Videomaker - In Car Video Camera Techniques

Uploaded by videomaker on 14.03.2008

bjbj [Music Playing] Hi, I m Jennifer O Rourke. On today s tips and tricks, we re gonna show
you how to shoot from a moving vehicle. [Music Playing] Depending on the vehicle at your
disposal, and whether you re working solo or have a driver, there are different ways
to achieve your shot. Let s talk about the type of vehicles first. The typical transport
you d most likely use would be the family car or truck. Larger vehicles like vans, SUVs
and luxury trucks or luxury cars usually have better shock absorption than compact cars
or some sports cars. The props and gear you need to shoot might include newspaper, rubbing
alcohol, camera, tripod, bean bag, sand bags, bungee cords, a vehicle and a driver. [Music
Playing] There are three different ways you might position your camera shooting through
a windshield, an open window or door, or au naturale from a convertible, sunroof or the
back of a truck. [Music Playing] Shooting through a windshield is the easiest to set
up, but usually not the most effective, as you need to constantly watch for dirt, bugs
and sunspots on the window. Sometimes, a scene calls for a point of view, or POV, that really
is shot through a windshield or a straight driving shot, so here s a tip. After you ve
cleaned the window, clean the window again using rubbing alcohol, not window cleaner,
as it is less streaky and use newspaper instead of a towel to wipe it down. A small bean bag
on the dashboard will help support the camera and lessen some of the bumps. If your POV
is supposed to simulate a through a windshield shot, try to include portions of the window
s edge in a shot or two for reference. When shooting through an open side window, shooting
at about the 2:00 position, then you see your subject or scenery as it approaches and your
audience is happy. However, breaking the rules, if you re looking for a good road trip type
blur, shoot a straight angle right at an orchard or a cornfield. Although I ve done a lot of
shooting using black beauty here, my favorite vehicle to shoot from is the old-fashioned
family van. [Music Playing] A uniquely cool feature in a van is the sliding door. An open
door gives you so much more options to frame your shot than an open window. You have a
wide open palette to follow a subject that is on a bike, another vehicle or walking.
One technique you see a lot will have the shot approach the subject from behind, pace
him for a while, then pass him up, allowing a natural transition to take another angle.
That other shot might be from in front of the subject as he follows the van. If you
re shooting handheld, sit cross-legged as far back as you can comfortably sit without
falling out and cradle the camera in your lap or a bean bag works as a cushioning agent.
Fluff it up so the camera is tilted up a bit to reveal more scenery and less road. [Music
Playing] If you don t have a driver, you need to find a different approach. Shooting with
a tripod can seem cumbersome, but if you re going solo, you need to support that camera
somehow. This is where creative strapping and setup comes in. When setting up a car
seat, before you place the camera on the tripod, set one leg of the tripod on the floorboard
and the other two legs towards the rear of the seat. Then, stretch the bungee cord around
the center spreader, if your tripod has one, or around the back two legs, then around the
bottom of the seat. Keep the tripod as low as possible, then level your tripod head.
It may take some finessing, but it s easier to level the head than trying to level the
legs. Whichever way you set your shot, shoot as wide as you can without getting the edges
of windows, doors or other portions of the vehicle in the shot. Shoot wide. A wider angle
will reveal a lot less shake than a zoomed in shot. Check out the location you re planning
to shoot at different times of the day. You might need to travel north to south in the
late afternoon and find you re shooting right into the sun. [Music Playing] A small cover
of tin foil over the top of the camera shading the lens will help cut some glare. If you
have the budget, you might look at a camera mount. There are several types on the market
today from the vice-like mounts used in Hollywood to the Davis and Sanford Steady Stick and
Sticky Pod. We ve done a few stories on these devices. You ll find a link at the end of
this show. Finally, speed does matter. Remember, you re never gonna use the shot right when
you first take off and right when you stop because you re gonna get a little bit of bobbling
of the camera. And also, you want to shoot about 35 miles per hour. Anything slower,
and you re gonna have the car shifting; anything faster, and you re gonna have too much of
a blur. So, there you go. That s your tips and tricks for shooting and driving. I m Jennifer
O Rourke for Video Maker. [Music Playing] For more details, take a look at these articles
using this DVD on your computer. [Music Playing] [End of Audio] Shooting from a Moving Car
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