This is article #3 in the DSLR Video Weekly series. If you'd like the whole thing in one shot, check out the book Creating DSLR Video: From Snapshots to Great Shots. Once you get the hang of video, be sure to monetize it by becoming a contributor to Adobe Stock. If you’ve been shooting photos, you’ve probably developed many of the skills that are used to tell visual stories. Composition skills help you frame the shot, and exposure skills ensure that the details of the image are clear. You may be a great photographer or just getting … [Read more...] about DSLR Video Weekly: Shooting with Motion in Mind
This post also appears on DPBestflow.org This is Part 4 in our series on planning a project (don't miss Part 3) The stage where all of the video elements are connected is referred to as postproduction. Here you will ingest the material into a computer environment so the files can enter the working stage. This is where the video footage and audio are combined, the story is refined so only the best footage remains. When finished, you’ll be able to view the completed project that you’ve imagined in your head. Postproduction can seem … [Read more...] about How to Plan a Video Project: Postproduction
This post also appears on DPBestflow.org This is Part 3 in our series on planning a project (don't miss Part 2) The production stage is where all your hard work comes together. Every project will have a unique configuration of gear. Special lenses to get the desired shots as well as lighting to create the right look. Multiple cameras may be needed to get proper coverage of an event and to make the editing process run more smoothly. In a large production, the roles listed below will be performed by different people. In a small production, … [Read more...] about How to Plan a Video Project: Production
This is article #2 in the DSLR Video Weekly series. If you'd like the whole thing in one shot, check out the book Creating DSLR Video: From Snapshots to Great Shots. Once you get the hang of video, be sure to monetize it by becoming a contributor to Adobe Stock. Every coin has two sides. So, although there is much to love about shooting video on a DSLR video camera, there are some drawbacks that will drive you nuts. If you’re used to shooting video on a traditional video camera, these shortcomings will be particularly noticeable. Be … [Read more...] about DSLR Video Weekly: What’s Not So Great About DSLR Video?
This post also appears on DPBestflow.org This is Part 2 in our series on planning a project (don't miss Part 1) Successful video projects rarely just happen; in fact, they often involve a great deal of planning. Budgets need to be created, contracts drafted, crews booked, and schedules made. A video shoot has many elements: lighting, shot design, locations, audio, directing, and videography—to name a few. All of these require planning and choices to be made before the shoot day. You must plan Many photographers are interested in just … [Read more...] about How to Plan a Video Project: Preproduction
This post also appears on DPBestflow.org This is Part 01 in our series on planning a project. If you do not make informed decisions early on in a video project, it may result in an enormous amount of time spent “cleaning-up” or “fixing it in post.” This can compromise the quality and vision of the work or require a redo, often at your own expense. With the proper amount of planning and decision-making, many “could be issues” become non-issues. The goal of planning is to determine what questions to ask and how to proceed with the … [Read more...] about How to Plan a Video Project: The Objectives
This is article #1 in the DSLR Video Weekly series. If you'd like the whole thing in one shot, check out the book Creating DSLR Video: From Snapshots to Great Shots. Whether you stumbled across the video options in your DSLR camera or specifically selected your camera with video shooting in mind, I welcome you to the world of DSLR video. Telling stories with video is enjoyable and challenging. Your camera is a great tool, but by its very nature, video is a complex medium. Throughout this book I’ll focus on teaching you the most important … [Read more...] about DSLR Video Weekly: Why Is DSLR Video So Popular?
