(suspenseful music) (tapping)
Now, watch the one, yeah. (suspenseful music) (tapping)
The next, kind-of level up. We've talked a lot about how to add storytelling, layers of storytelling, different storytelling techniques, or putting things in order. The next level up to your films is to add camera movement. As a photographer, what is it that you manipulate to give your photos a three-dimensional look?
Light, yes, light, exactly. Lighting is what gives your photographs a three-dimensional look. Camera movement gives your films a three-dimensional feel. The other thing it does is it can give you some anticipation, right? If something's sliding or panning, you know something's about to be revealed, so you're anticipating seeing something like that. And did you notice at the very end of that shot the two chess pieces, the dead one and the triumphant one, it was moving into the pieces with ca...
mera movement? That actually isn't movement, although you could film it that way. That's done in editing. It's called scaling. It's just basically zooming. But when you do that, it gives this kind of heightened sense of exactly what just happened. Somebody lost, somebody won, and it changes the entire emotional dynamic to your film.
Yes, and it almost makes it seem like the film's about the pieces, the kings on the chess board, as opposed to the players. Let's get into camera movement, 'cause a big, a lot of people think camera movement looks cool, and it totally does, but we want to have a psychological reason to use it every time. So we're gonna talk about a stable shot, one that doesn't move, a pan. Tilth? We must have been hungry last night when we made this. (laughing)
We did this on purpose because Tilth is a restaurant in Seattle that we're gonna go to tomorrow night. It's the best. If you're here in Seattle, go to Tilth.
Okay, fly on the wall, we're gonna do a slider or a dolly shot. We're gonna talk about a Steadicam, and then we're also gonna talk about a jib. Let's talk about the stable shot. Okay, so stable shots are really good to start with because it's gonna rely on a composition. If you're a photographer, you know all about composition. This should be no problem for you. And just the idea of a stable shot is to make it look like a painting. There's a good filmmaking theory that when you press pause on a movie, it should look like a work of art at any point, so think about that. Shot needs to be still, and it's really common for establishing shots. If you want to just give a really wide perspective, normally, that's what it would be used for, and a lot of times, if I'm gonna use a stable shot, I'd like to have movement in the shot, where there's characters are moving or objects are moving or something like that. You would put that on a tripod, and here is what a stable shot would look like, just so you know. (contemplative music) Notice how nothing ever moves, and see how I have movement. There's activity. It's not dead in the scene or anything like that. Pan, okay, so first thing I need to tell you about a pan is you need a fluid head to do this. If you have a photography tripod, you cannot pan with it. I mean, you can, but it won't look good. So, what Jeff has on here is a fluid head. We recommend the 502 fluid head, which is--
Right back here.
Right there on the back of that slider. We'll pull that out in a second.
And the 502 is a fantastic head. Right in here, this is a 504 head. It's a older head, it's a great head. 502, we like it better.
If you don't want to actually get a tripod, you have your photography tripod, and you love it, and you've got paintings on it or something, you got some sort of sentimental attachment to it, fine. Okay, there are uses for this tripod that make it better, but you can get a fluid head and screw it onto your photography tripod and switch them in and out, and when you get tired of doing that, then you go buy yourself a set of legs.
Then you go buy a set of legs like this, and one of the great thing about buying a video tripod is this Manfrotto right here will have this center column that allows you to adjust on a 180-degree axis like this. In addition to going frontwards and backwards, tilting and panning, you get the ability to level quickly, which a photography tripod is very hard to level quickly 'cause you have to deal with the legs.
So a pan is very simple. It's horizontal movement this way, and you're either following a subject, like this video here. So--
I'm introducing a subject here. You can either introduce a subject, follow movement, follow a subject, or go from one subject to the other. So maybe I have the camera on you, and I want to pan over to you, introducing a new subject. So there's a lot of ways to use pan. Sometimes it's a style choice. If you're in a scene, and it's a conversation or something, you're gonna want to just pan across the face a little bit to add a little movement to it. You can do that. I would use it very sparingly, okay? I wouldn't abuse that, but it can be done, and I've done it, and I do actually like the look.
Our assistant Tyler loves to move the camera. If nothing's kind of happening, he just moves it, thinking that it's gonna give him something easier on editing sometimes, so he just purposefully introduces movement.
