Why not make our own camera technique training clips? Can you help? at DVinfo.net

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Old March 12th, 2008, 06:16 AM   #1
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Why not make our own camera technique training clips? Can you help?

Being new to both video and the A1, and after much searching of the internet attempting to find budget (for which read free) video clips which demonstrated such things as how to adjust White Balance, shooting for editing, shooting for content, the different standard shots, audio for the A1, and all the other stuff which is necessary to make a decent short, it occurred to me that this community is the perfect place to actually deliver something like that.

Perhaps a series of short (2-3 minute) clips, each on a specific subject and each one done by a different member of the community. These could then be available to all members.

Some clips would be specific to the A1, for example setting up audio using xlr connected mikes, focusing, exposure, etc. These would benefit those of us new to the A1.

Others could be non-camera specific, for example shooting for editing or sample standard shots (extreme close up, close up, etc.). Shooting for content, etc. These would focus on processes and techniques which would assist those of us new to video.

I think that these could be filmed using any camera, but with the camera shown in any shot actually being the A1. The shots wouldnt need to be HD so as to reduce download time.

In order to find out if this project can get off the ground, the two questions that need answering first are:

What subjects do you think would be useful?

Would you be willing to film and produce a clip?

Hoping I will be inundated with suggestions and volunteers.

Colin
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Old March 12th, 2008, 07:15 AM   #2
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If I understand you well then you will organize and coördinate this project?
In that case I'm willing to produce some desired footage as soon as I'm familiar enough with my A1 and know exactly how all the settings on and in the camera work and what they do exactly.
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Old March 12th, 2008, 07:47 AM   #3
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Going beyond the training videos currently available.

Hi Kees,

Yes, I would be more than happy to organise and coordinate this. Hopefully people will not only suggest a specific subject but volunteer to produce the clip for that subject. But of course I would also welcome people who were willing to produce other peoples suggested subjects. That way we would have a lot more flexibility in what we can produce.

The more volunteers the better. That way each person only has to do one clip on one specific subject.

I would like to emphasise that the intent would be to go beyond the training videos that are currently on the market. We could specifically include those areas of camera work which are more than just "which button do I push?".

Some other examples of clips could be: How (and why) to compose shots, good panning/tilting vs bad panning/tilting, what shots you need to set the scene. The idea being that besides having clips specific to how to use the A1 we would provide those people new to video with a rough outline of the shorts of shots to film and why.

I think that if we can get this off the ground it would be a really useful tool for those of us who are new to this, and of course it would be a way of putting something back into this forum, and who knows where it might lead in the long run.

Regards

Colin
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Old March 12th, 2008, 07:48 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Colin Reid View Post
attempting to find budget (for which read free) video clips which demonstrated such things as how to adjust White Balance, shooting for editing, shooting for content, the different standard shots, audio for the A1, and all the other stuff which is necessary to make a decent short...
Be sure to take a look at what's out there already. For starters, Digital Juice has a ton of well-made how-to videos (to help sell their products):
http://www.digitaljuice.com/djtv/default.asp

Guy Cochran's product demonstrations over at the dvestore are also informative:
http://www.dvcreators.net/dvestore/
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Old March 12th, 2008, 11:55 AM   #5
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I think this is a great idea. Yes there is stuff out there but not quite to the point. I've gone past the learning the camera part, but I can remember all too clearly the overwhelming feeling I had while at that stage.

Today, I still have an overwhelming feeling most times, but about different things (Composition, lighting etc.).

Lets make a list of the videos we'd like to see and take it from there.

Shiv.
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Old March 13th, 2008, 04:43 PM   #6
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Okay folks, the first two suggestions are:

Composition

Lighting

Come on guys, with all the members this forum has, surely some of you would like to get involved!

Colin
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Old March 13th, 2008, 04:51 PM   #7
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Collin,

I'd like to participate for sure. One issue I do see is getting together to produce this seeing that we're scattered across the globe.

I wouldn't mind attempting these videos single handedly in fact. I've been through this phase recently and remember quite clearly my own questions/doubts/difficulties.
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Old March 13th, 2008, 04:54 PM   #8
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I'll provide hosting for any helpful clips you guys come up with, so we can keep this under the DV Info Net roof. I'm looking hard at a server-side uploading / encoding app for clip hosting, which we've long needed around here.
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Old March 13th, 2008, 08:31 PM   #9
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Fantastic! Thank you Chris!

I think a whole section could be devoted to "Adventures beyond Auto Program Mode". Granted, one could read the manual. But most people interested in videography are visual learner and may never open the manual!

Case in point. I've been showing a friend a few tips and tricks whenever we get together with our XH A1s. He has a journalistic background and teaches advanced web design and Flash at the local university. However, he hadn't used manual mode until I prompted him to try it.

Looking at the user manual's table of contents, we could build a large library just covering the basics.

