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Video Shooter, 3rd Edition

Book Description

Tired of the all the digital filmmaking guidebooks that give you only the nuts and bolts of how to use a camera? The third edition of Video Shooter takes the how-to knowledge a step further by showing you how to craft a story in your video. Barry Braverman is an experienced shooter and filmmaker whose is highly regarded in the field. This book covers everything from framing a shot, to lighting, to the type of camera (and tripod) you should use, and perhaps most importantly--how to translate the use of all this equipment and techniques into a story. The author is a veteran cinematic storyteller, and he shares practiced film-style techniques for use on your own DV cam.

Humorous and opinionated, the author provides anecdotes and full-color illustrations that help you to learn the tricks of the trade. He gets right to the point of what you need to know to get good shots-and on a budget.

New to this edition:
* more up-to-date techniques involving HD technology
* more coverage on the multi-skillset required of today's filmmakers (who are asked to act simultaneously as Director, Director of Photography, Cinematographer, Sound Recordists, etc.)
*Website including craft tips, equipment review/blogs, and a teacher's corner to support use of the book in film studies/digital media class (includes student work completed in class using the text)

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright Page
  4. Dedication
  5. Table of Contents
  6. Acknowledgements
  7. CHAPTER 1 The Shooter’s Point of View
    1. Your Story’s Point of View
    2. No More Chasing Rainbows
    3. Wearing Many Hats Now
    4. Learning the Discipline
    5. New Points of View
    6. Look Who’s Shooting Now
    7. Hire Your Clients!
    8. You Have the Power
  8. CHAPTER 2 Let Me Tell You a Story
    1. What Makes a Good Story?
    2. Know Your Genre and Make Sure Your Audience Knows
    3. What Does Your Poster Look Like?
    4. Know Your Log Line
    5. Embrace Your Limitations
    6. For Different Reasons
    7. Your Comparative Advantage
    8. Limit Your Canvas
    9. Respect Your Camera’s Dynamic Range
    10. Shoot the Magic Hour
    11. Authenticity Matters
    12. The Story Never Stops
    13. Ethics Matter
  9. CHAPTER 3 The Video Storyteller
    1. Still Lofty Expectations
    2. Put a Frame Around the World
    3. Exclude, Exclude, Exclude!
    4. Make ’Em Suffer
    5. A Unique Perspective
    6. Obscure, Hide, and Conceal
    7. Matters of Perspective
    8. Box-Girder Bridges, Anyone?
    9. The Rule of Thirds
    10. The Golden Rectangle
    11. Evoking Pain
    12. What Kind of Place?
    13. Embrace the Theory
    14. Craft Matters
    15. Close-Ups Are Your Meat and Potatoes
    16. Attack Obliquely
    17. Shot Progression and Frame Size
    18. The Power of Eyeline
    19. Shooting the Less than Perfect
    20. The Story Within the Story
    21. Backgrounds Tell the Real Story
    22. We Are All Liars and Cheats
    23. Know What You Want
    24. Working With the Ego-Crazed
  10. CHAPTER 4 The Storyteller’s Box
    1. Too Many Choices
    2. Cameras Reflect the Changes
    3. Framing the Argument
    4. 2K, 4K, and Higher Resolution
    5. Grappling With the Technical
    6. What You Need to Know
    7. When the Technical Matters
    8. The Technical Nature of the World
    9. The Processor in Your Mind
    10. Let’s Have an Analog Experience
    11. Improving Our Digital Recordings
    12. A Bit of Knowledge
    13. The 10-Bit Workflow
    14. Does Your Camera Pass the 10-Minute Rule?
    15. Be Sensor-Tive
    16. Size Matters, Sort Of
    17. The Resolution Ruse
    18. Human Limits to Perception of Resolution
    19. Is the End Game Near?
    20. Pixels in a Grid
    21. Three-Chip Versus Single-Chip
    22. Why Is Compression Necessary?
    23. For Practical Reasons
    24. Redundancy, Redundancy
    25. You Don’t Miss What You Can’t See
    26. Interframe Versus Intraframe Compression
    27. Selecting a Frame Rate
    28. Why the Goofy Frame Rates—or Why 24p Isn’t 24p?
    29. The Many Flavors of 24P
    30. So You’re Shooting 24p
    31. If SD Still Lives Within You
    32. Attention Laggards!
    33. Once Upon a Time
  11. CHAPTER 5 The DSLR Story
    1. A Matter of Performance
    2. It’s Not a Video Camera
    3. More Than Low-Light Capable
    4. Load Shedding
    5. Setting Up
    6. Jello-Cam
    7. Narrow Depth of Field: Blessing or Curse?
    8. The Operational Challenge
    9. Seeing What We’re Doing
    10. Unsound Thoughts
    11. Getting to Work
  12. CHAPTER 6 Your Window on the World
    1. Control Your Space
    2. To Flatter or Not to Flatter
    3. Maximize Use of the Storytelling Tools
    4. Go Long for the Touchdown
    5. Beware of Dubious Claims
    6. Optical Versus Digital Zoom
    7. Going Wider and Longer
    8. Tale from the Trenches
    9. Why Lenses Look Cheap
    10. Say No to Small F-Stops