A tilt is very similar, except it's just vertical. So you're going up and down as opposed to horizontally, and a lot of what I use a tilt for, you can follow movement like in the "Every Nun" video. It followed the--
The feather all the way up. But, really, at the end of the day, I use it to introduce a scene or exit a scene. Everybody remember the wedding from yesterday, Shannon and Amy? How did I introduce the scene? I tilted down from the sky, right? And it ended the same way. You're gonna see a nice jump cut here in a second. Boom, okay? You know what that is? That's not two shots. That's the exact same shot in reverse. And so I started the same way I ended. I didn't need to use two shots for that, so I'll show you how to do that in editing tomorrow. Slider or dolly. Now, let me just, before I get into the more extreme camera movements, here's my two rules for camera movement. You have to ask yourself when should I move the camera and how. Intensity mimics intensity. Movement mimics movement. What does that mean? So, if I'm in a scene, and it's a intense scene, maybe you're yelling at me for some reason. I don't what I did to piss you off, but I apologize. And I have a shoulder mount here or something. Basically, the idea of a shoulder mount, which I'm gonna show in a second, is to lock frame and to hold frame. So as his head moves, my body moves with it to try to hold the original frame. Here's the whole trick to this. You're not gonna be able to do it. That's the idea, is as you try to follow the movement, the natural human movement is introduced, and as the intensity of his mood picks up, and he's yelling, spit's flying, and he's really upset, the more his head moves, the more I'm gonna have to move to try and lock frame, so he's controlling my movement. I don't do this on purpose. I just do it to follow the frame, and when you see all those handheld movies like "The Hurt Locker," which won Best Picture last year, that whole entire movie was on a shoulder mount, the whole thing. And what that movie did such a good job of, or "Homeland." Anybody watch? You guys watch the show "Homeland?" The reason, I always tell people, "How do you watch "Homeland?"" I watch it like this because it makes you feel like you're actually there, because think about this. Nobody stands like this in the world. No one's like a statue. We move, our heads move, we sway. Apparently, I sway too much. You have movement, so the shoulder mount's one of the best ways to mimic the movement. The slider, okay, is gonna give you that three-dimensional look where foreground and background cross each other, and Jeff was saying, as photographers, light is your biggest source to make things three-dimensional. Camera movement's your biggest source to make things three-dimensional, so a slider, a lot of times, if the scene is smooth, and you want to give it that smooth movement, the slider's gonna be a mechanically smooth movement in any direction. You can use a slider, or you can use a dolly like they have in the back. I'm sure you've seen some dolly shots of us here on the Kessler.
What we recommend: you get your $750 setup. Okay, you know you have to have that. What's the next thing you buy? Buy a slider. That was the holy grail for us--
When we were coming through these ranks.
Or a tile cutter. (laughing)
Yeah, well, we did the tile cutter. Don't try that.
One shot, one shot.
Don't try that, yeah.
So here's what a slider shot looks like. And when I say movement mimics movement, there's gonna be a shot where Kevin's on a rolly chair, and he just rolls his chair, and watch the slider just mimic what he does. So I'm just trying to mimic what's going on. It's smooth. I'll dolly back really slow here. I'll dolly back. I just stop down to keep it. They're praying. I'm smooth. A shoulder mount would look ridiculous here. A shaky camera would look ridiculous. A lot of times I'll come off of objects. I'll come off of a white wall, or I'll say, "Jeff, stand in front of the camera." And I'll just come off his leg, and it'll just look like I'm coming off black or something. I'll come off objects that way, and then it helps me to edit later on. When you put the telephoto lens on, look at the background, how much it moves, and it's almost like the foreground stays still. You can really see it in this next shot here. They're barely moving, but look at the building outside. Look how much it's moving. And that's an 85-millimeter lens on that, and it takes the movement and switches it to the background, which gives you, in my opinion, a better look, and you're gonna make yourself look different from your colleagues who are doing that.
Now, when you buy a slider you're gonna have to buy a fluid head for it. It does not come with a fluid head. But to get that look that Ross was talking about you have to move the fluid head and move the slider at the same time. So you're both panning and sliding in order to get that background to move like that.
