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**Save 100%. Introductory sale price of FREE (regularly $14.99). Limited-time offer. Be sure to check out our other four great LUCiD apps to enhance your pictures. With LUCiD apps for Photos, you can quickly and easily make your pictures look their best.
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The real key to timelapses lies in your style as a storyteller, because as the tools evolve, the fundamentals stay the same. Once you master the technique, all you have to do is experiment with your compositions.
Timelapse photography/videography has come a long way since the invention of the camera over a century ago. Today, our smartphones even have built-in timelapse capabilities, making it easier than ever to create a sped-up version of real life. The real key lies in your style as a storyteller, because as the tools change and evolve, the basic fundamentals and techniques stay the same. Once you master the technique, all you have to do is experiment with your compositions and go! So, let’s talk technique…
Photoserge offers a number of free photography lessons. As an added bonus, simply sign up and gain access to hundreds of free raw files, Lightroom & Photoshop presets and actions! Among some of the best tutorials:
You will need the Ansel Adams Presets – don’t forget to sign up for a free account to get them. Sign up here: http://photoserge.com/free-lessons?yid=PLP250
November 17, 2015
Choosing a metering mode can be as important as choosing an ISO or aperture when you need to nail your exposure. Metering affects how your camera processes the scene, thus giving you a reading on your exposure in camera. I know that with the ability to “chimp”, or stop and look at the back of your dSLR after each image, we can take our meters for granted. As a wedding photographer (and as a mother to two young children that don’t allow “do-overs”), however, I simply do not have the time to second guess myself after each frame.
Most of today’s modern cameras have at least three different metering modes to choose from; matrix (evaluative), center-weighted, and spot. Some cameras are also equipped with a fourth metering type called highlight-weighted metering mode. Both of my Nikon bodies have this newer mode and so I’ve included it here.
By default, your camera WANTS you to be at a center or zero on the meter. Zero on the meter equates to 18% gray (some may argue 12% gray depending upon camera), which is a happy mid-tone. This makes sense if you are measuring only mid-tones. My problem with this is that often what is most important to me in a scene is not that simple. Skin, for instance, gives completely different “correct exposure” readings on the meter depending on ethnicity. Your meter may also be fooled by the lighting you are using depending on which mode you have set. This is why it is important to learn the different modes and what results you can expect in each situation.
Click here to see the various explanations on Metering Modes
June 17, 2015
Any working colorist will likely encounter their fair share of talking head interviews. It’s a great idea to use these projects as opportunities to up your skills. Here are a few quick and easy tips to consider when applying your magic to interview footage.
Choose a frame where the subject’s eyes are open and acknowledging the camera or the interviewer off-camera. This will help us engage with the speaker, allowing us to judge exposure and color tints with better acuity. Picking a moment when the talent doesn’t look their best will hinder our ability to color them in the best possible way.
It’ll be easier to engage the subject if they’re engaging you.
For more detail on Coloring Talking Head Interviews in DaVinci Resolve, click here.
Got any advice/tips/tricks for users of Davinci Resolve? Please share them in the comments below!
December 16, 2014
Want to learn how to shoot some amazing star time-lapses? Then follow us to Red Rock Canyon State Park in California, where we learned how it’s done from three Pond5 artists (NaoTharp, LoveMushroom and MountAiryFilms) who are working on their documentary “California Timelapse”. Get your gears ready: it’s time to warp to the desert!
The best time to shoot a milky way time lapse is around the new moon (+/- 3 days) night during summer, because there is less moonlight to affect your shots. Also, make sure you check the weather, because things like puffy white clouds (and rain) can be a big problem if they cover up too much of the sky.
Make sure your location actually has visible stars. Stars are hard to see in cities and other bright areas, so pick a location far away from any possible conflicting light sources. Once you reach your location, get started before sunset so you have enough time and light to get situated. Higher elevations and more dry conditions also aid in a more vivid time-lapse, due to less atmosphere to compete with. Pick a spot for your scene that has a foreground or background object, like a tree, a rock or an old house, which gives your shot more depth and makes the star movements more obvious. It also makes your movements more dramatic, and who doesn’t love drama?
Many cameras can do the job, but most important is manual control on your camera. Good low-light performance and a fast wide-angle lens give you the best image quality as well. Another hugely important piece of gear is your intervalometer to, you know, take pictures at different intervals. Some are built-in to the camera, but if yours isn’t, you can find them online for cheap. A large memory card to store all the images (especially if you’re shooting in RAW), and a strong, stable tripod will round out your necessary equipment for quality time-lapses.
One other thing you can add, which is optional, is a motion control or dolly or track system. Adding even just a little bit of motion significantly increases the value of your footage. It also just looks WAY cooler.
Now that you’ve locked those sticks down, it’s time to dial in your camera settings. Turn off all unnecessary features like noise reduction, vignette removal, live view display and auto lighting optimiser to cut down the camera’s processing time and save battery life. Set both your camera and focus to manual, then crank that focus ring all the way to the sideways 8. Wait, we mean infinity.
