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Basic Camera Work

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  1. Basic Camera Work

  2. The Shot • Each continuous shooting period, from the moment the camera starts shooting until it stops is called a shot. • Each new shot should lead you on to the next. • With a new shot within a scene you want to change camera viewpoint, angle, or distance.

  3. Shot Duration • Average shot is 5 to 15 seconds • If it’s too short, the viewer will be confused. • If it’s too long, the viewer will become bored. • Exceptions are theatrical production, concerts and sporting events. • Maintain viewer interest by using zoom or pan in these incidences.

  4. Camera Shots & Angles

  5. Extreme Long Shot (ELS) • Used to establish location and set the scene. • Know as the establishing shot. • Starts most movies.

  6. Long Shot (LS) • Establishes the scene • Shows your subjects in their surroundings (head to toe) • Tells the viewer where the action is taking place

  7. Medium Long Shot (MLS) • Cut through thighs or shins • Never cut through ankles or knees (no joints)

  8. Medium Shot (MS) • Shows main subjects fully but eliminates much of background • Tells something about who the subjects are and what they are doing and what the movie is about • Cuts through waist

  9. Medium Close up (MCU) • Cuts through Chest • Used in dialogue

  10. Close Up Shot (CU) • Zeros in on a key activity in the movie. • Used to show emotions. • Cuts thru shoulders.

  11. BIG CLOSE-UP (BCU) • Shows small detail even larger than the close up • Forehead to Chin

  12. EXTREME CLOSE UP (XCU) • Focuses on one body part, like eyes or an ear.

  13. Shooting Angle • Shooting Angle: camera’s viewpoint of the subject • Eye Level-Most Common, what you should use most of the time

  14. Shooting Angles (cont) • Low Angle (Worms Eye View)-camera is well below the main part of interest of the subject and is aimed up. • Exaggerates height and can make a subject appear powerful, and authoritative. • A LS or MS from this angle can help establish location

  15. Shooting Angle (cont) • High Angle-camera is above the part of main interest and is aimed down. • Has the effect of reducing the apparent height of a subject and makes subject appear small, weak or insignificant. • Useful for creating dramatic impact, especially for a medium shot. • Best to return to eye level for a close up shot.

  16. Shooting Angle (cont) • Over the Shoulder-used when shooting a conversation between two people • Speakers full face is shown while the camera is aimed over the shoulder of the listener. • Can shoot as MS or CU

  17. Two Shot / Three Shot/Group Shot • Keep subjects in a two shot close together

  18. Camera Steadiness • Best way to keep camera steady is to mount it on a tripod!!! • If you are zoomed in it is more evident if image is unsteady. • Basic Shooting positions: • Standing: stand with legs apart and use elbows braced against body to keep camera steady • Kneeling: support right or left elbow on one knee • Sitting: use back of a chair or brace your back against a wall and brace elbows against body.

  19. Camera Movement & Effects

  20. Panning • Panning: swinging the camera horizontally left to right or right to left while shooting. • Use tripod to achieve effect. • Use to: • follow moving subjects • To shift viewer attention from one subject to another • to display a panoramic view

  21. Panning (cont) • When you pan to shift viewpoint, pan should last two to three seconds • When panning to show panoramic view take six to eight seconds to sweep camera through 45 degree angle. • To follow moving object move camera fast enough to keep subject in frame • Don’t pan unless you have a reason to do it.

  22. Swish Pan • A fast Pan=Swish Pan • Can create an effective transition from one scene to another • Give the viewer the impression that a period of time or a long distance passed between the two shots. • Stop shooting while you are in the first pan and start the camera in motion before beginning the second pan.

  23. Tilting • Sweeping the camera in a vertical direction • Tilt the camera to follow action that rises or falls • Can use to establish location • Hold the camera still for a few seconds at the start and end of the shot.

  24. Trucking • Changing the camera viewpoint continuously while the camera is running by changing camera location • Gives the effect you see when looking out the side window of a moving car • Move the camera sideways or in an arc across the scene without changing the camera to subject distance. • Use a wagon or wheelchair • Gives viewer real sensation of “being there” • To enhance place object in near foreground.

  25. Trucking (cont)

  26. Dollying • Move the camera toward or away from the subject. • Use a dolly, same as you would for trucking. • Begin shot with camera stationary for a few seconds then dolly slowly and steadily toward or away from subject.

  27. Zooming • Doesn’t really change camera-to-subject distance but only makes it appear so. • Begin each shot with a few seconds of non-zoom and end it the same way. • Use manual zooming only for special effects. • Use it selectively • Previewing: Before you record a zoom shot, preview it in the viewfinder. Check the composition of the initial and final frames.

  28. Zooming

  29. Pedestal Shot (Ped Up/Down) A shot in which the position of the camera is raised or lowered with respect to the floor. It’s the equivalent to holding a camera on your shoulder and bending or straightening your knees to change the height of the camera

  30. Lighting OUTDOOR SHOOTING • When shooting outside shoot with the sun behind you to use the sun to light your subject. If you shoot with the sun in front of you your subject will appear dark and look like a silhouette. • The best time to shoot is early morning or late afternoon. Shooting in the afternoon when the sun is directly overhead will cause deep shadows under your subject's eyes and nose. Ideally an overcast day is best because shadows are minimal. • If shooting on a bright day to diffuse the light move the subject to a shady area with a shady background. • To reflect or bounce light use a car sun shade and reflect the light on your subject.

  31. Lighting INDOOR SHOOTING • Shooting inside requires light. To increase the lighting indoors turn on all the lights, remove lamp shades, replace bulbs with a higher wattage bulb. • There is a difference in the color of the light that the sun gives off and the color of the lamps that are used indoors. Indoor lamps give off an orange/reddish color, whereas sunlight is blue. Try to avoid mixing both types of light. • Remove your subject from standing or sitting in front of a window when shooting. This will cause a backlight and your subject will appear to look like a silhouette.

  32. The End