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Author Topic: Mega confused would-be newbie!  (Read 4527 times)

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« on: June 04, 2017, 13:06 »
Thinking of trying footage. I have an OMD EM5. And no video software. And basically do not know where to begin. I have read lots on the internet but my head is just spinning. On my camera alone there are so many options....

Is it possible to give me a starting point:
what format to set on my camera
free or low cost easy to use video software to do basic editing

so I can have a play?

Clearly the objective is to end up with something half decent for most sites.....

or is this like asking how long is a piece of string?

« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2017, 14:47 »
I bought a pan, I want to a chef!

Seriously, don't worry about stock.  Keep reading, watch some tutorials, RTM, etc.   You'll get there.

« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2017, 01:19 »
But it's stock I am interested in (having done stock photos for years).

I don't aim to do mini Hollywood epics with sound effects, snazzy transitions and impressive special 3d animation effects. Which is why I asked here.

It IS a whole new world and some help as to where to usefully start would be nice.

I don't want to be a chef. Just a competent (stock) cook.

I look forward to maybe a more useful reply.

« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2017, 02:13 »
Teach yourself and be prepared to put in 20 years hard work before you see good results. If you can adapt quickly to a rapidly changing industry you may be able to make a living or part thereof.

« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2017, 02:36 »
How about going to a videography course?

« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2017, 03:19 »
Wait a little while, there should be a whole rash of "how to make millions shooting microstock videos" being hawked on this forum very soon.


  • Space, Sci-Fi and Astronomy Related Stock Footage

« Reply #6 on: June 05, 2017, 05:23 »
Twenty years is probably a bit excessive. I bought my first video camera in 2007, used After Effects for the first time in 2008, sold my first stock video in 2009, started doing stock seriously in 2014, gave up freelancing to do stock full time in 2015, started travelling the world using just my stock earnings in 2016.. just working one or two days a week on new items.

I'm maybe the exception to the norm, but if you have common sense, a bit of business acumen, an 'eye for the shot' and a basic understanding of what sells... you can learn the rest pretty quickly. If you read books, watch tutorials and shoot as much as you can for a month, you'll have all the knowledge you need to shoot stock content that will probably sell from time to time. Shooting the right stuff and figuring out what sells will take a bit longer, and creating stuff that will do a lot better than 'probably sell from time to time' will take a lot longer than that... but probably years rather than decades.

On the other hand, you could be at it for twenty, even forty years... and still be s**t! There's certain things you can't really teach... it's the same reason why some musician who's been at it for twenty years might be a multi million dollar performer, and another might be getting the crowd going before the bingo starts. I appreciate there's more of a 'right place at the right time' and an issue of getting the right opportunities in that scenario, but hopefully you get the idea.   

« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2017, 06:07 »
Presumably you've already Googled for settings?  If not, do that.  Yes, it is complicated...

I do have an OM-5 but I'm not an expert on using it for video (I have Canons for that), but in general, what you need is to use a shutter speed that's as close to half the frame rate as you can get, so as the OM-D will default to 29 frames/sec (maybe that's really 29.97, I'm not sure) you're looking for 1/60th of a sec.

If you use the camera in pure video mode I have no idea what setting it will select, beyond 29 frames/sec, so it's best to use either Shutter priority and set 1/60th of a sec, or Manual.  If Shutter Priority, it will try and get a sensible aperture, and you can use the exposure compensation wheel to adjust as it suits you.  If Manual, just adjust the aperture to get the exposure but keep it on 1/60th sec.  If that can't get you what you want, change the ISO, but generally you want that as low as possible, unless depth of field is vital.

You need to give any user scope to colour grade it for themselves, so set the Picture Mode to Natural or Muted, the Enhanced and Vivid modes are overprocessed for video.

It's not going to be possible to change focus during recording - at least, not in any way that will give good results as far as I know - so you're limited to setting focus first, then just recording a scene.  Or at least, that's what I do.  Perhaps someone else knows a way.

