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Is this shot impossible?


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#1 Mei Lewis

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Posted 31 July 2013 - 02:00 PM

I'm shooting a short film in a couple of weeks and the director has asked something I'm pretty sure is impossible.

I don't think he's very good at visualising what he's asking for.

 

A character called Safiya is inside a cafe which has a big window at the front. The director wants to shoot in through the front window of the cafe and:

 

"MS, Slow track right - outside window, showing Safiya looking at her watch and gazing out the window, unhappy. The shot HOLDS on Safiya looking out the window and you see her reflection on the glass. "

 

 

I'm pretty sure this is impossible - to see her reflection we'd need to be on the same side of the glass as she is, i.e. inside.

 

Am I missing something?


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#2 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 31 July 2013 - 02:20 PM

Simple; just composite the same shot again over itself in post with a lot of opacity. Roto just her, so it's just her reflection; maybe add a bit of a bur to it as well.

 

You can try to do a test with basically any camera and any move through a window.


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#3 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 31 July 2013 - 02:29 PM

Here's a quite example I just did out my own window; I just copied the still onto itself, offset it a bit, and brought the opacity down. You can certainly do more than this in a controlled situation in more than 2 minutes.

 

 

 

example.jpg


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#4 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 31 July 2013 - 02:32 PM

This is the original image.. nothing special at all:KIMG0005.JPG


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#5 Mei Lewis

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Posted 03 August 2013 - 02:40 PM

Thanks Adrian. I hadn't thought of using vfx.

 

I'm not sure what your example shows. You've taken a photo and overlaid onto it a reduced opacity version slightly offset?

 

The director want to see Safiya and her reflection at the same time, so I'd have to shoot on two cameras, one through the window showing the glass and any marks on it, and another from inside, then overlay the inside version with reduced opacity on the outside version, is that what you're suggesting?

 

I don't know how I'd make that 'real', because there is no real version of this shot? ie a version done without vfx.


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#6 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 03 August 2013 - 03:00 PM

Basically, yes, but you only really need 1 camera. If i'm understanding the director properly, s/he'd want a "ghosted" image as though it is showing on the glass. Normally this would be a reflection we would get from the inside. What I am just suggesting is to try a test, since I don't know 100% how well it'd work but you can do it with a friend in a window, shooting the scene then duplicating it in post. You'd then, on the new layer, want to rotoscope just what you'd want to "reflect," and remove the rest. Give this an opacity and a blur and ask the director if this is what they mean. In the example above, I just did it with a still based on a shot out through my window (showing the window would probably have enhanced the effect) so it "ghosts," itself a bit.

I would try doing this with FXs because in truth doing it in camera may be more of a hassle than it's worth, but you should test it with your director to see if it's going in the right direction.


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#7 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 03 August 2013 - 04:54 PM

It doesn't make sense, if she is inside and the camera is outside, she wouldn't be reflected in the glass!  Doesn't the director understand that glass or a mirror reflects things in front of them, not behind them?


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#8 Mei Lewis

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Posted 10 August 2013 - 03:41 PM

Thanks Adrian. I could do a test but the director says he doesn't want the shot anymore....


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#9 Mei Lewis

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Posted 10 August 2013 - 03:42 PM

It doesn't make sense, if she is inside and the camera is outside, she wouldn't be reflected in the glass!  Doesn't the director understand that glass or a mirror reflects things in front of them, not behind them?

This is EXACTLY what I thought, but wanted to do due diligence and check with people that might know better. Sadly I don't think the director does understand how reflections work :-(


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