Neil Smith

Neil Smith is CEO of Rift Valley Studios based in Los Angeles, California. Neil is a FAA Certified drone pilot and VR expert with over twenty five years in the IT and filmmaking industries. Neil returned to school in 2000 to catch up on his reading and whilst studying Psychology and Neuroscience at USC (University of Southern California) he also started making HD documentaries on Neuroscience and became fascinated with the technology and workflow of digital content creation. After attending many of the classes run by the USC Cinema School he soon realized that Hollywood was about to go digital and would need IT expertise to complement traditional filmmaking skills. Since 2005, Neil has owned and managed a post-production and systems integration business in LA focusing on providing state-of-the-art digital technology and services to filmmakers and digital content creators. Having already been involved with VR IT projects during the 1980s, it was only natural that his interest should be piqued once the next-gen VR technology driven by Oculus Rift started to bubble up during 2013. Since 2013, Rift Valley Studios has been experimenting with different Drone and VR cameras rigs and workflows in order to optimize the production and post processes involved in shooting, stitching and delivering aerial and 360 VR digital content for industries like Real Estate and Media & Entertainment.

The GoPro ‘Personal Production Platform’ for Digital Content Creators

The GoPro ‘Personal Production Platform’ for Digital Content Creators

At CES 2017, Nick Woodman, CEO of GoPro described his vision of his company as providing the most extensive ‘personal production platform’ on the planet for digital content creators and…

GoPro OMNI 360 rig – VR capture made easy!

GoPro OMNI 360 rig – VR capture made easy!

When it comes to shooting and delivering 360 content with multiple cameras there are several key workflow challenges many VR filmmakers face: Data wrangling and file management Syncing and managing…

360º Video Report #11 – Epson Moverio BT-200 AR Smart Glasses at NAB 2016

360º Video Report #11 – Epson Moverio BT-200 AR Smart Glasses at NAB 2016

One of the hidden gems I came across at NAB 2016 was on the Epson booth. We typically associate Epson with printers but they also make great projectors. Epson have…

360º Video Report #10 – Illya Friedman, President of Hot Rod Cameras talks VR mods and fisheye lenses

360º Video Report #10 – Illya Friedman, President of Hot Rod Cameras talks VR mods and fisheye lenses

Illya Friedman is the President of Hot Rod Cameras in Hollywood, Los Angeles. He’s a great guy with a terrific company that sells cameras and production equipment. They…

360º Video Report #9 – Tims Johnson from Blacklist Digital talking VR Production and Post

360º Video Report #9 – Tims Johnson from Blacklist Digital talking VR Production and Post

Tims Johnson, CEO and Co-owner of Blacklist Digital talking VR Production and Post. Tims (yes he does have a ‘s’ at the end of his first name…

360º Video Report #8 – Chris Bobotis from Mettle explaining their new VR 360º plugin for Adobe CC

360º Video Report #8 – Chris Bobotis from Mettle explaining their new VR 360º plugin for Adobe CC

Chris Bobotis , Owner and Creative Director at Mettle explains their incredible VR 360 plug-in for Adobe Creative Cloud.   (Don’t forget to watch the 360° video using…

Some fun at the GoPro 360º playroom with Samsung Gear VR headsets

Some fun at the GoPro 360º playroom with Samsung Gear VR headsets

Upstairs at the NAB GoPro booth there was a room full of Samsung Gear VR headsets. I took my 360º camera rig up there and walked around the room. Most…

360º Video Report #7 – Jim Geduldick on the new GoPro Omni Synchronized Spherical VR Rig

360º Video Report #7 – Jim Geduldick on the new GoPro Omni Synchronized Spherical VR Rig

Jim Geduldick, GoPro’s Cinema, Broadcast & Photo Marketing Manager explains the new GoPro OMNI spherical camera rig and the GoPro 360 video content server platform: (Don’t…

360º Video Report #6 – Annette Tindall – Zeiss VR ONE Head Mounted Display

360º Video Report #6 – Annette Tindall – Zeiss VR ONE Head Mounted Display

Zeiss have being making high-end lenses and optics for over 160 years. What they don’t they don’t know about lens technology isn’t worth…

NAB 360º Video Report #5 – Tim Sarnoff, President Production Services and Deputy CEO at Technicolor

NAB 360º Video Report #5 – Tim Sarnoff, President Production Services and Deputy CEO at Technicolor

Tim Sarnoff is in charge of Technicolor’s Post-Production, Visual Effects, Animation and Games worldwide. Technicolor has production facilities located in Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, Vancouver, Toronto…

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