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Music Video Slating


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#1 Andrew Brinkhaus

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Posted 15 December 2007 - 06:08 PM

Will be 2nd'ing on a 2 camera, 35mm music video Wednesday, and was thinking about some prep stuff when I came across something I wasn't entirely sure about.

While slating, how should I mark the rolls between A' and B' cameras? (as I am going to be the only clapper on set.) I'm just not sure how to mark shots, as well as roll info for each camera on one slate, unless it's just common sticks.

As of right now, A' Camera will be mags 1, 2, 3 and B' Camera will be mags 4, 5, 6. I will then lend "A" to A' Camera, and "B" to B' Camera, so the roll would say A3 to indicate A' Camera, 3rd mag. (this works because we won't be loading any new magazines during the day, if we did, it would just continue upwards, "B9, B10" etc.)

However, this still leaves me unsure about how to mark and properly identify two cameras with one slate. Any help is appreciated.
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#2 Camillo Foramitti

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Posted 15 December 2007 - 06:59 PM

Whenever you change a mag on one camera you write only this roll's number on the slate and shoot a few frames. The editor will know exactly what roll it is. When actually shooting you just write the numbers for A and B cameras on the slate.
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#3 Matt Kelly

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Posted 16 December 2007 - 05:17 AM

Just put both rolls numbers on the slate or make two slates (may sound harder than it is). It's pretty much that straightforward in my experience.
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#4 Andrew Brinkhaus

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Posted 16 December 2007 - 07:21 AM

Yeah, maybe it is just that easy, and I'm over analyzing.
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#5 Brad Grimmett

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Posted 16 December 2007 - 01:59 PM

On most music videos, they just want to see the timecode run on the slate a little. They rarely ever hit the sticks. I know that sounds strange, but it's pretty standard. Check first and make sure you know how they want you to do it.
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#6 Andrew Brinkhaus

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Posted 16 December 2007 - 09:28 PM

Yeah, I am familiar with that Brad, though it doesn't really apply, as I wont be using a sync-slate. Really my only worry was a good workflow for marking 2 cameras with one slate, so that in editorial they could easily decipher between the two for all setups. Would it make sense to just mark both cameras at once with common sticks? Or re slate each camera individually with its own shot info...Seems like that would burn a lot of film waiting for B' Cam to get slated.
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#7 Alex Worster

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Posted 16 December 2007 - 10:35 PM

If you're not using sync slates, why would you on a music video, just keep one slate with a red "A" followed by the roll # then a blue "B" right under it with the roll #, particular colors don't matter just as long as they're different. Preferably you'd make it work on an insert slate so it takes up less room but that might get a little cramped with both roll IDs. If you really wanted to make sure the editors knew what you were doing just shoot 15-20 seconds of an 8 by 10 inch sign that says "Cam A = Red" (also include some of the same red color tape on the sign) at the head of the first A cam mag and the same goes for B cam. The goal is to make it as clear as possible. In a situation were you have to slate the cameras separately just put a finger over the whichever Roll ID/camera you're not slating for leaving the correct camera Roll ID showing. This is preferable because I find the less I make the op reframe to get a slate the more they like me. For a common slate just bump the slate with both Roll IDs uncovered. You don't have to worry about burning film while running between cameras because if you're not sync slating you'll just need to bump a few frames before the cameras roll on their respective angle.

All this is if you want to look super anal which is sometimes a good thing for newish ACs because it shows they're detail oriented. However, on most music videos I've worked on, and also talking with other ACs, usually the slate is only used for timecode and we don't even bother with the other info because everything is moving so fast and the editor is going to watch everything anyways so it doesn't really matter what came from which camera, etc.

I think that about covers the long answer. The short answer being: do whatever the 1st wants.
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#8 Andrew Brinkhaus

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Posted 16 December 2007 - 11:04 PM

Thanks Alex. Definitely answered my question, thanks for being specific and including details.
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#9 Brad Grimmett

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Posted 17 December 2007 - 04:56 AM

usually the slate is only used for timecode and we don't even bother with the other info because everything is moving so fast and the editor is going to watch everything anyways so it doesn't really matter what came from which camera, etc.

I think that about covers the long answer. The short answer being: do whatever the 1st wants.

Yep, that about covers it.
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#10 Andrew Brinkhaus

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Posted 17 December 2007 - 09:39 PM

Apparently the 1st AC just got dropped, something came up, so I am moving up to fill in his position. I will communicate a simple system based off of you guys' comments to the 2nd. Thanks again.
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