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This weekly course covers the most common questions videographers encounter when shooting and editing with DSLR cameras, from choosing a frame size and frame rate to understanding moiré. Authors Rich Harrington and Robbie Carman will also help you understand the impacts of compression and the difference between cropped (or micro 4/3rds) and full-sized sensors in cameras, and much more. This continual FAQ guide is a handy way to find the answers to the questions that plague you the most.
Rich Harrington: So Rob, you do a lot of color grading, fixing other people's footage. One of the hardest things to fix is an overexposed shot, right? Robbie Carman: Absolutely! The overexposed shot is sort of the bane of my existence. You know, it's just one of those things where-- Rich Harrington: You just twiddle the slider, right? Robbie Carman: Right, you know, an underexposed shot, I can usually save. An overexposed shot where things just kind of get burnt out and go to white, I like to say it's more of a band aid on bullet hole approach. I can make it slightly better, but I'm not to going to make it look awesome.
And that problem actually starts out in the field of course. Rich Harrington: Right! Robbie Carman: A lot of people, especially when they are shooting DSLRs, are using just the viewfinder here on the back of the camera and as you pointed out in an earlier episode, guess what? Everything looks good-- Rich Harrington: Yeah! Robbie Carman: on the back of the camera, now-- Rich Harrington: And what I hate too is that environmental light can make it really hard to see, like I've been shooting outdoors without a loupe, with out a monitor, I am like, I think it's right? Robbie Carman: Absolutely! And so, because of that you might think that you're getting a nicely exposed image, when in fact there might be part of the image that are pretty overexposed.
Now there are other options that we have out there in the DSLR world with larger external monitors, using videoscopes and that kind of stuff. But in this movie, I want to talk about how an EVF can sort of help us benefit with this, because an EVF is going to give us a much higher resolution image and depending on the EVF that you are using, you will have different options that you can use to check your exposure. So combined with a higher resolution and those options, it's really easy to get a really nice exposure. And I'm sorry, but there's no real excuse anymore to come in back with footage from the field that's 5, 6 ,7, stops overexposed.
Rich Harrington: Yeah! Robbie Carman: It shouldn't happen when we have such great monitoring now. Rich Harrington: One of my favorites is that I can actually get zebra bars where it shows me peaking for those areas that are overexposed and those are getting closer to that maximum exposure. Well, let's look through the camera here. Robbie Carman: Okay Rich Harrington: And what we are seeing is clearly a shot like the histogram point of view, it's right in the middle. It looks great! It's in the middle, except we are shooting over a black background here and it just kind of looks is like a white blob, right? Robbie Carman: Yeah! In fact, every--all those little pieces of stone there in the vase are kind of blown out into white, and I might be able recover some of that in post, but it's better to always start in the field with fixing problems, rather than reverting to that old adage of, we'll fix it in post.
So why don't you just stop down the camera a few stops, and there we go. Go one more stop for me. Rich Harrington: Yeah! I am actually going to take the ISO down too, because we are really high there. Robbie Carman: Yeah, there you go, and that's looking much, much better to me. Now one of the other benefits depending again on sort of the EVF that you are using, is that I do like using a loupe with an EVF, because it does magnify the image, right? And you might notice that there might be something off in the corner of the screen, you know, somebody's watch or something like that, that just with the naked eye without using the actual loupe itself on the EVF, you are not really noticing; it's nice to get sort of a magnified view as well.
Rich Harrington: Well I freely admit, I've had productions where we've missed a reflector being--sitting in the back corner. Somebody set a reflector down. Robbie Carman: Yeah! Rich Harrington: Or the leg of a C-Stand creeping into the scene. There is something about just taking the time to focus and look through the loupe into the EVF that just totally let's you see what's happening. The other thing that's nice is it actually puts some of the camera displays heads up, so you could really see what you're doing. When we come back, we're going to talk about some of those important options to look for when you choose an electronic viewfinder.
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