Properly exposing with a bright window at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Sony XAVC / XDCAM / NXCAM / AVCHD / HDV / DV Camera Systems > Sony HDV and DV Camera Systems > Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion

Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion
Topics also include Sony's TRV950, VX2000, PD150 & DSR250 family.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old August 16th, 2004, 02:50 AM   #1
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 51
Properly exposing with a bright window

I want to make sure I'm doing this correctly. I'm shooting with a VX2000. I find that anytime I am facing any large window the image in front (person) is dark and unrecognizeable. If I switch to manual exposure mode and change the f-stop the character becomes brighter but so does the background. I'm thinking this is the best it's going to get but I'm wondering if there is another way to control this. Basically I'm trying to avoid the person looking like an alien that has just landed on earth.......(massive bright light behind them!!!).

Would adding ND filters help with this? What about going to ND1 and adjusting the exposure......does it have something to do with the White Balancing button???
Brian Patterson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 16th, 2004, 03:40 AM   #2
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Berkshire, UK
Posts: 107
If the contrast range of a scene exceeds the recording capability of DV then you need to either reduce the highlights (e.g. put a sheet or something over the outside of the window, or shoot at a different time of day) or increase the shadow levels, either by lighting or using a large reflector (white card is fine but you can buy large material reflectors that fold up quite small). ND filters will just darken the whole scene and won't help on their own.

Where possible the best solution is usually to rearrange the subject and/or shooting position. If none of these are possible then you have to just expose for the subject and let the background window blow out.
Pat Chaney is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 16th, 2004, 07:41 AM   #3
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 6,609
Way back in the day when I was doing still work (you still see it today) I used a strong strobe on the camera to help counteract the background being blown out. Off course film is much more workable in that situation than DV tape. So your choices are; let the background blow out, use some sort of reflector in front of the subject matter to help open up the shadows, or use a light to counteract the shadows. If you choose #3, use the light carefully or you could end up going the other way. A combination of reflector and light is the best choice, well actually the BEST choice is not to be in the backlight situation but sometimes you don't have that opportunity.
OH well, sometimes you just gotta say "what the ****" and go with what you got!

Don B
Don Bloom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 16th, 2004, 09:03 AM   #4
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Billericay, England UK
Posts: 4,711
Good replies guys. I might add that white balance has no effect on the situation at all. Brian, the best way is to go with the situation. I've shot many a wedding speaker in this way and the window has been a complete washout of zebra stripes as I shoot. But in fact it's scarier than it looks. On the TV later all that happens is that you have a corectly exposed speaker with a completely white and featureless background. In some ways this deletes the distracting carpark and concentrates the mind on the speaker alone. Probably best to zoom in as much as possible so that there's more speaker, less background, but in reality it works well and is nothing to be afraid of I find.

I've had well meaning people offer to draw the curtains for me to block out the light but I'm a firm believer that we photographers need light above all else, and I for one am happy to manually expose and burn out the unneeded.

tom.
Tom Hardwick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 16th, 2004, 01:28 PM   #5
Wrangler
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Vallejo, California
Posts: 4,049
If your editing software supports lumakeying, you can just shoot the background (properly exposed) long enough to have a nice loop. Maybe 10 seconds.

Then lumakey the prime footage so that the bright window image is replaced with an underlying clip. That clip is your background clip.

Sometimes you cannot get a background clip and you can use something else.

If you have the time and $ you can always balance the window by covering it with a ND film.
__________________
Mike Rehmus
Hey, I can see the carrot at the end of the tunnel!
Mike Rehmus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 16th, 2004, 11:20 PM   #6
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 51
It's a wedding so the walk down the aisle can't really be reflected or set up as described in some of the posts.....

Thanks for your replies, they helped!
Brian Patterson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 19th, 2004, 04:46 PM   #7
New Boot
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Cheshire, U.K.
Posts: 7
Brian, in fear of stating the obvious, but have you tried using the backlight feature of the vx2000? Also, the camera will suggest in the viewfinder display when you need to use either of the nd filters.
Rick
Rick Barry is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Sony XAVC / XDCAM / NXCAM / AVCHD / HDV / DV Camera Systems > Sony HDV and DV Camera Systems > Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:09 AM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network