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Old December 4th, 2009, 09:02 PM   #1
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Ringing in the rain

Had another interesting assignment early this morning: Videotape one of our columnists doing a two-hour stint as a Salvation Army bell-ringer at the local Wal-Mart. I and the HMC-40 arrived about 7:30 a.m. for the pre-bell briefing. Of course it began to rain like mad about 20 minutes into the assignment, which kept people away and me crammed up in the breezeway between the electric doors and the shopping carts. Thankfully, the rain was intermittent.

The sky was pretty dark the whole morning, so I'm happy with how well the exposure and color turned out. Any suggestions for improvement are welcome.

Videos: Eve Samples: Ringer with a cause - Treasure Coast, FL | TCPalm.com
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Old December 5th, 2009, 02:54 AM   #2
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I found it an interesting record of this event, although it could use a liitle more work for a final polish. Some minor things that occurred to me:

I found the jump cut at about 1'05'' (to the lady in red shorts) and again at 1'23" a bit jarring.
The film largely speaks for itself, but coming to all of this as a stranger it seemed slightly odd that the only title was on the interview with Charlie. I would rather have known who the blonde was :-) and you might as well do a "Stuart Mall - 9:30 am Saturday" type title at the beginning and possibly a "$153.76 was raised for the Salvation Army" at the end. However, if the viewers are locals or regulars to the website, it is not particularly important as they will know the context.

Thanks for posting, feel free to ignore my 2p.
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Old December 5th, 2009, 09:22 AM   #3
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Colin,

This video will be packaged with an online column by our columnist, who is featured in the video. Our online video player only has room for about five or six words of explanation, so I have to be super-brief in the descriptions.

Had the video been a standalone feature, I would have also used a nameplate when I interviewed our columnist. I agree that one nameplate looks a bit weird when two people were interviewed. But like I said, the video was about the columnist and I refer to her by name when interviewing Charlie, so I don't think there was any question about who she was. :)

As far as the jarring edits, I try to use cross dissolves or other transitions on problem areas. Apparently I missed some...:)

One of the biggest challenges of putting this video together, and maybe I was just being too critical or cautious, was that the columnist said twice that she was surprised at who tended to donate. I don't remember how she phrased it, but what she meant was she was surprised at the variety of people who donated - all ages, all colors, equally men and women. But when Joe Public hears it, it may translate to she was surprised that a lot of minorities and rag-tag looking people donated. So over her monologue, I had to use footage that somehow masked the identity of the people giving so as to not offend anyone. Maybe that's where the "jarring edits" came in....:)

Either way, thanks for the feedback.
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Old December 5th, 2009, 06:18 PM   #4
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I don't know why but the entire video, including your graphics looks really dark. Anyone else having issued with the streamed footage?
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Old December 5th, 2009, 09:46 PM   #5
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Sherri,

I'm especially impressed with your shot compositions. It is a happy story, and who would know the rain tried to cramp your style.

Thanks for sharing.
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Old December 6th, 2009, 07:25 PM   #6
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Thanks, Dan!

Denny, as far as the streaming, yes, I notice that our site is having intermittent issues. I got the "dark" footage a couple times, which seems to be a buffering issue. A reload of the page corrected it for me. And I finally saw the odd jump cut Colin was describing, which I can assure everyone is a streaming glitch and definitely not the way I edited it. I'm actually very aghast that the video is playing back so glitchy (is that even a word?). I'll definitely be opening a service ticket for the video player if the problems continue.
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Old December 7th, 2009, 02:26 AM   #7
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Sherri, I managed to get to to go the next day. What recoridng mode and scenefile did shoot that in? Looks pretty good. Hard to tell you were struggling with rain.

One thing, if the scene file you are in will allow it I would suggest changing the knee to low or mid. This buffers the blow out somewhat (compresses the bright white).

Oh and as the reporter noticed, poorer people do tend to give more to the salvation army or poppy funds (a memorial fund up here in Canada started by the Legion after the war).

So how have you been liking the hmc40 so far?
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Old December 7th, 2009, 01:46 PM   #8
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Denny,

I'm loving the HMC-40. I'm still a bit hesitant to fiddle around with the manual controls, so I have Barry Green's book on the way. Hopefully, it will help me better understand what all this camera can accomplish.

About the only thing I'm not loving is that there is no SD mode. My Sony HDR-XR500V - the camcorder the HMC-40 replaced - has an SD option, so going right from the field into Premiere was a snap. Since I tend to shoot anywhere between 60 and 100 clips per assignment, transcoding to SD can take some time. Not a good thing when you're working on deadline.

I shot the bell-ringing in 1080/60i. Here's my scene file:

Detail level +2
V Detail level +2
Detail coring +1
Chroma level +2
Chroma phase 0
Color temp 0
Master PED 0
A. Iris level 0
DRS 3
Gamma Cine-like V
Knee (low, grayed out)
Matrix - Cine-like
Skintone DTL off

The reds tend to be oversaturated with this scene file setting, I think, but I like overall color balance. Any suggested tweaks?

Last edited by Sherri Nestico; December 7th, 2009 at 06:26 PM.
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Old December 7th, 2009, 06:16 PM   #9
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I don't have hands on experience with this cam (I have the HMC150) but since this camera is already supposed to havea very sharp picture form the full raster chip, I'd lower detail and Vdetail to at least -2. Chroma no higher than 0 (basically it is like saturation). Coring.. probably +1 or +2.

Best to try a few settings out and do some test footage. What Gamma/matrix are you using?
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Old December 7th, 2009, 06:50 PM   #10
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Gamma Cine-like V, Matrix cine-like.

Woo-hoo! Barry's book just arrived in today's mail! Guess what I'll be up late reading...
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