See How To Stabilize Your DJI Phantom Footage With A $10 Rig

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Shooting aerial footage with a DJI Phantom and a GoPro can be an awesome thing, but while the system takes care of getting the camera in the air and actually capturing some video, it has an inherent flaw which creates a Jello Effect if the rotor vibrates too much.

And indeed both the net (and the stores) are filled with tips and advice on reducing this Jello Effect. If you want a deeper understanding on where this effects comes in the first place, take a look at our rolling shutter intro. Anyways, it’s there.

The secret for reducing the jello effect is to disconnect the vibration coming from the DJI rotors from the camera. And this is exactly what the team at Human Resources did.

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Tutorial: How To Create Film Sets From Scratch

If you are just starting out your film making career, you must have notice the issue of locations by now. The big players get to pick a location and rent it, or to rebuild it in a studio. If you only have limited budget, your second best option may be to build a set.

While a lot of times a set may look like the real thing, it is basically a collection of stand-up pieces of wood. A collection of flats standing next to each other to builds a corner of a room or (as the video demonstrates) an elevator. They are also the same panels used in theater. A fancy wall on one side, simple looking construction on the other – movie magic.

Flats are pretty much standardized and usually come in 8′x4′ which, I guess, takes the least amount of cutting to make.

Matt Brown takes you through the process of building a flat, and balancing it so it can freely stand. Now, of course once you’ve built a flat you still need to dress it up to make it look like the set you want, but this is another topic completely.

[Let's Build Some Flats! | Matt Brown via filmmakeriq]

The Pinolga – A Beautiful DIY Cardboard Holga-Style Pinhole Camera

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It’s been a long while since we posted any decent pinhole cameras, so I was truly happy to receive this one – The Pinolga – A Beautiful DIY Cardboard Holga-Style Pinhole Camera. Completely made out of cardboard.

The camera made by Ray Panduro is completely made out of cardboard to resemble (one to one) the old plastic medium format Holga. As such it also accepts rolls of medium film. (It shoots 12 6×6 photos on a roll). For the pinhole fanatics, the camera has an f-stop of about F/177 – F/180 and focal length of about 55mm.

Here are some photos of more photos of the camera, followed by photos taken with the camera (slightly blurred from movement)

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Breaking Down A Cake Photography Session

Last month I did a tutorial on how to build a wooden table for product photography, and I had a client recently which needed photos of their cakes and cupcakes which was the perfect opportunity to use my own DIY wooden table and share the results.

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But first I had to make 2 new wood planks. I only had one white wood plank done, but for this shoot I needed two more colors, so I made a sky blue top and a black one. To see how to build the tops, click here. [Read more...]

Is Shooting A Video On Film Still Worth It?

You know Steven. He is the crazy hacker who made the Battlefield Pinhole Camera (and others….). This time around he sent me his latest music video. Here is the thing, it was shot 100% on film, and well worth the effort.

The clip was shot with a rented Aaton LTR 54, using a full Zeiss Prime f/1.2 series lens kit (80mm, 50mm, 35mm, 25mm, 16mm, 12mm, 9,5mm, 5,6mm aspheron)

First, this clip is just oozing with creativity, but that alone does not justify film. I asked Steven why he shot this on film and basically he has two reasons:

The first one was the physical qualities of the film, huge latitude and grain: [Read more...]

Building A Large Format Digital Camera

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it is not often that a person builds their own camera, and even less common for them to build a large format camera, but Jimmy.c. Alzen just built one of those. The total cost of the build was less than $150 + several years of education and tinkering know-how.

The camera was submitted to Hack a day’s Challenge and as such it is pretty hacked up. The photographs that it takes, though, are dreamy. [Read more...]

7 DIY Photography Tips Using Household Objects

Photography can be expensive! So, it’s lovely to come across cool tips for using every day, household objects in your photography which can both help reduce the price of creating cool images or even help protect your gear.

Markus Berger and the team over at the COOPH YouTube channel has just released a new video featuring seven very cool little tips (and a bonus one at the end) doing just that: it shows simple, every day objects, used to great effect. More than one of these I had never thought of, so it’s well worth checking out these DIY hints used in effect. Read more below the jump.

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How To Improve The Function Of The Fuji X-T1 For Faster Focusing

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Photographer Eivind Rohne is a happy Fuji X1 shooter, but ever the greatest of cameras can use a small push to make it perfect.

Eivind shares that one of the most used functions on his Fuji X1 is the back panel direction buttons which he uses to move the focus point. He does that by assigning the front custom button to activate focus point selection.

While was almost perfect, Eivind made it even more perfect by adding a bit of Sugru to the camera:

When I shoot, I move the focus point around a lot. So on the X-T1 I’ve assigned the function to activate focus point selection to the front custom button. Then I can press it with my middle finger, and move the focus point with my thumb on the four buttons around the OK button. But I want to do this without having to take the camera from my eye to see which button I’m pressing.

So to work more efficiently with the camera, I rolled thin stripes of Sugru and applied to all four buttons around the OK button. I also put a small dot of Sugru on the front function button, the Focus Assist button, and on the AF-L button. Why not the AE-L button you might wonder? Because with only a dot on one of those two, I immediately know where on the back of the camera my finger is without having to look. And I chose red because it looked color than black.

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Build Your Own Inexpensive Transport Equipment Cases

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Basic tools and carpentry techniques can save you a lot of cash when protecting your valuable hardware! Like a lot of video producers on a budget I’m always looking for ways to save cash while moving forward with the realistic hardware needs of various projects. The recent purchase of a pair of vintage Colortran 2K Fresnel lights nudged me to seek some type of protective storage and transport case option that wasn’t insanely priced. These are big fixtures and they call for big cases. [Read more...]