love the power of oscillators; I wish they were something that could be used in other programs like Ableton, Final Cut or After Effects.

I use my filmed footage for VJ content. I remember when I only had 1 month left before Damian’s live tour; I had to create 10 different “scenes”, one for each different song, while trying to figure out how to work VDMX. The clock was ticking and I was running out of ideas and I was in a huge panic. My friend, Marko Perendija had helped me out a lot on that project, we ended up in all sorts of all nighter situations, editing all day round the clock without sleep, filming in the city at 3am. One of the scenes is about this scary rabbit, it’s one of my favorite scenes, in fact, it was just me in my brother’s office at 4am in front of a camera, light and tripod, wearing a rabbit mask and a white boiler suit. I cut holes in the boiler suit’s hoody for the rabbit’s ears to go through, so I couldn’t take the mask off until I finished as it was all quite fragile, and the only way I could look out was through the rabbit’s nostrils, it was a nightmare to test the shots, focusing, light angles and everything else. Sweaty, claustrophobic and frustrating, all that for one of the ten tracks. I just hope no one in the apartments in the opposite building was looking in, must have been a sight.

I’ve jumped into VJing not knowing how you’re “supposed” to do it, I just did what seemed natural to me. I filmed stuff in slow motion and play it back, tightly reacting to the sound and mood. My style displays a lot of contrast and opposites. Techno is energetic and fast, so I love playing slow-motion footage over techno, it’s all about fluidity and smoothness against the aggressive beats. I don’t really enjoy the type of visuals that show these crazy images flashing every tenth of a second. When you have slow-motion footage of weird inverted erupting clouds (I made this in the Rebel Rave U.S. Tour visuals), combined with a sound-reactive flicker, that’s what really gets me excited.

On a completely different note to VDMX, I’ve always made Flash based visuals for private parties or friends’ nights, way before I started making videos. I have a whole load of generative animations that I’ve built over the years, most are entirely code based, and others are mixed with time line animations. It’s just a variation of circles, dots, lines, and random shapes, white on black, moving about on screen in an ordered-chaos type way… So I built an engine that just loads in these different scenes in random order, for random amounts of time. This means that for events I can just plug the laptop in and let it run all night on its own without having to interact with it. (Some of the scenes are on my site under Flash Toys). The last time I used this was a couple of months ago for ReSolute in New York, when Lee Burridge played at Love.

Laid back snack attack (fix mix) by davidterranova

Music works?
DT: I always played instruments, I studied classical music and dreamed going to the conservatory school of music in Rome. In the past 3 or 4 years I’ve been making more solid music in my spare time. I know a certain amount about music theory, scales, chord structures, harmonies, so my tracks are always driven by slow dark melodic loops that keep building up. I enjoy making slow and dark grinding music that is perfect for playing in your car at full volume or driving down the highway at night under torrential rain.

Camera selections? Video FX? Output settings?
DT: I own a Sony Z1, I used it for the RR videos, I don’t particularly like it but it does the job. Whenever possible I rent the Sony EX3, which in comparison is a dream, and the frame-rate feature is something I use a lot. Richie Hawtin’s video and the fashion films were all filmed on the EX3. There’s some crowd scenes I filmed at 60fps that are just really impressive – I want to make a small separate video with them on their own to some weird music, it’s quite disturbing in a way, especially when you see huge Italian crowds of Hawtin fans raving in slow-motion! Gives you the shivers, very cool in a dark way!

My girlfriend owns a Canon 5D MkII, which I’ve used a few times to film, it’s great but I still prefer the EX3 as there’s no way you can film properly without using extra rigs, and also because it doesn’t seem to handle fast movement. Not sure if it’s because of the low bit rate or if it’s just the way that it refreshes itself. If you point it at a train directly from the side of the track from closeup, the train will seem to be slanting forwards, so all the vertical lines come out diagonal, which is a good way to see how this camera seems to be working in rows from top to bottom. It’s OK if the camera’s locked off and if the subject is relatively still, but if you’re hand holding it and moving fast, or if the subject is moving around quickly, the image appears to be distorting. Anyway, maybe I’m missing something… probably a lot of professionals would disagree with all of the above or have a simple solution!

