How To Easily Get a Cinematic Look From Your dSLR Video

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Achieving a “film look” is something that most aspiring filmmakers strive to accomplish.  We always want our work to appear as masterpieces, but sometimes we aren’t sure how to capture those little nuances that could help push it over the edge.  The advent of dSLR video helped bring video production capabilities to the masses, but getting that classic look of film continues to be a steady pursuit of many.

But, don’t be feint of heart!  With some simple tricks, from adjusting camera settings to tweaking in post-production, you can be well on your way to getting the result you want!

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Why Computer Generated Effects Seem So Cheap To Us?

As someone who covers a lot of photoshop action (no pun intended) it was quite interesting for me to see this talk about the equivalent of what photoshop is to stills on cinema. CG (Computer Generated) effects. Pixel peepers and sharped eyed viewers are fast to catch on #failed photoshop disasters, but all and all I think it is fair to say that we are satisfied with how photoshop plays a role in our industry.

CG effects are a complete opposite though. If you watched any big summer blockbuster, you probably have some complaints on how poorly the CG effects are. Heck, Star Wars VII has taken into practical effects because fans were so deeply disappointed with the amount of CG in the 1-3 prequel.

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The Big Camera Movie Quiz

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So, here is some thursday fun. After the jump you’ll get photos of cameras from twenty five movies. See if you can match each camera to its right movie. The highest score is 25.  Good luck!

P.S. we are going to publish a delicious quiz each thursday now, sharpen your minds.

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50 Filmmaking Tips in 7 minutes

Making the move from stills to video may seem trivial. I mean as far as gear goes any camera can tke some decent video, right?

But film making is an art on its own and getting a few good pointers when you start can make a long way. The  folks at DSLRguide are celebrating their (hair short of) 50,000 subscribers, and we for 50 filmmaking tips for absolutely free.(including sound, cinematography, business and some misc tips)

It’s a short 7 minutes video, but if it will save your movie once it was worth watching.

[50 Tips For Filmmakers via iso1200]

Photographer’s Heartwarming Tribute To His Dying Dog Will Move You To Tears

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For many dog owners, the beloved companions are more than just a pet–they are a best friend, an equal part of the family. Ben Moon, a travelling surfer and photographer, documents that very connection in this incredibly touching video memoir to Denali–Moon’s dog who recently passed away after gifting the photographer a life of loving memories.

The beautifully crafted tribute to Denali features breathtaking cinematography, inspiring photography, and a narrative so moving you’ll probably notice your eyes swelling with tears before the video’s midpoint. At the very least, you’ll find yourself with an uncontrollable urge to play and snuggle up next to your own pup. [Read more…]

5 Simple Shots You Can Use To Shoot A Love Story With A Slider

If you’ve been around the blog for a while you know that we are big advocates of the slider as a cinematic tool. We got out hands on one of the best sliders in the market and decided to demonstrate the versatility of this tool by filming a love story using only slider moves to do so. Of course, the moves had to be motivated so each of our five sliders moves had a good reason to be on the movie.

We asked videographer Adam Frimer from kaveret to help us make the movie, and boy we are happy that we did.

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How To Do Cinematic Color Grading Like A Pro

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Ever noticed how movies have a very distinct look that gives off a cinematic look. The process of taking the footage and giving it a specific look is called Grading. There are a few ways to achieve that look and the team at the Photoshop Training Channel provides one of the best color grading primers I’ve seen to date.

Now, Grading can be as complex as you want to take it, but if you want to get a general understanding of the process this video is a great 30 minutes crash course.

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Orcavue Creates Bullet Time Shots With One Camera

Remember how revolutionary that bullet shot in the matrix was? It was also a few dozens cameras, a full-scale Chroma room and a budget that would probably be enough for a mid-sized indie film. But the effect is totally worth it.

I guess this is why we are seeing so many creative ways of recreating this effect, from crowd-sourcing, to using “cheap” GoPros (or even RASPBERRY PIs) arrays to using a ceiling fan (really!).

Orcavue took that ceiling fan concept and made it into a product. I guess I can only describe their rig as an upside down biggish ceiling fan with a camera on its arm.

The arm on the Orcavue  revolves at 1-2 revolutions per second, and combined with a high FPS camera – say a 120FPS, $500 GoPro – it can create some cool bullet time effects. The team recommends slowing the camera even further in post (say using Twixtor) to get a really slow shot.

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40 Movies About Photography–How Many On The List Have You Seen?

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This past July, Adam Sherwin posted a list of 40 movies about photography that “every photographer should watch” over at Resource Magazine. When I first saw the list, I had already seen quite a few of the films mentioned, but it also led me to discover a slew of other photography related movies I hadn’t heard of before. Since then I’ve been working my way through the curation. While I probably won’t watch all of the films (honestly, they don’t all look interesting to me, as I’m sure they won’t all look interesting to you, too), I have seen a little over half of the titles so far, including those I had previously watched.

Here’s a list of some of my favorite (and not so favorite) films from the list, but be sure to head over to the original post and check it out in entirety. There might be some gems listed for you to discover, as well. [Read more…]