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View Full Version : Is it the camera or the man behind the camera?



Evan S
10-09-2005, 02:46 AM
Forget 24p, Forget all your fancy high-tech gizmos and CGI.
I am sure this has been brought up before, but I must reinterate it.

I've realized after all this time, drooling over the thought of owning a DVX100.
But I've realized that... I don't really need it. 24p isn't a big thing for me. I wont be outing to film. I'm 17. I just want to make short films right now. I just want to enter some festivals. and hey, if I happen to get lucky and need to convert to film, than that's fine by me. 28 days later was shot on an XL1s, and it looked fine to me in theatres.
Although, I'd love to buy a DVX100. I don't have the money. So I'm going to settle for maybe the DVC30. and that's fine by me. I know I probably sound like I'm ranting and all, but I don't think I'll be dissapointed when I buy it, because I don't think it's the camera that makes the film. It's the director. It's the script. It's the actors.

So all of you people just starting out the whole film making career like I am, start small and build...

because Rome wasn't built in a day, er - in this case expeirence isn't gained by getting a nice camera.


but maybe it's just my opinion.

rsbush
10-09-2005, 04:37 AM
You are absolutely on target. Now get that DVC30 and get to work!

Cheesesailor77
10-09-2005, 12:15 PM
Yep, I don't think anyone would argue with you there.

And while the DVX is capable of producing far better images than lesser cameras when in the right hands, if you don't know what your doing the dvx is just as capable of producing ugly crap. Just as I've seen beautiful stuff shot on the $300 cameras from circuit city.

But yeah, the key is shoot. You might as well get the best camera you can get, but in the beginning $3400 is a tall order. Aquire SOME camera and shot AND complete as many projects as you can before your 20. (I just turned 20 in July and was embarrassed I didn't have more to show for it)

Evan S
10-09-2005, 04:52 PM
Thanks for the support. I was afraid that I would of been ripped apart for sure :P.

Noel Evans
10-09-2005, 08:56 PM
Id agree with you for sure 100% in general terms. Something that I feel also adds to the whole process: the intelligence of the person and also thier natural talent. These people still need to learn the same as the rest, but in my experience cream always rises to the top.

Whats the top though? Well that depends on the person and thier perceptions and aspirations.

daviddelaurier
11-10-2005, 09:38 PM
It is all up to the people to get things done. I started with a cheap panny and we shot great stuff. i learned a lot about filming doing this. I got more equipment and we filmed more, but if no one wants to act it does not matter how much stuff you have, it wont happen. Good job coming to this conclusion by yourself. Start filming and good luck!

Luis Caffesse
11-10-2005, 09:45 PM
I don't think it's the camera that makes the film. It's the director. It's the script. It's the actors.

...expeirence isn't gained by getting a nice camera.


That can't be repeated ENOUGH.
I wish I'd made that realization at 17.

There is not enough difference among cameras at this level to make or break any project. I've never seen a short film and thought to myself "hmm if only it had been progressive I could have gotten into it" or "You know, it was okay, but I really would have like it if he'd used a 1/3" CCD camera"

CONTENT

Have an idea, and have a point of view.
That is the foundation of any engaging work.
Everything else is just gravy.

You're definitely thinking along (what I think are) the right lines.
Look forward to seeing your work.

jpbankesmercer
11-11-2005, 03:46 AM
It's about doing it man. Just shooting, directing, acting...Content is king.
People who should do it, will do it.
J.P.

lpcvideo1
11-11-2005, 06:49 AM
. . . and the DVC30 is a GREAT camera!

Pipe
11-15-2005, 08:45 AM
You're right Directing is about narritive, shot selection, structure, timing your ability to engage with actors, a moment, a mood, storytelling. It's not about the camera, if you want to be a DP or a camera op then yes it might be about the camera. Even with your storyboards you can learn and practice Directing, but then that might start the discussion of standard pencil, propelling pencil, 2b, 4h, hb, biro, fibre tip.

Luis Caffesse
11-15-2005, 09:00 AM
but then that might start the discussion of standard pencil, propelling pencil, 2b, 4h, hb, biro, fibre tip.


Pencil?? Pencil!?

Amateur.
Real directors do their storyboards with quills.
Anything else is a joke.

:)

HorseFilms
11-15-2005, 10:30 AM
I use cave drawings for mine. Beat that, poser!

Pipe
11-15-2005, 10:54 AM
Pencil?? Pencil!?

