When you’re working on a music video and need to record a commercial or promo that’s tightly tied to a music track, it’s important to think ahead for post-production. Recording with a click track gives you the ability to sync multiple cameras and multiple takes across several locations. Using consistent, sequential audio cues, known as a click track, will help you sync your visuals in post.
On this week’s show, Robbie and Rich walk you through the benefits of using a click track when recording a musical performance.
This week we cover
• Using a click track: Learn how to use a click track in the field to synchronize multiple cameras.
• Creating a click track: Learn how you can create a click track before you shoot your footage.
• Playing a click track in the field: We’ll go over your options for playback with a click track while on set.
• Recording with a click track in the field: We’ll take you in the field to record a music video.
• Syncing in post–production: Learn how to sync your audio and visuals using a click track.
Check out both the sample video above and this week’s complete episode on lynda.com. We’ll help you get the best performance and make editing a breeze.
Throughout the past month, we’ve tackled the exposure triangle—the critical way to get properly exposed photos and videos. Remember your camera and lens have three essential controls that affect how much light comes into the camera: the aperture or opening of the lens, the shutter speed (how long the shutter opens), and the ISO (the sensitivity of your sensor).
But a problem as tough as exposure can still be hard to crack. What happens when you can’t get more light into the camera and the shot is dark? How about when you want shallow depth of field and the shot is overexposed? Sometimes you have to look past the camera and make external changes to get the results you want.
This week we cover
• Controlling exposure beyond camera settings:
How do you know when it’s time to stop pushing buttons on the camera and make a physical change to your shoot?
• Adding light:
Is your shot underexposed? When is it time to add more light—or reposition your subject?
• Adding filtration:
Too much light can also be a problem. Did you know that you can give your camera a “pair of sunglasses” when shooting in bright light?
A great way to create more interesting video perspectives is to raise your camera higher. Positioning the camera above any scene gives a unique view—and putting the camera into motion from that position can result in really dynamic shots.
In this week’s video, we look at a couple of tools for raising your camera up higher, and discuss techniques for getting the most out of elevated shots.
This week we cover
- Using a monopod to extend your reach. Learn why a monopod is one of the easiest ways to get the camera up higher and extend it into a scene.
- What is a jib? A jib is an extremely popular way of elevating the camera, while also putting it into motion. We’ll check out all the various features and parts of a jib system.
- Operating a jib. Catch up with director of photography Jim Ball and learn about some hard-won techniques for operating a jib.
- Real-world examples. We’ll evaluate several elevated shots from a recent music video shoot, breaking down what worked and what didn’t.
From its origins as a surf camera to its current incarnation as a flexible tool for any project that needs a small, durable, and capable camera, GoPro has become synonymous with go anywhere, “get the shot no matter what” productions.
Smaller than your fist and providing endless mounting options, GoPro cameras allow you to get shots you never thought were possible—especially where larger, more expensive cameras won’t work.
In this week’s episode, we’ll take a look at the iconic GoPro camera and how it can become even more flexible with different mounts, and the GoPro App, which allows you to remotely control your GoPro from mobile devices.
This week we cover
• Essential GoPro mounts: A huge advantage of a using a GoPro is how easy it is to mount it in different situations. We’ll show you some of our favorite ways to do it.
• Remote app: You can control your camera using the free GoPro App, available on iOS, Android, and Windows Phone. We’ll show you how to connect it to your GoPro, and both record and view shots. We’ll also show you how to change the settings on your GoPro camera directly from the app.
• Real-world examples: We’ll evaluate several shots from a recent shoot, including some using a GoPro on a quadcopter. We’ll break down what we liked and what we didn’t.
With its versatile mounts and a powerful remote app, GoPro cameras make a great addition to any filmmaker’s kit. Be sure to check out both the sample video above and this week’s complete episode on lynda.com.
Blackmagic Design is well known for its reasonably priced video post-production products, including interfaces and adapters. Recently they’ve also started making cameras, including the Blackmagic Cinema Camera, Production Camera 4k, and Pocket Cinema Camera—all with high-end features and great price points.
On this week’s episode, we’ll take a look at the small, yet capable Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera.
