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  • Critque this Clips


    I've decided to make a short film and got a cast together last night to shoot some scenes. The shots seem all wrong and I'd like some advice on how to improve them. I'm using a gh2 with stock 14-42 lens, 42-200, an tiny 35mm, 1.8 cine lens. The audio sucks because I forgot my mic and Zoom H4n. I have lightening but didn't have time to set it up.


  • #2
    First I would also do a google or youtbube search on how to acheive the film look with a GH2. They can do a nice job and this would improve your shots greatly. I also noticed you are centering your subjects in the frame. That is a boring shot. Another error is the actors are looking directly into the camera. Unless you are making it clear the camera is who they are talking to (by never showing the other person for one thing) do not let actors look into the camera Shoot both subjects in the converstion following the 180 rule. This may sound like a lot but you could find this information on the internet and learn this in a few hours and reshoot tonight with much better results. I look forwrd to seeing the reshoot.
    Last edited by Mick Scarborough; 10-07-2013, 07:44 AM.


    • #3

      Will post reshoot


      • #4
        #1 - Establishing shots would be a great addition

        #2 - Typically when the talent is looking to the right you want to place the talent in the left third of the screen

        #3 - The zooms and pans were awkward

        #4 - Read a book called "Shot by Shot" It is an easy read and will transform you into what you want to become

        Number 2 is linked to a video here that is very simple but goes through the shots and angles for filmmaking
        Distribber - Keep 100% of your film's revenue


        • #5
          I agree with Nick and Mick on their comments.

          You also need to work on focusing. Too many shots were out of focus and that is a major no no. Without knowing your set up or if you actually have a follow focus, I will suggest that you do a google or Youtube search for "DIY Follow Focus". Check out the $5 Follow Focus tutorial created by Film Riot:

          Another thing worth mentioning to go along with Mick's comment on achieving the film look with your camera, is to switch everything to full manual control. I noticed that your exposure (iris) was jumping around, which gives you those very annoying flashes of brightness and darkness to the video. Once you've set your exposure for a scene, it should never change while shooting. However, when you set up a different angle or a different scene, you will have to reset your exposure for that specific environment. It cannot be understated enough, that one of the biggest differences between an amateur hobbyist and a professional is the use of a camera's auto settings. The Camera is dumb and you are smart, so it is you who should be making every decision about those settings.

          I hope that these tips will help you, and I look forward to seeing how you improve with your reshoot.


          PS... I would personally like to see you light your reshoot for us... many of us will also be able to help you with that topic as well once we see what you can do.


          • #6
            Originally posted by Nick Soares;
            17426 Read a book called "Shot by Shot" It is an easy read and will transform you into what you want to become

            There is more than one film making book by that name. Which author are you talking about? It sounds helpful
            Last edited by Mick Scarborough; 10-07-2013, 02:24 PM.


            • #7
              At 0:04, have your actors face each other. Move the ironing board in the middle of the room so you can fit your camera on both sides. Have one of the actors stand on the opposite side of the ironing board. While you're filming one actor, film the other actor's shoulder and/or back of her head. Film one over-the-shoulder wide shot of both actors from both angles, and then film one close-up shot of each actor of just their faces. You can film a close-up of the iron if you want, but this isn't needed. When editing, start off with a wide shot to establish that the two people are talking to each other. Then film their closeups if needed, but you can stick to all wide shots if you want. Also, don't zoom into shots as much as you did. It looks awkward if you have a steady shot, then you zoom, then with the same continuous take you have a steady shot again. Instead, cut from the wide shot, to the close-up, and then back to the wide. I would only use zoom in or out if there's a purpose to do so. For example, if two people are sitting on a bench and one person is talking, you could zoom out just before the other person begins talking to reveal that the person is there and surprise the audience. If someone is saying a very intense line, you could zoom in, but it may be better to just cut to a close-up instead. In the beginning of this scene, you could also start off with a close-up of the iron and then slowly pan up to the actor's face.

              At 1:00 and all of the other shots, have the actors face each other. Don't have them look into the camera. Instead, have them look at each other. Tell them that the camera isn't there.

              From 1:11 to 1:18, panning to the right looks awkward and it just wastes 7 seconds of your audience's time. Try to tell your story visually as quick as you can without taking away anything from the story. I would just cut at 1:11 and continue the next scene.

              At 1:29 (and 1:46) when the girl fires the gun, you can make a muzzle flash image appear at the tip of the gun and a gun shot sound effect. Right before she fires the gun, you can add a close-up of the object that she's shooting. Right after she fires, you can show the object getting hit, even if you have to fake it. For instance, if she's shooting a can, show the can untouched before the shoots it. After she shoots it, flick the can and then film it falling. Move your hand away quickly when filming and cut as soon as your hand moves out of the shot. Also, tell your actors not to fire the gun so it doesn't make the fake gun sound, unless they're supposed to be firing a fake gun.

              Before 1:32, the girl's eyes are open. After 1:32, the girl's left eye is closed. When filming, keep continuity in mind. If working with the footage that you already have, to fix this, you could cut to another shot in-between these two shots of the girl with the gun. You could either cut to a close-up of the other woman or a close-up of another object such as the object that she's shooting or the gun, and then cut back to the girl's close-up.

              At 1:35, the girl grips the gun by the tip where the bullet comes out. If this gun is supposed to be real, make sure that you make your talent is aware that they are handling a gun. Anyone holding a real gun would not grip it in this way. At 1:40, the woman points the gun directly at the girl, which wouldn't usually happen in real life. If someone did point the gun at someone, the other person would probably get scared and move out of the way. You could also film a close-up of the girl handing the woman the gun, but at the very least, I would put both people in the shot as the gun is being handed over.

              At 1:52, have both actors in the shot. An over-the-shoulder shot would work.

              At 1:53, there's a huge light glare in the background. You can either shut off the light and place your own lights where it will not create a glare, or you can use a light reflector to block the light. If you don't have a light reflector, you could hold something like a cardboard box in front of the light. You can also choose to film at a different angle, such as positioning the camera to the right, and filming an area where there is not a light glare. Reposition the actors and camera as needed.

              From 1:56 to 2:00, the man is talking, but the girl is visible. It's okay to use a second or two of her video for her facial expression, but I would eventually cut to the man speaking.