I do a lot of shooting with GoPro cameras. They offer a great size to price to performance ratio and really allow for some creative work. The thing is, the more you shoot with GoPros, the more accessories and gadgets you collect. The GoPro camera is all about getting unique angles and point of view shots, so a bit of gear goes a long way. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fjjiVlmn9wA Here's what's in my GoPro Go Bag, if you're looking for gift ideas or something for yourself, this list is what I take in the field for most projects. Do I … [Read more...] about The Ultimate GoPro 5 Kit
Trying to record sound with your video? Having a good microphone is nearly worthless if you don't put it in the right position. The closer you can get the mic to the source of the audio the stronger the signal. Skimp on taking the time to position and test your mics and you run the risk of noisy and hollow sounding audio. Here are a few guiding principles when it comes to microphone placement: Too far away. Extend your thumb and pinky finger in opposite directions. This is a good target distance for the microphone to be from the mouth … [Read more...] about There’s No Replacement for Microphone Placement
Plan to shoot video with your DSLR or Mirrorless cameras? Chances are you might use more than one camera body while shooting footage. This may be to get an extra angle or to avoid having to change lenses in the field. The closer your camera settings the match, the more seamless it will appear when you edit the different footage together. Ideally the acquired footage will match as closely as possible. This means that you to adjust both the aesthetic and technical properties. Aesthetic Matching Look inside the camera and check your menu … [Read more...] about Quickly Calibrate DSLR Cameras for Video
Whether you’re shooting video or stills, portable LED lights have become very widely-accepted for use indoors or out because of their portability and their small size/weight. I’ve used half a dozen different brands of LED lights. They all have the basics in common. They typically run on battery (some on battery or AC/DC), they don’t get hot to the touch like traditional strobes or non-LED constant lighting. They are almost all very lightweight and portable. I evaluated three such lights from Polaroid. Yes Polaroid. While you may remember … [Read more...] about Polaroid Portable LED Lights – First Look
Sometimes I forget to pack a remote shutter release when I stumble upon an HDR scene. Luckily I can set up a Sony A7 series camera to shoot a bracketed series of images with a self-timer. Press the Menu button on the upper-left backside of the camera. Navigate to the page 2 of the Image menu and scroll down to Bracket Settings. Press Ok. Inside Bracket Settings, click on Self Timer. I like to assign a 2-second self timer. Scroll down to BRK 2 and click Ok. To shoot with the self-timer, all you need to do is enable the Continuous … [Read more...] about Setting a Self Timer for Bracketing HDR Images on Sony Cameras
There are so many different types of tripod heads and it can get confusing on which one to use depending on what you’re shooting. I like it when my gear complements my photography, rather than getting in the way or making my job harder. Here’s a breakdown of the most popular types of tripod heads. Ball Heads Ball heads are the most popular tripod head for photography. The rotating ball lets you position the camera in almost any way imaginable, with a locking screw letting you lock the ball in position. It gives you the most flexibility in … [Read more...] about Breaking Down the Different Types of Tripod Heads
Nikon and Canon cameras have a button on the camera body to enable a bracketing mode. Sony cameras don’t…I’d buried under the shooting mode menu. Once you know what you’re looking for and configure your settings, it’s very easy to switch in and out of bracketing mode. Let’s go through the settings and get set up. To enable bracketing, we need to change the Drive Mode of the camera. You can do this one of two ways: Press the left side of the circular wheel on the back of the camera Go into the Menu, navigate to page 2 of the Image … [Read more...] about Setting up Bracketing on Sony Cameras
There are a wide variety of digital cameras available than can shoot video. In this section, we’ll primarily explore the options available when shooting DSLR video. However the core technology discussed is also relevant to most video cameras being produced today. Which type of camera will work best for you? It depends to a great extent on the type of work you do. Choosing the Right Camera for Video Shooting Digital still cameras have recently gained a new feature: the ability to shoot high definition video. Still photographers are … [Read more...] about Choosing the Right Camera for Video Shooting
While DSLR video cameras are very capable, there are some times when it’s going to be better to use a traditional video camera. There are a number of functions that are either missing on DSLRs or are not well-suited to the form factor. Here are some considerations that would make a traditional video camera a better choice. Autofocus - Many DSLR cameras simply can’t autofocus when they are in video shooting mode. And the ones that do autofocus may do it with too much “searching.” Consumer video cameras often feature autofocus options. … [Read more...] about When Should You use a Traditional Video Camera Instead of a DSLR?
Shooting video on a DSLR, Mirrorless or Micro Four Thirds camera can be challenging. Let's look at how to choose the right camera or camera configuration for the task at hand. Even if you only have one camera to use, you can figure out how to optimize your set-up for the job. Form Factor Shooting video on a DSLR camera is currently not a well-designed experience in terms of ergonomics. The technical need to shoot with the camera’s mirror open requires the photographer to compose a shot using the DSLR’s LiveView feature or LCD monitor. As … [Read more...] about How to Get a Stable Shot When Shooting Video
When shooting video on a DSLR, you will be recording to one of the camera’s memory slots to a card. You’ll often feel as though you don’t have many choices when it comes to choosing your camera storage format. While some manufacturers support more than one format (offering both a CompactFlash and a Secure Digital card slot), the choice is still made by the camera manufacturer. Card format Knowing what each format is capable of is important. All modern storage formats have their advantages and limitations. You can use this knowledge when … [Read more...] about Advice When Shooting Video to a Memory Card
