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Old May 24th, 2007, 02:36 PM   #1
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My First HDV Movie with the XH-A1!

I had two of the A1s at my disposal to shoot my movie for the 48 Hour Film Project and I have to say that it came out fantastic!

See: www.48hourfilm.com

I'm still learning the nuances of the camera and cinematography in general, but this camera made my little movie look pretty good.

I found that the custom presets available here on the boards were a tremendous help for finding the right look--thanks a million to those who posted them! EOSCOLOR worked quite well for the interiors with natural light.

The movie was silly, but it was alot of fun.

Have a look:

http://www.klemm-media.com/48/


If you guys have any ideas for helping future projects look better, please let me know!

Thanks,

bk
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Old May 24th, 2007, 05:26 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Bill Klemm View Post
If you guys have any ideas for helping future projects look better, please let me know!

Thanks,

bk

Loose the zooms.
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Old May 25th, 2007, 12:28 AM   #3
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My First HDV Movie with the XH-A1!

Nice job Bill. Some of the staging was a little linear which did not allow for use of a longer lens. Specific focus areas make it look more like a feature. Of course it is harder to keep stuff in focus doing this.
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Old May 25th, 2007, 08:21 AM   #4
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Nice job - especially considering the time constraints! I really like that wierd lit staircase scene. Not sure how you got that shot but it was good.

The fantasy/nightmare segments were quite creative.

The shot in the red theatre - how did you shoot the camera move that comes down slowly - from behind the actors towards the seating - very nicely done

to avoid the few zooms, an office dolly would have got you those - those office carts with the wheels - just thinking one must have been kicking around in the space

i'm reading the DV Rebel book (quite good) - he talks about cheap workarounds of all kinds - the office cart being one of them

But I think overall you had some really interesting shots, camere angles, and filmed with a good sense of humour from the acting crew

trish
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Old May 25th, 2007, 09:50 AM   #5
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thanks!

Thanks everybody!

Yes--the zooms. The bane of my film. If I use the zoom at all, I prefer to only use about 20% and very slowly. But I wasn't operating the camera most of the day so when I saw the footage, I was a little disappointed with the frame moving around so much--I mean, why bother with a tripod if it's going to look almost hand held or home made?

My "DP" (a friend of mine in film school) was way too happy with the pan, tilt, and zoom for my taste. We were using a dolly for a little while but the wheels were very bad on it so we had to ditch it after about half the day. I like to keep the frame still, tight and composed until there's some tension--that's where a push/pull or dolly work nicely. A zoom or jump cut (like the overhead in the stairs scene) is effective for a very few select moments of action.

The "crane shot" in the theatre was just that--we had a lift that we put the tripod on. We raised it about 15-20 feet and rolled the tape while we let the hydrolic pressure out to go down (less vibration than going up).

The crane operator was riding the tilt and the lift servo at the same time--not easy but he did a pretty good job.

And, Trish, yes--I keep a copy of the "DV Rebel" book in my camera bag ;)

The location was amazing. We didn't even use some of the more interesting spaces--this time!

Last edited by Bill Klemm; May 25th, 2007 at 01:37 PM. Reason: typos
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Old May 25th, 2007, 10:40 AM   #6
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Great job... I love those film scrambles....
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Old May 26th, 2007, 10:40 PM   #7
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I'll repeat what I posted on your website:

Does David Lynch know you raid his script bin?

They have beat you up over at DVInfo.net about the zoom, so I will not mention it. ;)

Great clip, and I love the crane work.

You will do the sequel for the next 48 Hours project, right? Do not leave us hanging, man!
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Old May 27th, 2007, 03:43 AM   #8
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The cinematography of the part where the guy goes into the stall and then is in the stair case was well done.

Good work.
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Old May 27th, 2007, 04:51 AM   #9
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I use a wheelchair for a dolly....darn student budgets
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Old May 27th, 2007, 10:56 AM   #10
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The unmotivated cuts really bother me especially when they are nearly from the same angle. It's like a Michael Bay movie without the action. Good acting though.
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Old May 27th, 2007, 12:29 PM   #11
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Hmmm...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marlon Torres View Post
The unmotivated cuts really bother me especially when they are nearly from the same angle. It's like a Michael Bay movie without the action. Good acting though.
I was hoping for more constructive criticism--but point taken.

Last edited by Bill Klemm; May 27th, 2007 at 01:49 PM. Reason: removed comment
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Old May 27th, 2007, 07:07 PM   #12
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In that case, I'll continue on with Marlon's criticism and try to make it more constructive.

For me, it wasn't so much the cuts being unmotivated as the fact that the angles were essentially the same. The shots are going to cut a lot better if there is a higher degree of difference between them. So go from your wide to a medium or close up of one of your characters. I know that it's tough to plan out a lot of closeups when you're making a film in two days, but to me, that is where that second camera could really come into play. If you have your 2nd camera operator tight on somebody specific, it's really going to open some doors as far as editing.

In any case, I'm always impressed what people can pull off in such a short time period with these things. I would definitely rate it a success in those terms.
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Old May 27th, 2007, 08:49 PM   #13
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Great feedback!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean Gillane View Post
In that case, I'll continue on with Marlon's criticism and try to make it more constructive.

For me, it wasn't so much the cuts being unmotivated as the fact that the angles were essentially the same. The shots are going to cut a lot better if there is a higher degree of difference between them. So go from your wide to a medium or close up of one of your characters. I know that it's tough to plan out a lot of closeups when you're making a film in two days, but to me, that is where that second camera could really come into play. If you have your 2nd camera operator tight on somebody specific, it's really going to open some doors as far as editing.

In any case, I'm always impressed what people can pull off in such a short time period with these things. I would definitely rate it a success in those terms.

Thanks, Sean! That's most helpful.

On a shoot I did before this (a non-movie), I used 3 cameras doing just the thing you recommended and it made the video much more powerful and easier to edit (and to watch).

There's plenty I would do different if I could go back--putting this advice to work would be job one. Second would be to story board the angles I wanted and communicate better with my camera crew. Since we were in such a hurry, I let them do their own thing which isn't very good directing, is it?

Since this is my first "film" with more than one camera, I'm learning ALOT of stuff on-the-job.

Thanks again for the thoughtful reply. That's why I posted it here!
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Old May 28th, 2007, 09:24 AM   #14
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It says in the description of the piece that you used two cameras? Did you have two crews working at different locations or did you shoot each scene with two cameras?
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Old May 28th, 2007, 10:08 AM   #15
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It says in the description of the piece that you used two cameras? Did you have two crews working at different locations or did you shoot each scene with two cameras?
We use both at the same time. Some of the spaces we used were pretty tight so we were limited on our angles because of lighting. Looking back, I should have used the tighter B-Roll as per the others' suggestions.
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