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Under Cranking with Video


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#1 Antonio Campos

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 01:14 PM

We are shooting a music video at the end of the month and our concept involves one long shot where we want the band playing at normal speed and all the action behind and around them to be going in fast motion. We are planning on shooting HD.
Just looking for suggestions on the best way to accomplish this in video- is there a way of doing it without having to go to AfterEffects or some other compositing program?

Thanks
Antonio
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#2 Keith Mottram

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 01:29 PM

We are shooting a music video at the end of the month and our concept involves one long shot where we want the band playing at normal speed and all the action behind and around them to be going in fast motion. We are planning on shooting HD.
Just looking for suggestions on the best way to accomplish this in video- is there a way of doing it without having to go to AfterEffects or some other compositing program?

Thanks
Antonio


No. You could pull a key in an NLE, but it will look poop. You will need to a reasonably good effects team for a shot like this and you'll need to think hard about lighting so that the lighting for your greenscreen, behind the talent, does not effect your stage lighting- thus making the band look composited.

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#3 Michael Collier

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 02:54 PM

You can go into after effects and rotoscope everything. I did that for a similar shot that lasted 40secs. It took forever and was just one person walking down the street. we shot with a locked down tripod (well we did a pull out from a clock tower to start the plate, but locked it once it got to its final position. We shot the crowd and then cleared the area and had the actor walk down the street. (with a lock on the camera our rotoscope didnt always have to be exact.)
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#4 David Sweetman

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 03:25 PM

Go for the rotoscope. The greenscreen idea is much easier, but if you rotoscope instead, then you can shoot your talent and your background plate at the same location, on the same day, so the lighting will match exactly.

Of course the problem with the rotoscope is it may take 4 minutes per frame, and at 30 frames per second...it will take a long time.

Obviously you can't 'undercrank' with video, but you wouldn't want to anyway; if you do it in post you'll have more control. You may want to open up the shutter as wide as possible to see if it adds more motion blur...I dunno, just shoot a test and mess around with stuff.
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#5 sibte hassan

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 03:48 PM

Another simpler way would be, but it will take toll on the band players, shoot the video on HVX200, set it to 720p @ 48 fps. Shoot the video in one take and then speed up the video 2x to make it 24fps. The band will be performing at normal speed while the people and the background goes crazy.
Changing to 48fps, you need to play back the song and make the band perform at twice as long and twice as slow; a small calculation- song length 3:30, the band performs for 7:00 minutes and sings slowwwwwly, At 60fps you will make them go more slow thats 2.5 times slower, 3:30 will be 8:45minutes. You then dont need to rotoscope or any other effect.
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#6 DetroitDIT

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Posted 03 May 2006 - 08:33 PM

Another simpler way would be, but it will take toll on the band players, shoot the video on HVX200, set it to 720p @ 48 fps. Shoot the video in one take and then speed up the video 2x to make it 24fps. The band will be performing at normal speed while the people and the background goes crazy.
Changing to 48fps, you need to play back the song and make the band perform at twice as long and twice as slow; a small calculation- song length 3:30, the band performs for 7:00 minutes and sings slowwwwwly, At 60fps you will make them go more slow thats 2.5 times slower, 3:30 will be 8:45minutes. You then dont need to rotoscope or any other effect.

That idea works well I did the reverse shot at 48fps audio play back was at 2x with a wide shutter than slowed it down to 24fps and we created a very dreamy effect very easily.
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#7 Julianthebruce

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Posted 30 May 2006 - 01:56 PM

I also think that shooting over cranked on a hvx and having your talent play the track extra slow seems like your best bet.

I shot a 35mm music video in film school that was the exact mirror of what you should do. I shot at 48fps and re-recorded the song twice as fast but kept the pitch the same. Make sure your band has lots of time to practice playing along with the song at the new speed (as you are undercranking it is probably a lot easier that playing a song faster and overcranking). My project ended up working perfectly, the timing of mouth movement lined up perfectly with the song (not that i could not adjust that in post).

So the final effect i got, was a band playing a song and visually their movements were in slow motion, altho the song was still being preformed at its normal speed (thank you Spike Jonze for the idea, from your music video of Weezer - Undone).

So back to your music video, I recommend the HVX if youir going HD as its variable frame rates are perfect for your project. As you are undercranking as opposed to my project where i overcranked you could easily use a dv camera (try to get one with progressive scan). If you would have to rent a dv camera anyway, go for the hvx instead, as it is not that much more $. If you decide to go the dv route just shoot the project on progrssive mode at 30fps and then just speed up the clip as you like in post.

Good luck with you shoot
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#8 Bob Hayes

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Posted 30 May 2006 - 04:16 PM

Band playing slow motion sounds like a great idea. I'd shoot some different angles so in case parts of one don't work you can use another angle. Also I'd think of having your back ground go as fast as they can. I've done this before and it worked great. When sped up it really adds to the pixilization.
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#9 Michael Collier

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 03:38 PM

Just remember that the band might have motion like that greenday video. (dont remember which one, it was off their last album, the colors were very green in the video, you know which one I am talking about.)

