A shoot with two cameras.

From "Hairspray." 

(The image above is a fun one from the archives and has nothing to do with the written content of this post). 

We're trying to keep all client engagements short and sweet. To that end I spend time setting up the studio well ahead of time so no one is waiting around. This morning we were photographing one person on a white background. I chose to light with LED fixtures because we followed the "main course," portrait photographs, with a short series of video captures. The continuous lighting worked both ways.

While it's easy and possible to switch a couple menu settings on the Lumix S1 camera and go from photographing to filming (?. We need some new words here that don't use film analogies) when you are working quickly it's even better to have two identical cameras and set each one up to shoot a specific type of file. I shot the photos  in raw and in the "natural" setting, with a few tweaks. I shot the video in 10 bit 4:2:2 .mov files at 4K and used the flat setting, with a few tweaks. The video camera was preset for shutter speed, aperture and ISO so all we had to do in the switch over was swap cameras on the tripod. Nothing to overlook in the heat of the moment. 

It's a good way to work. If we were back in leisure times it wouldn't have been a big deal at all to use one camera for both and to take a break between the two parts of the session to make sure the settings were exactly right. But now time seems more critical.

I shot the video in a fairly high light environment and I used the 24-105mm f4.0 lens on the S1 with the V-log upgrade loaded (it offers other capabilities besides V-Log) and I used the face detection mode in the AF settings. The camera and lens locked in like an armadillo on a grub. There isn't a second in five minutes of video where the camera loses focus lock or hunts. 

Later in the afternoon the advertising agency/client got an online gallery with 310 color corrected Jpegs and a WeTransfer.com file transfer of 1.3 GB of 4K video. Now we're just waiting for photo selections. Once I get them I'll retouch the images and drop out the backgrounds to provide Tiff files with layer masks. Everything we shot will eventually go to the web.

Camera news. 

My videographer buddy texted me this afternoon to let me know he was pre-ordering the Sony A7SIII from B&H photo. I was amused. Only a week ago he was all ready to spring for a Canon C300 mk3.
I can't fault his choice (yet) since we haven't seen any reviewers do a deep dive on the Sony camera yet. And he does have a complete selection of the best Sony lenses. But I'm gun shy about Sony cameras right now. There always seems to be an undisclosed weak spot. It will be interesting to see if they've finally delivered a flawless video camera. They have gotten a lot of stuff right this time: starting with the menus...

After using my S1 for today's video I have no current camera lust. There's not much out there I really feel like buying. I'm sure that will change. I'm sure I'll let you know. But I can assure you it won't be a Canon M5 or a Sony A7Smk3. Just not in the mood...

There is one cinema lens I wouldn't mind having but I won't mention it for fear the price will go up before I commit.

Hope you are safe, happy and have decided not to send your e-mail to me that starts out with: "You Should...."


Frank Grygier said...

Gerald Undone has a great in-depth review of the new Sony.

Alex Solla said...

At some point, when you have the time, could you talk about how you arrived at your audio recording setup? I Have been struggling to get good solid audio. As always, thank you.

Greg Heins said...

But you should, you know. You really should.

karmagroovy said...

You should take a real vacation. Even if it's just a driving vacation. Edward Weston's house in Carmel, CA is only 26 hours drive time from Austin! ;-)