Correct exposure for video capture is complicated by several factors. Even if you’ve mastered it for stills workflows, additional limitations make video capture more difficult. As a photographer, you’re can take advantage of shooting in different program modes for unique situations. Perhaps you enjoy the ease of aperture priority. When shooting video, you will generally achieve best results by switching all controls over to manual. Your basic tools for exposure control are ISO and aperture. Unfortunately, with video you’ll lose the shutter … [Read more...] about How to Expose a Video Shot
With new cameras being released every month and new developments in memory card technology, many readers have struggled to find a memory card reader that works well for them. My friend Michael Tapes, designer of LensAlign, was having an issue finding a card reader that could grow with him and evolve as his cameras evolve. The Nikon D5 shoots either dual XQD or dual CF cards, Nikon D810 shoots SD and CF, Nikon D500 shoots XQD and SD, Canon 1DX Mark II shoots CF and CFast cards, and both the Canon 5D Mark III and 5Ds R shoot CF and SD cards. As … [Read more...] about Speed Up your Import Workflow with a New Card Reader
A few weeks ago, I rented a Sony A7s Mark II camera from LensRentals.com for a trip to a few Southern California beaches. After using the camera for about 2 weeks, one of my absolute favorite features of the Sony a7 series cameras is the inclusion of a micro-USB port. Packing so much performance into a small body can really be a draw on the batteries, and Sony's little batteries are some of the worst on the market. Luckily, you can power the camera externally using the micro-USB port on the side of a camera. Now you may be thinking, how am I … [Read more...] about External Power for Sony A7 Series Cameras
As you evaluate cameras for shooting DSLR video, one of the most important factors is the format or codec the camera records in. Different manufacturers use different file formats (and may offer different choices within their own product lines). It is essential that you understand the impact of codec, let’s compare how video compression relates to still compression. When shooting stills, you can often choose to shoot raw, TIFF, or JPEG. Raw files allow for superior latitude during post-processing since raw images are not permanently … [Read more...] about Choosing the Best Capture Format for Recording Video
When shooting video, it is important to achieve a white balancing setting that gives you the desired color temperature at the point of acquisition. While you can apply filters or effects during editing, these can add additional processing time to your workflow. Taking the time to manually white balance your camera will reduce shifts in color temperature as the subjects move in the scene. The last thing you want is shifts in color. https://vimeo.com/37315644 White balance presets All digital cameras have some white balance presets for … [Read more...] about Understanding White Balance & Video
This is part 6 of a series on timelapse photography. Generally you’re going to avoid shooting in an Automated mode like Program, Shutter Priority, or Aperture Priority. You need to shoot manual to really control the camera. Let’s briefly revisit the Exposure triangle: Aperture. Remember the aperture is the size of the opening in your lens. And generally speaking, you're going to adjust this based upon the environment. If shooting mountain ranges or fields, I'm going to go down to a very small aperture, maybe F16. So there's a … [Read more...] about How to Expose the Shot for Timelapse Photography
This is part 4 of a series on timelapse photography. Your camera offers two or even three ways to make a timelapse movie. The method you choose will influence both the quality of the final output and the amount of post processing time. Shooting JPEG You’ll choose JPEG if you're going to be likely recording for very long durations. Because of their smaller file size, you can shoot longer on the same card. JPEGs offer more sizes to choose from in camera, so you can choose an image size that more closely matches the requirements that you … [Read more...] about Choosing the Right Record Format for Timelapse Photography
This is part 3 of a series on timelapse photography. Let’s review some of the most important gear you can use with timelapse photography. This is the bare bones needs that won't set you back a lot of money. Tripod. The very first thing, you need is a rock solid platform. Now, in a pinch you might cradle your camera and set it on rock, but a far better choice is a real tripod. Now, by real I mean, get the best tripod you can afford. You want something solid. Not the rickety thing that you get at a big box electronic store. With … [Read more...] about Essential Equipment for Timelapse Photography
This is part 2 of a series on timelapse photography. When it comes to time-lapse, the primary objective is to get a great exposure in the camera. Revisit the Exposure Triangle, so you balance out the aperture, the ISO, and the shutter speed. This'll give you a proper exposure in camera. More importantly though, you need that exposure to not change over time. So you're going to need to learn to shoot manual. So that the camera doesn't adapt. If you've got a camera in automatic mode, the exposure's going to vary as the camera tries to … [Read more...] about What to Capture for Timelapse Photography
This is part 1 of a series on timelapse photography. Time-lapse photography is the closest thing to how you shoot as a still photographer. It’s essentially clicking a shutter and making a single image, over and over again…potentially thousands of times sequentially. One of the things I love about time-lapse video is how compelling the end product is. It's just magical how you can see the passage of time. In order to do this, there's lots of things to put together. Essentially, hundreds, if not thousands of stills that get assembled into a … [Read more...] about What is Timelapse Photography?
Whether its a big job that pops up or even a little one... sometimes an extra set of hands can go a long way. Maybe it's a video project that needs an audio professional or an assistant to help you light a big shoot. The challenge though is that finding other professionals to work with can seem quite daunting at first. This is especially true if you are changing markets or professional focus. It’s important to realize that there's always good help out there. And groups like the film and video community are well established with their own … [Read more...] about Finding and Hiring Video Production Team Members
It is that time of year again. NAB is just around the corner. My inbox and social media have already been flooded with official announcements and "unofficial" leaks. What am I excited to see on the show floor? There is a lot to cover, so let's dive in. Lytro Cinema — Lytro's light field cameras caused quite a stir in the photography community a while back. And, while the consumer market was not ready for the Illium, Lytro has not been idle. I knew they had VR projects in the pipeline, but I did not see Lytro Cinema coming. … [Read more...] about What to Look For At NAB 2016