Weird Science :: Video Tech Blogs

Drex's Tech Poi Blog #384: One-handed 1.5 turns

Teddy brought me this challenge a couple weeks ago in New York City--turning with one-handed 1.5s. It took a lot of work and there's a lot of places where it can tangle terribly, but hopefully the end result is close enough for government work ;)

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Fire dancing--hoop, poi, and staff with GoPro!

My first attempt at a video compilation with my new GoPro! :) A couple of these are a little hazy because I forgot to clean the lense in between takes and there was a hell of a lot of pollen in the air. Thanks so much to all the folks who let me video them! :)

Music: "The City" by The 1975

Performers:
Jeremy Croxton
Doodle
Drex
Tim Goddard
Hex
Spinnabel
Sticky
Justin Warren & Christina Koller

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #369: The X-Man

This was a fun move I was taught at the Wesleyan Winter Fire Arts retreat last weekend in Midtown, Connecticut. One can think of it as being somewhat similar to both Supermans and Fantastic Fours, but uses a very different timing. Part of the fun here is the combo that leads into it, which has several steps and looks more difficult and complex than it really is.

 

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #368: 3-poi CAP/Point Iso Tribrid

Chris Kelly does this really nifty 3-poi trick that I edited into the Top 10 video for this year where he does a CAP going one way and a point iso vs extension going the other way. His version has a CAP in the opposite hand, but I found I could synchronize this trick with a static spin to create some lovely tribrid lines. Demonstrated here in both opposites and same direction.

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #367: Superman barrel rolls

It's impossible to overstate how silly a move this is--performing barrel rolls with a 3-beat superman! Here's the basic idea: take one half of a normal barrel roll and one half of a 2-beat weave and you can get a bit of a barrel roll to work with the superman. It's not a full barrel roll, unfortunately (don't know if that's even possible with a superman), but it is entertaining to try ;) Beware tangles!

 

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #366: One-handed Zan's Diamond

A few people have been asking about this move in the online poi forums over the past couple months--Zan shows off a version of it in the Arizona Transmission video, but as of yet I wasn't aware of much other work being done on it in the wider community. Yesterday I managed to get the move down fairly consistently (at the cost of the callouses in between my ring finger and pinkie :-/) and was happy to find that the method I've been teaching to learn Zan's Diamond in my Fundamentals of Tech class totally works for the one-handed version, too.

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #365: 3 beat fantastic four

Last week in New York, Noel taught me this fun variant on the Fantastic Four. One of the things I really dig about it is that it really is the Fantastic Four we all know and love with only one significant tweak, so if you've already got the FF, this move isn't so huge a leap. 3-beat, though? Not sure if the name really encompasses it.

 

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #364: One handed mercedes (triquetra vs extension)

This one's been a while in the works: trying to do a polyrhythm hybrid with only one hand! The trick here is to remember which poi is closer at which point in the shape so you can aim it accordingly. Cool looking trick but requires a lot of work and accuracy!

 

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #363: CAP vs Extension

Triquetra vs pendulum is probably my favorite poi move, but it's kind of a misnomer because the triquetra is really something more like a CAP. With that in mind, I came up with this other CAP and combined it with an extension to create a different move that in some respects inverts elements of triquetra vs pendulum while still including many if not all of the elements of this move.

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Drex Fall Poi Tech: Contact poi and tapedeck toroids

Man...this video totally started out as something very different indeed ;) I wanted to show off a couple ideas for contact combos I'd been working with, then I wound up with too many of them for a single tech blog...and then Tim Goddard posted his video about tapedeck toroids and it got my creative gears turning. So...here is an interesting hodgepodge of different tech ideas. Enjoy! :)

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #362: Straight Jackets

This is one of those moves that is so epically much more work than is ultimately worth it, but man is it bragging rights! Straight jackets are like crossers, but from a place where you arms are pretzeled around each other so you have almost no mobility. Part of the challenge is that it's nearly impossible to practice them without getting the entrance (from a barrel roll) down first. Not for the faint of heart--use soft poi!

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #361: How I make my Tech Blogs part 3 promotion and analytics

The final installment of my video series on how I make my tech blogs and the longest yet--this one covers how I promote my videos once they're published and how I gauge the success of them. Included here is information on monetization, how I get around restrictions on Facebook Pages, and why I don't post every video I make to Tech Poi or Reddit.

In situations where I want to share videos but I know I'll be on the road and unable to do it manually, I'll use Buffer for both Facebook and Twitter:
http://www.bufferapp.com

 

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #360: How I make my tech blogs part 2 Editing

Everything you ever wanted to know about how I make my videos, continuing with editing! This is a three-part series on everything that goes into my tech blogs and tutorials, including time spent on different elements, the technology and editing process, and promotion for my videos. This video focuses on the editing process, both for audio and video and the different software that I use for each. Coming next week: publishing and promoting my content.

