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Old February 2nd, 2006, 11:16 AM   #1
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little wildlife demo video

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Hi everybody
I'm just registered as user but i've been using the forum for some years and find it one of the best ways of obtaining information.
I work as a biologist in endangered species conservation in north spain and for the last years i was trying to shoot some of the nice wildlife and landscapes we have here (but never enough time to do it properly...).

I have edited a little demo reel with some images and the beautiful music of Douglas Spotted Eagle (thanks for it) and I would like comments, suggestions or critics about it. It was shooted with Canon XL1s and EOS lenses and edited in Vegas.

You can see the reel in

Now i am thinking in the upgrade to HD with my eyes in the XL H1... and also need to encourage my sound recording... and so many other things.... so I think this new wildlife section of the forum could be of great interest.

Best regards

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Old February 2nd, 2006, 11:37 AM   #2
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Very nice

Beautiful video. What were you shooting with. Long lens ?? HD or HDV would be nicer, but, your gift is in your eye, not in the format..
Chris J. Barcellos
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Old February 2nd, 2006, 11:58 AM   #3
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very nice

I'm your polar opposite.

I'm a cameraman with a Bachelors degree, going back to school for a Masters in Marine Biology!

I plan on making underwater/nature films very soon. First, I had to decide whether 720p or 1080i. I wanted 1080i at first, but decided that 720p would be better for slow motion. I have been considering th JVC HD100, since you can shoot faster frame rates. However, I'm not sure if broadcasters such as National Geographic and Discovery HD are accepting HDV, so I might have to buy a Varicam, which i'd rather not do.
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Old February 2nd, 2006, 12:09 PM   #4
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Very nice video. You have some really beautiful images. What I would like to see more of is some wider shots. You have a lot of very close-up images one after the other. I would like to see where some of those animals are. If you shoot a close up of the deer, show me a wide shot also so I can tell where in the landscape they are. If you have more scenery shots you could mix them in with the close-ups as well for variety. I realize this is just a short demo and if you were to make a full length documentary you would probably edit very differently.

Cameras....In your situation you are probably looking at the Canon HDV camera since you are already familiar with that line. Look also at the JVC HD-100. It has a real broadcast lens that in my opinion would be easier for focusing. However, if you already have extra Canon lenses then the Canon camera may be a better choice.

Nice work!
Chris Pyle
Wildland Films
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Old February 2nd, 2006, 01:26 PM   #5
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Very nice footage. There are some great shots in there. The XL series is great with the EF lenses. I had the chance to try out a whole range at the Wildeye XL course from macros to extreme telephoto. Very flexible camera for wildlife.

One slightly off topic question, how did you do the opening "handwritten" graphics ?
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Old February 2nd, 2006, 02:35 PM   #6
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that was a pleasure to watch. every time i watch a nicely shot wildlife video, i imagine what a beautiful and magical experience it is for the person behind the camera, to be able to see the world in that way.

what lenses did you use for your close-up photography? stock lens or something else?
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Old February 3rd, 2006, 09:14 AM   #7
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Thank you everybody for your kind comments

Chris B. and Meryem, most of the reel has been filmed with the Canon EF 100-400. Is my better lens and i'm very happy with the results. All the close ups are made with this lens in a kind of "tele-macro-filming" very interesting because I don't have to disturb insects or other animals to obtain a good close-up. I would like to obtain more closest images and i have used a 50mm macro lens but i find it very difficult to use (narrow dof, little flexibility in the field) ┐Has somebody experience with more closest aproximations? ┐With what kind of lenses?

The other lens i use is the standard 16x, and i'm not very confortable with the results. This is the reason why i haven┤t nice wide images (you're completely right Chris P.). I think my pans and landscape images aren't enough sharp and clear, but i'm not sure if its a problem of the lens or is an operator problem.

Declan, the handwrited opening has been made in Vegas with the animated mask option in the event pan/crop tool. Is not very well made but i haven't enough time to improuve it. I was thinking time a go in the Wildeye course, has it been interested? what do you think so of the different lenses quality.

Well, excuse me for introducing more question than answers but...
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Old February 3rd, 2006, 09:38 AM   #8
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i'm just beginning my own experiments with macro videography, so i'm no expert. i have a 100mm f2.8 macro to attach to the XL2 but haven't found the time to experiment with it too much. i have a plan to shoot with both the 100mm macro and a +1 achromatic diopter attached to the 20x stock lens and see which performs better but haven't done it yet. i have an FX-1 and have found that it can perform at +2 and +3, better than the XL2, so that may be my best possible macro image.

but it's all still theoretical, at this point. too many other things going on at the moment. i need a big chunk of free time to run these experiments. but, meanwhile, i'm trying to learn a bit about how others are doing macro work. i would not have expected a 100-400mm could do such nice work at that level. very interesting.
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Old February 8th, 2006, 01:53 PM   #9
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Lovely wildlife in their wild environs Fernando, thank you.

Graham Bernard in the thread Zoom closes iris, why? may be of interest regarding close-up lenses. I use Sigma 180mm for good macro of tiny alpine plants from 1 to 2 metres but only with my Canon Digital Rebel ... I don't have interchangeable lens with XM2 so I can't say whether that lens would work for you or not. Other members have helped me understand macro as well, several mentioned on that thread ...

Next time follow the vulture even for 3 seconds, please?
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