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


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Old June 8th, 2006, 09:58 PM   #16
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Here's a clip from a wedding I filmed (in the rain outside) using a Glidecam 2000 (cam was a Sony VX1000 - not the best for low light):

http://rapidshare.de/files/21762640/...tion_large.mov

The glidecam 2k is a great piece of hardware, but heavy and tough on the wrist and arms, even with an armbrace.

Just got a Steadicam Merlin. I had one day of practice so far. Here's a clip of some practice shots (cam is a Sony TRV900 w/wide angle lens and extended-life battery):

http://rapidshare.de/files/22588734/..._footage_1.mov

I love the Merlin for its lightweight and compact handling. It's an excellent piece, but pricey.
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Old June 9th, 2006, 07:09 AM   #17
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the weather that day...

Danny- The wedding day was overcast and rainy, which I'm sure added to the gloomy feel, although I went with it in post and it made for some cool stills. Check out the opening still I used for the highlight vid...gloomy enough for ya?
The Brits seemed to think the weather was normal...j/k...Vin

http://www.firsttakestudios.com/demos/butters1sm.wmv
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Old June 9th, 2006, 09:26 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoochul Chong
Patrick,

Do you find that using a full body stabilizer is too intrusive for a wedding? I mean you probably stick out like a sore thumb at a wedding? no?
thanks
Sorry I missed the first part.

No, after practice I don't find it too intrusive whatsoever. There are soem tight locations that I wouldn't use it which also goes for some very small packages, but overall I like to use it for the preps, some photo-session clips, certain parts of the ceremony and lots of the reception.

My unit only takes about 1 min to balance so it is much quicker to switch if I need something else, pus I usually leave it balanced all day with a camera and just have another camera on a monopod nearby. For covering something like a present exchange in the morning or the bouquet and garter toss (which I would normally just add small clips into a montage like piece) I find this stabilizer allows me to add the raw footage in a special features section and it often looks very good (for raw footage) all the way through with one camera, which I couldn't do before.

As for getting noticed, it is much much better than I had thought it would be. After the first couple weddings I almost think nobody notices anymore. We do go over these options with the couple prior to the wedding and nobody yet has even considered not opting for the stabilizer and nobody has had any bad experiences. The only reactions I have really gotten so far are from friends who are into video and what to know what its called and what not, but otherwise nothing at all.

Keep in mind we often use a small studio light at the reception for speeches and bring a crane out from time to time to grab some shots at the photo-session, which is not everybodies style and gives you an idea of how my opinion may be biased.
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Old June 17th, 2006, 12:14 PM   #19
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Heres my Wedding Highlights with the use of Steadicam Flyer at the reception:

http://www.greendaydigital.com/downl...6_download.mov

http://www.greendaydigital.com/downl...hts%20Dunn.mp4

cheers

Chris
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Old June 17th, 2006, 12:55 PM   #20
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frankly i tried all the cameramount you can think of and there is no equivalent to a well balanced shoulder mount.
wearing a vest with arm/stabilzer is just heavy and painful.
additionaly, it is almost impossible to use in crowded place without bumping everywhere.
the turtle X stuff (hanging the camera in front of you ) is very nice because the camera has no weight anymore, but it does not really give stabilization (especially when walking) and can be as bulky as a steadicam.
every stuff you have to lift with your arms become very too heavy.
A well balanced shoulder mount remove all the weight from your arms, let you walk with smooth stabilization (your knees...), can be setup on and off in seconds, let you add and remove accessories without tricky balancing and does not make you look strange in a church or anywhere else.
you still can control the camera position (in case you need to roll the cam,aim up or down) the way you want.
just make sure you choos a model that can add counterweight in you back, so you can balance it properly. Some model propose a part that clip on your belt , it is ok but less efficient.

if you want any idea of how it can look: http://www.zacuto-rentals.com/0301.jpg
(i find this one a bit long on the back of the cameraman, because you can bump when you turn)
you can easily build one for less than 150$ in one weekend

Last edited by Giroud Francois; June 17th, 2006 at 01:40 PM.
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Old June 17th, 2006, 01:59 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Giroud Francois
frankly i tried all the cameramount you can think of and there is no equivalent to a well balanced shoulder mount.
wearing a vest with arm/stabilzer is just heavy and painful.
additionaly, it is almost impossible to use in crowded place without bumping everywhere.
I use the body mounted stabilizer weekly and I have no problems working in very crowded environments. Once you get used to the rig it becomes part of your body and you can move quite easily in very tight or crowded places. I don't use it everywhere but the quality of the footage, if your looking for the more dramatic moving style as opposed to the more staitionary and stable angle, cannot be beat in my opinion. There are many great glidecam users on here that can achieve the same results but this does provide less strain and definately offers many advantages. I've used many shoulder mounted braces and we currently bring the spiderbrace with us, but I don't think it comes anywhere close to competing with a glidecam.

