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Shooting white in HD exteriors


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#1 Fernando Getz

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Posted 16 November 2005 - 06:42 AM

I have a shoot with the Sony HDV. The subject is a white box that moves all over town on a sunny day. I'm really worried that it's going to blow up all over the place and of course I have no time for testing. Does anybody know a good way to stain or darken the box without it being to evident? Thanks

Edited by DesPa, 16 November 2005 - 06:43 AM.

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#2 Stephen Williams

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Posted 16 November 2005 - 10:20 AM

I have a shoot with the Sony HDV. The subject is a white box that moves all over town on a sunny day. I'm really worried that it's going to blow up all over the place and of course I have no time for testing. Does anybody know a good way to stain or darken the box without it being to evident? Thanks


Hi,

Paint it grey!

Stephen
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#3 BritLoader

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Posted 16 November 2005 - 11:25 AM

I know there is 'TV white', which is basically a light grey, but is there a specific percentage that this should be or does this vary entirely on the lighting conditions.
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#4 Jim Murdoch

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Posted 17 November 2005 - 05:35 AM

I have a shoot with the Sony HDV. The subject is a white box that moves all over town on a sunny day. I'm really worried that it's going to blow up all over the place and of course I have no time for testing. Does anybody know a good way to stain or darken the box without it being to evident? Thanks


If the box has to be a "standard" shade of white, what you can do is take a greyscale chart to a paint store that has an automatic paint matcher and get them to mix up some paint that matches the brightest grey bar that doesn't burn out. A lot of places these days will even pack it into a pressure-pack can while you wait. Only trouble is, if there's something brighter in the same scene, your box will tend to look grey.

Apart from doing that, or getting a more expensive camera (or dare I say it; using film:-), I don't think there is any real solution. Does it have to be a white box? And I strongly suggest you make time for testing, otherwise you're going to find yourself up a certain creek sans paddle!
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#5 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 17 November 2005 - 11:05 AM

Well, if it's "white" technically it would be "blown out" i.e. clipped -- I mean, if you could see detail in the white box, it would technically not be white but a very light, light gray.

Basically, if you don't want the box to be clipped, you could decide to alway expose it at 99 IRE, for example, no matter what the surroundings should be exposed at, and then tweak in post color-correction.

OR create a series of light gray boxes designed to hit 99 IRE once you've exposed the background properly.

You can usually set the zebras to appear at 100 or 99 IRE, whatever, in the viewfinder, but I'm not sure about the Z1.

But if the white surface can be a featureless blob, then letting it get clipped (go over 100 IRE) is OK -- it won't be "illegal" since that's why it gets clipped. It will just be white and featureless.
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#6 Michael Collier

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Posted 17 November 2005 - 06:50 PM

I like to aim for IRE 90 for a white object in my scenes. reason being is that upper 10% can capture detail in the highlights, and give you some headroom for color correction, which is almost a nessecity on any video project.

the Z1 has 2 zebra patterns. zebra and clipping. go into the menu and set the zebra to 90IRE. then when your exposing the shot, switch back and forth, try and get the box to be covered by zebra, then make sure nothing is clipping other than maybe hotspots of in frame lights, etc.

Dont worry too much about the blow-out effect. That is mostly limited to CCDs, the Z1 is CMOS. we shot a scene on the movie I am working on (also with the Z1) and caught a nasty hightlight from the sun reflecting off a table directly into the lens (we were using bounced lighting, so the scene definatly was not exposed for this reflection) and the Z1 handled it beautifully.
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#7 Peter J DeCrescenzo

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Posted 17 November 2005 - 07:45 PM

... Dont worry too much about the blow-out effect. That is mostly limited to CCDs, the Z1 is CMOS. ...


FYI: According to Sony's product information, the Z1 has three 1/3-inch "Super HAD" CCD -- not CMOS -- image sensors.

All the best,

- Peter DeCrescenzo
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#8 Michael Collier

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Posted 17 November 2005 - 08:21 PM

FYI: According to Sony's product information, the Z1 has three 1/3-inch "Super HAD" CCD -- not CMOS -- image sensors.


wow, didnt know that. I read somewhere it was CMOS, but maybe I was looking at a different camera. If it isnt CMOS, then the CCD does have provisions to drain excess charge in a pixel because even with really bright spots well above IRE100 it doesnt bloom very much, and verticle smear is almost non-existent.

Thanks for the correction Peter
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#9 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 17 November 2005 - 08:29 PM

Trouble is that exposing a white box in full sun at 90 IRE means that the surrounding scene is underexposed.

The best thing would be to make a light gray box and make your life easier...
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#10 Dickson Sorensen

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Posted 17 November 2005 - 08:34 PM

Here's an idea that may help.

Paint the sides of the box each a varying shade of off white as above. The lightest on the top of the box, a little darker on one side and even darker on the other side. Your biggest problem is if two or three sides should clip and turn it into a blob. Turn the box with the darkest side into the natural shadow. Paint the back of the box the reverse. You could paint a few boxes by varying amounts and carry them to cover different lighting conditions.
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#11 Stephen Williams

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Posted 18 November 2005 - 03:25 AM

, then letting it get clipped (go over 100 IRE) is OK -- it won't be "illegal" since that's why it gets clipped. It will just be white and featureless.


Hi,

Be aware most Sony cameras clip at about 108% from factory. I have seen facility companies turn down the video levels, because its too high!

Stephen
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