Focus: Use the brightest star in the sky to help you set your focus. A magnifying monitor can help you to get more accurate focusing.
Aperture: Open your aperture as wide as possible — f2.8 or faster is ideal — to get the most light into your camera.
ISO: Set it as high as it can be without adding any noise to the image. For Pond5 contributors, 3200 is best for high-end cameras and 1600 for mid-range cameras. If it’s too noisy, lower your ISO and check our article about noise reduction tips from Pond5 photo curators.
White Balance: Set your white balance to “Incandescent” or “Fluorescent” or manually set your color temperature between 2500K to 4200K to capture that blue night sky.
Your shutter needs to let in enough light, but you also need to keep your exposures short enough to eliminate any star trails, which happens when your exposure is too long. The 500 rule says that you take 500 and divide it by your lens’s focal length. A full frame camera with a 16 mm lens would be 500 divided by 16, which is… hmm… this is a tough one… okay, a 31 second exposure time. Setting it to this length or shorter keeps the stars dots and not streaks. If you hate math and don’t know your camera’s crop factor, however, 20 seconds is a good place start. Or maybe reading your camera’s manual is the best place to start…
Depending on your camera, you’ll need to either access your interval timer in the menu or grab your intervalometer from step 1 and set your interval to exposure time + camera buffer time. This buffer time should be at least 3 seconds to give your camera enough time to process and save the data to the memory card.
Now calculate the number of photos you want to take. A good base is 300, since 300 frames equals 10 seconds of footage at 30 frames per second, and 12.5 seconds of video at 24 frames per second, or something completely different if you use PAL, which our mind can’t possibly comprehend. Now take all the frames and exposure time and add it up to see how long it will take overall, which in our example is something close to 3 hours.
Finally, re-check your frame and focus, and then start the madness. Put on some tunes, a pot of coffee, then enjoy the beautiful night sky as you document the rest of the galaxy above!
July 4, 2014
By: Anne Schwab, Creative Management Services
Fireworks never fail to ignite passion and patriotism. Here are seven sure-fire tips to capturing that heart-pounding display on Friday.
A tripod helps steady the camera better than hand-holding. Leave your camera shutter open for three to five seconds to successfully capture the moving streams of light. A tripod with a ball head allows for tilting to more easily follow the bombs bursting in air.
2.Choose Your Shots
Knowing where to set up your camera and tripod is key to catching the dazzling display.
● Look at old photos of fireworks in the same area you will be shooting.
● If possible, visit the location with your camera and tripod before the 4th.
● Get there early on the 4th to claim your spot.
● Pick an area that will not be obstructed with bobbing heads.
● Make certain the camera is level with the horizon.
3.Reducing Camera Shake
If you are up close and personal to the rumbling of the rockets, a remote release cable or wireless remote control will help keep the camera still. Second choice to a shutter release is a self-release timer on the camera.
To minimize the equipment you will need, I recommend a zoom lens for the flexibility of shooting close-up and wide angle. You can always crop the wide shots later. For nice sharp red flares, set your lens to manual focus and the distance to infinity.
Use apertures between f/8 and f/16 for best results. And turn off your flash.
Set your camera to manual and the shutter speed to between 1 and 20 seconds. If you are experimenting with very long exposures, cover the lens between the fireworks with a black card avoid contamination from ambient light.
Since you are not looking for speed, set your ISO to 100 for crisper shots.
So Put Some Fireworks in Your Photos This 4th
Happy Independence Day from Cavus Media to all of our patrons in the U.S.A!
balance, Black Magic, color, Da Vinci Resolve, Denver Riddle, exposure, FCPX, final cut pro x, free, GLJ Media Group, grading, interface, jeff riegel, jeffvlog, looks, mood, scopes, tutorials, workflow
November 29, 2013
Denver Riddle is a right brain person. so he loves creativity, loves challenging himself with analytical problems and that’s probably why he loves color grading becasue it strikes a blance between technology and creativity. He’s a working colorist and we hope that you will gain valuable knowledge by watching his video tutorials about color grading in Final Cut Pro X, Da Vinci Resolve and Black Magic and more.
February 20, 2013
Shooting a timelapse is not a science. However, there are a few things you can do to improve your chances.
One of the challenges you need to overcome when shooting is determining the ideal setting for your camera. In this post, I will walk you through a few of the settings you will need to consider. I will also be asking a few questions that will help guide you towards the perfect settings for your given scenario. I will be covering the following:
I have broken down the post into pre-production, production and post-production. Pre-production will break down how I approach shooting a timelapse as well as how I prepare before going out to shoot. Production covers the different settings and intervals and post-production gives you a brief breakdown of my workflow.
Click here for so much more on this interesting article via Phillip Blooms website.
For processing JPEG timelapses, check out a previous post from Philip: Tutorial on how to turn your DSLRs stills timelapse into video.
For processing RAW timelapses, Tom Baurain put together a great tutorial on his process: RAW workflow for timelapse.
Want to find out more on shooting a time-lapse? Make sure to check out Prestonkanak.com.