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Old March 5th, 2010, 04:04 AM   #1
7D political spot
Burk Webb Burk Webb is offline March 5th, 2010, 04:04 AM

Hey folks, did a couple of political spots with my 7D recently. Figured I would see what people thought. Here is one of em'.


Any feedback would be appreciated.

Thanks a bunch.

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Old March 5th, 2010, 04:48 AM   #2
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Sightlines Off, Audio Comprimised, Dolly Distracts

First, image quality looks good!
Everything is in focus and crisp.
But you asked for feedback and I'm not going to hold back:

The background noise is killing me! The location is very secondary to getting clean audio. A nondescript building that looks half as good is better than poor audio in a great location. Sounds like people are having Sunday brunch in the background!

The dolly is also too much. It moves without motivation, up and back. It is distracting. Either start the shot or end the shot with it. Use it as a transitional device.

This one is huge- Sight lines.
They are way off. Looks like he is talking to 15 different people (looks left, right - then into camera - then off camera). You really have to reign him in. Visually this could have been fixed if we saw over his shoulder that he's speaking to a group of teachers. But it never resolves, just ends with the card (which should be up longer).
Fix his sight lines in camera by hiring a teleprompter or have him memorize his lines and tell him to look down the barrel and don't force that second cut-away camera. That second camera buys you nothing- use your cutaways from him interacting with real people (teachers, shaking hands, listening).

Overall, don't think this is ready for prime-time or broadcast.
I'd try and re-shoot with him. Have him standing, he talks with his hands - use that to your advantage.

My 2 cents, take it with a grain of salt...but I've also done my fair share of these over the years.
-C
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Old March 5th, 2010, 05:07 PM   #3
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Hey Christopher, thanks for the feedback! Really appreciate it and thanks for not holding back :)

"First, image quality looks good!
Everything is in focus and crisp."

- Thanks a bunch!

"The background noise is killing me! Sounds like people are having Sunday brunch in the background!"

- This is actually what we were going for in the spot. The concept was to make it seem like he was addressing a group of people in a coffee shop. The background noise was added in post.

"The dolly is also too much. It moves without motivation, up and back. It is distracting. Either start the shot or end the shot with it. Use it as a transitional device."

- Fair enough. Originally we were going to go with it as an opening shot and a closing shot but we got to cutting back and forth and liked the look.

"This one is huge- Sight lines. They are way off. Looks like he is talking to 15 different people"

- Again, the concept was to make it seem like he is addressing a group of people in a coffee shop. There was some discussion about him addressing the camera or not but the client really liked it. I'm kind of on the fence about it but I'm leaning more to the like it side.

"Fix his sight lines in camera by hiring a teleprompter or have him memorize his lines and tell him to look down the barrel"

- Going in this was something we were very much trying to avoid. The client and producer really wanted him to not talk to the camera or if he did to include the camera like it was a person.

"Overall, don't think this is ready for prime-time or broadcast."

- Fair enough and I really appreciate your honesty. It sounds like your main issue is with the "concept" of the spot? The concept is not mine, it came from the campaign and the producer, but I do dig it. I will say that the client is incredibly happy with how these turned out.

Thanks again for the feedback! Anyone else?
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Old March 6th, 2010, 03:47 PM   #4
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To me it looked like it was shot with out really much care for organization. I would say that the previous advice is all good. Try to re-edit or re-shoot with mostly static shots... use the dolly very sparingly and if possibly try to get some extras and show that these people are eating and watching him.. Also.. try to cut back on the background noise, to me it doesn't sound like people eating at all, to me it sounds like right to the right of him is an open door to a kitchen that is getting ready to start a busy shift.

I'll just reiterate the fact that his sight lines are all way off. What you should do is definitely try to get him to not move around so much, maybe that is ok when its live and he really is talking to everybody, but in a scripted work he definitely looks around way to much. I think as stated above, a great way to do this is to place telepromters in the center, and one on each side but tell him not to move around to much. This way, he may move around, but he always looks at the same place and doesn't look like a bobble head.

Another thing is maybe along with the cut way shots of people at a coffee house, it might also be nice to get some over the shoulders of the people looking at him as well to really drive home the point, it might also be nice if he is talking to teachers not just random people getting their coffee.
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Old March 6th, 2010, 04:28 PM   #5
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It looks absolutely beautiful, really pretty incredible. Still blown away by these cameras.

