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Old November 28th, 2013, 12:55 AM   #1
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On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

I got a portable dolly for my wedding movies and its doing wonders to my videos now. I can really straight angel tracking shots perfectly now.
Since last week, I have been shooting 2 clients and totally loved it, but I have faced some situations and limitations to it, which I need to know, how you people do it, so I can buy the right equipment and try it the next time.

1. My Dolly is this,
It does perfect job for FRONT BACK , BACK FRONT, LEFT RIGHT , RIGHT LEFT.

But what it fails is at curves. Its very hard to set it to do perfect curves or circular POVs like going round the couple and round. Going round the grid's hanging dress,etc .


2. The dolly only works perfect on vitrified tiles or strong wooden surfaces. Everything else like a sofa, or lawn, or outside ground or grass uneven surfaces, it gives all shaky videos, because the surface is not smooth.

What do you guys use for such outside use, and uneven surfaces ?

3. I want to take circular tracking shot of the top flower fixtures or lighting fixtures on the roof from the bottom, so we can get a nice circular moving slow motion of the lighting fixture on our movie, but not able to achieve it with the dolly, as its very hard to go down to the floor and look at the inverted camera and all, and not able to focus from there.
What do you use for that ?


Let me know, if you need examples of what Im looking to achieve.
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Old November 28th, 2013, 02:08 AM   #2
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Re: On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

Hey Soumendra, I'm pretty sure most wedding video people who do circular moves are just using steadicams.

It sounds like you have some sort of Orbit Dolly? If so, then, you're right about the shake -- unless it's a very smooth surface, you're going to get bumps in your footage. The same would apply to any other "universal dolly" or "crab dolly" system, unless it's a big and heavy one...

Apart from steadicam, other options for circling a subject include:
-- something like a skateboard dolly for ring shots, or Cineskates (though they're tricky to manage under wedding conditions), or you rotate the object rather than the camera, with a lazy susan, or by place it on top of a tripod and panning
-- using a normal slider, and panning as you slide
-- using some sort of dedicated curved slider system... Including the Red Rock curved slider, the forthcoming Edelkrone Target Module, or the Kessler Parallax... For other ideas, see the thread on "Curved sliders"
-- using curved track... could be something like Kessler K-Flex (kind of like rubber tubing you can curve into any shape). Or recently, on Kickstarter, the SnapTrack Cinerails got a bit of publicity, for basically doing the same thing with easy-to-buy PVC tubes. I've used the SnapTrack system, and it's fine, assuming you have time to set them up...
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Old November 28th, 2013, 03:00 AM   #3
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Re: On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

Great!

Can I have the link to some videos you did with it ?

Also, just tell me the product names, so I can search on amazon and do some research too.

And got a link to the curves sliders thread ?
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Old November 28th, 2013, 04:46 PM   #4
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Re: On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

Hey,

Re product names, I think I've mentioned them all above! Curved slider thread is on the front page -- just look down the screen a bit.

Samples... Most of the techniques I've mentioned I haven't used under wedding conditions. I don't have a curved slider, and haven't laid out curved track.

To see a simple steadicam of a cake, followed by a very dodgy pan-and-slide shot of bride's nametag, skip ahead to 10:50 (password is "password"):


The pan-and-slide is normally a lot smoother than this; had problems with the slider that day.

For a skateboard dolly shot, check out (at 1:07):


For lazy susan, check out (at 0:38):


For a universal dolly shot, check out (at 4:26):

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Old November 29th, 2013, 08:43 PM   #5
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Re: On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

1st video you shared :

0.30, 0.52, 0.58, 1.12, 3.18 , 8.17, 8.21 : What do you use for those ?

8.27 - 8.35 : What did you to use to follow from back or chase from front ? Also while walking side by side ?

9.36 : What did you use for moving and zooming out ?

10.19 : What did you use while they were walking on the lane ? For moving.



2nd video :

First clip : What did you use for shooting the bride's dress from bottom angle ?
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Old December 1st, 2013, 04:42 AM   #6
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Re: On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

Hey, I haven't reviewed the video, but the answer is going to be steadicam for most things, and slider for the rest. We didn't use any tracks in those videos, and no orbit dolly in the first two as far as I can remember.
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Old December 1st, 2013, 04:58 AM   #7
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Re: On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

Which steadicam do you use ?


Can you show an exa,poe of your steadicam setup ?

I have a wondlan Steadicam with arm jacket and stabilizer, but I have never succeeded in getting a 100% stable position for the camera on the stabilizer.

Its very irritating.
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Old December 1st, 2013, 06:02 AM   #8
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Re: On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

Steadicam Merlin. No vest.

Setup... Usually with 16-35 lens plus Rode VMP on top. Takes one starting weight, three mid weights, one finish weight at the bottom and one mid weight at front.
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Old December 2nd, 2013, 12:11 AM   #9
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Re: On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

Got a picture of yoursteadicam setup bro ?

And do you mean this one,
Steadicam Merlin Camera Stabilizing System MERLIN B&H Photo
?
It says, product not available anymore :(
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Old December 2nd, 2013, 12:58 PM   #10
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Re: On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

Oh wow, the 800$ Merlin 2 is available for 349$ till tomorrow,

Steadicam Merlin 2 Camera Stabilizing System MERLIN2 B&H Photo
?

Shall I just buy it immediately ?
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Old December 2nd, 2013, 09:00 PM   #11
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Re: On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

Up to you! I don't know all the other options out there. Presumably Glidecam is better in windy conditions. Or is there anything really wrong with your current stabiliser?

By the way, the times you mentioned... the one at 30 seconds is just a slider. The bride's dress is the second video is just a slider. Everything else is steadicam.
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Old December 2nd, 2013, 09:36 PM   #12
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Re: On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

1. You use the same Merlin2, right ? How much time does it take every time you want to balance it just before the shoot ?

2. I use this Mini Handheld Stabilizer - Mini Handheld Stabilizer Manufacturers & Suppliers now. The problem is, I have been able to achieve a 100% perfec stabilized position for it, since a year. So, looking to sell it, as its just not working as it should. I have tried many things, but it never gets the 0 position. Im tired, so looking for other options.

3. Im only looking at Merlin, because of its weight. Good choice ?

4. About the aerial moving shots, how is that taken ? Which rig is used ? And how does the camera guy visualize or focus , because the camera must be upside down ?
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Old December 13th, 2013, 12:24 PM   #13
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Re: On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

I found this for curved,
Varavon Arc Slider – Curved Slider CheesyCam


But its overpriced.
Any other cheap options ?
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Old December 13th, 2013, 08:28 PM   #14
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Re: On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

I love the lazy-susan idea- not sure why I haven't picked one up already. Are there particular ones with nice looking surfaces that some of you like to use for ring shots?
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Old December 13th, 2013, 10:00 PM   #15
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Re: On move tracking and circular tracking, how ?

Hey Max, I just have a basic glass one. To make it look nice I find something from the immediate environment. A cloth, a piece of wood etc. Or if you want to get more creative you can do things like invert a glass bowl or vase, place a torch underneath. Can combine with slider moves etc.

I prefer a normal Susan to a battery powered one, but I guess it's much of a muchness.

Note: I don't carry it much anymore. I just put that cloth or piece of wood on the tripod head instead and rotate.
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