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Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old January 9th, 2009, 12:12 AM   #1
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5D + Jamaica = Slick Music Video

So finally we had a chance to use the new 5D Mark II in the field.
We took it with us to Jamaica and Patrick tested it in many different ways (including a weeding and surprise SDE we did).

Being in Jamaica to shoot a wedding, we met one very interesting entertainer and artist, Ras Slick. The idea of having him out for a love story shoot with the couple, quickly came to Patrick's mind.

Our plan was to shoot some footage of him singing and dancing to tie it in with the love story, as well as possibly create an independent little music video for Slick. It was also perfect opportunity to test 5D in action, before the wedding.
Patrick shot with new 5D (lenses: mostly 16-35 f2.8, as well as 50 f1.4, 70-200 f2.8, 135 f2, and 45mm tilt shift) and I flew bare EX1 on the flyer. Little did we know how good the shoot would go. In under 2h we got a lot of footage.
We were very impressed with what we got out of 5D. The dynamic range, for instance, stood out right away. We also were disappointed with few things.

Cutting it together, including lip syncing took some time. I've never worked with such a timeline before. 22 video tracks and 48 audio tracks. And try to fit it all on 17" laptop screen. Quite a challenge, but fun experience at the same time.

When Patrick took over for the coloring part, he was quite surprised how easy it was to match two cameras together. The biggest challenge was the crashed blacks in 5D shots, caused by h264 compression.
I must also mention that we converted all the 5D footage to 24P before editing anything.

Both, with shooting and editing, our approach was to create something fast and fun, very upbeat, like the song itself.

For more on the story, you can read my blog post:
StillMotionBlog.com Slick. Jamaica. 5D. // Action!

Patrick will posting more on 5D experience shortly on our blog:
StillMotionBlog.com


I hope you all enjoy it.

I'm looking forward to any comments.
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Old January 9th, 2009, 12:36 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Konrad Czystowski View Post
So finally we had a chance to use the new 5D Mark II in the field.
We took it with us to Jamaica and Patrick tested it in many different ways (including a weeding and surprise SDE we did).

Being in Jamaica to shoot a wedding, we met one very interesting entertainer and artist, Ras Slick. The idea of having him out for a love story shoot with the couple, quickly came to Patrick's mind.

Our plan was to shoot some footage of him singing and dancing to tie it in with the love story, as well as possibly create an independent little music video for Slick. It was also perfect opportunity to test 5D in action, before the wedding.
Patrick shot with new 5D (lenses: mostly 16-35 f2.8, as well as 50 f1.4, 70-200 f2.8, 135 f2, and 45mm tilt shift) and I flew bare EX1 on the flyer. Little did we know how good the shoot would go. In under 2h we got a lot of footage.
We were very impressed with what we got out of 5D. The dynamic range, for instance, stood out right away. We also were disappointed with few things.

Cutting it together, including lip syncing took some time. I've never worked with such a timeline before. 22 video tracks and 48 audio tracks. And try to fit it all on 17" laptop screen. Quite a challenge, but fun experience at the same time.

When Patrick took over for the coloring part, he was quite surprised how easy it was to match two cameras together. The biggest challenge was the crashed blacks in 5D shots, caused by h264 compression.
I must also mention that we converted all the 5D footage to 24P before editing anything.

Both, with shooting and editing, our approach was to create something fast and fun, very upbeat, like the song itself.

For more on the story, you can read my blog post:
StillMotionBlog.com Slick. Jamaica. 5D. // Action!

Patrick will posting more on 5D experience shortly on our blog:
StillMotionBlog.com


I hope you all enjoy it.

I'm looking forward to any comments.
Great job, guys! Love the clarity and colors. Did you use ND filters to stop down the footage outside to get your shallow DOF? I agree that it's fairly straight-forward mixing colors between the 5D and the EX1. Is the 24p just b/c you prefer the esthetic? I'm assuming that's why...

Anyway, again - great clip!
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Old January 9th, 2009, 01:07 AM   #3
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Excellent video. Everything from the locations you chose, the angles you chose, the compositions you chose .. to the phenomenal editing. A++ work, guys.

I'm in awe that you managed 22 video tracks and 48 audio tracks on a LAPTOP. Is this some sort of genetic-mutation laptop that the rest of us have never seen? I have a pretty beefy desktop CPU and it would choke on that load I'm pretty sure.
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Old January 9th, 2009, 02:13 AM   #4
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WOW....that was like watching a "pro" video on MTV! I wouldn't be surprised if you guys end up getting more calls from commercial artists to do their music videos ;).

