Ross Douglas

Edinburgh never knew what it was about to spawn.




I made two swf files. Neither of which I can post here as WordPress doesn’t allow swf files to be posted. Which is a damn shame as you would have loved them.


More video…

Last week the tutor at college set the class the task of making a boring bit of video watchable.

He had filmed some footage of a kettle boiling for a couple of minutes and a toaster toasting a couple of slices of bread and let us all loose. In the spirit of mischief I decided to use the least amount of footage possible and made the following video.


Another video project

That my tutor Steven Tyler (honest, that’s his name. Look him up on the college website) set the class last week was to take some video he recorded at the Helix of The Kelpies and edit it into a short film.

To do this I used Adobe Premiere. Adobe Premiere seemed more daunting at first than any other video editing software I’ve used before but the simple and easy to understand interface is quite easy to navigate around. After a few hours I had a finished movie.

As an experiment I put together a second movie with better transitions using only still images I found online (if I’ve used your image and want credited for use or removed please let me know) but added some text and also a voiceover recorded using the open source audio editing program Audacity*.

Kelpies are mythical Scottish creatures so I asked my wife to do the voiceover. She’s got a better speaking voice than I have. She also has a lovely Scottish accent that adds to the overall feel.

Audacity happens to be the program I’ll be using in Audio Editing class. Getting to have a look at how it works is a help for the future and I’ve already learned a little trick for removing background noise to clean up a voice recording. There’s a lot of functionality in Audacity and I’ve barely scratched the surface so far.

* You can get a copy of Audacity here if you want to find a powerful audio editing tool.


Photoshop practise.

For the last couple of hours I have been playing around with Photoshop as part of my college homework. I have been experimenting with removing colour, taking out text and making colours more vibrant and punchy.

This first image was one I took while on holiday in Iceland. I wanted to highlight the graffiti so I changed the hue and saturation to make the bold colours stand out more and then used a new layer to allow me to make the rest of the image black and white.

In this photograph I did the same as the above image.


In the photograph below I used the clone stamp tool to remove a watermark and changed the image to black and white.

removed text

Not too shabby for a beginner I think. If you have any tips or tricks you may have for using photoshop please feel free to pop them in the comments.


My First Video…

This is the first video I have ever made at Edinburgh College usingĀ Adobe Premier Plus.

Welcome event…

So today was the welcome event at Edinburgh College and it was no where near as daunting as I thought. Going by the number of people in my group there’s only seven people in the class. Bonus!

First day proper is Tuesday. Stay tuned…

In the movie of my life…

This is where I (presumably played by Johnny Vegas) get showered, shave and trim the hairs, that for some reason grow in my ears, in a montage. There will be Wild Thing by Tone Loc playing over quick cuts of razors, toothbrushes, toilet flushes and air freshener being sprayed…

It’s welcome day at Edinburgh College and I’m kinda nervous at the thought of going. I can’t remember being this nervous at my first day at primary school but that might be because I was to busy staring at my new shoes and wondering how something could be so shiny.

But there will be no staring at shoes today, only focusing on the task in hand.


It was my birthday yesterday. I’m now 44 years old. Happy birthday to me and all that guff…

I’m about to start a college course in four days time and am both looking forward to it and also panicking at the thought. The course is a NPA in Web Design Fundamentals and Digital Media and while I do have a small knowledge on how to play around with a computer I’m pretty sure that I’ll be getting into things I know nothing of. I hereby promise I shall never again ridicule my mother for looking confused when I “Fix” her computer by searching on google…

The course paperwork says that at the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the main technical and design considerations in designing a website.
  • Produce and optimise graphics for the World Wide Web to a given brief.
  • Create a webpage for use on a web-server using basic HTML features.
  • Plan an animation for inclusion on a website.
  • Plan and design a digital narrative for inclusion on a website.
  • Create a digital narrative for inclusion on a website.
  • Test and Evaluate a digital narrative.
  • Produce a plan for the design and creation of a website to a clients requirement.
  • Construct and upload a website which includes text and graphics.
  • Test and evaluate a website.

Which is nice…

I get the feeling that a lot of those are things I’m familiar with from plunging around in the HTML of a couple of blogs and a couple are new. The animation and graphic sections could be fun to do. On thursday this week I have a welcome event. Classmates and lecturers will be met and I’ll find out more about start dates, funding and the like.

As I said I’m going to try to post at least one thing a day on here documenting my journey into further learning and hope you’ll drop by often and say hi.

The Best Tomato Soup ever.

Tomato SoupThis Soup is simple and delicious. Ingredients.

  • Six tins of tinned plum tomatoes.
  • 500ml Passata.
  • Bunch of chopped fresh Basil.
  • Two onions. Chopped.
  • Two good size garlic cloves. Chopped.
  • Kilo potatoes. Cubed.
  • 1l Vegetable stock.
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce.
  • Tabasco sauce.

There are many different ways to make a good tomato soup. The best way is to keep it simple. Throw the chopped onions, basil and garlic into a pot with a small bit of butter and give itĀ  a gentle fry. Once browned throw in the tins of tomatoes and the passata. Add Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco. Add vegetable stock. Bring to a boil.

Blend with a hand blender. Garnish with a small sprig of basil. There’s nothing that goes with a great tomato soup than warm cheese bread, olives, oil and balsamic vinegar.

bread olives

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