Have you thought of the obvious rotoscope, easments? IE, if behind the drummer is a stack of speakers. Then you only have to roto the thing once, since those speakers arent moving, then you can comp in people behind the stage going in fast motion and only have to roto if the singer or guitarist is supposed to walk in front of this comp. Then in the forground if there is a level of seperation, you dont have to roto each individual person, just draw one mask to cover everyone for the length of the shot. if you are really creative you could even put dolly moves in.

I have thought of this technique for some time, but have had no chance to use it. Basicly if you place a camera on your dolly pointing straight at the track (not the camera you plan to shoot with, of course) and have a mark on the dolly every 10-15 inches, then you could be free to shoot the talent perform, and dolly side to side. Then you could take that footage into a laptop NLE, slow it down and then have two monitors together-the output of that slowed down track, and the cameras output. Then you have basicly two shots of lines moving. if they move at the same speed, your dead on, if the line is advanced or retarded from the second monitor you know your speed is off (fine tuning can be accomplished with time remapping. lay a mark for each time a line crosses center of frame, and then lay a keyframe on the track you want corrected. then just line up the keyframes with the marks on the other track and the two shots should mix nearly seamlessly.

i dunno just a thought to spice up the 'band playing in real time with the audience going fast' shot
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#10 David Cox

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 05:06 PM

We are shooting a music video at the end of the month and our concept involves one long shot where we want the band playing at normal speed and all the action behind and around them to be going in fast motion. We are planning on shooting HD.
Just looking for suggestions on the best way to accomplish this in video- is there a way of doing it without having to go to AfterEffects or some other compositing program?

Thanks
Antonio


Actually we have just post produced a project exactly as you describe. There are a couple of shots in our reels at baraka.co.uk, although perhaps I can get the full video up tomorrow since the segments used don?t show the effect too well. Go to baraka.co.uk, select gallery and then showreels. There is a small segment from this video in the music video showreel ? it?s the third item on there. Also the VFX reel has a better breakdown of a shot towards the end of the reel. These reels don?t allow fast forwarding so you?ll just have to sit through them all! In the VFX reel, the shot breakdown is after the mule kicking the chicken ? you?ll see what I mean!

You will inevitably need to do some compositing. You can make it simple (quick) or complicated (time consuming) by using one of (or a mixture of) the following techniques.

1. Very Simple method. Making sure your foreground action and background action are shot in exactly the same lighting set up from a locked off camera, be careful to arrange the action to avoid any cross over. This will allow you to create a clear line (wipe) between the two shot speeds and so you will not need to rotoscope frame by frame. The downside of this method is that the shots will look a little bit contrived.

2. Medium method: Green Screen behind the foreground action. Using a green screen will allow crossover without time-consuming rotoscoping. However, because of the need to light the green screen, the final composites are rarely 100% believable because there is an inevitable difference in lighting between the foreground and background.

3. Time consuming method: As with method 1 but allow cross over. In post production, these crossovers will have to be matted frame by frame by hand. Motion blur is a problem when drawing mattes because the edges are semi transparent. Depending on your post solution, you could shoot sharp frames and add motion blur in post later as long as you have access to a motion detecting blur effect, such as The Foundry?s Kronos.

For the project we did, we used the last method. The benefit is a really natural look to the comps, but the downside is the post production time. We rotoscoped for around 30 hours for approx 90 seconds of two layer comps. If your using a ?home? post system, add a good bit to this.

Something else that can help with method 3; as well as your foreground and background takes, shoot a clean pass too. Again depending on your post solution, difference matting can be used to get a start. But your passes must have EXACTLY the same camera and lighting setups.

Remember that if you want to move the camera, you will need motion control and a camera that can shoot at different speeds. If you shoot locked off, you can speed up in post but if you shoot with a moving camera, the speed difference must be done in camera because speeding up in post would also speed up the camera move. So for example you would shoot your ?fast motion? takes by having (eg) your motion control rig repeat the move at 1/5th speed, and then have your camera shoot at 6FPS (assuming 30FPS is the normal speed). For this, you would ideally use a panasonic varicam.

I?ll see if I can get the full video up for you tomorrow.

David Cox
Baraka Post Production
www.baraka.co.uk


...actually just found the video on our client's website.

Go to drawpictures.co.uk and click on directors (the playing cards). Choose Rupert Jones (the director) and the video is Upper Room "Black & White".

The motion looks a bit steppy but thats just a web video thing.

David Cox
www.baraka.co.uk
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#11 grantsmith

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Posted 08 June 2006 - 06:26 AM

It's probably not appropriate for your shoot but I remeber being on a music video shoot a few years ago.

The shot called for somebody walking down a busy street at normal speed while everyone else was speeded up.

Production managed to get hold of a performance dancer who was trained in carrying out movement in slow motion (this is actually quite a skill). All they had to do was to get her to walk down the street 'slowly' and then speed the footage up in post.

It looked great too. As she was so good at this she looked so natural (no jerky movements)
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