making single camera look like multi

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lacaro
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Joined: Jul 29 2007

Hiya
I have to film a dance company perfomance and I only have one camera (XL2). I intend to grab the audio seperately but how can I get beyond one static shot of the whole performance? I thought about mounting the camera on a tripod and filming one performance and then filming a second performance to get cutaways, close-ups etc., or can I crib it in post (premier) at all? Won´t the latter result in dodgy resolution and therefore quality (if I try to blow-up the image to show faces etc.,)

It is only a short performance so I can´t reposition the camera without loosing footage and I need continuity with the sound!! Ouch what to do? Anyone any suggestions please?

Dave R Smith
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Joined: May 10 2005

Hi Lacro,

The use of cutaway/2nd performance means you will be spend a long long time in post trying to get continuity looking right.

A hired/loaned camera (unmanned and locked off on tripod if necessary) is a much better way for you, the performers and the budget.

Possibly the hire cost can be past on to the client.

fuddam
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Joined: Nov 19 2005

ask them what they want, and give them the budget accordingly

if that's too late, personally would go for the 2nd performance for closeups

Alan Roberts
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Even a two-cam shoot won't get you much, you really need at least three to get enough for a good edit, because you need to be able to move any camera at any time so you need at least another two to provide alternative shots when any one is moving. Plus, you'll need to plan very carefully to make sure you get the shots you want. Event-recording's quite hard to get right.

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HallmarkProductions
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That is a bit harsh Alan - look at it for what it is. 2 cameras will be sufficient, it is hardly looking like this person's requirement is for a broadcast production is it? It is perfectly possible to keep one camera on a wide, and just do closeups with a second. The third camera, whilst nice, is a bit of a luxury for this kind of thing.

Chris
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Alan Roberts
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It might sound harsh, but it's true nontheless. With only two cameras you get stuck for alternatives when the mobile one's on the move for that next great shot. I wsell remember a shoot we did of a ballet with 4 cameras (to 4 iso recorders). We shot it on 4 successive performances to get enough angles to make the production. And we got an award for it as well :)

Get my test cards document, and cards for 625, 525, 720 and 1080. Thanks to Gavin Gration for hosting them.
Camera settings documents are held by Daniel Browning and at the EBU
My book, 'Circles of Confusion' is available here.
Also EBU Tech.3335 tells how to test cameras, and R.118 tells how to use the results.

tom hardwick
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Joined: Apr 8 1999

It sounds as if a two camera shoot at the same performance is the way to go for this small project, but it will mean borrowing one (and testing it first).

I like to work with the locked-off camera immediately to my right, its side-screen flipped back on itself so that I can give it swift glances from time to time to check all's ok. I've long admired the Z1's top screen position, but this is one trick it cannot do. A plus point for the V1, but it's a very small plus point.

I used to do such shoots with my cameras spaced well apart, but the cut from one camera to another can sometimes give a 'crossing the line' look in the finished edit, and I find it best to be on axis with the centre of the theatre as much as possible. That way the stage is square to you and it doesn't appear as if your camera's wonky on the tripod, as it can do if you're but a few degrees off centre-line.

Lastly, assume nothing. Film with your control camera as if the locked-off camera wasn’t there to catch your fall. Get wide shots with your camera just in case. Oh, and get there with loads of time to spare, and set up those radio mics.

tom.

Alan Roberts
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Quite right, don't get into close angles (i.e. don't stray far from the fixed camera), unless you've got a specific effect in mind, and shoot with the roving camera as though it were the only camera, then, at least, most of the footage will be useful.

Get my test cards document, and cards for 625, 525, 720 and 1080. Thanks to Gavin Gration for hosting them.
Camera settings documents are held by Daniel Browning and at the EBU
My book, 'Circles of Confusion' is available here.
Also EBU Tech.3335 tells how to test cameras, and R.118 tells how to use the results.

