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Author Topic: Where do you start for videos?  (Read 5805 times)

TC1006

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Re: Where do you start for videos?
« Reply #15 on: October 15, 2012, 03:56:48 PM »
Quick question regarding Auto-Focus:

If your subject is moving, how do you keep the focus on at all times? Does this have to be done manually?

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Re: Where do you start for videos?
« Reply #15 on: October 15, 2012, 03:56:48 PM »

Basti187

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Re: Where do you start for videos?
« Reply #16 on: October 15, 2012, 04:20:29 PM »
I haven't read previous posts really, but you always want to keep things manual (unless you're doing a documentary where you have to rush into a house for example then you might want to work with auto iso), focusing it depends what you're shooting, but try and keep the f.stops at 10+ then you wont have such a shallow DOF which will make it easier to keep a subject moving in focus, but it's all about manually adjusting things. Obviously not as easy with a DSLR than a professional video camera.
« Last Edit: October 15, 2012, 04:41:46 PM by Basti187 »

Policar

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Re: Where do you start for videos?
« Reply #17 on: October 15, 2012, 05:25:35 PM »
Quick question regarding Auto-Focus:

If your subject is moving, how do you keep the focus on at all times? Does this have to be done manually?

Hire a good AC (most pros have roughly memorized distance by eye and can pull decently on the fly at normal stops i.e. f5.6 or deeper on the 5D). Otherwise, just write your marks (with erasable marker on the follow focus and tape on set) and find a friend who's good at video games to pull--it's what I do.

All your focusing has to be done manually if you want consistently decent results (I'm not even sure the Mark III has video AF), and if you do not have an AC you'll have to practice like mad or design your shots around your limitations (or shoot at like f11 with wide lenses). Without peaking (please ML?) it is very very difficult to get an in-focus image on the fly, and even with it...very difficult.
« Last Edit: October 15, 2012, 05:47:01 PM by Policar »

Axilrod

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Re: Where do you start for videos?
« Reply #18 on: October 15, 2012, 06:10:01 PM »
Quick question regarding Auto-Focus:

If your subject is moving, how do you keep the focus on at all times? Does this have to be done manually?

Most common method is using a follow focus.  Manfrotto makes a remote that hooks up to the camera via USB that will allow you to focus and do a few other things, but I don't know that I'd trust it to do what I want.  You definitely need to have a solid monitor/EVF and be very careful.  I have a couple Marshall monitors, but I prefer my Zacuto EVF because it has a peaking feature, which essentially artificially sharpens what I'm seeing so it's very easy to tell when it's in focus. 

Finding a good way to focus is critical, because unless you're shooting at like f/8 or higher you're going to have a lot of trouble with it.  Shooting with the aperture opened up makes the DOF very shallow, which is probably the most difficult situation to focus in.  At f/2 on your 50mm if someone moves their head forward even a few inches they may suddenly be out of focus. 

Generally the motion picture industry spends lots of time setting focus marks and measuring exact distances to be really precise, so focusing is a lot more work and a lot more important than it may seem initially.

And a word of advice, be careful judging based on the camera's built-in screen.  I can't tell you how many people I've seen think that the footage looked great looking on the little screen but then they got it open on the computer and it was a totally different story. 
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Re: Where do you start for videos?
« Reply #19 on: October 15, 2012, 06:27:13 PM »
Quick question regarding Auto-Focus:

If your subject is moving, how do you keep the focus on at all times? Does this have to be done manually?

Most common method is using a follow focus.  Manfrotto makes a remote that hooks up to the camera via USB that will allow you to focus and do a few other things, but I don't know that I'd trust it to do what I want.  You definitely need to have a solid monitor/EVF and be very careful.  I have a couple Marshall monitors, but I prefer my Zacuto EVF because it has a peaking feature, which essentially artificially sharpens what I'm seeing so it's very easy to tell when it's in focus. 

Finding a good way to focus is critical, because unless you're shooting at like f/8 or higher you're going to have a lot of trouble with it.  Shooting with the aperture opened up makes the DOF very shallow, which is probably the most difficult situation to focus in.  At f/2 on your 50mm if someone moves their head forward even a few inches they may suddenly be out of focus. 

Generally the motion picture industry spends lots of time setting focus marks and measuring exact distances to be really precise, so focusing is a lot more work and a lot more important than it may seem initially.

And a word of advice, be careful judging based on the camera's built-in screen.  I can't tell you how many people I've seen think that the footage looked great looking on the little screen but then they got it open on the computer and it was a totally different story. 

+100 on using the camera LCD...last year (Sep'11) I interviewed a member of the government outside our parliament building for 20 mins - it was a once-off opportunity for a documentary I was shooting on Commercial Property Legislation and I had my tripod + 7D + 50mm f/1.4 + Zoom H4n + lavalier mics on XLR ext cables all set up just outside the gates of the main government building, on the street. I thought I had perfect focus, using AF Live mode and I recorded the footage with zero possibility of a re-take. In post, I had the face of a policeman just to the right of the politician in perfect focus (even though he was several feet behind - so a back focus issue). I tried to fix in post using an 'Unsharpen' mask in Premiere Pro, but it was a nightmare, especially as I'd managed to persuade this politician to take off his jacket, loosen his tie, and remove his cuff-links and roll-up his sleeves - as I wanted to be totally different to regular broadcasters who do the opposite. That 3-inch DSLR screen is a waste of time for any serious shooting.

Matthew19

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Re: Where do you start for videos?
« Reply #20 on: October 15, 2012, 07:52:21 PM »
The LCD can be fine for focus if you know how to use it. Plenty of wedding videos are made with just the LCD, and no follow focus. Its actually easier to see the more open your aperture. Anything above 2.8 and it gets more difficult to tell where your focus point is. User the punch in feature in liveview to be sure.

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pardus

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Re: Where do you start for videos?
« Reply #21 on: October 15, 2012, 08:20:37 PM »
When I first got my 7D I got "Learn Canon 5D Mark II Cinematography With Philip Bloom" and "Philip Bloom - Learn To Shoot Great Video With Your Canon 7D" and was amazing, brought me up to speed in a couple of days and made a huge difference in understanding the whole process and reasons why settings or techniques work or dont. There is minimal difference from the mark ii or 7D in terms of what he is teaching and easily applicable to the mark iii.

Definitely recommend both those videos. He goes into a bit of post processing as well.
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Re: Where do you start for videos?
« Reply #21 on: October 15, 2012, 08:20:37 PM »

fdtv

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Re: Where do you start for videos?
« Reply #22 on: November 06, 2012, 09:33:46 AM »
I have done a lot of research on dslr video and yes you can create some amazing footage but is comes at a cost. Camera and lenses cost then there is the external audio recorder, then software to sync audio in post, a follow focus and the workflow when shooting takes longer when you have to manually focus each shot. Then if you shoot fast movement you have to deal with the jello effect.

After experiencing all this I decided to just buy the Canon XF100. About the same price as the 5d3 but you get 2 xlr inputs 50mps shooting to cfl cards and 4:2:2 color.

I still use my dslr as a b camera, but it literally takes half the time shooting with the XF100. This is just my 2 cents.

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Re: Where do you start for videos?
« Reply #22 on: November 06, 2012, 09:33:46 AM »