Software that I use:
Audacity: http://audacity.sourceforge.net/
Adobe After Effects
iMovie

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #359: How I make my Tech Blog part 1 Inspiration and Shooting

Everything you ever wanted to know about how I make my videos, starting with inspiration and shooting! This is a three-part series on everything that goes into my tech blogs and tutorials, including time spent on different elements, the technology and editing process, and promotion for my videos. Coming next week: the editing process.

Inspiration:
Tech Poi Facebook Group: http://www.facebook.com/groups/techpoi/
Reddit Poi: http://www.reddit.com/r/poi/
Google+ Poi: http://plus.google.com/u/0/communities/105824907484542224167

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #358: The Fantastic Four

I love poi moves with superhero names! This one's been on the back burner for a while, but checking out Tim Goddard's tutorial on the move broke down many of the barriers I'd been running up against. While looped in with supermans, I actually think this move is a slightly different beast, but an extremely useful one because it allows you to switch the planes your poi are moving in when spinning in a meteor fashion.

 

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #357: Ronan's multistep CAPs

At Tahoe, Ronan taught a class on 8-step CAPs that I was kind of in and out of due to some other commitments at the festival, but this was one of the moves I got out of it. I don't know if it qualifies as a dictionary-definition 8-step CAP given that only one hand in the pattern is actually performing a CAP at all, so I'm just going to label it a multistep CAP and call it a day. I found a way to do a similar pattern in diamond mode, so that's included here as well.

 

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #356: Contact rolls from isolated throws

Early in the festival season, Noel showed me an interesting entry to forearm contact rolls--using isolated throws going forwards rather than back. It puts the momentum of the tether right were it would be if you'd performed a pendulum in cradle, so the direction is already set. I didn't work much with it until Alan Lualdi showed me a use for it in a combo of his own making at PacFire. Intrigued, I came up with my own. All three variants can be found in this video.

 

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #355: 3-beat superman waistwrap

Spent a bunch of time working on this at Burning Man and Tahoe and finally have something worth seeing! Turning with a 3-beat superman is an interesting challenge because it frequently requires a type of counter rotation that can kill the momentum of the poi and therefore the move. Here are some tips on how to get around these problems--also, it was filmed in one of the most beautiful places I've ever been in my life :)

 

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #354: 3-poi/meteor 1.5s

This was one move from Kate and Keith's 3-poi video that I found particularly confusing given that all the poi were the same color, so puzzling out which poi was doing what couldn't happen until I saw someone else doing the same move in real life. That guy was my friend Willow, who showed me the technique you see in the video for putting this move together. It bears a lot of similarities to Nicky Evers' wavy weaves and requires a knowledge of thumb-led reverse meteor 2-beats.

 

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #353: Superman antispin and hybrid flowers

An awesome connect the dots moment! Previously on my tech blog we played around with the idea of doing 3-beat weaves with supermans. We can apply this same idea to flowers by turning the superman into a body-traced 4-petal antispin flower or 2-petal inspin flower. You can then combine it with the other hand to get either a pair of antispins or a hybrid flower along the lines of VTG tech!

 

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #352: Reverse Superman and turns

One of those challenges I took up at Burning Man this year was to add the reverse Superman to my repertoire of tricks and it turned out to be a really interesting challenge given that the timing for it feels completely different from the timing of a forwards superman. The great part of getting it down, however is being able to turn and do waistwraps with it.

 

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #351: Thumb led meteor and 3 poi weaves

When I did my tutorial on 3 poi weaves a couple weeks ago, I thought the waistwrap would be switching between thumb led and poi led, but at Wildfire I was shown it's much easier to keep the move in thumb led when making this turn. It feels a little awkward to me, but makes up for it in making the move smoother overall and this effect really comes across in the 360 degree turns you do with it.

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #350: 3 and 4 beat Superman weaves

Last weekend at Wildfire I taught at 3-poi class that essentially turned into a skill share and one of the cooler things I saw during said skill share was Noel showing us how to do a 3-beat weave with a superman. It's not hard to get there and it sets up both the possibility of doing the weave as an atomic as well as a 4-beat variant. I don't know if a 5-beat is possible, but it would sure be a challenge!

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #349: Pendulum vs cateye transitions

A cool poi trick that came out of an experiment from an earlier tech vid: when performing the transition from pendulum vs CAP to static vs point iso, that static vs point iso can serve to transition into either cateye vs iso or cateye vs isolated pendulum. Both have a really cool bouncy effect and make use of something I dearly love about poi: the capacity to create moves that establish relationships between the poi and hands.

 

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Drex's Tech Poi Blog #348: 3-poi spiral wraps

Following up from my video last week, taking that meteor spiral wrap and applying it to a three-poi environment. Ironically, I find this easier to do than the meteor version, but it does require a lot of work to understand the ins and outs of the 2-beats that lead up to it. Here are a few tips for getting there.

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