Amateur.
Real directors do their storyboards with quills.
Anything else is a joke.

:)

Real directors get their storyboard boy to do it.

Ralph Oshiro
11-15-2005, 11:01 AM
http://www.24framefilms.com/NBC-1.jpg
It's the man behind the camera.

Ill Eagle
11-15-2005, 12:59 PM
Look up GumSpiritsOnline and download the trailer or scenes from Jim Cole's movie SUNDOWNING......then go to www.marlathemovie.com and watch MARLA, both of these movies were done on a GL2 which is identical to the DVC30 and is actually not as good.......

Both these movies sh*t on some of the movies I've seen shot with a DVX and their beautiful.......

If the GL2 weren't such a crap-made camera, I'da never questioned getting it and I haven't seen enough of the DVC30 but it's just as good as the GL2 and should give you similar results..........

Slimothy
11-15-2005, 01:21 PM
I think all this goes w.o saying.

Jaime Valles
11-15-2005, 01:39 PM
I agree with everything said so far, but I would like to add a vote for 24p. I know, a DVX is out of your price range. Fine. A DVC30 will be great.

But you should consider investing in a software program like "DV Film Maker", "Magic Bullet" or "Nattress" filters to turn your finished film to 24p. It'll look more like a film than if you leave it at 60i. Period.

If you're doing a documentary, a wedding, or reality tv, then 60i is preferred. But narrative fiction benefits from 24p, even if it's done in post. 28 Days Later was shot with an XL1, but when you saw it in a movie theater, it was projected at 24fps.

Most of these programs sell for only $100, and I think they're absolutely worth the price. Heck, you can downoad the demo for free before plunking down any cash!

It's not the camera, it's the man behind the camera. 100%. But 24p will definitely help.

jamestmather
11-15-2005, 01:44 PM
I saw an amazing feature film on TV a couple of years ago shot on a black and white child's video camera which used a c90 cassette tape. I say this not to illustrate how you can shoot on anything and still tell a story but rather the look of the film was beautiful and different (a bit like lomo photography). I think the camera cost about 100 bucks in toys r us but had a very different look and managed to create a 24p vibe (as in, it didn't look video clean like news footage). - and, most importantly, I still remembered it years later

KyleProhaska
11-21-2005, 09:00 AM
For the price (being 17 also) I settled on the GS400 from Panasonic. Excellent image quality and every manual control you can get pretty much. Now for my next camera, my DVX :grin: that will be for college in the upcoming months this summer.

lucidz
11-21-2005, 09:58 AM
what is with all the 17 year olds on here. when I was 17 I was playing doom 1 and drinking mountain dew...

little bobby
11-21-2005, 11:04 AM
Forget 24p, Forget all your fancy high-tech gizmos and CGI.
I am sure this has been brought up before, but I must reinterate it.

I've realized after all this time, drooling over the thought of owning a DVX100.
But I've realized that... I don't really need it. 24p isn't a big thing for me. I wont be outing to film. I'm 17. I just want to make short films right now. I just want to enter some festivals. and hey, if I happen to get lucky and need to convert to film, than that's fine by me. 28 days later was shot on an XL1s, and it looked fine to me in theatres.
Although, I'd love to buy a DVX100. I don't have the money. So I'm going to settle for maybe the DVC30. and that's fine by me. I know I probably sound like I'm ranting and all, but I don't think I'll be dissapointed when I buy it, because I don't think it's the camera that makes the film. It's the director. It's the script. It's the actors.

So all of you people just starting out the whole film making career like I am, start small and build...

because Rome wasn't built in a day, er - in this case expeirence isn't gained by getting a nice camera.


but maybe it's just my opinion.

I love my DVC30....I too have no need for 24P...actually, I just don't like it. If I am going to go for the film look, I will shoot with film. We have a sweet super16 camera where I work we just rarely use it.

dpvtank
11-22-2005, 05:32 PM
Wow. Thanks a lot. I myself am 16, and have a Sony DCR-HC20, which was all I could afford with family budget (the camera belongs to the family, and it isn't mine, but I get to use it the most).

I came on this forum, and I saw all this great visual imagery, and was completely stunned, and thought I had no chance at winning at a short film competition I just entered (I still have to start with it, it was just announced a few days ago). But you give me a hope and I'm just eating up everything on the Marla website.

Wow. There is still a part of me that wants visual brilliance, but thanks a lot for motivating me to focus on the script and story.