For web video I just always use Vimeo, which works best with H.264 5000kbps at 1280×720. Any higher than 5000 and it can get choppy on slower machines – like mine!

For live shows I can’t really say with confidence. From what I read online I always use 90% JPG compression at a 1024×576 resolution. Again this works best with my sluggish laptop, I imagine you can go a lot higher.

Who/what inspires you on a consistent basis?
DT: I can’t think of someone/something that consistently inspires me. One day I’m completely taken by an artist, I learn all about their work, the next day he’s just a bookmark in my Delicious account, then I probably won’t go back to as by then I’m busy reading up another artist. This is the problem with the web, there’s too much stuff coming at you every single hour.

Probably the most consistent “inspirations” for me is the “night”, when I’m on a certain project I can literally work 3 days in a row without sleep. This works when I’m at my brothers’ office in London, a closed-in tiny suite surrounded by top of the line equipment and coffee mugs, now that I’m in New York I haven’t been able to work like this.

Advice for students pursuing design as a career?
DT: #1 Bad answer but most truthful: I’m the last person to ask for advice. I don’t really know where my career is going and my plans for the future are somewhat blurry. But if you really have to know: Go party!

#2 Ideal answer: Always take on whatever may seem impossible for you to achieve. Things always work out in one way or another, you’ll come out the other end having learned some-thing new. It’s the only way you move forward.

Visao Media would like thank David Terranova for doing this interesting spotlight and look out for David’s upcoming films for Damian Lazarus’ Fabric 54, JPLS, Plastikman & more.

Umbrella Haus ~ An Über Creative Studio

umbrella haus - creative design studio - sacramento
I teamed up with several designers to open a studio advocating multi-disciplinary thinking. We needed an “umbrella studio” to house the special niche of skills, experience and ideas under one roof. Umbrella Haus was founded on the same social and economic principles as the famous Bauhaus School of Design in Germany.

SO….. think of all the cool music, art, fashion, interactive stuff we cool kids like but also for the corporate world, it’s Umbrella Haus.

David Terranova Spotlight ~ Rebel Rave Director ~ Pt.1 (of 2)

david terranova - visao media - rebel rave

David Terranova: the Director
Flash Developer/Video/Music Producer/Designer
Age? 27
Born: Rome, then moved to London. I’m half Italian, half English. I spent part of my childhood moving between London and a rustic old village outside Rome, then at 16 I moved to the UK permanently.
Current City: I’ve been in New York for 6 months now, London has definitely been the most influential city on me. Since moving to NY I’m feeling really fresh and positive vibes everywhere, so I know my move will be an important chapter for me.

How did your opportunity with the Rebel Rave video series come about? Matthew Dear’s Black City? Richie Hawtin’s M-nus Embed video?
DT: An important chapter in my life was when I discovered the party scene in East London at the rather late age of 23. I became ingrained in the local parties, taking pictures with my little snap camera (flickr?) and making flash flyers and posters for friends’ nights like “Trailer Trash”. I got a text message from Hannah Holland one day, while I was freelancing in an agency building an awful kids’ website for Disney. She was a DJ from that scene and asked me if I was interested in speaking to Damian Lazarus, he was looking for someone to make some videos. Within a couple of weeks I was sitting in his kitchen drinking a cup of tea and stroking his cat, completely star struck, talking about this series he wanted to make to promote his label(Crosstown Rebels). Neither of us had a clear idea of what we wanted, he just wanted me to film the parties and make cool videos. So as a trial he sent me off on New Year’s Eve to film three different parties. My cameraman brother quickly showed me how to use his Sony Z1 and my best friend, Robbie came along as my assistant. Damian loved the video, but it was just a leap in the dark for me.

