Video Tips from Jesse James Allen - MR2 Owners Club Message Board
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old February 26th, 2004, 09:31 Thread Starter
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Video Tips from Jesse James Allen

Courtesy of user BlueToms2 (Jesse James Allen) from

Overcast days are the very best to shoot because car color saturation is read much higher without the heavy sunlight washing it out.

Moving shots are best done if you have some type of reference. Ever noticed in my videos the shots that look fast have trees or rock in the background. An open road in the middle of nowhere is just that, it has nothing to reference speed, you could go 120 and it would look like 20 but if you did the same shot in a vally of trees it would look 120, your audience needs to see some reference.

Shoot at low shutter speeds if you camera can do it. Standared video shutters flash 1/60 you eye only registers 1/42 thats why video looks so much different then film...because it slurrs like your eye does. IE move something quick across your you see some type of trail...yeah you do. Video can shoot so fast it can stop that up to 1/1500. If you set your camera at 1/30 or less the more blurring will happen in the camera...that's what you brain tells you is fast. Set it at 1/8 and a car going 20MPH will look like it's doing 200.

Don't zoom a lot. I rarely do , wide shots let people see whats going on. If you want close move close, it restricts camera jiggle that is only emphisized with a zoom and the lens gets a better pictures than with the zoom.

Watch every car commerical you can from Toyota, mazda etc... try to figure out where they have the camera pointed and what is in the background.

Hope that helps.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old February 26th, 2004, 09:31 Thread Starter
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originally posted by BlueToms2

This list is my choices for the semi pro- totally pro movie maker. I have used all of these products and can say this stuff will work wonders for you.

Best Camera's for Auto Movies:
(All of these are Pro quality 3 XCCD chip cameras) Price range $1,700-$5,000
(Also I should note that MiniDV is the best choice because of ease of editing and it can be accepted as a pro format should you decide to take it to a broadcast suite for edit)

Sony PD 100
Sony PD 150
Sony DCR-VX2000
Sony DCR-TRV900
(I love the Sony cameras because of all the wonderful shutter speed settings, the 3xCCD cameras are by far the best picture quality under $20,000 there is on the market today. You pay more for these cameras but your footage will be 2DIE4 )

Other great 3XCCD DV cams,

Canon GL1
Canon XL-1 --This one you can changed lenses on.

Best POV cam: (under $300)
The color chasecam is awesome!

Best editing software: ($500-$2000)
Adobe Premire
Cinestream 3 Media 100
Avid Xpress DV
Final Cut Pro

Best Special effects programs:
Adobe After Effects with Digi effects plug in's

Best Title maker software:
Ulead Cool 3d (It's under $100) and kicks serious butt, this program is a steal for what it does (3D text titles and 2d to 3d Vector based conversion!).
Adobe Photoshop is a must for 2d titles and to work with after effects.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old February 26th, 2004, 09:33 Thread Starter
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originally posted by BlueToms2
Getting the most from the Cone cam.

For those of you who don?t know what this is, it is a small camera you can mount anywhere on your car for those great point of view shots just like you see on speed vision.

The big thing is the cone cam needs a source recorder. If you have a camcorder that has an analogue input and record feature your in business. In this case I was using a Sony DCR-TRV900 Mini DV camera to record a digital camera. This camera is great because you can see what the Cone Cam see's on a flip out monitor inside the car.

The Cone cam runs under $200 from The color version is a single chip medium resolution camera with a fixed aperture fixed infinity focus. It comes with all the hookups to your camera input plus a 12V power supply that hooks to your cig lighter

The first order of business is to go to a camera store and get a circular polar filter for the camera. This is like tinted sunglasses for the camera. I picked a 52MM still camera lens and built up a support for the camera with gaffers tape to hold the filter in place. The 52MM filter is about the same size as the body of the Conecam and will simply rest on top of the lens itself if your tape the filter to the body of the camera. Gaffer?s tape is a black duct tape like roll that does not leave any residue when you take it off, it?s strong as hell too, and you can get it at most film/ video supply houses for about $15. This tape is also great for mounting the camera temporarily to the car without worry of the tape damaging your paint. Also the tape is great to tack the cone cam?s wires to the side of the car.

The polar lens will reduce sunglare and protect the tiny camera from street debris hitting it (If the filter shatters your only out $10-$20). It also will help bring out saturation levels in color (It makes color things really pretty)

Because of the conecame?s fixed aperture setting it produces a lot of grain (pixilated pictures) in low light so the best use for it is during the day when the sun is high. An overcast day is best for you filmmakers out there because the saturation levels go up and lens flares are minimal. In post (If your editing) you can adjust the color levels easily in a program like Adobe After effects.

This camera for the money is one of the best POV?s around. It?s a great tool for the filmmaker and a great learning device for track racers to see really how the car is doing during a lap. A must have item!

The Trailers for Apotheosis use Cone Cam's for all the POV shots.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old January 25th, 2006, 00:23
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I'm going to update this and say one of the best video editing programs I have found recently is Sony Vegas 6.

It's $450 and I have yet to find anything that offers a bigger bang for the buck. The big plus is that you can save your videos in any digital video format including the very web friendly WMV format.

It's very easy to use, you can have many formats of both audio and video on the same edit display and it will run no problem.

I use this program everyday professionally and it's a godsend.

Jesse James Allen
Director of MR2DIE4 & Apotheosis
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old January 26th, 2006, 00:44
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Let me also add that for those on a budget and want legal software that Adobe Premiere Elements 2+ isa very good program for around $60. I use it and Vegas.

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old January 27th, 2006, 12:21
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Overcast is good, beacuse of the even lighting conditions, i.e. you can do you white balance once, and be done with it.
Overcast days also makes for softer shading, softer shadows etc. which looks realy good in some instances, but I do beleivem, unless you planning on some heavy doctoring of the footage, overcast lends itself to beaty shoots, and not furious action shoots.
I do not agree that you should avoid sunny days, just make sure it's at around noon or a little before. And use a use a polarizer filter, and UV filter, those arent usualy that expensive, but well worth it.
You should always try to use a UV filter, even on overcast days to get rid of the haze.

Jesse mentioned the shutter speed, which is correct, but sometimes that isnt an option, so you could also record it the regular speed of the camera, which is 60 fields/30 frames a sec NTSC, (50fld,25fr, PAL). Now in your editing software collapse the two fields into one frame, and use interpoolating if you have that option. This adds a very nice smoothness to it, or the slury feeling Jesse was talking about.

I tend to drop the red and blue channel saturation a little, especialy on cheaper cameras, since they pulse and moire like there is no tomorrow.
Especialy keep that in mind when playing with contrast leves, as in most cases this will not only compress the grey values, but also color space.

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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old May 11th, 2008, 21:01
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tv commercials are done in 24fps. i think motion pictures are done at the same rate.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old May 12th, 2008, 11:38
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That's cause a lot of commercials, are filmed with movie cameras, not tv cameras. Which are running at 24fps, whereas a tv cam is 30fps(60hz) or in Pal(euro) at 25fps(50hz)

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