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Phil Holland

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  1. Got your message Harrie. What David is mentioning about the "safe" panning speeds applies here for 24fps. To some this also influences the camera movement when focusing or following a subject as well with smaller movements in frame. One of the more interesting things I've been tinkering with lately is utilizing the Red Motion Mount's "Soft Shutter" mode. This particular effect reduces temporal aliasing, however, it does change the general character of the motion blur itself. You do indeed get a smoother feel and a more painterly style of blur which increasing the focus on the subject matter slightly due to the different style of blur. A good example I saw recently of that on the big screen was in Gone Girl when Detective Bony first pulls up to the house in her police car. It's a crane move with the pan and tilt focusing on the car pulling into the driveway. It's a fairly large pan, but the Soft Shutter effect shows off what's possible there. In shots that do exhibit undesirable judder there's always post motion flow and blurring effects. Most of the time I try to shoot within the boundaries that can be found in the ASC Manual though. It's worked well for a few decades! One thing you can do is shoot with a fatter/wider shutter, like 360 degrees. That's 1/24th for a 24fps time base. That will give you more blur and lessen judder for certain moves. I've certainly used this method on bigger moves.
  2. You're fairly limited by what's available on the market today faster than f/2.8 in the 17-22mm range. However, I'd take a look at the Sigma 20mm f/1.8. If you're looking to spend more money there's a 21mm Olympus f/2 that's pretty nice, but sometimes hard to find.
  3. Just thought I'd jump in and share some notes/progress in terms of my personal experience shooting material on Canon DSLRs. (as we're about to get a slew of new bodies) Rigging Previously I have constructed a rig that looked like this: - bigger The concept behind the rig was to avoid shooting pure handheld and still have something I could plop down on some sticks. Stay quick, stay light, stay small, be flexible. I used that for a bit and things felt fine. Which led to this video: http://www.vimeo.com/15928756 That setup lasted about a year or so of use without too much change. However, this year I've changed a few things: - bigger A nice change was with the "Easom Halo Cage" arms and offsetting them. This allows me to get a grip on the camera handle. There's not a lot of space to quickly move the camera in and out of cage, but it's certainly easier to do with this configuration. Another big change for me was getting rid of the RedRock Micro Handles and switching up to a generic brand that can fold up. These guys collapse flat and can individually be adjusted. Not to mention the can be removed in one piece. The placement of the Zoom H4N (or Marantz unit) has changed to allow me to control and monitor audio more easily. In my first build it was quickly discovered that not being able to see that pesky device was a bad thing. Batteries have to be changed, levels have to monitored. Having it on the right side, also the record button side of the 5D Mark II, allows for me to preroll audio and quickly get the camera rolling. The shotgun position moves around still on this rig, but honestly the microphone is rarely on it when shooting live action. However, when I am handling audio I do have the Sennheiser (sorry about the typo in the graphic) receivers attached via velcro to the should brace. Nice to have all of that again on the right side of the unit. Good for monitoring even when on sticks. Still using the smallHD DP-1, but 90% of my shooting happens still through the Zacuto zFinder V2 or just the LCD. There's a couple of newer solutions on the market, but none are "sexy" enough to attract me. One thing I will be replacing very soon is the RedRock Micro Follow Focus V2. I've destroyed this thing by shooting rough, travel, and general anger out of desire for a higher quality unit. RedRock has recently released their "blue" series follow focus and I'll likely purchase that device. The Material The biggest change this year in terms of working with the material has been the release of Technicolor's CineStyle picture profile. Personally I love it, but there are certainly some who hate it. For cinematographers/shooters who use these tiny cameras it's a real "upgrade". It allows you to step out of the typical video feel of the default profiles and the plastic skin effect of a lot of the other "flat" profiles. It produces a much flatter and almost "film like" feel to the material. Case in point, this scene. This would be wretched to shoot with the default profile as the blacks and shadow detail would crush into each other, however through the use of the CineStyle profile I can shoot and produce something that feels closer to what I feel is right. Technicolor CineStyle - bigger 5D Mark II with a 50mm f/1.2L at f/2.0. ISO 