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Wedding / Event Videography Techniques
Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old May 15th, 2008, 06:29 PM   #1
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My latest highlight

Hey Folks,
This is just typical that I log on to post a highlight, and here's Mark Von Lanken postng one right before me. I guess my only saving grace is that mine is from April 26 of this year!Anyway, humbly here is my submission. This was shot with Canon A1s and was a very difficult shoot. Notice the walk from the ceremony to the reception. Plus the reception was the darkest I have had. All recpetion shots are 1/30 shutter speed which gave me an additional stop of light. Comments welcome, but this one is delivered...
Thanks in advance...
www.grantphotovideo.com/taylorjonathan
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Old May 15th, 2008, 07:20 PM   #2
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Hi Bill,

Would you just quit it! ;-)

You did a good job with your Highlight and yes, you did beat me in turnaround time, so there. With our new editor we are going to get those turnaround times down.
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Old May 15th, 2008, 07:29 PM   #3
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Thanks for sharing your video! Considering the challenges you had during the reception things looked good. Looking forward to seeing more great work!
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Old May 15th, 2008, 08:20 PM   #4
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I thought the piece was a solid edit. I think you could play with your colors and levels to get more mood from your images, though. And if that's the darkest reception you've ever had, count yourself lucky, lol.

I've had plenty of outdoor, night-time receptions lit only by candles on the tables. Very challenging!
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Old May 15th, 2008, 09:58 PM   #5
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Thanks Guys,
You know Travis I think that might be the next frontier for me. I've gotten over shooting, and editing, now maybe I'll focus on Color. How would you suggest I start? My biggest issue in alot of situations (like this day) is that sometimes I cannot get and sustain a good color balance. Under that balcony during the processional was a nightmare of red and orange. Anyway thanks again for the comments. Oh, and I shouldve qualified to say that this is the darkest reception since I've been shooting HD. It is like learning to shoot all over again though. I mean really.
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Old May 15th, 2008, 11:44 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Bill Grant View Post
Thanks Guys,
You know Travis I think that might be the next frontier for me. I've gotten over shooting, and editing, now maybe I'll focus on Color. How would you suggest I start? My biggest issue in alot of situations (like this day) is that sometimes I cannot get and sustain a good color balance. Under that balcony during the processional was a nightmare of red and orange. Anyway thanks again for the comments. Oh, and I shouldve qualified to say that this is the darkest reception since I've been shooting HD. It is like learning to shoot all over again though. I mean really.
Bill
Well, if you've got shooting and editing down, image enhancement would be a great place to go next, especially with an A1 in your hands. I'm jealous!!

I don't know what you edit with, but in Final Cut Pro just start with the 3-way Color Corrector filter. You can find some easy tutorials online that will get you on the right track very quickly. Start with black and white levels. If you drop your blacks to get deeper darker blacks, and adjust your whites to within the limits, you're image will already start looking a lot better. You can then fine-tune your white balance, and adjust your color saturation. You'll be amazed at how you can transform "okay" footage into great looking stuff!

The next step after that is to go beyond "correcting" and starting "grading", or making actual looks. That's where I'm trying to learn right now. Some of the best stuff posted on this forum has had special color grading to enhance the mood of the shots.
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Old May 16th, 2008, 12:31 AM   #7
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Oh, I didn't say I had it down, I said I'm over it... :) Anyway, yeah I use Vegas, and I get very frustratated with the Color Correction. I have used that as well as levels & color curves applied to just about every clip you see there, and still I am not happy necessarily. I don't know that I have the patience you know? Do you use MB looks or any of those plugins...?
Bill
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Old May 16th, 2008, 01:36 AM   #8
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Hey Bill,

Nice clip - great song choice as well.

I'd agree with Travis, some advanced colour correction would really take things to the next level.

Loved the shot of all the bridesmaids and their flowers. I thought the reception footage looked great - I didn't even notice the difficult lighting conditions so good job!

