FORUMS: list search recent posts

What did I do wrong in this sequence?

COW Forums : Art of the Edit

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
Anthony Atkielski
What did I do wrong in this sequence?
on Feb 23, 2012 at 2:09:33 pm

In a video I made I have a short sequence of about 30 seconds that is especially bothering me, which you can see here (it starts at 13:12):



The sequence shows some traffic starting and stopping at a traffic light. First, I show the intersection, with the traffic light turning red on the right and a bus coming to a stop on the left. Then, I do a simple cut to another view, almost 180° around, showing another car stopping at the light. Then I go back to the the first angle, this time showing pedestrians crossing with the light on the left as it turns green again. Then I switch back to the other view again, showing the traffic starting to move.

Something about this sequence just doesn't flow, and I don't know why. The first cut in particular (where cars are stopping) seems jarring, whereas the second is a little bit better (where cars are starting to move again).

Are the transitions wrong, or did I shoot the wrong shots to make this work, or have I broken a rule, or what? I was thinking recently that maybe my placement of the traffic light in each shot wasn't appropriate (should it have been on a different side?), but I don't know for sure.

Comments and suggestions welcomed.


Return to posts index

Steve Kownacki
Re: What did I do wrong in this sequence?
on Feb 23, 2012 at 3:37:38 pm

I think you need to highlight the "little ones on the bottom" maybe with an arrow or darken the screen except for a circle around it. I didn't know where to look so I was looking at the yellow light on top thinking "they're all the same size"; you may need to hold the shots longer so you can read and absorb the titles and give me time to relate it to the video.

Perhaps the shot at 13:28 could be from the left of the driver as he looks to the "little light" showing relation of height to the driver's eyeline.

13:35 need to show relation of the front of the car with regard to the light. The shot at 13:25 shows the white minivan clearly past the imaginary line - can you put a graphic line on the screen where he should have stopped, roughly his rear wheels?

Took me 4 times to watch and read to understand. If I were in the traffic business (municipal planners or engineers for instance) I would totally get what you are showing. As a layman, took a few views to get it.

Steve






Return to posts index

Scott Cumbo
Re: What did I do wrong in this sequence?
on Feb 24, 2012 at 4:06:19 am

To me it's that pole on the left that makes it jarring. your eyes go right to it. the second time isn't as bad because you've seen it already. I would use another shot or zoom in a bit and try to get rid of it or at least minimize it.

good luck

Scott Cumbo
Editor
Broadway Video, NYC


Return to posts index


adam taylor
Re: What did I do wrong in this sequence?
on Mar 5, 2012 at 12:39:05 pm

for me the flow problem is down to both the editing and the original choice of camera position.

As the light changes to green, you hold the shot for too long....but then when you cut to the traffic moving off, the first white car has already gone yet the time you held the shot was not long enough for the car to have got completely out view.

It would flow much better if the light changed to green, then maybe 10 frames later cut to see the white car in the first few frames of motion.

Also, i think the camera position has hindered your shots. You were too close to the lights which has limited your compositional options. If the camera was further away from the junction, you would be able to use a selection of lens focal lengths to capture shots that include the lights and the vehicles.
Shooting close means everything requires the wide angle end of your lens, which in turn distorts the image and makes it look weird and unnatural.

It would have been better to stand on the other side of the street in front of the stopped traffic. At the moment all we can see is a metal post and the back end the vehicles. From across the street we could have seen the front of the stopped vehicles, and the lighting furniture in its entirety. Which in turn would have given a much stronger overview of the situation at that junction. Basically,
You need to walk a bit more between the different camera positions, but its worth it as the pictures would have been more watchable and the edit would have looked much better.

adam

Adam Taylor
Video Editor/Audio Mixer/ Compositor/Motion GFX/Barista
Character Options Ltd
Oldham, UK

http://www.sculptedbliss.co.uk
My YouTube Animations Page


Return to posts index

Anthony Atkielski
Re: What did I do wrong in this sequence?
on Mar 7, 2012 at 8:03:49 am

Thank you for all the replies. It's obviously too late to change this video, but I can practice shooting the same topic and see if I can get something that flows better.