320 at 1/50th. 5600K white balance. Green and pink sunset through the smog of Los Angeles with a light blue sky. Light bounce camera right. Highlight detail nicely contained and saved. The shadows have actual usable detail in them. Also, in terms of the previous profile I was using (Marvel's Cine), the Technicolor CineStyle profile is a bit smoother to color correct and grade. Now much of what I have to do with my material when shooting on HDSLRs is to bring it up to snuff and get it to match other types of material "seamlessly". Super35 is often the target, but recently Alexa and Red One have also had to be visually matched. You can't come close to the pure resolution nor dynamic range of these bodies. Especially the Red Epic with good glass. These current digital SLRs just don't have the resolving power within the lines. Once projecting this material straight onto a 40 foot screen causes screams throughout the darkness. However, in terms of bringing things into a 2K/1080P world I have developed a consistent pipeline to bring things up to visual standard. It usually consists of noise reduction, chromatic blurring (remove the damn moire), rolling shutter correction (if needed), upressing/scaling, sharpening, and applying a film grain pattern of some sort. Usually in that order. Between the noise reduction and the grain pattern application you get rid of a good amount of codec compression artifacts, which is one of the bigger issues for me. Different studios have varying requests regarding this material and sometimes a few of these steps are left out. In the end with, a light grade/correction, you can get something similar to this: Canon 5D Mark II + Technicolor CineStyle + processing for projection (pushed up a bit over a third of a stop). - bigger On a total side note, if you want to squeek the most out of those resolving lines, shooting in anamorphic is a perfectly viable option on both the full frame and 1.6x crop factor bodies. It's just a pain in the butt and expensive. 50mm f/2.8 (@ around f/8) Iscorama 1.5X + 5D Mark II - bigger 100mm f/2.0 (@ around f/10) Panavision 2x + 5D Mark II - bigger Big Conclusion It ain't a perfect world. Shooting with these little monsters and getting images on screen is a wrestling match. I've been extremely lucky to have been able to follow most of the material I've shot from camera, through post, and onto screen. A rarity these days for sure. But it does help ensure quality as opposed to confusion. The biggest learning curves have been getting solid with the follow focus through "loupe" and on a fairly low resolution screen. This will likely be remedied in the next iteration of bodies with full 1080p out while recording. Avoiding "jello cam" hasn't been a tremendous issue once you add the shoulder mount into the mix. That is of course as long as you don't whip pan like you're having a fit. If so, there are things you can do in post, and even more if you involve a VFX studio. My experience as a digital colorist a few trips around the sun ago has helped with managing this material and being acutely aware of what can be "saved" and what will always be lost. That mindset doesn't just apply to these cameras by the way. Having that awareness when shooting is extremely important. Especially when it comes to making sacrifices for a good exposure, like here where I clearly should have ND'd those windows. - bigger My life has surrounded still and motion pictures for a long while and I haven't stepped up to the plate just yet to invest in a more expensive/higher quality camera package. However, after shooting with the Red EPIC last week for pre production and several projects previously with the Red One and Alexa, I see myself maybe making the leap, but that is a very scary world. Big money and big risk. Plus there's new high quality cams out now (Sony F3 comes to mind) and more on the way. I've been in a very fortunate position to play with and gain experience on a lot of these toys... erm.... tools and have had a great time doing it. There's always so much to learn and each camera system has it's fun quirks and kinks. Just thought I'd share some thoughts through my experiences when it comes to this particular type of body thus far. Cheers!
  4. *edit* I should add one statement. Color matching/grade within "reason". You can't push the material around too much, but if you've got yourself a good colorist you can indeed do a lot.
  5. I would say yes. Technicolor's CineStyle is the way to go. I've had to match 5D Mark II footage with Super35, Alexa, and Red One so far this year this year in terms of color and you can get in the ball park. You will be smashing your blacks back down though overall if you want a "pure" black. I shot this at Coachella this year with CineStyle: http://www.vimeo.com/26876870 Brighter than the club lights you are likely going to deal with, but still an extremely dark live performance. In the correction/grade some of these shots are pushed +1.5 stops. I cleaned up the noise though and tossed a 5218 grain pattern over the whole thing.
