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Old November 12th, 2010, 09:21 AM   #1
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zooming out while closing in

I found out by accident this nice technique.,.

you shoot a specific item in a scene (say a car) and while getting close to it you gradually zoom out using the same speed at which you are getting closer

the result is funny, it seems like the rest of the scene is almost going backwards

does this technique have a name?
anyone know other "tricks" like this?
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Old November 12th, 2010, 09:37 AM   #2
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That's called a smash zoom. it's been used by Spielberg & Scorcese, so you're in good company!
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Old November 12th, 2010, 12:50 PM   #3
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It's called a dolly zoom and Hitchcock was probably the best know director to use it. Watch Vertigo very good use of this to make the viewer feel extremely unsettled. The key to pulling this off is to keep your subject the same size on the frame. To do this effectively I've set my camera on a dolly and marked intervals and used a stopwatch so I know I'm keeping a constant dolly speed. My camera has function that allows me to set the focal length at the start and end and tell it how many second to zoom between the two. Then it's just keeping the dolly at a constant pace.

-Garrett
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Old November 12th, 2010, 01:51 PM   #4
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Staple fodder of media courses in colleges and universities because it's the best explanation of why zooming is NOT the same as tracking. A good demonstration of perspective. In a zoom, the ratio between the foreground and background remains the same, in a track, it changes. This is why the Hitchcock Effect is so disturbing, the foreground subject remains the same size while the background changes. Something that in real life simply doesn't happen. Get it right, and do it fast and it's shocking - usually in modern TV and movies coupled with a swooshing sound. If you can't get it right in production - as Garrett said, getting the speed to match the zoom is so difficult - then do the dolly track with the lens wide, and match the track in speed in post. You lose a bit of definition, of course - but these shots are often very short. You can also try effects on the background as it zooms in too. It's overused, of course, but done right looks amazing!

Spielberg and Scorsese no doubt borrowed this one from Hitchcock, who borrowed the effect from Irwin Roberts, who's the accepted inventor of the technique when working for Paramount.
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Old November 15th, 2010, 11:46 AM   #5
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You know I've ben thinking about this for a while and I used to know what the term was. Above is not what I remember and I would know it if I heard or saw the term. It's driving me nuts!!!

Maybe I'm thinking of a different effect, but a perfect example is in the movie Jaws, when Roy Scheider is on the beach, sees a person gobbled up by shark, camera moves in while zooming out, making the background appear almost three dimensional.

I used to know this term, AAAAGGGGHH.

Very cool effect though.

Can anyone offer any help? I think it is two words.

Jonathan
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Old November 15th, 2010, 02:10 PM   #6
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Jonathan,

Some of the other terms I've heard it called are:

Zoom in/Dolly out
Reverse Tracking
Zolly
Vertigo Zoom
Hitchcock zoom

and I've even heard it called a Jaws zoom or Jaws Shot by a fairly young director.

Any of those the term you've heard?

-Garrett
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Old November 15th, 2010, 02:16 PM   #7
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Garrett,

Thanks for those. But those are not it either! Damn, how many terms does this effect have?
Again, I'd remember it if I saw it.

This is killin' me.

Jonathan
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Old November 15th, 2010, 10:45 PM   #8
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You should search this forum. I have seen it talked about with different names in older posts.
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Old November 16th, 2010, 12:50 AM   #9
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I've heard he "Jaws" shot referred to as a crash zoom.
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Old November 16th, 2010, 02:02 AM   #10
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I do not believe that is correct. A "crash zoom" is merely a very rapid (even violent) zoom, which was somewhat over used (like the "crash pan") in the late 1960s/70s. No dollying is involved in a crash zoom in my understanding.
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Old November 16th, 2010, 07:56 AM   #11
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Colin is correct. A "crash zoom" is the same as a "whip zoom". It's just a very quick zoom.

-Garrett
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Old November 16th, 2010, 10:56 PM   #12
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Here is a link to another thread about this look.....

How do you achieve the following camera technique
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Old December 1st, 2010, 09:23 AM   #13
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Vertigo Zoom

In Germany everybody knows it as a "Vertigo Zoom". Never heard another word used for it, except in English-speaking forums, where people tend to call it "dolly zoom"
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Old December 2nd, 2010, 07:31 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Federico Perale View Post
..you shoot a specific item in a scene (say a car) and while getting close to it you gradually zoom out using the same speed at which you are getting closer
it is a dolly zoom Dolly zoom - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old December 2nd, 2010, 09:34 AM   #15
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Dolly Zoom is the term I hear most. "Slide Zoom" used to be used, like twenty years ago... but not so much now. If you use 'Dolly Zoom" I think most DP's will know what you're referencing.
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