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Multi- camera concert shoot


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#1 Justin Newry

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 10:55 AM

Hello all, I'm new here! (first post) and quite honestly I don't know much about cinematography at all. In fact, I tried to google what I needed and my results never came up with anything that was remotely what I required lol. I have a lot of knowledge of recording music and live bands but no experience in cinematography or directing or anything video SO, here's what I need:

I'm doing a Gospel concert DVD recording in Upstate NY (Albany, NY) and I need:

1. Multi-camera (5) team to shoot the concert and meet with me before hand to make the recording a success.

2. I want to shoot in the best quality possible but I don't have blu-ray in mind. I need to know what format is best to shoot in and what should I expect to receive when the shoot is over. (in the music studio I'd have a hard drive... is this the same kinda deal?)

3. I'm going to have professional lighting at the concert. I was told that it's best to shoot with the lights on in the crowd cause the lights on the stage shining into the audience don't make people look the best. (reds, blues, stuff like that)

4. Does the company give me footage from all 5 camera's for me to edit in post production or am I pretty dumb by thinking this??


The biggest thing I'm looking for is #1. I need the company so I can do some quotes and stuff... but this seems like a great community of people so I guessed I'd post it here too.
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#2 Oron Cohen

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 03:12 PM

Hello all, I'm new here! (first post) and quite honestly I don't know much about cinematography at all. In fact, I tried to google what I needed and my results never came up with anything that was remotely what I required lol. I have a lot of knowledge of recording music and live bands but no experience in cinematography or directing or anything video SO, here's what I need:

I'm doing a Gospel concert DVD recording in Upstate NY (Albany, NY) and I need:

1. Multi-camera (5) team to shoot the concert and meet with me before hand to make the recording a success.

2. I want to shoot in the best quality possible but I don't have blu-ray in mind. I need to know what format is best to shoot in and what should I expect to receive when the shoot is over. (in the music studio I'd have a hard drive... is this the same kinda deal?)

3. I'm going to have professional lighting at the concert. I was told that it's best to shoot with the lights on in the crowd cause the lights on the stage shining into the audience don't make people look the best. (reds, blues, stuff like that)

4. Does the company give me footage from all 5 camera's for me to edit in post production or am I pretty dumb by thinking this??


The biggest thing I'm looking for is #1. I need the company so I can do some quotes and stuff... but this seems like a great community of people so I guessed I'd post it here too.

Hey there,

In short I would say,
1) a short google search using those key words got me many results:" video production ny events " , I should just mention that in my opinion it will be a mistake to find 5 different people to film the show(I have extensive experience shooting live concerts in the past), You should find a good production company that will fit the bill, they should get 5 camera man that know how to work with each other and more importantly a director that will guide all the cameras live when the show is happening.

2) it's not a problem, you shoot in HD (HPX500, EX-3 or similar)and when you finish editing you can make an HD file of it then turn it to anything you like: DVD, file, Blue-ray.

3)lighting for the stage and lighting for video are completely different things, what you would like if possible is that the lighting guys will be kind enough to give you some more fill light, because stage lighting is usually too contrasty for video :-)

4)If you want to edit yourself(not a good idea unless you are a professional editor), so yes of course, they give you all the footage, even if you decide to make the editing with the company of your choice they will still give you all the footage.

Have a nice show :-)
O.

Edited by Oron Cohen, 11 October 2010 - 03:16 PM.

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#3 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 05:04 PM

Hi,

It sounds like it might be worth your at least consulting with a director on this.

Further to earlier answers, you can hire crews (with or without their own gear) and they will shoot as directed. Most people who do jobbing camerawork for a living will have shot concerts before, so if you get them there a couple of hours prior and have a chat about what you're going to do, they'll probably be able to advise you (or frankly, if you're inexperienced, sort out amongst themselves with your input) what the best approach is. You'll take five tapes home with you and cut it as you see fit. Be upfront about your level of expertise and nobody will have a problem with it; what you are attempting to do is reasonably straightforward and everyday and most crew will be happy to discuss what you're after.