  6. A shoulder rig and a bit of practice will make your live a lot easier. I'd invest in one. You'll still get a nice hand held feel, but with a lot more stability. If you're shooting for any length of time over an hour or so, it would good to make sure you have some counterbalancing. Longer than that, a belt stabilization rod going up to the shoulder rig really can help your arms out.
  7. I agree with David. I've shot out 5D Mark II and 7D material on a Arrilaser Recorder and did some uprez and sharpen tests at 4k. You'll be fine at 2k.
  8. I had some time after a shoot last week and put together a video about my HDSLR Rig, it's components, and why I chose them. Thought it would be useful and just sharing with the community. http://www.vimeo.com/15928756 Hope you like it, Phil
  9. Thought I'd pop back in and share a recent test with you guys. I'm prepping for a shoot that's going to use some diopters for close ups and all that. Now that the Iscorama 36 has gained popularity a lot of people are using just the adapter on top of other lenses either for different focal lengths or faster glass. Most are using the Nikon f/1.8 as it's extremely easy to adapt and you gain 1 and 1/3 stops over the stock Isco f/2.8 base lens. Nice if you need it, but it does introduce some strange flare and just a bit more pincushion distortion. Here's sort of a worse case example with a +2 diopter. (Don't mind the sharpness, shot was panning) And just some images with the +4. I'll be using the stock Isco lens for most of this shoot. Rest of the stuff will be telephoto/normal glass.
  10. I'm on there posting images when I can. https://twitter.com/phfx
  11. I've done quite a few timelapses for the big screen. Here's some tips: -Use a good lens -Shoot in Manual Mode -There's a trick to locking the aperture on Canon lenses by using the "depth of field preview" button on the front of the camera and slightly disengaging the lens. This fixes the aperture and will eliminate any iris variation that would cause flicker. -Shoot in Camera RAW. -Process the files with a "linear" curve with as much of the shadow detail visible. -Don't do much to the contrast or saturation. If you are concerned about anything really matching, it's a great idea to see a frame of what you are working with. Otherwise this would be enough for a colorist to play with. In terms of it matching cinema primes, in terms of quality you shouldn't be too worried. However, if you are attempting match say a Cooke 50mm you'll want to shoot with something in the 85mm range to match the field of view. Hope that helps, Phil
  12. Those are just two daylight balanced CFLs in china balls. I think 80 watt Enzo bulbs. The setup worked well for this particular shoot as I was shooting things that needed to remain fairly cool.
  13. Hi David, I'm a pretty early adopter of the Cool Lights 600. I have used them a ton. I currently have 5 of them and am looking forward for the 1200 and 2400 unites in development. They are fairly rugged and come with their own shoulder bag which I like a whole lot. It's large enough carry the light, power supply, and a few gels and acrylic panels. I had an acrylic guy cut some panels so I had some rigid diffusion. I don't have any experience with their softboxes yet however. I have done my fair share of gaffing up some diffusion right over the barn doors. I like the light that pops out of them, and they have dimmers which work well for subtle changes. Here's a couple shots of them in action.
  14. It's in Southern California north up the 101 near where it meats the 33 on the way to Ojai. There's a caretaker and I do believe they rent it out for shoots. I've seen it used once.
  15. However, something I did acquire this year in cinema glass, but non anamorphic flavor is a very rare Century Precision Optics 600mm f/4.5 that can be adapted to full frame cameras just fine. I spoke to Schnieder Optics who now own Century Precision. This lens was made in the early 80's and there were likely less than 25 ever manufactured. Holds up pretty well with tele-converters as well. I've even tried stacking 2 2X TCs, but that's really hurting in the aperture/light loss department. It does however occasionally vignette on the 3.2:1 frame, but 16:9 in video mode on these "lil digi VistaVision" cameras works fine. Just a little daunting shooting at this length. - bigger - bigger - bigger 1200mm with a 2X TC - bigger - bigger 100% crop of above - bigger 2400mm with 2 2X TCs. The real issue is that at this length atmospheric and heat distortion start to polute the image. The 2nd converter also destroys a good amount of sharpness and contrast. - bigger However, if you are going for an epic moon shot, this is a full frame image at 2400mm, which I think is pretty nice. - bigger This is a 300mm frame for comparison. - bigger - bigger Phil
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