I am trying to achieve the type of fluid transitions which seem to go unnoticed. For example, if I had a scene with a person holding a pencil in a kitchen and I wanted to zoom into the pencil, seeing a bit of the background (maybe an overexposed window) but at a shallow depth of field, and then pull out of the pencil revealing a completely different room, such as a bedroom, how could i go about doing this? I thought I could green screen the person and the object and shoot the background separately. This would work, however, only if you do not see any of the background. I have seen commercials that use this technique but I have never understood how they can do it so smoothly. Could anyone help me with this idea? Thank you.
probably best to do with short dissolve in post. end 1st setup in a way you can duplicate, or come close to the same for the next setup. ie.. cu pencil, try to start with same size for zoom out. keep lighting and bg same. you can mark frame izes with china marker on a monitor to help you set up same size from shot to shot,
Flip Flop Films
Cinematography Forum Leader
[meding26]"I have seen commercials that use this technique but I have never understood how they can do it so smoothly."
how commercial producers do it smoothly: they have the budget for high-end compositing and the artists to go with it.
how you can do it: your green screen idea might work. I would recommend including at least one foreground or background element when you shoot Scene 1; as you zoom past them, have someone take them out of the scene so they're not there when you zoom out.
Todd's idea would probably look better. If you shot in HD you would have some slop so that you could adjust the frame and make the close-ups match better.
We've done this. Fake the pencil. Have someone hold an imaginary pencil and zoom to where it would be. Match the background for your second shot and pull out to reveal the hand and then the person. Now, here is the part that is going to sound really cheezy but bear with me. Using a large monitor with a glass crt, use a sharp dry erase pen and have the first person hold an actual pencil. Zoom in and focus on the pencil. Lock the tripod head. Trace the pencil with the pen directly on the glass. I'm assuming that you have a soft, bright, out of focus background. Reach in and remove the pencil so that you now have a clean plate, without the pencil. Measure your brightness with a waveform. At your second location, create a matching background and pull out to reveal the second setting. Your pencil can be in a hand or in a cup. Simply put the pencil in later. Experiment.