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Shooting POV vinto a Mirror

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Sascha Engel
Shooting POV vinto a Mirror
on Mar 4, 2011 at 4:32:36 pm

Hallo Everybody,

I have a certain shooting on location problem. Here is the scene:
The character is coming out of a toilet booth in a bar, walking towards the sink & the bath room mirror, looking up and seeing himself in the mirror. The whole shot should appear as a one taker, POV of the character.
How can this be done, so the DOP is replaced with the actual character looking at himself. The whole shot should be or at least appear to be handhold.

Thanx a lot for any suggestions.



Greetings,

Sascha


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Todd Terry
Re: Shooting POV vinto a Mirror
on Mar 4, 2011 at 5:42:48 pm

Well. are you shooting on a "real" (practical) location? The right "Hollywood" way to do this would be two build a set...a two-sided set. One that is the real restroom side, and the "mirrored" reverse side. There is no mirror, just an opening where there mirror would be. The actor does his role, and the camera operator mirrors his action on the reverse side of the set.

If your practical restroom is big enough, you might be able to create enough of the "reverse" side of the set to work... just a bit of a counter, maybe a couple of props (another soap dispenser, faucet, etc).

Another option would be to angle the mirror over the sink so that the camera op can play the scene standing beside the talent... just make sure that the talent plays to the camera rather than playing to his own reflection in the mirror.

If you can't angle the mirror, you could probably do it as well with the talent and camera op working side by side... but again the talent must play to the camera, not his own reflection... and it this case tighter shots would probably work better than wider ones.

T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com



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Sascha Engel
Re: Shooting POV vinto a Mirror
on Mar 4, 2011 at 5:54:16 pm

You are funny - ;-) - the right hollywood way!
We make films in Israel - which means a full feature film here costs the amount of a good video clip in the states.
And low budget films here are No-Budget films.
So, no way of sound stages!
But thanx for the other tips, they are very practical!!!!



Sascha


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Mark Suszko
Re: Shooting POV vinto a Mirror
on Mar 4, 2011 at 9:15:12 pm

Shooting with the mirror angled could work. Angle of incidence=angle of reflection. Or you can use motion trackers on the set, and combine the reflected performance of the actor in post. You are making a "sandwich" from a layer that is just the actor performing at the lens as if it is a mirror, and you'll motion-track that layer to match the perspective changes of your camera move thru the bathroom, with some cropping so the final view fits the real mirror surface. Using blend modes, the cameraman will magically be replaced with the actor.

When you have no money for practical, set-based effects, like Todd's idea, you'll have to spend extra time in post. That's always the trade-off.

You should see if you can contact COW member Eran Stern in the AE forum, as this sounds like the kind of fun AfterEffects project he might have some ideas about executing, and he lives AFAIK in Isreal.


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Sascha Engel
Re: Shooting POV vinto a Mirror
on Mar 5, 2011 at 10:24:24 am

Your suggestion sounds very interesting.
But I have to admit I am not sure I understand it fully:
- Angle of incident=angle of reflecction => could you ellaborate on that one?

- The method of "sandwich" was not clear to me. If you don't mind, could you explain it in different words?

Many thanx.

Sascha


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Mark Suszko
Re: Shooting POV vinto a Mirror
on Mar 6, 2011 at 7:19:06 pm

As to your first question, you can angle the mirror in the bathroom in such a way as to reflect the actor standing *next to* the POV cameraman, yet make it seem as though it is still a head-on reflection.

As to your second question, the idea of compositing can be likened to a stack of glass layers, some transparent, others all or partly opaque, layered like a sandwich. By using tracking dots during the main shot of the actor/cameraman in the bathroom, you will be able to make additional layers of the composite track perfectly with that first shot, preserving the illusion that all layers are in fact just one camera pass. Only, you trick the audience by substituting a shot of your actor into the space where the true mirror reflection of the camera operator was. Is that more clear?


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Sascha Engel
Re: Shooting POV vinto a Mirror
on Mar 8, 2011 at 12:55:42 pm

Clear now. Thanx a lot for the Suggestions!

Sascha


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Richard Herd
Re: Shooting POV vinto a Mirror
on Mar 7, 2011 at 7:57:58 pm

All no-budget filmmakers need to know a carpenter. Since the build doesn't have to be code, it can be put together very quickly and the materials (very few materials) saved for some other purpose.


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