Nikon D5200 example

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by CharlieBrandt09, Jun 3, 2014.

  1. CharlieBrandt09 macrumors 6502

    CharlieBrandt09

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2012
    Location:
    Southern NJ
    #1
    So I shot this today: http://youtu.be/X2TqZ_J-a0s

    I've never used a DSLR for video, and I am looking for a few pointers on how to shoot by hand with one. This one wasn't too bad, but it was only a few seconds long.
     
  2. puckhead193 macrumors G3

    puckhead193

    Joined:
    May 25, 2004
    Location:
    NY
    #2
    Looks good! What were your settings? Are you in full manual?

    There isn't much to do about stable hand held shots without getting into a lot of money for shoulder rigs etc.
    if your zoomed out you can try the stabilized feature in FCP X
     
  3. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #3
    If you need to stabilize the background, use a tripod.

    A tripod is such an absolutely required video accessory that I would consider hand holding the camera to be a "Special Effect" that you only use if you want that kind of "look". For most work the hand held look is simply distracting. But many times it is kind of engaging and gives and informal look that reminds the viewer of a news gathering shot. Use it only if you have a reason and NOT as the default.

    It is best of course to use a big tripod with a fluid head and large sand or shot bags on each leg but such a setup is not portable. A small aluminum one is so much better than nothing.

    As for the composition and the choose of using shallow focus it is very good. The only technical problem is the harsh treatment of the out of focus background, likely because of a zoom lens. Some primes make a nicer "creamy" blur. But that is a matter of taste. Those big circles don't look bad but some people prefer not to have them. I think it adds interest others say it is a "camera artifact" that removes the "suspension of disbelief" that cinema depends on.

    One neat thing about Nikon is they never changed the lens mount. So you can buy way-old prime lenses made in the 1960's These can be very good for video where you tend to use manual focus and manual exposure anyways.

    One other way to improve this. The exposure is good but could have been improved if maybe you added a big white reflector to add fill light. Video is always viewed on-screen and people's monitors have a narrow dynamic range so yu really have to watch the lighting ratio in video more then with stills. Your shot is good enough but you asked for how to improve it.

    So to put it all together, The camera goes on a big tripod, the (say) the 40 year old 105mm f/2.0 lens goes on the camera, Take a few test exposes and verify with the camera's histogram display. Thej=histogram will tell you the range too. Fix it if required. Then use tape measure to find subject distance, set focus using scale on lens. You need to use the tape and not autofocus because the bird (or actor) is not there. Pros will typically use a stand-in to stand on a mark taped to the floor to get focus and exposure. AF works but it has the problem of choosing the object to focus on, which can be very distracting if say you are shooting a bird and then it flys off and the camera decides to refocus on the background. It ruins the shot. Moving the focus is as distracting to the viewer as a pan or zoom and all these need to be used VERY sparingly only if they add to the story.

    But over all your shot looks good
     
  4. CharlieBrandt09 thread starter macrumors 6502

    CharlieBrandt09

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2012
    Location:
    Southern NJ
    #4
    Thanks for the tips.

    I have a big tripod, but I was hand held and zoomed at that point for a photo. I am going to test some video-only shoots this weekend. I have a 50mm f1.8G lens that I will most likely use.
     

Share This Page