ProfessorChaos
11-22-2005, 09:03 PM
To add to the club, I'm also 17...using my schools Sony PD100A..also using DVFilmMaker to convert 60i to 24P.. the best I can. I'm currently in pre-prod for a simple short with a friend of mine and I'm using Magic Bullet in class to CC. I'm still struggling to think of a script idea. But once we have the plot /characters locked down then it'll be finished soon :)

I wish I could afford my own camcorder....would open up a lot more opportunities for shooting around town. But money doesn't come easy and so I'm forced to use one of the cams at my school...the DSR-PD100A...

I've got an idea for a plot... that there is a soccer player in his house after the game and he gets really pissed and starts smashing things, screaming and whatnot..phone is ringing, he doesnt answer...he falls to his knees and starts crying(he is a wreck)...theres a flashback of the championship game or whatnot and it goes into penalty shootout...he shoots and it goes wide...the other team cheers and celebrates and he feels extremely dejected hanging his head, his teammates just walk away...and thats the end? and after the penalty shot miss.. i was hoping to key out the sky and adding in rain in post but using a hose or something to have real water hit the main character.

sound decent?

Matthew B. Moore
11-23-2005, 06:26 AM
Wow. Thanks a lot. I myself am 16, and have a Sony DCR-HC20, which was all I could afford with family budget (the camera belongs to the family, and it isn't mine, but I get to use it the most).

I came on this forum, and I saw all this great visual imagery, and was completely stunned, and thought I had no chance at winning at a short film competition I just entered (I still have to start with it, it was just announced a few days ago). But you give me a hope and I'm just eating up everything on the Marla website.

Wow. There is still a part of me that wants visual brilliance, but thanks a lot for motivating me to focus on the script and story.

Focus on it all. Preproduction will make or break your film. Learn the camera, do some tests....get your hands on it as often as possible. Find the best possible way to record sound. Good sound means easier post-production(editing). Visual brilliance is learned. Video can be explored long before the production. You can come up with a look that you want, take the camera out one afternoon, nail the look and write down your settings. Then on the day of the shoot you won't have to concern yourself with it.

SCRIPT and STORY are way important. Don't waste a moment of the viewers time. Try to out think the viewer. Knock them on their ass. They will thank you for it.

dpvtank
11-26-2005, 07:38 AM
Just out of curiosity, I saw the new Sci-fest contest on the forums. I was wondering if my Sony DCR-HC20 would count as a DVX100 camera or not. I know its a stupid question, but I don't have vast technical knowledge.

Barry_Green
11-26-2005, 11:33 AM
Nope. Only the Panasonic DVX100 series, and the Panasonic HVX200 series, are eligible.

Jack Daniel Stanley
11-26-2005, 04:44 PM
Forget 24p, Forget all your fancy high-tech gizmos and CGI.
I am sure this has been brought up before, but I must reinterate it.

I've realized after all this time, drooling over the thought of owning a DVX100.
But I've realized that... I don't really need it. 24p isn't a big thing for me. I wont be outing to film. I'm 17. I just want to make short films right now. I just want to enter some festivals. and hey, if I happen to get lucky and need to convert to film, than that's fine by me. 28 days later was shot on an XL1s, and it looked fine to me in theatres.
Although, I'd love to buy a DVX100. I don't have the money. So I'm going to settle for maybe the DVC30. and that's fine by me. I know I probably sound like I'm ranting and all, but I don't think I'll be dissapointed when I buy it, because I don't think it's the camera that makes the film. It's the director. It's the script. It's the actors.

So all of you people just starting out the whole film making career like I am, start small and build...

because Rome wasn't built in a day, er - in this case expeirence isn't gained by getting a nice camera.


but maybe it's just my opinion.
Your attitude on the whole is right on. And the DVC30 is a great camera for the money.

Some food for thought however:


28 days was shot on PAL which is 25fps and easy to convert to 24p by changing the speed a negigable 4%. They also used cinema prime lenses so it's in no way the standard to measure what 60i DV with infinate depth of field will look like.
24p is not just about a clean or easier transfer to film, its about making narrative work look more film like and less like the news or a documentary - even things like law and order are 24p so its not only movies.
I wouldn't make such a strong pull towards 24p if you were stuck - there are several cost effective solutions. If you happen to be on a Mac, for ex, you can get Graeme Nattress's G film effects for like $100 and you get updates free for life -- the 24p will make a big difference in your work looking more pro for narrative things even when projected on a digital projector in a festival. The 24p motion of G Film is VERY comparable to the 24p motion of the DVX as it is achieved by the same method. So ask for some extra cash this Christmas, or PM Graeme Nattress (he's a member) and tell him your 17 and ask if you can send him $10 bucks a month - who knows he may go for it.
Finally, with used DVX prices dropping and a new DVC30 around $1500, you may be within $500 of getting a used DVX -- just something to think about.