You may be able to hand hold (the IS is good) if it suits the subject, street scenes or things that are dynamic, but I would suggest it's best to start with easier stuff like static scenes with movement in the subjects - and you'll need a tripod for that, with which IS should be off in my opinion.

Then just try it out.  Mount it on the tripod, turn IS off, get it focused, set Shutter Priority and 1/60th of a sec, press the Live View button and adjust compensation till it looks right to you in the screen.  Then press the red "Record" button and get some footage.  Press it again to stop.

As for software, get a copy of MPEG Streamclip - it's free - again, Google to find it.  You can do basic editing in it to remove the shaky bits at the start and end, and various other stuff.

Then export from MPEG Streamclip as follows (my suggestion anyway, others may differ):

File/Export to Quicktime - settings:

Compression: Apple Photo - JPEG (All sites will accept this)
Quality: 90% (Don't go above 95%, the result will be a huge file for no great benefit)
Sound: No Sound  (the camera microphone is not likely to be good enough)
Frame Size: 1920x1080 (unscaled)
Turn off "Interlaced Scaling"

You can create a preset in the program so those settings can be easily retrieved.

Then click on "Make Movie" and it will make a new file... a much bigger one, unfortunately, but something you can upload.

Leastwise, that's the sort of thing I do.  Others may do it in other ways of course but it's a start!

Best of luck...  don't expect great sales though.  Pond5 is probably the best site to start with, but SS are good too.

Have fun.

« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2017, 07:24 »
Gannet77 you are a star! Yes, I've been round Google and even did a one day video course (but they didn't want to get hung up on the technical stuff!)
I at least have a starting point.
Thanks so much, really appreciated.

« Last Edit: June 05, 2017, 07:27 by sarah2 »

« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2017, 09:24 »
Sounds like you've had more training than I have!

As I said, I'm no expert - and it could well be you'd get perfectly adequate results just setting it in video mode and going for it, but I'm used to using a 5D for video and I like to be able to set everything up for myself, so I do the same thing with the OM.  Could well be the IS doesn't matter either, but generally I turn that off (if I remember) when on a tripod so same here.

Best of luck.

« Reply #10 on: June 05, 2017, 09:35 »
There are some basic but important differences when first switching from photography to videography:

The shutter speed should be more or less fixed (double the framerate for natural looking motion blur). ND filters are a must if you want to stay true to this. If there is not much movement fast shutter speeds are not TOO obvious but if you introduce faster things or water, it will look quite unpleasing if you go over 1/48-1/60th of a second (unless slow motion).

Look for movement in addition or instead of the usual things you would look for in a photograph. A scene that would be quite dull as a photo can become quite interesting as a video clip with movement (either camera movement or within the scene).

Footage of still life usually requires a bit of camera movement (slider/dolly) to be interesting. In fact, it might get rejected if it looks like a photograph with minimal movement in the scene.

« Reply #11 on: June 05, 2017, 10:19 »
Good points - and that bit about ND filters is especially true, as the slowish shutter speed means you can end up using very small apertures like f22 (unless it's dark),  causing any sensor spots to become more visible, and those are hard to deal with in video unless you have professional software.

« Reply #12 on: June 05, 2017, 13:36 »
Thanks so much all. I was getting really bogged down in all the options while my goals are - at least in the short term - fairly limited.


« Reply #13 on: July 01, 2017, 02:34 »
I would recommend using manual exposure when shooting video. Auto exposure can have some undesirable results. For example, if you're panning past something that is fairly dark like a cave, auto exposure will open up the aperture to compensate, overexposing the footage temporarily and then resuming normal exposure after the cave has passed. As you could imagine, this would be very distracting. Likewise - suppose you're recording a static scene and all of a sudden, a shiney white car moves past the camera. If left on auto exposure, the camera will close down the aperture to compensate, temporarily darkening the scene. The same thing will happen if you tilt the camera from ground level to a higher point to film a building or other tall structure. The inclusion of the sky in the frame will darken the footage somewhat. If you set the camera to manual exposure mode (if your OMD has one) you won't have these issues.
« Last Edit: July 02, 2017, 10:15 by dragonblade »


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