HallmarkProductions
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Alan Roberts wrote:
It might sound harsh, but it's true nontheless. With only two cameras you get stuck for alternatives when the mobile one's on the move for that next great shot. I wsell remember a shoot we did of a ballet with 4 cameras (to 4 iso recorders). We shot it on 4 successive performances to get enough angles to make the production. And we got an award for it as well :)

I think you are missing the point though Alan - you probably had a much bigger budget to film that ballet. I am reading between lines, but I bet the production is in a somewhat different league. Also, who said anything about a roving camera? In most theatres, that is a pretty difficult thing to achieve unless it is a broadcast production. Surely, it is much more likely that the camera will be on sticks in a fixed location, with closeups being achieved through the zoom. Agree with Tom about keeping the cameras close together.

Chris
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Alan Roberts
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No, I didn't miss the point, I was just making it clear that you need more than just one or two viewpoints in order to get enough to be able to reject a shot because you don't like it, rather than because you've got nothing else.

Get my test cards document, and cards for 625, 525, 720 and 1080. Thanks to Gavin Gration for hosting them.
Camera settings documents are held by Daniel Browning and at the EBU
My book, 'Circles of Confusion' is available here.
Also EBU Tech.3335 tells how to test cameras, and R.118 tells how to use the results.

Matt Dowson
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Joined: Jul 30 2005
FCP Multicam

If you can get a few repeat performances down from at least three angles, add in two cameras for the shoots, cut it in FCP 5 or 6 using the multicam feature would be a way to do it. I've done a few live band/music performances that have worked well - you still need to go through and tweak here and there as things are rarely performed at the same speed every time with second and third takes. Do you have access to FCP?

Corporate Film Production Sony DSR 450 WSP, Canon J15 x 8 lens, Vinten Vision 10; Apple Final Cut Studio, based in sunny Yorkshire. dowson.com

HallmarkProductions
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Matt Dowson wrote:
If you can get a few repeat performances down from at least three angles, add in two cameras for the shoots, cut it in FCP 5 or 6 using the multicam feature would be a way to do it. I've done a few live band/music performances that have worked well - you still need to go through and tweak here and there as things are rarely performed at the same speed every time with second and third takes. Do you have access to FCP?

or Avid Liquid, which has a multicam facility

Chris
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Alan Roberts
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as does Edius.

Get my test cards document, and cards for 625, 525, 720 and 1080. Thanks to Gavin Gration for hosting them.
Camera settings documents are held by Daniel Browning and at the EBU
My book, 'Circles of Confusion' is available here.
Also EBU Tech.3335 tells how to test cameras, and R.118 tells how to use the results.

Dave R Smith
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Joined: May 10 2005

..and Prem Pro, but would have to sub-mix if >4 tracks in multicam mode.

fuddam
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Joined: Nov 19 2005

As does vegas, which outshines all the others, because you can multicam with as many tracks as you need, and each track can have as many clips as you need, i.e. not all the same length / duration - very good for B roll cutaways
AND can incorporate dissolves/crossfades as well as straight cuts
AND adjustments to final cut can be done at any time, and updated immediately
AND can create audio master (ie not only video master)
AND can add unused cuts as Takes, which can be compared on the fly

:D

(that commission is building up nicely!)

Dave R Smith
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fuddam wrote:
As does vegas, which outshines all the others, because you can multicam with as many tracks as you need, and each track can have as many clips as you need, i.e. not all the same length / duration - very good for B roll cutaways
AND can incorporate dissolves/crossfades as well as straight cuts
AND adjustments to final cut can be done at any time, and updated immediately
AND can create audio master (ie not only video master)
AND can add unused cuts as Takes, which can be compared on the fly

:D

(that commission is building up nicely!)

