Like I've said before, being creative or simply having to create, is one of the biggest assets you can have in this era. Being creative doesn't mean you always have the juices flowing in your body. Sometimes, we get into a rut. I know some of you have fallen into that black hole where it feels like you can't seem to get out. Trust me, we can all use a jump-start from time to time. Creatives can always use a new method to refresh their minds.
It might be tricky to be your own stylist, costumer, or scene creator on your own set, especially when you have never been into it. I have some good news! Imagination, some research, and dedication can solve this issue and bring bright results. Here are five handy materials and tips to use on your upcoming shoots to add a special touch when you need something more than a regular shot. The process is challenging, fun, and brain-training. You will have good practice for upcoming shoots and better coordination with different materials on set.
I love simple, easy to implement solutions to a common problem. The problem in this case, is using any sort of ND, polarizer, or other lens filter on wide-angle lenses that don't have filter threads. Sure, there are filter holder solutions but those can be a bit pricey for a hobbyist. In this video from MrCheesyCam, we're shown a simple way to DIY a filter onto a lens with some tape and card stock.
The DJI OSMO is a great tool for stabilizing your footage in a cinematic way. It is sure to increase your video’s production value. It can shoot 4K at 30fps, and you can even increase the frame rate to slow it down quite considerably. You can also shoot time-lapses or intervals, and if you move through an area while doing so, you will get the a very smooth, esthetically pleasing footage.
Some photographers call themselves artists, some photographers only think they’re photographers. Regardless, we all aspire for success. Maybe that means finding your work in galleries or gracing the cover of Vanity Fair. Even if you aren’t a photographer (how did you get here?), everyone strives to succeed. It’s different for everyone, that’s why it’s a difficult thing to chase. It’s tough to advise someone on how to succeed if you don’t have the same dream. There is, however, some common ground. Casey Neistat, the master Youtuber, shares his mantra, his guide, and what seems to be his daily lifestyle for pursuing his dreams and succeeding.
Continuous light sources used to be preferred by videographers more than photographers. However, in the last few years, it has become common to replace strobes with LED, HMI, or tungsten equipment. Unlike flash, with continuous lighting, what you see is what you get. It makes it much easier to set up and thus a great alternative for fast-paced work environments. Even more useful is that no recharging time is needed between each shot. The only issue remaining is often either the lack of power or the portability. Find out how to overcome both with this DIY powerful dimmable LED light.
Anamorphic lenses are mostly used by cinematographers to get a ratio of 2.40:1. The cinematic look these lenses offer has become popular amongst photographers lately. While such a wide ratio is not very practical for most genres, the squeezed bokeh and the unique flare these optics create is a way to stand out amongst the competition.
I've never been one for artificial light in my photography, and it's an issue that many photographers come across when leaving that oh, so beautiful natural light. The struggle of having a budget to put towards lighting equipment can be daunting but shouldn't limit you in finding the best way to create the shot. In this behind the scenes look, I will go into how I created a high-end product shot using light trails, all while on a budget. Remember, this can be recreated with any camera, including an iPhone, that allows for long exposures.
All too often in our business, we are thrust into a job in which we either have no time for or cannot afford lighting tests. I find that these gigs force me to fall back on my old tricks and techniques. This can lead to the dangerous place of shooting stuff that all looks the same. Sure, you can try out new ideas on personal projects, but sometimes, the job calls for stuff that you don’t own or cannot afford to get. Usually, when planning a shoot, I have great theories and fantastic ideas on how to pull off a look. However, the idea of winging it in front of a client is stressful...
If you have ever used LED panels for photo of video work, you know how awesome and helpful they can be. You also probably know that for a good LED, you are most likely looking at spending a good sized about of money. This is not always practical for the average photographer. However, in this 19 minute DIY video from DIY Perks, you can learn how to make flexible LED panel for around $60.
Creating a music video for a national act is one of the most intense tasks for a modern day filmmaker. Sure, the tools are more affordable, but declining budgets and insane turnaround times can turn your production into a sprint. Last month, my company, McFarland & Pecci, was tasked with creating two new music videos for the Grammy-nominated metal act, Killswitch Engage. My partner, Ian McFarland, and I drop everything when these guys call.