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Techniques for Independent Production
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Old June 21st, 2012, 08:46 PM   #1
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Green Screen Help


Am doing a new project, which requires me to green screen a panel of people, its for a Footy Show.

I myself have not done any Green Screen work, I use a Sony HDV-Z7 unit.

Can someone link me to any good information on starting up, and how to setup etc.

Basically its only part of the background I will be eliminating and replacing with a backdrop of sponsors and a TV playing the sponsors as well.

Any help would be great, been filming for fifteen years, and funny enough, never done any of this stuff!


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Old June 21st, 2012, 10:19 PM   #2
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Re: Green Screen Help

There are hundreds of videos on Youtube on how to do it, but the basics are simple:

1. Get a screen color that isn't present in your subject - it can be green, blue, red or even black
2. Make sure the light is even throughout the screen, especially in areas behind and just around the main subjects' edges.
3. Keeping your subjects about 10 feet away from the screen helps in eliminating light spills on the screen
4. Shoot with the best possible color settings on camera
5. Use a good chroma keyer plugin/software and don't be afraid to try more than one for each area. E.g., while shooting if you have problem areas, you could pre-plan your post production by separating the main subject area into parts and applying different plugins to each area - pros do it all the time. Sometimes you'll be forced to use masks.

I recommend you play around with the available software with footage sourced off the net.

The key is step 2, if you do that right, even basic chroma keying packages can handle it. I have chroma keyed with a setup similar to yours, in a photography studio with a green backdrop. HDV is tricky, and if there's a lot of movement you could isolate those areas and convert them into image sequences (I worked in 32-bit float TIFF sequences in After Effects at the time).

Hope this helps for a start.
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Old June 23rd, 2012, 05:51 PM   #3
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Re: Green Screen Help

We do a lot of green screen.

From your description, I am not exactly sure what you're doing.
If you only need to 'fly in' an area (for a tv or banner?) that the actors don't move in front of, I wouldn't bother with anything more than right sized piece of foam core painted w/ chroma key paint - you might not even need that if no one step in front of the area, but if the camera is going to be moving, then you'll want it.
Jacques Mersereau
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Old June 26th, 2012, 12:10 AM   #4
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Re: Green Screen Help

I agree with Jacques. There are lots of videos on Youtube regarding green screen/ chroma key installation or to save time, you can always rent. I think some rental shops does setup as well
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Old June 26th, 2012, 02:20 AM   #5
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Re: Green Screen Help

Even lighting on the screen and enough separation for the subject are the two main things to keep in mind when shooting. Avoid having spill or bounce of the screen color in any part of your subjects (most usually seen on shoulders, ears, etc.).
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