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Sony XDCAM PMW-F3 CineAlta
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Old November 9th, 2011, 08:33 AM   #1
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Dawn at Corfe Castle. F3 and Motion Control


This is a rough composition of a series of shots taken at daybreak at Corfe Castle in Dorset, UK. This is a test shot for a project I am working on with Geoff Boyle and Justin Pentecost. The finished video is actually in 3D. It was shot using a pair of PMW-F3's with Sigma 20mm lenses on a motion controlled 3D rig with an interaxial of 4m. The 3D version however is reserved for our client at this stage. We shot multiple real time, motion controlled pans across the scene starting before dark and continuing to shoot identical passes until the first train out of Corfe station. Getting the timing near perfect to catch the train coming out behind the hill was a mix of absolute skill and a lot of luck. This edit used 4 different clips from the 15 to 20 that we shot. We had to lug around 80kg of gear up a very, very steep hill, almost on our hands an knees in the dark to get this clip. I'm really pleased with the end result and think it was worth the effort.
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Old November 10th, 2011, 04:56 PM   #2
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Re: Dawn at Corfe Castle. F3 and Motion Control

Really great Alister. So many things happening in it that you can watch more than once and get something new out of it each time.
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Old November 10th, 2011, 09:38 PM   #3
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Re: Dawn at Corfe Castle. F3 and Motion Control

Nicely done!
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Old November 11th, 2011, 02:54 AM   #4
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Re: Dawn at Corfe Castle. F3 and Motion Control

Thanks for the kind words. It's a teaser for part of a much larger project that we should start shooting in the new year. It looks even more incredible in 3D. It's a shame about all the banding that results from a combination of high compression ratio, very gentle sky graduation and 6 bit computer screens. The original looks really nice on a decent monitor.

I've attached a couple of pictures of the rig.
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Dawn at Corfe Castle. F3 and Motion Control-img_0814.jpg   Dawn at Corfe Castle. F3 and Motion Control-img_0816.jpg  

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Old November 11th, 2011, 11:33 AM   #5
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Re: Dawn at Corfe Castle. F3 and Motion Control

Wow, that's quite some interocular distance on the 3D rig!
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Old November 11th, 2011, 12:05 PM   #6
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Re: Dawn at Corfe Castle. F3 and Motion Control

Yes, 4m interoccular. The main shoot will be even wider, were building a special mount and motorised head system.
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Old November 18th, 2011, 07:10 PM   #7
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Re: Dawn at Corfe Castle. F3 and Motion Control

Nice clip. But why such a big interocular? Just curious, there's a lot I don't understand about 3D still...
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Old November 22nd, 2011, 05:30 AM   #8
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Re: Dawn at Corfe Castle. F3 and Motion Control

Hi Alister,

Great composite shot! Though I almost find it hard to believe you were able to synchronize the pan and that train leaving with such precise timing... if only the rest of the UK rail system was this reliable!

Give my regards to Justin, he may not remember me but I was lucky enough to spend a couple of weeks with him as a trainee on a C4 shoot some 12 years ago, and I learned a lot from him, a truly inspiring can-do spirit, his workshop had me drooling! Of course, it was real film in those days and felt like a world away from today's tech, but technique and workmanship are still (and will always be) the keys to quality production.

It's really amazing how small the world can feel sometimes.

Cheers,
Dave.
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Old November 22nd, 2011, 12:33 PM   #9
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Re: Dawn at Corfe Castle. F3 and Motion Control

Hi Dave, well we could see the train coming in the distance and guestimated the amount of time it would take to come out from behind the hill. I'll say hi to Justin for you!

Ben: If you look at a very distant object and blink your eyes the distant object will not move from side to side in your vision. Because our eyes are close together we don't actually see distant objects stereoscopically, only close objects, less than about 30m/90ft. It's the same with a 3D camera. When the cameras are close together distant objects will appear to be in the same position in the frame for both cameras, so no depth. For this shot we wanted to force depth into the scene, so we had to move the cameras much further apart to create a difference between the left and right views. One (desired in this case) side effect of this is that the scene appears to be miniaturised, as though the viewer is looking down on a model because if our brain see's a lot of stereoscopic depth it assumes we must be close to the subject (less than 30m/90ft). If we are that close to a castle, yet it is only small in our field of view then our brain assumes it to not be real as we know from experience that a "real" castle less than 30m/90ft away would be huge in our field of view. Stereoscopic 3D is an optical illusion and as such it's easy to fool the brain or fail to produce a convincing image.
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Old November 29th, 2011, 04:47 PM   #10
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Re: Dawn at Corfe Castle. F3 and Motion Control

Thanks for the detailed explanation, Alister. Very informative!
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