There is no mention of 'multicam' in Vegas 7.0 Help index within the software.
Is there a different 'buzzword' i should be looking for?

fuddam
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Joined: Nov 19 2005

made you look! made you look! hehehe
;)
ok, truth is, all the stuff I said has been available in Vegas since about version 4 - is now v7, as you said, so a good few years. HOWEVER, it requires a plugin. Can do it manually, but too much hassle

so, a number of choices:
Excalibur (at least 25 cams, if nec. jetdv.com)
UltimateS (4 cams max)
Infiniticam (unlimited)
Duocam (free)

the latter 3 are available from vasst2.com

:)

Dave R Smith
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With much time invested in the adobe suite, I need a good reason to go through a learning curve on comparable products - but try and can keep an open mind.
The Sony Vegas freebie only does 2 cameras and I can't justify time/cost in getting other plugins and seeing what they do, so I'll leave Vegas 7 to gather dust until I find a need.

Thank-you for the links.

HallmarkProductions
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fuddam wrote:
As does vegas, which outshines all the others, because you can multicam with as many tracks as you need, and each track can have as many clips as you need, i.e. not all the same length / duration - very good for B roll cutaways
AND can incorporate dissolves/crossfades as well as straight cuts
AND adjustments to final cut can be done at any time, and updated immediately
AND can create audio master (ie not only video master)
AND can add unused cuts as Takes, which can be compared on the fly

:D

(that commission is building up nicely!)

I think that Avid Liquid can do all of that too (although I am not an expert on Multicam). it certainly does not need a plugin to achieve multicam though. i am not sure that you can say that Vegas leaves AL in the shade, fuddam (oh dear, i see a NLE software war looming!)

Chris
Time for a new signature now...

lacaro
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Joined: Jul 29 2007
trying to make single camera look multi

First, i want to say thankyou very much to all of you - I apreciate the posts mucho. I am living and working in a place where I don´t speak english and certainly don´t have anyone to "pick brains" with.

Yes, this is a superbudget job - I´m doing it as a trade for a new external hard drive, and for my showreel (the company is african, poor and good) !! Therefore unless I can blag a second camera of equal quality (and I never give up hope) then it will be two nights filming and hard work in post.

I am cutting the pix with premier pro 2 and have never used the multicam feature before so this is a good time to give it a go. all advice on this subject and the filming is read avidly (sorry) and gratefully. I´ll let you know what happens!

Alan Roberts
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Don't worry, we're here to help. If you have to record two performances, make absolutely sure than one performance is recorded with the camera fixed, because that'll be your main picture, the one you fall back onto when the other's zooming, focusing etc.

Get my test cards document, and cards for 625, 525, 720 and 1080. Thanks to Gavin Gration for hosting them.
Camera settings documents are held by Daniel Browning and at the EBU
My book, 'Circles of Confusion' is available here.
Also EBU Tech.3335 tells how to test cameras, and R.118 tells how to use the results.

Dave R Smith
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Joined: May 10 2005

Hi Lacaro,

Firstly apologies for the spelling error on your name last time I wrote.

Premiere pro multicam is good when <4 cameras and it's all from the same action.

If you do single camera, multiple takes/nights, don't use multicam, because you'll want to juggle each take to take forward and back a bit for steady flow. The performers only need to be a fraction of a second out from previous performance and continuity is gone.

I little workaround on this (not truely synched content), if it's from just 2 sets(days) of footage, is to roughly line the 2 up on your timeline and set scale to 50%. Align one clip left, the other clip right. Then do your editing with razor- you'll be able to see both shots at same time, and move each clip to be used up to track3.

After doing this, you'll need to go back and set all 'motion' to 100% and position centre - which can be done quick using copy/paste.
You'll probably want to keep one camera as 'the anchor' and this will probably be the one for which you are using sound (if not external device).

If you take this approach, any colour matching between clips and other effects for brightness etc are best done first - before you slice it up.

It's easier in practice, but explanation sounds protracted.

Whichever way (multicam or multitrack), some cuts will be done to coincide with screen action - but overall try and keep a steady rythym to them - it's easier on the eye.

HTH

P.S.
Try and get the loan of the second unit. I recently did some work for Martial Arts 'Wooden Dummy' from footage the trainer had done himself - a daily exercise routine, with consecutive takes (some 'close' some 'wide' shots).
Keeping continuity was very time consuming and took much longer than was necessary.