All in 2 hours of shooting too. Freakin sweet. Can't wait for the workshop...haha.
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Old January 9th, 2009, 10:16 AM   #5
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Excellent video. Everything from the locations you chose, the angles you chose, the compositions you chose .. to the phenomenal editing. A++ work, guys.

I'm in awe that you managed 22 video tracks and 48 audio tracks on a LAPTOP. Is this some sort of genetic-mutation laptop that the rest of us have never seen? I have a pretty beefy desktop CPU and it would choke on that load I'm pretty sure.
Oddly enough, I've had a 48 track edit on my lappy, but I do need to have the second display for everything else (tools, etc). Since my lappy is my primary edit system it handles that all pretty well. (and it is just a P4, but then again, I'm not shooting HD)

But back to their shoot. Amazing colors for sure. The skies just pop out!
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Old January 10th, 2009, 09:00 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Bruce Patterson View Post
Great job, guys! Love the clarity and colors. Did you use ND filters to stop down the footage outside to get your shallow DOF? I agree that it's fairly straight-forward mixing colors between the 5D and the EX1. Is the 24p just b/c you prefer the esthetic? I'm assuming that's why...

Anyway, again - great clip!

Thanks, Bruce.
We didn't have any ND filters on us, but we are definitely are getting them for our next shoot outdoors.
24p is just something we love. The motion looks so much better and it helps the footage look less like video.
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Old January 10th, 2009, 09:11 AM   #7
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Travis, the funniest part is that I need glasses, but didn't order them until I got back from Jamaica (it's my first glasses ever, so it took me some time).
So I was about 10" from the monitor, as I changed the size of the tracks to the smallest, something I've never done before. They're looked like spaghetti :)

Thanks Jason.
I'm curious what kind of project requires from you to have 48 tracks.
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Old January 10th, 2009, 09:19 AM   #8
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WOW....that was like watching a "pro" video on MTV! I wouldn't be surprised if you guys end up getting more calls from commercial artists to do their music videos ;).

All in 2 hours of shooting too. Freakin sweet. Can't wait for the workshop...haha.

Thanks Randy.
That ii for sure something I would love to see us do.

We can't wait for the workshop either. That's all we talk about right now. :)
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Old January 10th, 2009, 01:21 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Konrad Czystowski View Post
Travis, the funniest part is that I need glasses, but didn't order them until I got back from Jamaica (it's my first glasses ever, so it took me some time).
So I was about 10" from the monitor, as I changed the size of the tracks to the smallest, something I've never done before. They're looked like spaghetti :)

Thanks Jason.
I'm curious what kind of project requires from you to have 48 tracks.
Wow, that must have made editing really tough!

You know, I find it REALLY ironic that the StillMotion team has steadicams and brevis and all this cool stuff, but not ND filters. That just made me laugh. d;-)
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Old January 10th, 2009, 02:49 PM   #10
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I'm curious what kind of project requires from you to have 48 tracks.
"Requires" and "managed to accumulate that many tracks" are completely different because I in no way claim to be an efficient editor. :-)

Those tracks are mostly audio. For example, for a 3 cam shoot each cam has a track just for all the source footage and a track for its audio (muted). Some cams have multiple channel audio from different sources (lapel, shotgun, etc), so each source gets its own track and then a track for each audio source after tweakign in soundforge for normalization, etc. Then that audio is mirrored on other tracks for the 5.1 work if I want it mixed in a bit to the sides instead of just centered. The soundtrack is on its own tracks (centered speakers and one for LEF), and there are usually at least two or three soundtracks (so I can exactly control the crossfade) times two for the centered audio + LFE.

If I do any fancy graphics like on my new promo, then the chromakey screen takes a track, the tv image took a track, the black BG took a track, the parent track for motion, etc etc. The promo has 21 tracks. Any folly work or background audio layers also have their own tracks, especially if they are not synced to the visuals playing out on screen.

This compositing nightmare was 30 tracks with lots and lots of parent track movements synched with other track movements, etc.

Also, I double all the non-soundtrack audio tracks for a 5.1 vs stereo mix because WMV renders of a 5.1 timeline ignores anything on center channel, so I need to mute the 5.1 mixed tracks, and unmute the stereo mixed tracks for the non-AC3 renders.

It adds up pretty fast. I don't claim it to be efficient, but this way when I mute a track I know there is only one source on that track on the entire timeline (like say, camera B's recording of the left channel which is the pastor's lapel mic for the ceremony).

And again, I'm only working in SD still, so RAID-0 in my laptop (man I love this little system) can handle playing all that junk back. Now if only it had something besides a P4 in it.....
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