One reason I was so close to the traffic lights is that their design is important to the shot (I wanted to show how there are little lights that duplicate the big lights), but I will nevertheless take your advice for future shots.


Return to posts index

adam taylor
Re: What did I do wrong in this sequence?
on Mar 7, 2012 at 8:52:47 am

Sorry to say but if that was the intention - to show the two different sized lights, then you didnt really succeed.

You only managed a couple of shots with both sizes together, and in both, it was such a wide shot that the small size became insignificantly small. Also, the angle from which you shot the smaller set tended to hide them by optically squashing them in the horizontal axis (circle viewed from an angle becomes an ellipse).

I would have tried to get at least a couple of shots from the other side of the street, looking through the traffic, to show the lights from the drivers angle.

A tilting shot from one light to another would also help establish the two different sets on each pole.

Again, i think much of the problem was being too close and having to use a wider angle lens. On the long end of the lens, you would have had the benefits of the flattening or foreshortening effect that telephoto lenses have.

i would suggest you do some tests with your camera....try shooting a street scene with different focal lengths, some very close and some distant, whilst trying to maintain as similar a composition as possible by physically moving the camera nearer or further away to compensate for the lens focal length. When you watch the footage back, look for the ways your lens has altered the image.

Once you understand how your lens works, you'll be in a much better place to pick the right shooting position for the shot you want.

Oh, one more thing i spotted on watching it back just now - a horizontal wipe on top of a moving car??really? The wipe should have been either in front or behind the vehicle - definitely not fading out halfway along the car.

Theres a lot to learn, so tick with it and you'll get where you want to be.

adam

Adam Taylor
Video Editor/Audio Mixer/ Compositor/Motion GFX/Barista
Character Options Ltd
Oldham, UK

http://www.sculptedbliss.co.uk
My YouTube Animations Page


Return to posts index


Anthony Atkielski
Re: What did I do wrong in this sequence?
on Mar 8, 2012 at 9:26:34 am

Thanks for the tips.

Concerning the wipe on the car: Since I don't have a lot of control over who walks in front of my camera in these videos, I often have shots interrupted by a car or person crossing the frame at close range. Trying to make the best of a bad thing, I hit upon the idea of using the object or person as a way of dragging a linear wipe transition across the frame. I just assumed that centering the wipe on the object or person would make it less obtrusive than having it follow or precede the moving element, since it would be sort of invisible if the viewer is following the object rather than the edge of the wipe. You're saying that it's bad to put a wipe right on something that is moving? How should it be done, then? Or is a linear wipe a bad way to deal with objects that wash through the frame to begin with?


Return to posts index

adam taylor
Re: What did I do wrong in this sequence?
on Mar 8, 2012 at 9:44:31 am

ideally I would use the car as the leading edge of the wipe.

To do that i would use a soft wipe but not as soft as the one you used, and keyframe the wipe position so that the car drags it along behind.
Try avoid having any part of the car fading out as that will spoil the effect.

You can create shaped masks to make a more close fitting wipe, but that is not always necessary.

The point of using a wipe is to transition to a different shot. This can be either hidden or obvious.

A hidden one is what i think you were trying but because you placed the wipe in the centre of the car, you actually made it very obvious with half the car being faded out - the result is a bizarre view of half a car driving through your shot.

If you place the wipe behind the car, the soft edge will make the transition less obvious, and the moving car right in front of the wipe will distract the viewers attention from the transition.

Personally i prefer to use an object within the scene to act as the catalyst for a wipe. Depending on the object you can even get away with a straight cut. Often you will see a bus pass through the shot filling the frame, and as it finishes the shot has changed. Often the editor will find another shot with a bus rushing through and do a short 3-4 frame mix whilst both buses are filling the frame. As buses usually look very similar, and moving quickly, chances are the transition will be unnoticed.

The main thing is to keep experimenting, keep learning, and don't just look at your tv - watch it, and analyse what the editor and cameraman are showing you. You'll never stop learning!

regards
Adam

Adam Taylor
Video Editor/Audio Mixer/ Compositor/Motion GFX/Barista
Character Options Ltd
Oldham, UK

http://www.sculptedbliss.co.uk
My YouTube Animations Page


Return to posts index

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
© 2017 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]