About the same size as a traditional point-and-shoot stills camera, the BMPCC is capable of shooting video using Apple ProRes 422 (HQ) and now, the compressed RAW format as well, all to a fast SD card. It’s a versatile camera that we’re sure will be in the hands of lots of filmmakers.
This week we cover
- Getting to know the camera. We’ll explore the details of the Pocket Cinema Camera, including its ergonomics, which lenses to use, crop factor, power, and firmware.
- What to look out for. No camera is perfect, and we’ll show you some of the limitations of the Pocket Cinema Camera.
- Workflow. The Pocket Cinema Camera can shoot Apple ProRes 422 (HQ) in a couple different modes and soon it’ll be able to shoot RAW video. We’ll take a look at how to best handle files coming off the camera.
- Real-world examples. We’ll evaluate several shots from a studio shoot, breaking down what we liked and what we didn’t.
Having clear, crisp audio tracks is essential for effective corporate videos, commercials, documentaries—and particularly critical for interview footage. Audiences are often willing to forgive small technical mistakes with video, but far less so with problematic audio.
This week we’ll set up to shoot an interview, and look at ways to improve audio recording quality on location. It’s easy to focus solely on capturing great visuals while shooting an interview; but audio that’s hard to hear, distorted, or runs together between interviewer and subject can quickly ruin a production–and possibly even require a reshoot. To help you capture the best audio with interview footage, this week we’ll discuss:
Often you’ll only have one chance to get interview audio right, so check out this week’s episode so you’ll be prepared before your next shoot. Remember, each week’s episode is free for seven days–tell your video and photography friends to watch for free.
- Why good audio is essential to an interview
- How to place microphones for the best results
- Best practices for positioning the interviewee, interviewer, and crew
- Interview techniques including making your subject comfortable, having questions prepared, and not talking over your subject’s answers
Adorama Photography TV Presents DSLR | Video Skills with Rich Harrington. Join Rich as he reveals great tips and techniques on how to achieve a good interview. From establishing a proper relationship with your subject, to eye-line, feedback, and how to ask follow-up questions, Rich will sit down with filmmaker Irene Magafan to talk about her newest documentary.
AdoramaTV features talented hosts including: Mark Wallace, Gavin Hoey, Joe McNally, Joe DiMaggio, Tamara Lackey, Bryan Peterson, and Rich Harrington.
|This is a sneak peek from a new book I am writing – Creating DSLR Video: From Snapshots to Great Shots|
While you can do a lot in postproduction to fix exposure, video files are a lot like working with JPEG images (as opposed to raw photos). Push an adjustment too far and you’ll get posterized image where details are clipped. Shoot too dark or too bright and you’ll have no information to work with and possibly quite a bit of noise.
The key is to always protect your highlights. Do not let the bright areas of your image (like skies or faces) get clipped. One view you likely have on your camera is a histogram. You typically can see this after taking a photo or cycling through your view options (in most cameras you can push the Info button or press your navigation dial from side to side to cycle views). If the histogram is pushed against the right edge, it means you have no information to work with. Blown out highlights go pure white and there is just no way to recover the details.
Here you can see the same scene shot two different ways. In the first, I shot things a little hot. With color correction in post, I was able to recover a lot of details. But you’ll notice that a lot of the details in the shadows are clipped.
Be careful to keep your histograms from getting slammed to the right.
ISO 125 | 1/50th sec. | f/14 | 32mm lens
On the other hand, I also shot the scene and exposed for the “boring middle.” In this case the histograms were more balanced and I had a lot more information to work with. After color correction (a Levels and Saturation adjustment), the shot looks a lot better.
It’s better to slightly underexpose than overexpose when shooting video. Notice how the shadowy details in the rocks are preserved better in this version.
ISO 100 | 1/60th sec. | f/14 | 32mm lens
The use of a loupe or viewfinder is essential for outdoor shooting. Bright light on your LCD just makes things damn near impossible to judge. If this is out of your price range, wear a hat and use it as a shield for time to time to judge exposure. I can’t emphasize enough though that a loupe should be one of your first investments if you become serious about shooting video on your DSLR camera. By removing all light pollution, you can make accurate decisions.
Photo by Vanelli
Be sure to pre-order my new book – Creating DSLR Video: From Snapshots to Great Shots