I considered going with teh DVC30 and using G Film before I lucked into some extra money to go for the DVX. But if you go with the DVC30 and use G Film or some other great / inexpensive frame conversion software YOU WILL HAVE RESULTS THAT ARE VIRTUALLY INDISTINGUISHABLE from the DVX100 at 24p, and comparable results to the DVX100A or B at 24pa -- it's just a great way to go.

Whatever your do good luck!

masada1903
12-01-2005, 09:33 PM
I like easy questions: It's the people (film is collaborative) behind the camera, not the camera itself that makes a project good. If it were the camera, why not drop a cool mil on 70mm three strip technicolor and win an oscar on your first time out?

That said, 70mm looks really, really cool.

dpvtank
12-06-2005, 06:53 PM
I agree. I come from being fascinated with computer animation since I was 12. The more time I spent learning my art, I learnt that its not about what software application you use, but more on getting your characters to act.

I doubt the WETA Digital really cared about delivering a Gollum (for example) that looked really cool, but could not act well. So, that's where I am taking my craft. More about the idea and being able to get the rights thing on film, then worrying about the film itself!

Besides, I was reading around and looking for motivation, and I learnt that Peter Jackson made his first film, Bad Taste in 4 years working with just a bunch of friends and people in the community on an extremely low budget. Something like that gives me hope.

TimurCivan
12-07-2005, 06:09 AM
If youre gona do 60i and convert anyway, save money, buy a cheaper camera. You really dont need a DVC30. Go for a really kick ass 1 chip even. Think about it like this, youre gonna spend 1800 on a DVc30, or you can spend $1000 on a cheaper 3chip/1 chip + Good tripod, a reflector/ lights and software.

I have a sony TRV70 (good 1 chip), if you light it right, it makes a GREAT picture. Plus learning to light properly in the first place will help SOOOO much more later. Plus When yo udo upgrade to a DVX, you will have a good tripod, reflector and software, already. Also youre a student, go to JourneyED.com and buy the video software at a big student discount. i got vegas for $245. Normally its like $600+.

the importat think ot remeber is that the camera is only HALF the cost of the setup. you need the proper peripheral to support a great camera. I learned that the hard way. i bought my DVX without a tripod bag or software, and i had to pull lotsa over time to cover the cost of the additional stuff.

hope thsi view point helps.

lpcvideo1
12-07-2005, 06:26 AM
The DVC30 has a pretty good fake-24p mode. It won't satisfy a DVX fan, but it'll make your average audience go, "wow, that's not what I'm used to seeing in a video camera. How'd you do that?"

Bravesboy786
12-08-2005, 03:36 AM
The GS400 is probably the ideal compromise for a new filmmaker. I used an old hi8 cam for 2 years while I was saving to get a good 1 chip cam for about a $1000. Then I bought a GS400 for about $1250 and what's funny is that people like my films just as much on average. You're right people comment on the story or the angles more than the exact cam I used. Don't wait like I did though if you're a kid and don't have a cam at all. Nowadays the cheap samsungs and canons are good enough to shoot a decent picture in the right person's hands.

Sean R
12-11-2005, 10:42 AM
I have a PV-GS400, and I'm more than happy with the results. Sure, it doesn't have integrated XLR or Phantom, but a Beachtek quickly resolved that.

By the way, it isn't the man behind the camera. It's the man in the camera. Get "inside" of the camera, and you can realize ANY cinematic dream.

David Jimerson
12-11-2005, 10:48 AM
The DVC30 has a pretty good fake-24p mode. It won't satisfy a DVX fan, but it'll make your average audience go, "wow, that's not what I'm used to seeing in a video camera. How'd you do that?"

Now, let's not get confusing.

What it has is a "frame" mode that's more accurately described as a "fake 30p," because it's 60i interpolated into 30p. It will not take on the motion characteristics of 24p.

It *is*, however, a pretty decent match of the DVX's 30p mode, though the color matrix is different.

lpcvideo1
12-12-2005, 07:45 AM
Ah, true. Sorry--thinking in general categories, speaking in specific.