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Old November 19th, 2010, 11:03 AM   #1
Super 8 Film - Fall Vermont Wedding
Marion Abrams Marion Abrams is offline November 19th, 2010, 11:03 AM

The groom in this wedding is a film maker, so he knew exactly what he wanted. He hired me to shoot super 8 film to add texture to the video being produced. It was really fun to try to create a dreamy home movie feel. I cut together about 1 minute of the footage to share.

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Old November 19th, 2010, 11:13 AM   #2
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I enjoyed seeing your little film Marion but I can't help but ask the question, 'What's the point?' OK, it was a client request, and probably ok if you've two cameramen and one can be fiddling about loading Super-8 cartridges.
Thing is I can make DV look more like Super-8 than I can make Super-8 look like Super-8, if you know what I mean.

'Add texture'? What have you done that couldn't be done to DV in post? 'Dreamy home movie feel'? Is that because none of it is really sharp? Try as I might, I still come back to that original question.

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Old November 19th, 2010, 11:19 AM   #3
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Tom,

The answer is very simple really. Because the client wanted it, and I was happy to oblige. It was fun for me to shoot on film, and great to make a client happy.

Regarding the dreamy home movie feel: I chose not to use a tripod most of the time, and tried to simulate home movie camera work ... but a little better. Also some shots like the camera out the window along the drive felt to me like something a family would shoot on vacation.

I have seen some very good film effects, but none that quite match the look and feel of super 8. Do you have some samples? I'd love to see your DV like Super 8 and hear what techniques you use.
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Old November 19th, 2010, 11:57 AM   #4
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Good to get your reply and of course - what the client wants he gets, every time. My concern is that a wedding day is a rapidly ticking clock. Every time you stop to flit a wide-angle converter you're not doing what you've been tasked with doing - capturing everything that happens on that day. Swapping your camcorder for a Super-8 machine is precious time lost in my view. Not only that, but it's precious audio lost, precious quality lost and much more money spent on stock, processing, transferring.

I've shot and transferred a lot of Super-8 film in my time. Footage I've shot has looked like film primarily because it's 4:3 and the 18fps transfer to 25fps adds a staccato effect to the combination frames that video needs. My Canon 1014E gives very sharp footage on Kodachrome 40 but even on a fairly small screen (for film) of 46" it can look pretty grainy.

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Old November 19th, 2010, 12:12 PM   #5
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Tom-

In this case the groom hired two companies. One to shoot traditional video coverage, and another (mine) to shoot super 8 film.
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Old November 19th, 2010, 12:17 PM   #6
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Ah - perfect! That's what I wanted to hear Marion. Hopefully you'll appear on the video doing a home movie shoot of the couple. Techie details please. Super-8 camera? Stock? How many cartridges? Cutting ratio? Cement splices or digital NLE? I see you slowed things on the timeline in the dance.
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Old November 19th, 2010, 02:57 PM   #7
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The reversal looks MUCH better than the negative. I didn't have any control over the lab and processing, so I'm not sure how they handled that end. I chose to shoot most of the footage at 18fps to give me a bit more latitude in low light.

The dancing I was forced to shoot at 9fps. It was the only way to get an exposure in the dark barn, even with a small light. I had hoped the film would be transferred at 18fps, but I think it was transferred at 24 or 30. Because the client is a film maker he chose to handle those details himself to save money.

It tried using cinema tools to conform the footage, but there is no 18fps option. I ended up using FCP to slow the 9fps section. If I were doing the "final" edit I would try working more with frame rates in After Effects.

The gate seemed to have a pretty serious wiggle in it, but I actually think in this case the client kind of liked that feel.
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