Each episode you can see that I learned something new: the first one was just a basic edit to music, the second I tried to record some sit-down “interviews”, the third was a big mess because Watergate in Berlin didn’t let me use my top-light, the fourth I played a bit more with graphics, the fifth I used a presenter for the first time, etc, etc. And you can see the editing and style also has changed a lot, so it’s just been a vehicle for me to figure out how to do things. The last episode, featuring the RR U.S. Tour, was mostly focused on making everything feel like a dream/nightmare, which is something I’m getting fond of. The Richie Hawtin video is a bit like that too.

The people at Fabric really liked the series and they put me through to Matthew Dear when he was looking for someone to make a promo video about his Audion world tour, filmed at his upcoming night at Fabric. I had met Matthew on a couple of occasions before at Crosstown-related events, so felt honored to finally be actually working with him. That was almost 2 years ago now, so when I moved to NY last January I sent him a quick email showing some of my latest work. He particularly liked the Afterlife video( made with my friend James Mountford, so he put me in touch with Will Calcutt to work together on the material for Black City… Six months later and I’m in an office with Will filming my eyeball for the promo video!

I remember not really knowing who Richie Hawtin was 4 or 5 years ago. I recognized the name, but knew nothing about his history nor heard him play. So, I went to this festival in London where friends were saying “Wow, Richie Hawtin and Ali Demirel”, because Ali’s name was also on the flyer. I was like “who’s Ali Demirel?” and they said “he does the visuals or something”. Turns out I was blown away by what was being displayed on this giant LED screen. There were these minimal geometrical images moving slowly all over the place and that was the beginning of a new chapter for me. This was a moment that shifted things around in my head. A couple of months later we went to the Contakt show in London, and that’s when I felt like my eyes had just been opened up for the first time. I remember going back home that morning with my best friend, we were in the shop looking for some breakfast and all we could see were these perfect and beautiful shapes everywhere, we actually stopped to look at the bottles that were neatly standing on the floor, admiring their colorful caps and how they were all chained together in an invisible grid. The next day I decided to recreate one of the visual structures that had been shown at the event, the one you always see in the Contakt videos with the grid of dots moving around, I called it Minus Grid (

A few months later I get a message from Ali Demirel, who I knew all about by this time: his history and work with Burak Arikan. So you can imagine the excitement when I get an email from him. A few times he tried to get me to do some work for them, including the first installment of the M-nus Embed series, but I could never take anything on because of my own schedule with other projects. So finally, I think after two years after we first spoke, we managed to get me working on the third installment of the Embed series, following Richie around on a 3 day tour across Europe, which included flying in a private jet. It was a really big ordeal for me as a lot of things went wrong (including a lost camera charger halfway through the trip!!) and everything became a terrible nightmare that I couldn’t believe was happening, which meant I had to work 3 times harder during post production to save the project. You can read more detail on my blog: those three days were in a way some of the worst in my life, but at the same time I was on a constant high spending time with Richie and Ali, people who I’d admired so much.


2010 Rebel Rave Tour(Crosstown Rebels) You’re the director for the video series; which shows did you happen to attend? Most memorable experiences? Fav. artist from series? Who was shooting all the video?
DT: I filmed everything actually. I don’t know how the series is perceived, but it’s actually a one-man-band. The skinny guy with the big camera poking around the DJs, that’s me… My favorite artist from the series has to be Mr. Seth Troxler. You just stick a cute girl next to him and camera in his face and he’ll just go on for hours. From the episode in Paris there’s so much footage I couldn’t use, really hilarious material, maybe one day I’ll post it up unedited. I would put Damian Lazarus up there in the top; after all he’s the real man behind it all.

Memorable experiences, on a personal level, has to be the Wolf+Lamb episode because everything about the trip was magical: meeting Zev and Gadi, going to the Marcy Hotel, the unparalleled 24 hour party, meeting my girlfriend. It became a huge chapter in my life, that episode is the only reason why I’m now living here in New York, a couple of blocks away from the Marcy.

