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Old June 1st, 2011, 09:34 AM   #1
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Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

One of my May brides called me in a panic, her photographer lost all of her CF cards while flying home. So she asked if I could pull any stills from the video. Anything is better than nothing right?

I'm happy to help her out, but I'm realizing how much time it has taken to scan thought all the video clips. I was wondering how much should I charge for this service? I tried a google search to see if anyone else is doing this, but I found nothing.
If anyone is charging for stills pulled from video, would you mind sharing your thoughts on how to charge a client? I am by no means wanting to be making this a habit, I know that even with the newest DSLRs the quality of video is still less than photo stills. This is purely being offered so that she can have some photos of her day, and I am just wanting to make sure that I am not undercutting the industry standard.
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Old June 1st, 2011, 10:25 AM   #2
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Re: Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

No matter if it's DSLR or not HD video frame is roughly 2Mp, so it's fine for web, but prints are not going to look good, but as you say it's better than nothing, I wouldn't charge anything if it's just a frame grabs, but if she wants retouching to make it look like real photos it's a different story, depending on number of pics she wants somewhere from $500
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Old June 1st, 2011, 10:43 AM   #3
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Re: Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

I've read one of our fellow DVIers offers this. I think it's Philip Howell not sure.
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Old June 1st, 2011, 11:52 AM   #4
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Re: Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

If it was shot well and with plenty of light, a 2MP HD still frame can be printed at 5x7 and even 8x10 at a quality that many consumers would find acceptable. So it's not a stretch to do this. When my wife and I review our wedding photos, it's in the form of a book of proofs that are appx. 5x7. You can take this project on and make it a success.
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Old June 1st, 2011, 12:19 PM   #5
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Re: Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

I do it with 60d, video screen shots, dont do more than prints at 6x4!!! if need be just put them on a disc and let her deal with it!! make sure she understands it is not high quality, i charge 250 for 250 screen shots...
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Old June 1st, 2011, 01:00 PM   #6
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Re: Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mary Angelini View Post
I'm happy to help her out, but I'm realizing how much time it has taken to scan thought all the video clips. I was wondering how much should I charge for this service?
Was the wedding shot in HD or SD? If everything was shot in HD, stills will be much better. Also, progressive mode footage will yield much better prints than interlaced. If you have interlaced footage, you'll need to de-interlace your stills in photoshop. Capturing stills off the timeline is easy in an NLE like Edius...simply park your cursor on the frame you want to grab, then press ctl-t. That's it!

I would charge by the hour, depending on how many stills the bride wants. Have her make a list of shots she wants, then charge $150 per hour for your time to capture and edit stills.
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Old June 1st, 2011, 01:49 PM   #7
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Re: Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

If your video is crisp, progressive and moving, Topaz Moment or the various MSU super resolution
algorithms (Video enhancement software, screen codec and DirectShow tools) will do a decent job for upscaling video to stills
relative to the state of the art.

You do need to have a slightl bit of camera motion so that the algorithms can do their
motion-vector based upscaling magic though. A static/locked off shot will not look better than
say just using a lanczos resize if there is no motion.
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Old June 1st, 2011, 01:49 PM   #8
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Re: Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

First, I'd presume she's getting a refund from the photog? You're "replacing" the lost pix in effect, so I would think that would be a "fair" starting point to discuss it with your client? You're saving both your client/bride AND the doofus who didn't keep track of their media... such "saves" aren't typically cheap!

Second, if you're reasonably good with a photo editing program, and can process (de-interlace, apply appropriate re-touching) the frame grabs you should be able to get something acceptable for 8x10 at least - keep in mind that many wedding photogs apply a "dreamy" look as part of the package - there's lack of resolution and there's creative filters <wink>. If you've never done it, you may have to learn it on the fly, but even though it's not a preferred method, if you're shooting HD, the potential is there to pull stills of usable quality, and with creative post work, get more than acceptable results (the one "bug" in the equation is you shot everything "landscape", so you're going to be cropping for any "portrait" shots, with resulting loss of pixels to work with...).

And yes, since you have 24-60 "stills" per second to go through, selecting the ones that are the best can be tricky and time consuming, especially since you weren't necessarliy shooting for "stills".

But you're the hero here, saving the day, literally... I wouldn't undercharge for the additional service, you're probably far more appreciated than you know, and if you pull off a few dozen great "artistic" shots, you may even find yourself smothered in heaps of praises for your new "skills"!
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Old June 1st, 2011, 03:07 PM   #9
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Re: Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

You can also make her a video slide show of the stills.
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Old June 1st, 2011, 11:05 PM   #10
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Re: Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

I would figure out an appropriate hourly rate and charge her the time. And btw, I just had a corporate client use a 5D video still for a BILLBOARD! I didn't know they were going to do it, but it looks pretty good. So, still away!
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Old June 2nd, 2011, 07:08 AM   #11
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Re: Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

Seriously LOTS of replies! Thanks- I have spoken to the Bride and I will be charging for my labor. Since it's a tedious task at hand, but I am not one to take advantage of one's misfortune.
Thanks again for all the input. :D
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Old June 2nd, 2011, 12:47 PM   #12
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Re: Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

What camera was used?

Frame grabs from a DSLR can be easily printed up to 6X9 assume they are sharp enough.
If they are shot at low ISO they can be easily printed even bigger.

The main problem is motion blur because of the slow shutter speed usually used on video.
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Old June 2nd, 2011, 02:02 PM   #13
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Re: Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

Quote:
Originally Posted by Noel Lising View Post
I've read one of our fellow DVIers offers this. I think it's Philip Howells not sure.
Thanks for the mention Noel - I've been in London doing a client presentation so missed the forum for a couple of days.

We do include in our package about 100 stills from the HD master, on CD with a copyright release. From next year we also include them in an album and on a Sony digital photo frame.

The key to offering these extras is the ease with which they can be done and I guess that depends on the NLE. In Avid Liquid, I can zip through the fused master (which I do for archive anyway) in a matter of minutes, clicking the icon which does a framegrab over a cup of coffee. The stretching of the frames is done painlessly as a batch in Corel Photoprint and the burning to CD is a couple of clicks in Nero. Obviously I can't speak for other NLEs though I'd be surprised if they don't all offer something similar.

Having said all that we do recommend the client doesn't try and make anything more than a 6x4 or maybe a 7x5 from the files.
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Old June 3rd, 2011, 06:22 AM   #14
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Re: Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

Philip, I seem to recall that you are using EX1R cameras which have rather better resolution than Canon DSLRs so should produce better images.
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Old June 3rd, 2011, 06:27 AM   #15
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Re: Need advise on a "unique" video still situation

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spiros Zaharakis View Post
What camera was used?

Frame grabs from a DSLR can be easily printed up to 6X9 assume they are sharp enough.
If they are shot at low ISO they can be easily printed even bigger.

The main problem is motion blur because of the slow shutter speed usually used on video.
Frame grabs from 'proper' HD camcorders e.g. Canon XF300 or Sony EX1R will have higher resolution than a DSLR shooting video so will produce even better images.

Shutter speed will normally be related to frame rate so 25p with 180 degree shutter of 1/50 will have motion blur but shooting at 50p with 1/100 should be fine.
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