Keep in mind when looking at any stabilizer, or even doing hand held work, creativity is the most important variable. No stabilizer will give you amazing footage without any work.
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Old June 17th, 2006, 02:00 PM   #22
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Holy cow, that thing looks more like a bazooka than a camcorder.
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Old June 17th, 2006, 03:16 PM   #23
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i got a glidecam (v20) since a long time and i know how to use it.
yes you can run and jump with it and still get smooth shots.
I do not think you need to do that in a wedding.
if it is a matter to walk (even in stairway) and get a steady shot, i can defy you (my shoulder mount against your stabilizer) and i am confident that i will get shot as smooth as yours (even with less balancing)
the difference ?
it will cost me 1/10th of the price, is smaller, lighter, it take 3 seconds to be operational (how much time you need to wear on/off a glide cam ?)
I can use all the button of the camera, including zoom and focus, nd filter, gain etc...)
i can add an accessory on the cam (even a teleprompter) or swap the cam without spending LOTS of time to rebalance everything. (unbalanced glidecam is a nightmare).
i can even fix a digital camera on it a take picture while shooting video.
I can lend it to somebody without a 2 day training and be confident that the shot will be usable.
believe me, try it and you will never use your glidecam again.
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Old June 17th, 2006, 04:01 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Giroud Francois
i got a glidecam (v20) since a long time and i know how to use it.
yes you can run and jump with it and still get smooth shots.
I do not think you need to do that in a wedding.

it will cost me 1/10th of the price, is smaller, lighter, it take 3 seconds to be operational (how much time you need to wear on/off a glide cam ?)
I can use all the button of the camera, including zoom and focus, nd filter, gain etc...)
I think that is the differenc right there. If you feel that you don't need to run and jump at a wedding then your option works perfect for you, and likely people who feel the same way as you. Each tool has specific advantages and everybody will have their preferences.

For what its worth, I have a camera mounted to my bounted mounted stabilizer ready to go so it takes about 30 seconds to load everything up and be perfectly balanced. If I remove the camera from the sled via the quick release, it usually takes an extra 90 seconds to rebalance.
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Old June 17th, 2006, 05:28 PM   #25
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ok, anyway i am not trying to convince anybody, i have nothing to sell.
I just answer the question, with the solid experience of somebody who had the chance to compare almost all the solutions available and give unbiased opinion, provided that you are looking for good , simple, cheap way to improve your shots.
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Old June 17th, 2006, 06:17 PM   #26
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More Steadicam Merlin footage.....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U4zcJ8L2-QA
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Old June 18th, 2006, 06:58 AM   #27
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Giroud,
Evxtly which model are you using (and talking about)?
Bruce Yarock
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Old June 18th, 2006, 09:28 AM   #28
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exactly, it is a home made model, but the principle is the same as the picture here.
http://www.zacuto-rentals.com/0301.jpg
the main thing is a rail, made of two tubes.
on these two tubes you can slide the different part so you get a good ergonomic and can balance the weight properly.
in the front you put the the monitor and camera, in the middle (on your shoulder) the shoulder support, and in the back, some counterweight (ideally "smart" counterweight like batteries or disk recorder).
i build mine from aluminium parts from the supermarket that fits together (picture will follow) so i just need to cut the correct length and assemble with pop rivets.
this requires no special tools (metallic saw, drill machine) and can be assembled in few hours. raw material cost less than 80$.
For sure you can find some "rig" already made, but they were all out of my budget and i would be reluctant to modify something i pay over 500$.
with these one (i already made several of them) there is no shame to saw and drill to customize them, knowing if you break a tube or another part, it will cost only few dollars to replace.
You can see here some part used to build a support for my miniDV35 with upside down vx2000.
http://www.giroud.com/minidv/frame1.jpg
http://www.giroud.com/minidv/frame2.jpg
the base (the two tubes and sliding parts) are the same as the shoulder mount.
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