Cheers,

Matthew.
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Old May 16th, 2008, 08:19 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Grant View Post
Oh, I didn't say I had it down, I said I'm over it... :) Anyway, yeah I use Vegas, and I get very frustratated with the Color Correction. I have used that as well as levels & color curves applied to just about every clip you see there, and still I am not happy necessarily. I don't know that I have the patience you know? Do you use MB looks or any of those plugins...?
Bill
Bill: We use MB and really like some of the presets. Some are have way too much drama but you can create your own 'Look' and save it. There are some excellent film curves that we use. We can get more detail out of using Color in FCP but for the money....MB is a great tool. It is a render hog though in some situations.

Nice work on this one by the way.
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Old May 16th, 2008, 12:30 PM   #10
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Go VASST

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Grant View Post
Oh, I didn't say I had it down, I said I'm over it... :) Anyway, yeah I use Vegas, and I get very frustratated with the Color Correction. I have used that as well as levels & color curves applied to just about every clip you see there, and still I am not happy necessarily. I don't know that I have the patience you know? Do you use MB looks or any of those plugins...?
Bill
I've personally put over $400 into training DVDs and the ONE disc that I think every Vegas editor should have is the VASST color correction DVD.

This disc is worth its weight in gold. Just make sure you make a copy for safe keeping in case you lose it because you can't get a replacement unless you buy it all over again (I lost VASST audio correction & haven't decided if it is worth buying again).

What I did on my last edit was CC like crazy on a single clip until I was happy with how it looked. Then I saved those settings as presets and applied them to all the clips shot at the same location & in the same conditions.

This is basically what I did: add Levels, Color Curves, Color Corrector, occasionally the Secondary CC for popping out flower colors. Take the levels tool and while watching the video scopes (watch the waveform scope) and bring your blacks down to "0" using the "input start" slider to lower the darkest darks to black. Then bring up the whites to 100 using the input end. This step right here made the biggest difference of all the CC work. For some reason the XL1/1s I was shooting with just looked like there was a gray film over everything, and this almost completely removed that. Then I went to the color curves and applied the VASST film like preset, but this can be created using a slight "S" shape to bump up the "pop" on colors (don't go too far or else skin tones will look artificial). Then I went to the primary CC and selected the left eye dropper on the right most wheel and selected something in the picture that should be the whitest white. Did the same with the left eye dropper on the middle wheel and selected the same white object. Grab "saturation" slider below the wheels and pumped everything to the max to see if there is any color tine left in the pure white object.

Hope that helps.

As as for how to apply a "color grade to achieve a look.... I have not gotten to that point in my productions. I'm still striving for great accurate color. I'll worry about creating a mood once I have this part solid.
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Old May 16th, 2008, 06:36 PM   #11
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Thanks Jason,
Good advice, that's exactly how I learned to get as far as I have. What happens with me is that I lose patience with it. Those shots under the balcony I spent literally an hour with those tools. My eyes get tired and I think that it looks good and then I go back the other way. Very frustrating. I've learned that as long as I keep the white balance consistently bad I can apply it accross the board. I have trouble when I keep fussing over the white balance while shooting and then I have multiple bad situations to straighten out... Thanks for the comments anyway... and I agree on the Vasst disk it is very good.
Bill
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Old May 17th, 2008, 02:52 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Grant View Post
Those shots under the balcony I spent literally an hour with those tools. My eyes get tired and I think that it looks good and then I go back the other way. Very frustrating. I've learned that as long as I keep the white balance consistently bad I can apply it accross the board. I have trouble when I keep fussing over the white balance while shooting and then I have multiple bad situations to straighten out... Thanks for the comments anyway... and I agree on the Vasst disk it is very good.
Bill
only an hour? Heh, just kidding. But I spent about 20-40 hrs just on CC on the first project that I dove into CC work with real serious intent to get good results. About 1/2 way through that project was when I bought the VASST disc. It sure helped a lot, but even like Douglas mentions, a lot of the CC work is your eye telling you that the footage looks better "here" than "there" etc.

IT is tempting to adjust the WB in camera while shooting. I am still learning when to compensate for changing situations, and when to just leave it.
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