Okay, so let me go to the fly on the wall. I was just talking about that earlier, where I'm making the "Hurt Locker" connection. This is my favorite look, and the reason why it's my favorite look is because I'm trying to, I'm in control of the movement, and it really mimics what's going on. Jeff, throw that on your shoulder. So, basically, how that would work, the camera would mount right there. This is actually a Genus--
This is a Genus shoulder mount, which, this gives you the ability to look through the viewfinder. If we had the camera on I could show you that. And it's got a counterweight in the back, and if he's trying to follow me, if you're trying to follow me, and I'm moving, he's just holding frame, right? And we could be boxing right now, but he's holding frame. And see how I move, it makes him move? That's the whole idea of a shoulder mount. Now, if you come from the broadcast world, and you're used to having a Betacam on your shoulder or something like that, and you are being forced to switch to a DSLR, which you probably are, this is a great transition for you because it puts the camera back on your shoulder and gives you that control back. So a lot of people who have come from the broadcast world can't stand the smaller cameras because they don't have that point of contact on the shoulder. The shoulder mount's a great transition to try to get you into the newer technology. And look, she moves, I try to follow her. I'm completely unsuccessful, but that's the whole idea of the shoulder mount, is to try to almost make people feel nervous and there, and it really mimics the humans. Here, I'm not even moving. I'm just standing still, and I'm letting the train take over the movement. That's not shaky, that's realistic. That's how your head, that's what your view would be on a train. And then, of course, you have the ability to pan like that. So you have quick, you have the ability to, you have the 360 motion, or I would say 180, I can't really turn all the way around, with your waist, so that becomes your ability to pan right there. Delkin makes a car mount. It's called a Fat Gecko. You can mount this on your car with suction cups, and it works really well. It's sort of a trust issue the first time you do it, (student laughing) but once you get over that trust issue, and you know the camera's not gonna fall off, you get that, and you just set it on there, and that's what it looks like. And the bounce of the car is okay for us because movement mimics movement, so that's what we're trying to do with that. Steadicam. This is sort of the mother lord of camera movements. All right, this is the Merlin here, which is smaller. I think it's $800? Jeff, correct me if I'm wrong. Camera would mount here.
You hold the handle, and you don't use this hand to hold it still. You use this hand to sorta guide it. So I would put my finger underneath like this, and then I would maybe track across you guys here. All right, this is gonna be your entry-level Steadicam. It's all about balancing it correctly. And then we have here the Steadicam I use mostly is the Pilot, where you put the vest on. The sled comes off, and then these spring arms, let's take this vest completely off. So the vest comes off here. These arms attach to the vest, and it removes you, the person, from the equation, and the springs actually absorb all of the shake and bounce. There, I have a little--
That's about $4900, that Steadicam. The Merlin that we showed you right there is $800. This is great for DSLR, but like you said, it's all about balance. If you get really serious about it, you could buy the other one, the more expensive one.
Here's a good Steadicam shot, and it talks about some lighting, the things you want to think about from our "Filmmaking for Photographers" DVD, from the camera movement section. So right now, I'm gonna cue my camera to walk, and I'm gonna start walking. Scott has the 60D on the Steadicam with the 14-millimeter lens. Now, one reason we use the 60D, the flip-out LCD screen makes things easier to operate. The 14 is good because you don't have to worry about focus. Now, I want you to notice how we've selected a hallway to walk down. See, when we walk down hallways, when it comes to using the Steadicam, and we use walls, we come off of objects, see, this hallway is introducing more movement. It's magnifying the movement. Notice how when he comes around a corner here, he hugs the corner a little more. We're gonna turn the corner here right here. Notice how he hugs the corner. See, when we turn corners and we pass objects, it introduces all sorts of crazy movement, and then as I walk here, you have to understand one thing also. (clap) Let's stop, stay here. Notice how my exposure does not float with what I'm doing. See, there is no auto when it comes to filmmaking. Your exposure is locked, so you need to keep that in mind when you go from room to room to room to room, that you make sure your exposure matches the way you want. So, that's my Steadicam overview. (upbeat music) Now, let's go on to other stuff. So, let's talk about, the last thing I want to talk about camera movement is a jib. Basically, I use this pretty exclusively to intro and exit scenes. You see this a lot in film, where they'll exit a scene, and it'll crane up, jib up, I would say. It's a vertically rising camera, and this just is production value. That's what I would say. Right here we have the indiSYSTEM's?
AIRjib. And the counterweight is water or soda or wine or whatever you want to drink when you're done taking the shot, which is pretty cool. If you want to see, actually, what a jib shot looks like, let's switch to the--
Can we cut to the, there's a jib here in the back. Can we cut to that camera and watch the way that's rising? That's what a jib does. And it's kind of one of the most favorite of film enthusiasts, one of the most favorite moves to make. Generally, the kind of jib that they have here in the back is upwards of $2000. This indiSYSTEM's AIRjib is 229 bucks. That's why you use water. You have to supply your own water.
Yeah, and basically, this comes off here.
And you just open it up. All the way off.
There's a point to this.
There we go.
I'm just thirsty. (crashing) (laughing)
Now we're not balanced anymore.
Yeah, we're not balanced anymore.
You see how that head is heavier? Obviously, we'd use two-liter bottles of Coke or something heavier if we actually had a camera on here, so.
Yeah, and sort of the rule of thumb with the jib counterweight is you want to double your weight that's on the camera. I would say, if you could see a shot of the jib behind us, there's a pretty hefty camera on there, and they actually have weights from a weight room on the back.