Things to watch include the following, based on the assumption that you want to organise and direct it yourself. You might be better looking for a company set up to do this sort of thing, but it is done by pulling together a bunch of freelancers, all the time. Begin stream of consciousness:

As our previous correspondent accurately points out, stage lighting does not work well for video. Dark shadows go black, bright highlights clip, saturated colours glow like neon. If you actually look with your eyes at a musical concert that's been lit for TV, it usually looks terribly bland and flat. If you cannot control the lighting, if the show is not being done mainly as an exercise in videography as opposed to primarily being done for the live audience, you can still shoot it and get acceptable results but it will not look like a TV show. Speak to the lighting people well ahead of the event to discuss this.

In a normal live situation camera crews would have voice communications with each other and the director. You can, in a real pinch, do without this, and just ask people to hold shots as long as they can, but there will inevitably come a moment when everyone decides to reframe at once. For this reason, one of the cameras tends to be asked to do a continuously-safe overview of the stage or something like that so you always have something to go to. You can rent communications gear and run cabling to a monitoring location, but at that point you're likely to need more crew and you might want to look into a package deal.

You should obviously try to ensure that everyone's shooting with the same gear, set up in the same way, so the pictures are somewhat consistent. Even factory fresh cameras don't always exactly match but it should be near enough.

Be aware of modern cameras that shoot to flash cards. This may mean a significant data wrangling effort at the event, to ensure you have the equipment and software you need to offload all the cards and store the results on something you can take away with you. Owner operated or rented cameras will generally come with media but they'll usually want it back with the cameras. With the physical running around this can take and the need to visually verify card offloads, this can become a full time job for someone. Make sure these factors and your edit software will work together before the fact.


Be aware of where you want your cameras to be, and ensure the venue can provide at least space, but probably also power, maybe elevated platforms, and any cable runs you may need for communications and monitoring. Maintain an awareness of the effect this may have on the saleability of seats that have their sightlines to the stage obscured by your equipment and people.


Take an audio feed to your cameras or to a standalone audio recorder from the house sound people, but discuss with them whether they're able and willing to put any work into your sound mix, as opposed to just sending you whatever they're feeding to the house PA. Sometimes the mix they use may not suit you and I have had several situations where there were serious quality problems with a house sound feed because nobody was monitoring it. Monitor it. Also evaluate what you might need to capture audience sound such as applause, which will probably be barely audible on the musicians' and singers' microphones.


Don't worry too much about sync - it's usually quite easy to eyeball it in.


End stream of consciousness.


P
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#4 Justin Newry

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 09:44 PM

First, THANKS!!! you guys provided some Excellent information!!!

Hey there,

In short I would say,
1) a short google search using those key words got me many results:" video production ny events " , I should just mention that in my opinion it will be a mistake to find 5 different people to film the show(I have extensive experience shooting live concerts in the past), You should find a good production company that will fit the bill, they should get 5 camera man that know how to work with each other and more importantly a director that will guide all the cameras live when the show is happening.

lol I tried to google everything but everytime I did I got post production editing houses and stuff of that nature. I want to find a team! I definitely knew I wanted this because then I can sign some sort of legal agreement and not be worried that people aren't going to show up.



Take an audio feed to your cameras or to a standalone audio recorder from the house sound people, but discuss with them whether they're able and willing to put any work into your sound mix, as opposed to just sending you whatever they're feeding to the house PA. Sometimes the mix they use may not suit you and I have had several situations where there were serious quality problems with a house sound feed because nobody was monitoring it. Monitor it. Also evaluate what you might need to capture audience sound such as applause, which will probably be barely audible on the musicians' and singers' microphones.[/size]