Another experience has to be the time I was at the Droog party on the roof-top of the Standard Hotel in Downtown LA: Damian had just started playing and the sun had gone down and all the surrounding skyscrapers were lit up. Unforgettable moments and a really colossal setting for a party! Oh no wait, actually probably the best one was walking around with Seth in Paris, looking for one of these guys on the street who is trying to sell you a haircut deal. We found one and followed this dodgy guy for about 15 minutes down these back alleys until we got to this amazing Caribbean hair salon where a bunch of 3 year-old kids gathered around us in awe (camera kit, Anna the presenter and Seth, this superstar-looking-guy with a funky tache). One of the kids burst into tears when we had to leave as he didn’t want to let go of the microphone we had mistakenly let him hold. In the end Seth was pretty pissed off that they brutalized his tache, right before his gig at the Batofar for Freak n Chic. That was very memorable.

The Rebel Rave series is a quirky music-based video series with party cuts and special guests. What’s your approach presenting the series?

DT: My approach at first was actually non-existent, it’s all been experimenting with whatever knowledge I had at the time. Well actually, the only thing I’d say is constant with my videos is that I spend a lot of time on the music. Before editing, I find the right music. I mix it all in Ableton, exporting single mixed tracks for Final Cut. It’s a fiddly process because I then edit the video to this track, and if at a certain point the track breaks down, that means I have to also break down the visuals, which involves going back and forth between the video edit, finding timecodes, going to Ableton and cutting or looping sections, or putting effects on top at the right point in time, and then going back to Final Cut to see if it fits. So as the video edit builds, I’m gradually extending the audio edit.

RR series: Biggest mishap?
DT: On my first trial during the NYE episode, two of the tapes were all scrambled, no playback! I generally have bad luck when I least need it (wait till you hear the Minus Embed story in a few days!), so I was in utter despair and just assumed that it was the end of my short-lived relationship with Damian and the Rebels. My brothers helped me figure out what was going on with the tapes; we called all sorts of technicians. In the end I found that if you scrubbed the tape at half the speed, it played fine without any scrambling. So, I re-recorded the two tapes by scrubbing them at half the speed onto new tapes, and then recaptured the new ones and sped them up by 200%. Big mess! Again, please don’t tell damian.

Rebel Rave Series: How are the music selections for the videos decided?

DT: Most of the time Damian sends me the label’s latest releases, which in some cases don’t work too well for video as they can be too bassy and minimal without many variations in frequency (although over the past year this has been changing). If there’s a track that has a lot of high-frequency effects going on, then it’s perfect to edit to, otherwise there’s nothing for me to hook onto.

Sometimes, I hear the track playing in the original footage and I ask Damian if he has the original (sometimes another DJ is playing it in the footage). For example in the last episode there was some shots of Damian in Mexico playing Robert James’ “Sleep Moods”. I didn’t know it at the time, so I exported a clip and sent it to him, after which he sent the original back. In the final edit you can hear the original audio (together with crowd and ambience sounds) which then mixes in with the original track, which I’ve pitched up/down to match the BPM that Damian was playing at. It’s a great way for me to get some good music. Just don’t tell Damian. Ha! Other times I pick stuff from my own library. Whatever you hear that isn’t released on Crosstown Rebels is my own selection. I ask him if he’s ok with it, if he’s ok with the artist or with the label, and most times he is.

What next in the Rebel Rave Series?
DT: We were trying to do the next one at Burning Man, but left it too late to organize and it looks like it’s not happening. It’s Damian’s and Jamie’s first time there, so it would have been really cool to do one at BM. Actually there’s a really big and exciting project for Rebel Rave coming up in the next 1 or 2 years(yeah, it’s that big). But I can’t say anything about this yet – sorry!.