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Shooting a starry sky on 5D (video but not timalapse)


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#1 Oskar Arnarson

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Posted 23 May 2010 - 11:45 AM

Wondering if you have a minute to spare... I need to do a scene in a movie, with a starry sky, on a 5D. I know you can do very nice timelapses and fully expose the stars in the sky by taking pictures, but what if this was a POV shot? The sky can't be moving but I need to see the stars. If I were to use a photo, I'd lose the twinkle and it'd be very obvious that it's a photo.. So.. Any way to get a clear, well exposed video of a static night sky on a 5D? Is there maybe a way to animate the pixels within a photo, so it looks like video? And then maybe animate the twinkle in after effects... Or how do you think it's best to go about this?

Oh and actually, it would be best if I could do a shot with actors in it and stars as well... I just sort of thought it was impossible without some special effects in post production.

How do they usually record space in movies, like the scene in Wayne's World where Garth and Wayne are lying on top of Wayne's car and watching the stars as Garth whistles a tune from Star Trek? Is it actual footage of the sky?

Thanks, really appreciate it.
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#2 Brian Drysdale

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Posted 23 May 2010 - 02:47 PM

Here's some time lapse of the night sky and the technical details are in the link.

http://radar.oreilly...tic-center.html

The problem is the long exposure times needed to photograph stars, so you'll need to green screen your actors or they'll have to be extremely still and not move.

In feature films it's usually faked as a painting of stars combined with the live action of the actors.

http://en.wikipedia..../Matte_painting
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#3 Oskar Arnarson

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Posted 24 May 2010 - 03:28 PM

Here's some time lapse of the night sky and the technical details are in the link.

http://radar.oreilly...tic-center.html

The problem is the long exposure times needed to photograph stars, so you'll need to green screen your actors or they'll have to be extremely still and not move.

In feature films it's usually faked as a painting of stars combined with the live action of the actors.

http://en.wikipedia..../Matte_painting


Thanks for the reply. Really appreciate it. I am wondering whether this matte painting technique isn't all done in post nowadays? Thanks.
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#4 Scott Fritzshall

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Posted 24 May 2010 - 11:44 PM

As Brian said, unless you can get really clever with your photography, you're going to need to do it in post. How complicated this will be will depend on a number of factors- does the camera move? What, if anything, crosses in front of the sky?
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#5 Brian Drysdale

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Posted 25 May 2010 - 01:46 AM

Thanks for the reply. Really appreciate it. I am wondering whether this matte painting technique isn't all done in post nowadays? Thanks.


Yes, Matte painting is now done in post, doing this on a live action stage could be time consuming in what could be an expensive or inconvenient place and would require the artist to be on location. Although they used to do it, but nothing stopping you trying it on one of your films.
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#6 Oskar Arnarson

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Posted 28 May 2010 - 03:16 AM

As Brian said, unless you can get really clever with your photography, you're going to need to do it in post. How complicated this will be will depend on a number of factors- does the camera move? What, if anything, crosses in front of the sky?


It would be nice to be able to have the camera tracking. The only thing that crosses the sky is a shooting star.
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