Tuesday, February 23, 2010
A Still Pro Gets Started In HD Video
Award-winning still photographer Mark Edward Harris takes us on his journey to becoming proficient with HD video
The Redrock works best when you become a human tripod, keeping the elbows in tight to the body. Racking focus smoothly is almost impossible without a supplemental focusing setup.
We used a variety of Singh-Ray grad ND filters to harness bright skies. For supplemental lighting, we carried a battery-powered Litepanels LED light that’s daylight balanced. It comes with some CTO gels for balancing under tungsten conditions, and it fits right in the hot-shoe on top of the camera. There’s an extension plate that fits in the hot-shoe so both the mic and the light panel can be on board the camera at the same time.
At the end of every fascinating day of shooting, we backed up our still photos and video clips captured on SanDisk Extreme Pro CF cards in our 500 GB LaCie Rugged external hard disks.
Perhaps my favorite shot of the journey was of the sun setting behind the seemingly endless stupas of Bagan. We arrived a half hour before sunset, climbed the sunset stupa and locked down the camera on my Manfrotto carbon-fiber tripod, exposing for the sun and letting it pass through our frame. In Final Cut Pro, we speeded up the seven-minute exposure with dramatic results.
We’re now in the process of putting the video together with the idea of telling someone a story rather than just scripting out a bunch of facts. This approach will hopefully produce a far more engaging result and be an effective calling card for future projects.
Photography has brought Mark Edward Harris to more than 80 countries around the globe. His books include: Inside Iran, Inside North Korea, The Way of the Japanese Bath, Wanderlust, and Faces of the Twentieth Century: Master Photographers and Their Work. Visit www.markedwardharris.com.
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