Well I was planning on actually doing a live recording of the whole event into protools so that I could do edits later and then match everything up to be synced with the video. Is this a smart idea?? The reason I'm asking is because I kinda want to have really clean audio and not just a live board mix I want to be able to add instruments that aren't actually there and be able to mix and master the recording to sound GREAT instead of just Ok.. I will also have a few crowd mics that will be recording also and we'll record fake crowd noise at the beginning of the show before anyone even gets out there lol (trade secrets of the music industry shhhh) haha
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#5 Phil Jackson

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Posted 21 October 2010 - 02:24 PM

First, THANKS!!! you guys provided some Excellent information!!!


lol I tried to google everything but everytime I did I got post production editing houses and stuff of that nature. I want to find a team! I definitely knew I wanted this because then I can sign some sort of legal agreement and not be worried that people aren't going to show up.




Well I was planning on actually doing a live recording of the whole event into protools so that I could do edits later and then match everything up to be synced with the video. Is this a smart idea?? The reason I'm asking is because I kinda want to have really clean audio and not just a live board mix I want to be able to add instruments that aren't actually there and be able to mix and master the recording to sound GREAT instead of just Ok.. I will also have a few crowd mics that will be recording also and we'll record fake crowd noise at the beginning of the show before anyone even gets out there lol (trade secrets of the music industry shhhh) haha



Craigslist is a great resource for finding people. Also you can post your show on Mandy.com. It just depends on how much money you have. The correct way to do this is with a multicamera production truck (there are some inexpensive 3-5k versions out there). That way you have audio recording facilities, camera shading facilities, and production control room all on board in one spot. Trying to do this the way you are doing is a nightmare. You NEVER want to let five camera operators roam free and do what they want. You're going to be hating life in post-production when all five cameras have the exact same thing, or are crossing in front of each other's frame at crucial moments. You want to be able to communicate with your operators (and them be able to communicate back) and you want to be able to see what everyone is shooting at all times. Remember gospel music isn't always the most interesting thing to watch (even in pentecostal environs) so you often have to create the energy visually with your footage. Watching people on a choir stand can become boring quickly even with good music the action doesn't really change that much, you will want cameras covering musicians and the crowd. Good multi cam directors create energy that supports what's happening on stage with camera movement, cutting rhythm, camera angles and pacing. What separates the men from the boys is how deliberate you are with what you are shooting and why you are shooting it that way. In a live show this is a constant process. If you let your cameras run free-form it will look like it and you may end up with a product that isn't cohesive visually (or the visual energy doesn't match the performance and environmental energy.)

If its at all possible to sync the cameras to a video switcher in a video village or truck, do a line cut. If for no other reason than reference for the editor and you have a product at the end of the day (heaven forbid one camera isn't in record or something or a battery dies or something halfway through the show. Things happen.) You can also record your audio track to the line cut so you at least have a synced audio track to begin with. As for audio the sound company may be able to give you a DA-88 8 or 16 track of the show off their console direct outs or group or matrix outputs. Find out early if they can do this. Syncing after the fact is inadvisable unless your audio track is run off the same time code as your video especially if you are shooting at 24p.

With lighting make sure your color temperatures are consistent. if you have a predominately African-American choir lighting is especially important as dark skin with accumulate specular highlights (shininess) quickly, you don't want to point lights at people with dark skin or you will get hot points of light reflecting off of it. Also blue lighting on dark skin is usually a no-no unless you like green looking people. Make sure your lighting company balances all the lighting to 3200K (most likely) and then you white balance and match all your cameras to some arbitrary white under that light. You also want to make sure your exposure range is consistent for video. In concerts spotlights can as much as 10 times brighter than the background, but with video the most you can get away with is 2:1 usually so you have to be very careful about your levels. A good video engineer shading cameras will be priceless. Spotlights on these small events are also notoriously uncorrected so you have to be on your lighting crew to be dilligent in making sure everything is at 3200K (or 5600K if you're outdoors) They will probably push back, just stay on them and remind them this is for video.

Edited by Phil Jackson, 21 October 2010 - 02:26 PM.

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