I didn't "get it" at first, but after reading about the concept of the video it did make sense upon rewatching.

Probably just a single cutaway to a crowd shot near the beginning would answer all the "complaints" about the spot thus far.

Overall I liked it, but don't miss the fact that thus far no one got the concept straight away. Stick a crowd shot or two in there and take care of that confusion!
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Old March 7th, 2010, 09:11 AM   #6
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Is the sync issue with audio and video a function of the compression? Nothing is more disconcerting to me as having the audio and video off, even a little.
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Old March 7th, 2010, 12:23 PM   #7
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I think Christopher has nailed most of it.

On the plus side, the shot looks great, very accomplished. On the not so plus side, the video doesn't work at all.

I've done a lot of political stuff over the years and have filmed Prime Ministers, Presidents and royalty numerous times. The goals are usually the same, make them appear sincere, believable and genuine with a clear message that is easy to understand. Unfortunately, your video here fails to do any of these things and the affect is that he comes across as contrived, shifty and a little desperate.

Talking to an empty room is not a good way to go at all. If you wanted him to look like he was talking to a room full of people in a coffee shop, then you should have shot him, talking to a roomful of people in a coffee shop. Sometimes the simplest approach is often the best.
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Old March 7th, 2010, 02:06 PM   #8
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> "...make them appear sincere, believable and genuine with a clear message that is easy to understand."

That's great advice for filming most anybody. I should frame that quote and put it on my wall. :)
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Old March 7th, 2010, 07:56 PM   #9
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Thanks a bunch everyone, really appreciate all the input. Now that I've had a chance to step back a bit I think I'm coming around to the general consensus.

The place just seems too empty. I think we were perhaps being a bit to ambitious for our budget and time window for this one. If we could have had some reversal shots of people sitting and listening to him I think it would work a lot better. Also having some action in the background would have been great as well. This was not possible with our budget or time. I really dig a lot of it but it seems we didn't quite nail it. We did two of these, this one was the experiment. Here is the more conventional spot if anybody wants to check it out:


Thanks a bunch for all the feedback, this forum is a great resource for people trying to hone their craft. Really appreciate everybody taking the time to check these out.
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Old March 7th, 2010, 11:20 PM   #10
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I do like that one better. Seems a bed of music might go a long way.

I also have a difficult time with the word "Oregonian" but I guess it's not so weird to those that live there. ;)
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Old March 8th, 2010, 02:01 AM   #11
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The first one feels cold and empty. Needs a cutaway to the audience he's talking to. If it's supposed to be busy, then there needs to be foreground and background action. Also, move the dolly slower.

The second is much better because it doesn't look like you're trying to fake a town hall meeting. Much more natural. Needs graphics and music though.
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Old March 10th, 2010, 01:46 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryan McCullough View Post
I do like that one better. Seems a bed of music might go a long way.

I also have a difficult time with the word "Oregonian" but I guess it's not so weird to those that live there. ;)
I agree... a bed of music would be great... a low bed of instramental music... I would get this video to somebody to score it and you wouldn't believe the difference it would make. IT would even make some of those cuts between motion to static look a bit better.... they still throw me off a little bit.
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Old March 28th, 2010, 01:50 PM   #13
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I keep coming back to these videos because I'm very impressed with the image. It's a very pretty picture.

Can you provide any details on how it was shot? What kind of lighting used? Etc.?

Thanks!
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Old March 29th, 2010, 03:46 PM   #14
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Sure Bryan, glad you like the look.

It's nothing fancy - these were real low budget spots. They just wanted to get something up on the website quickly.

For the "education" spot I just hit him with a Joker 800 and used a Joker 400 for some background fill. For the "bank" spot I hit him with both Jokers because I needed the punch to compete with the windows. Back and fill light was all natural through the windows.

Lenses were a Canon 1.4 50mm and a 17-55 2.8. I also used a 4x4 Tiffen polarizer in a matte box. This came in real handy on the "bank" spot because of all the glass.

The camera settings were real basic:

Neutral

sharpness = 1
contrast = -3
saturation = -1
color tone = 0

No color grading in post. The only thing I did was tweak the gamma curve a bit to give it a bit more contrast. Hope this info helps.
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Old March 29th, 2010, 05:41 PM   #15
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Helps a great deal, thanks a ton!
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