RECENTLY I WROTE:
- Dungeness at twilight
- Before I die…
- Borough Market and my old iPhone 4S
- The things you see in London…
- Filming with Gok Wan for NAT
- A photographer’s journey: Niall McDiarmid’s Crossing Paths
- Summer 2013 in pics, part 1
- In pictures: Surviving a thunderstorm in Kazimierz
- Aerial photographs of Heathrow Airport
- Adobe Lightroom 5 – five favourite video tutorials
MY MOBILE EYE:
Tag Archives: video
I wanted to film something casual with my DSLR yesterday, and ended up at the revamped Borough Market.
I admit: the German bratwurst with sauerkraut (20 minutes in the queue) and the raspberry and white chocolate brownie (5 minutes) sapped my energy and the crowds didn’t help either. I was still determined to film something somewhere though.
The autumnal colours at the market were simply too gorgeous to ignore, but somehow at that stage the prospect of running – sorry, pushing – through the Saturday afternoon crowds with my camera lost its appeal.
So I used the phone instead. Lighter, easier, quicker. We both lasted 20 minutes. Then a couple of hours in FCPX and here’s the result.
And yes, for my next weekend project I’ll choose somewhere less busy.
Everybody has been sharing this video today – and once you watch it, you’ll know why.
It shows London circa 1927 through the eyes of one Claude Friese-Greene. As the description that came with the video explains, this is “incredible colour footage of 1920s London shot by an early British pioneer of film named Claude Frisse-Greene, who made a series of travelogues using the colour process his father William – a noted cinematographer – was experimenting with. It’s like a beautifully dusty old postcard you’d find in a junk store, but moving.” Indeed.
I’m pretty sure this is part of a 2006 BBC documentary – co-produced with the British Film Institute – called The Lost World of Friese-Greene. Originally this clip was pat of his project called The Open Road whose aim was to film the people of Britain in colour for the first time.
Timelapse videos are becoming omnipresent and a bit repetitive. This is not a time lapse video. Not quite sure what to call this genre.
Vimeo user Willie Witte uploaded this video called “Screengrab”, illustrating an experimental technique which combines video footage with screengrabs and prints. Within a few days the video was picked up by sites like Gizmodo and Boing-Boing.
Willie said: “I’m testing an experimental process of printing out still frames from videos and using them to create these transistions.”
And the result is awesome:
Need I say more?
Simple is beautiful. But sometimes to make something simple you need to put a lot of effort in.
This lovely animation by Tony Miotto I found on Vimeo shows – in a simple, yet, quite time-consuming (for the creator, that is) way – the differences between Paris and New York. Why? No idea. (Well, it says at the end it’s based on a book by Vahram Muratyan which I just googled and it looks awesome too.)
What a fabulous little video…
As promised a few weeks ago, here is another inspirational story on how to become a successful photographer. If you are fascinated by photography and would like to turn pro – but don’t know how – Paul Clarke has a few words of encouragement for you. He features in today’s episode of my “A photographers journey” mini-series.
Paul told me his story and explained how he became a successful and respected event (but not only) photographer. He’d worked on somebody else’s images before he decided to invest in professional gear and take pictures, initially as a hobby, at various events.
But expensive gear again is not a prerequisite for great photography. As you will see in the video below, one of his all-time favourite images was taken with his phone.
What I’ve always liked about Paul’s photography is the fact he makes otherwise bland (in some cases at least) events look human. He himself describes what he does as making “art with suits”. And indeed, his images have a soul: human emotions are present, human flaws are not photoshopped out.
And that’s what – I would imagine – makes Paul popular not just as a photographer, but also as a person in general.
Coming soon in the same series, a brilliant photographer, Niall McDiairmid.
500px, Google+, Flickr, Twitter, Facebook. We’re bombarded by images daily, many of which are superb. Often their creators are not trained or even experienced photographers.
Many of them have done – or still do – something completely different for a living. Others do follow a more traditional path and work as freelance or agency photographers. Some have switched from one style of photography to another over the years. Looking at all those images I’ve been asking myself how people get to where they are now.
