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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.
Robbie: Hi, I'm Robbie Carman. Rich: And I'm Rich Harrington. Robbie: And welcome to another installment of DSLR Video Tips. And Rich, today we're going to talk about something we've talked about before, and that's a follow focus. But we're actually going to go out into the field and see the follow focus in action. Rich: I think a lot of folks still always have questions about follow focus. The biggest thing that I want to really get out there, is that the follow focus doesn't make it easier to get good focus. It just makes it easier to transition when you rehearse. And so, it's a subtle difference. A lot of people they think, oh I'll get the follow focus and then, my shots are going to be in focus.
No, you're just adding more hardware. It's kind of like saying, well, I'm, I don't know how to drive but I bought a better race car, so I'm going to win the race. Robbie: I'd actually say in some cases it's the exact opposite. That using a follow focus, especially if you're not experienced with it, and the technique that goes into it. You'll actually probably get more shots that are out of focus, than in focus, if you don't put a little practice into it. Rich: But the good news is, is that they transition smoothly, and what we have here is just one of many type of follow focuses. Robbie: Yep. Rich: But the key pieces of equipment are that you're going to have some sort of gear Robbie: Yep.
Rich: Which'll connect to the lens. Robbie: Yeah there's a gear here on the lens as well. So, this gear interfaces right with this gear right here. Rich: And then, you have a wheel here and it's basically much like you might have learned in grade school. Instead of doing big movements, it makes those movements much more subtle. So as I turn this, it translates to smaller movements over here. But, we've talked about this in the studio before. I think the best thing to do is to actually show it to you in a real shoot. And to do this, you worked with DP Kevin Bradley, right? Robbie: Yeah, Kevin and I were out in the field and we had a shot where we had the the artist from the music video we're shooting.
And we're having him walk down this road. And, it was a pretty long walk actually, it was probably, I don't know, 50, 60, 70 feet. And we wanted to obviously keep him in focus as he was walking down the entire road, getting closer to the camera. Now, that's a little difficult to do if you're just using the control right on the lens. Simply because on most DSLR lenses, which were originally intended to be photo lenses, a little movement actually makes a big difference right, you know? Rich: Yeah, a lot of these lenses are set so that if you do a quarter turn, you've gone through the entire focal range. Robbie: Right.
Rich: Its not like the old days. This is an older manual focus lens. Robbie: Yep. Rich: Where this dial is going to turn almost 270 degrees. Robbie: Yeah, exactly. Rich: Which is why I like this. But there's lots of different ways. You shot this scene on a Canon, and I think we should head out and see how all the pieces get put together. Robbie: Yeah, let's do it.
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