    11. Why One-Piece Camcorders Make Better Pictures
    12. Chromatic Aberration Compensation
    13. Making Peace With Your Not-So-Hot Lens
    14. How Sweet It Is
    15. Dubious Focus, Zoom, and Onion Rings
    16. Cine-Style Lenses
    17. Source of Enchantment and Frustration
    18. Excessive Depth of Field
    19. Lens Adapters
  13. CHAPTER 7 The 3D Shooter
    1. The Essence of 3D
    2. 3D Is a Technical Trick
    3. Depth Cues, Anyone?
    4. Monoscopic Depth Cues
    5. Stereoscopic Depth Cues
    6. Interaxial Versus Interocular
    7. Where to Set the Screen Plane
    8. 3D Camera Setup
    9. Avoiding Tolerance Issues
    10. Screen Size Matters
    11. Parallax: Getting It Right
    12. Window Violations
    13. Thinking About the 3D Story
    14. The Roundness Factor
    15. Shedding Your Evil 2D Ways
    16. The Future Is Glasses Free
    17. Is 3D Here to Stay?
    18. 3D Postproduction and Output
    19. 3D Is Coming—Again!
    20. 2D to 3D Conversion
    21. Evolution of the Craft
    22. Show Me a World I Haven’t Seen Before
  14. CHAPTER 8 Story Command and Control
    1. Auto-Everything: Who Needs It?
    2. Down With Auto-Exposure
    3. The China Girl
    4. Riding the Waveform
    5. I Shutter To Think About It
    6. The Synchronized Shutter
    7. Frame Rates and Your Story
    8. Focusing on What’s Important
    9. These Guys Are Not Artists
    10. HD Focus Can Be Tough!
    11. Following Focus
    12. White Balance Your Story
    13. To Preset or Not Preset
    14. Setting Manual White Balance
    15. The Illogic of Auto-White
    16. Automatic Black Balance
    17. No Gain, No Pain
    18. Keep the Noise Down
    19. The Timecode Swamp
    20. Serial Digital Versus High-Definition Multimedia Interface
    21. Interconnectivity and Streaming
    22. Monitoring Your Work
    23. More Power to You
    24. Managing Viewfinder Clutter
    25. Animation and Time Lapse
    26. The Magic of Pre-Record
    27. Here We Go Loopy Loo
    28. Shooting in Extreme Conditions
    29. Shooting Wild Life and Wildlife
  15. CHAPTER 9 Tweaking Your Story’s Look
    1. Getting Started on Your Look
    2. Master Pedestal: Where Is Black?
    3. The Legacy of Standard Definition
    4. Respecting Your Camera’s Dynamic Range
    5. Going, Going Gamma
    6. Minding Your Highlights
    7. Auto-Knee
    8. Controlling Chroma
    9. Matrix
    10. Filtering Your Image
    11. Getting Physical
    12. Consider a Filter Last
    13. Designed for the Task
    14. Neutral Density
    15. A Polarized View
    16. Sky Control
    17. The High-Contrast Dilemma
    18. The Diffused Look
    19. Christian Dior to the Rescue
    20. The Matte Box
    21. How They Stack Up
    22. Warming Up
    23. Out of the Fog
    24. The Post-Camera Finish
    25. Roll Your Own
    26. Color Correction
    27. Shooters, Take Charge!
  16. CHAPTER 10 Making Light of Your Story
    1. Think Small
    2. Shooters Who Light, Edit, Produce, and Wash Windows
    3. LED Lighting Comes of Age
    4. HMI Lighting: Expensive But Worth It
    5. Fluorescents and the Green Plague
    6. Think Big
    7. Soft Is Key
    8. Choosing a Soft Light
    9. Spilling the Beans
    10. The Art of Diffusion
    11. The Jelly Roll
    12. The Standard Setup
    13. Lighting Front and Center
    14. Having Your Fill
    15. On- and Off-Camera Options
    16. Lighting in Planes
    17. Lighting for Green Screen
    18. Why Green?
    19. Green Screen Alternative
    20. Get a Grip
    21. Kooks and Cookies
    22. Being Snooty
    23. Clamping Down
    24. Tape Makes the Man (or Woman)
    25. The Ditty Bag
    26. Lighting = Craft + Ingenuity
  17. CHAPTER 11 Supporting Your Story
    1. Getting a Head in Your Support
    2. What Pretty Legs You Have
    3. Getting a Leg Up
    4. Place Anywhere
    5. You Shoot; Therefore, You Are
  18. CHAPTER 12 Listening to Your Story
    1. An Unsound Proposition?
    2. Sound Advice
    3. Bad Connections = Bad Sound
    4. Keep Balance in Your Life
    5. Mixing It Up
    6. Setting Audio Level
    7. For the Love of Mic
    8. Riding (Short) Shotgun
    9. Going Wireless
    10. Going Boom
    11. Noise Reduction for the Video Shooter
    12. Shooting Double System: Is It Necessary?
    13. You are Surrounded
    14. To Improvise Is Good
  19. CHAPTER 13 Going with the Flow
    1. Not One Workflow
    2. The Promise of MXF
    3. The Beauty of Metadata
    4. We Should Be Less Fearful Now
    5. The Advent of SSD
    6. Proxy Video and the iPhone
    7. Outputting Your Story
    8. The Decline of DVD
    9. Eye on the Encoded Image
    10. Encoders Have Personalities
    11. Scenes That Spell Trouble
    12. The Noise-Reduction Imperative
    13. Know Your Encoding Mode
    14. Blu-Ray, Anyone?
    15. Reaching for the Clouds
    16. The Archiving Challenge
  20. AFTERWORD There Is No Best Button
    1. Beware the Hype
    2. Resist Complexity
    3. Future of Viewing
    4. Rapid Change Is Upon Us
    5. Dog-Eat-Dog World
  21. Index