For the past few weeks I’ve been asking some London-based photographers about their work, their inspiration – but most importantly, about their journeys. How did they get where they are today? How did they work on their style? Was it a conscious choice or, like many things in life, a happy (or perhaps a more dramatic) coincidence?
The people I’ve asked are my personal choices, photographers I’ve been watching or admiring for a while for various reasons.
The first photographer featured in my new miniseries called “A photographer’s journey” is James M. Barrett. I met James during a monthly photography meet-up in south London and was mesmerised by his unique, very harsh, but also captivating portraits of men of various ages. It turned out that James was not only a photographer, but also an artist and his love for such “ugly beautiful” portraits stems from his knowledge of and love for old paintings.
James invited me to his studio to record his story and film him taking portraits of two very different ‘models’: writer, Rupert Smith, and DJ, Wes Baggaley. It was a privilege to film James and learn his story. I’m hoping that stories like his will help others appreciate what they are doing and encourage them to explore their talents more.
So here is my first photographer’s journey. And if you’d like to be featured or know someone who would be an interesting subject for the series, do let me know. Next month’s journey features Paul Clarke.
Additional thanks to Lawrence Lang for help with this video.
I took this picture recently in an old recording studio in London, now converted into an indoor cycling/fitness facility.
Current owners of the space have rescued one of those ancient audio editing machines – and I love them for it. I used Studers like this when, almost 20 years ago, as a fresh radio reporter I learned the basics of audio recording and reel-to-reel editing.
I still remember the shock I got when my editor shortened my first 50-someting-second long piece to just under 30 seconds – just by editing out the unnecessary gaps and making everything ‘flow’ and sound more dynamic. It took him just a couple of minutes, maybe even less. The difference was striking. And all that using a Studer like the one above.
(Almost a decade later, during an induction course for new BBC radio journos, I was grateful for that knowledge when I realised tape was *still* preferred over digital – and most people on the course had never used tape before.)
The more time I spend filming using DSLRs with their pathetic sound recording capabilities, the more I realise how important it is nowadays to be able to replace low-quality camera output with better quality, independently recorded audio.
Regardless of whether you use tape or digital, the quality of the actual recording is as, if not more, important as good sound editing skills. But sadly, both often seem to be neglected. And I’m not talking here about casual mobile YouTube uploads, but rather videos created with more advanced gear, sometimes for clients.
I recently watched a clip by an international video production company (no naming and shaming here), with some fun advice on how to shoot a video using a DSLR. Great clip, pathetic sound. No effort was made to rectify this or even mention this as a potential issue. Which kind of rendered the otherwise good video useless.
So what can you do?
2. Invest in improving your audio editing skills. If you shoot video, you probably know how to edit it too. Basic principles of both are similar. Find an online Lynda course or simply browse YouTube for free advice on levels, noise reduction and audio matching. Or anything else, in fact.
3. Learn how to get audio right from the start – think about the space in which you are recording, about who you are recording and why; avoid background noise like crowds, buzzing air-con units or ringing phones; learn the difference between different types of microphones; and read this excellent duckrabbit blog post which pretty much nails it.
Trust me, with a bit of effort, it will improve your audio immensely. And you don’t need a gigantic Studer machine and a splicing block.
With so many tools and resources to learn from, you frankly have no excuse.
I honestly cannot believe the Canon 5D Mark II has been around for three years already. What a camera. The impact it’s had on photography – and videography – is immense.
And while it’s not cheap, it’s likely to remain the king (queen?) of full-frame HDSLRs for a while.
Unless you’ve participated in the 17-month simulated Mars mission, you probably already know that Canon has recently announced its latest baby. The Canon C300 offers film-makers an unbelievably advanced tool – at an ubvelievable price too.
As the camera has not yet been officially released, there have only been a handful of videos showing the camera’s output. The latest video, however, is slightly different from the more cinematic samples we’ve seen so far. As its author, Jonathan Yi, admits, “Canon, not thrilled with my sense of humor, does not credit or condone this video, but I think it shows a lot of the camera’s strengths.” It certainly does.
If you are a serious filmmaker – and have £14,000 to spend – here’s what the money buys you:
For more technical specs see here. Also, the British Journal of Photography has published an interview with Peter Yabsley, responsible for business development at Canon Europe, on how this camera was created.