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Old March 25th, 2010, 02:41 AM   #16
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Now you see them...

Here's a couple of screen grabs off the DVD (this show went straight to a Philips HDD DVD recorder). No outbreak of flesh-eating superbug - faces have been smudged on these pics to avoid individuals being identified.

When the photographer fires his flash another 3 almost unlit dancers appear. This happened several times during the show.
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Old March 25th, 2010, 11:48 AM   #17
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Collin,

From Pic#2 it looks like you shot this in 50i? In a low light situation like this I'd shoot 24p (or in your case 25p). That way you could set the shutter at 1/50th and pick up a little more light? What were your settings other than the gain?

Garrett
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Old March 25th, 2010, 12:57 PM   #18
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Guilty - 50i it was. With hindsight, I would have got more light on 25p as you say, but when I was setting this up, I didn't realise it would be so dark during the performance. I had the lights turned up more during the run through and decided that 1/50 sec and 50i would be the best compromise to catch the movement and still have enough light. I didn't fancy changing the frame rate once the show had started and I saw what I was up against.

I switched off the custom presets as I didn't have one loaded for filming black cats at midnight. In future I'll keep one ready - which do you think would be best for this kind of situation? I don't like to take the gain beyond +6dB and try to keep it at -3 or 0 if possible.
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Old March 25th, 2010, 02:32 PM   #19
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The central faces are correctly exposed, getting more exposure on the camera so you could see into the darker stage areas would mean that these faces are over exposed. The still camera's flash just added some fill light, so you saw more detail in the shadow areas.

25p is normally 1/50 of a second unless you select a slower shutter speed.
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Old March 25th, 2010, 03:37 PM   #20
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Hey Brian,

As I started thinking about it, it did dawn on me the Colin probably had his shutter already set to 1/50th. Out here in NTSC land we get a little lighting advantage going from 1/60th to 1/48th for 24p.

I agree that overall the exposure on the middle of the stage looks ok. That is always one of the biggest issues with live performances,there's just a lot of hot spots on the stage a a lot of dark areas.

Really the only way to combat this is to get a couple more cameras and get them closer to the stage on the sides to get the exposure correct and frame for the darker areas.

Colin, I did have a preset that I worked up that helped with stage shows. I'll have to see if i saved it somewhere. I no longer use Canon cams so I'll have to dig through some old files. The other way to help out is to get a camera with a bigger sensor that can pick up low light areas better. Then you could stretch the blacks to retain some more details.

Garrett
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Old March 25th, 2010, 05:46 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Drysdale View Post
The central faces are correctly exposed, getting more exposure on the camera so you could see into the darker stage areas would mean that these faces are over exposed. The still camera's flash just added some fill light, so you saw more detail in the shadow areas.
Fair enough, but when I had the lighting turned up there was much more spill, and so less contrast between the centre stage and the darker areas. With the greater illumination level, I had the lens stopped down a bit, so the faces were still OK (my zebras were grazing peacefully).
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Old March 25th, 2010, 07:03 PM   #22
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Unfortunately, I suspect the contrast ratio would remain the same, just the light levels were higher in the shadow area. So, once you set the correct exposure, the stage wings would still be dark compared to the still brighter centre stage.
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Old March 29th, 2010, 09:26 PM   #23
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Just did a shoot yesterday with the same director who I shot the underexposed dance film for related to earlier in this thread. This time, it was a scene in a room at night. I checked with my light meter, he made me underexpose the image by three stops, it looked horrible. I begged and pleaded with him to NOT make me underexpose the images, the editor was even on set and he told the director that he can easily make the well exposed images look dark but the director persisted, make it darker, its too bright, etc. So I gave him what he wanted. But it killed me to shoot massively underexposed footage, espeically with a 1/3" camera. With a crew, actors, a nice stage, everything.

Painful shooting with directors who don't understand the tools used to create their vision and don't listen to the pros that they hire to help them realize their vision. I have decided next time that I will purposely turn the brightness down on the client monitor and then I can correctly expose the actors at least. He will have a heart attack when he screens the dailies though and sees nicely exposed images though.

Dan
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Old March 29th, 2010, 11:03 PM   #24
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Dan, I've been on the OTHER side where the director wanted a VERY blown out doorway when the protagonist walks through. I said "blow it out in post" but he wanted it in camera.

Get to the edit bay and the discussion of "why is the colour on his face off? Can we bring that back?"

4 stops OVER exposed on DVCam with 1/3" imagers isn't MUCH nicer to work with.
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Old March 30th, 2010, 01:46 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin McDonald View Post
I switched off the custom presets as I didn't have one loaded for filming black cats at midnight. In future I'll keep one ready - which do you think would be best for this kind of situation? I don't like to take the gain beyond +6dB and try to keep it at -3 or 0 if possible.
Col check this CP out it's great .. IMO it would have really helped on the night ...

http://www.dvinfo.net/forum/xh-serie...-included.html

How was the sound of the dancing on those risers?

Cheers.
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Old March 30th, 2010, 11:22 AM   #26
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Thanks for that link, Allan. I'll give that CP a try at the first opportunity. Mind you looking out the window just now I might even need it even outside in this ghastly weather!

As for the audio on the DVD, I made a separate mix from the PA mixer and took it to the camera via a D/I box to keep my inputs balanced. That got me the music from the CD player plus the continuity radio mic. For ambient sound I used a Senny G2 kit with a MKE 2 Gold mic hung over the front of the stage. That got me the audience and all the clumping noises from the dancers on the staging!

There's a very convenient electrically operated projector screen that drops down at the front of the stage just right for taping the transmitter to and letting the tiny mic hang down at just the right height when it's raised fully. It's easy to set up and almost nothing is visible to the audience.

Oops, that's a bit OT on the lighting forum, sorry.
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Old March 30th, 2010, 03:54 PM   #27
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Thanks. Notice in that thread post 25 Randy changed the CORING and SHARPNESS to 0.

I couldn't see any worthwhile differences and left them as is.

Cheers.
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