I would like to see a description of the parameters in the custom presets and how each one affects the video.
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Old March 13th, 2008, 09:51 PM   #10
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A tutorial on shooting Low Light with the XH-A1 would be great! I'm having trouble with that....
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Old March 14th, 2008, 03:19 AM   #11
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Where we are at right now

Okay, now we're cooking with gas.

Hosting within the forum (Great, brings more members and encourages sponsors. No downside to that.

Suggested subjects so far:
These first tutorials are specific to the A1 and the camera in shot should be the A1 and the instructions ditto:

White Balance - One volunteer

Focusing - One volunteer

Setting Exposure - One volunteer

Lighting 1 - Using the camera in Low light. One volunteer.

Adventures beyond Auto Program Mode - one segment on each of the camera settings (Tv, Av, M, etc.) - (showing what the camera controls and what the operator can control) One setting per volunteer

Using simple XLR sound - One volunteer

Custom Presets 1- Perhaps split into one segment for each preset, showing what actually happens visually when a preset is changed throughout its range. - One volunteer per preset (or maybe some members would be willing to do more than one.

Custom Presets 2 - Explaining the relationships between the various presets. One volunteer.

The following segments are generic to video and do not necessarily require any camera in shot to be the A1:

Composition - could include basic rules, plus how to add relevant atmosphere using camera positioning, etc. - One volunteer? (perhaps the volunteer who did this could also shoot five second samples of standard shots such as extreme close-up, close-up, etc?

Lighting 2 - High Contrast and how to deal with it, Simple indoor, simple location, simple interviews. - One per volunteer or maybe one for the lot if someone is willing.

So far so good. What else is there that members would like to see?

Suggested guidelines for each tutorial, or, (Don't rush in and do this before it is all organised at this end).

Tutorial to explain the hows and whys, visually demonstrate camera settings where appropriate and show samples of the effect the setting has on the actual images recorded. Filming and editing to be to the best standard possible within the limits of the volunteers equipment and skills. Volunteers are not required or expected to incur costs in the production, other than the obviously valuable time and effort they put into their tutorial, for which we shall be eternally grateful. Standardised credits, which include the volunteer’s details and a reference to this website (see below). Anyone can download the finished product (public domain), (lots of people would want to keep copies on their own computer for quick reference, me included). Not sure if we can specify all should be in HD as some filming will be done using other brands/models instead of the A1, so perhaps we leave that up to the volunteer. Anything I have left out then let me know.

Organisation of the project

Since the idea is that each volunteer would do one segment, then distance is not an issue. Each volunteer would agree on the segment they will do, film and arrange simple editing of it and then pass the completed segment on. If the segment is something which is not A1 specific, then it could be filmed using whatever camera is available, but obviously if it was A1 specific, for example "Adventures beyond Auto Program Mode" then it could be filmed using any camera, but the camera in shot would need to be the A1. I think that the editing would include standardised credits along the line of (and this to be confirmed) - Subject Title, then "A training film made by XXX for the Digital Video Information Network" (where XXX is the name of the volunteer).

What Next
Finally, are there anymore suggested tutorials or other suggestions to get this off the ground? One thought - should this be limited to the A1 or could camera specific tutorials be done for the other cameras listed on dvinfo?????

If you know someone who might be interested in doing a tutorial then please let them know what we are trying to do.

If you are interested in doing a tutorial, then make a reply here and let me know which one interests you.

Come on guys you can make a big difference with this, not to mention a name for yourself!!!

Colin
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Old March 14th, 2008, 03:47 AM   #12
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Fantastic! Thank you Chris!

I would like to see a description of the parameters in the custom presets and how each one affects the video.
This would definitely be very high on my list of things I'd like to learn about.
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Old March 14th, 2008, 08:47 AM   #13
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Afew subjects to consider -

*Instant AF - What is it and how does it work. When NOT to use it. Using focus with adapter Lens'. When to go manual
*Custom functions - how to configure the camera to suit your workflow
*Camera handling Skills - Speaks for itself
*Focus/Zoom Preset - Configuration (menu), setting up (setting and getting the shot) and usage in the real world.
*Still images and external speedlights - How it works and how to get the most from it.
*Iris limitations and working with ND Filters
*Using the A1 with Console
*Using the A1 as a playback deck
*Downconverting and how to get it right in cam
*Handling the camera's colour gamut
*Exposure meter is not always your friend
*Peaking is your friend
*Dealing with noise and MPG compression - How to get the most from your cameras limitations
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Old March 14th, 2008, 03:47 PM   #14
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Do we want to set a time limit on the segments? When creating training video modules for online delivery, 5 minutes seems to be the magic number. Most everything on the list can be articulately demonstrated in this amount of time. A few more advanced topics could be segmented into 2 parts.
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Old March 14th, 2008, 08:35 PM   #15
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A tutorial could be more user friendly if it was a pdf format or power point presentation, linked in the end to your video that would itself demonstrate the collaborative fruit of the lessons. My $0.02
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