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green screen backdrops for corporates

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Joanne Braithwaite
green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 20, 2010 at 3:25:06 pm

Can anyone recommend a good source for green screen backdrops for corporate videos? I'm thinking board room bgs, brick walls from lofts, law offices, cool work spaces, conservative work spaces, etc.

I've come across several still photography backdrops that look good but am not sure they'll work in 16x9 HD video. It's been a while since I've used green screen in my previous tv life and can't recall all the details.

Thanks!

Joanne


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Noah Kadner
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 20, 2010 at 6:07:22 pm

I can't recommend Chromaflex aka Holoset highly enough. It looks a little expensive upfront but what it will save you in terms of not needing to light your screens perfectly and not spending decades saving bad composites in post will pay for itself on your first gig. Also your clients will love that you spend only 10 minutes setting up a keying shot and not two hours.

http://store.virtualsetworks.com/detail.aspx?ID=1102

Otherwise if you simply google for greenscreen you'll find a host of standard options.

Noah

Unlock the secrets of 24p, HD and Final Cut Studio with Call Box Training. Featuring the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and Canon 7D.


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Joanne Braithwaite
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 21, 2010 at 4:25:32 pm

Thanks for that, Noah! I've bookmarked the page.

What I really need at the moment, though, is the video backdrop that you'd see in the final video. The last time I worked with green screen was on a tv series and the production house took care of providing whatever we needed to make it happen, but now I have my own company and have to figure out where it all comes from.

I've found lots of great backgrounds for still photographers and a few for videographers on google but would appreciate some recommendations. I'm imagining a DVD with video of nice looking board rooms, cool office spaces, etc. The kind of place I'd shoot clients in their own offices for corporates but without having to travel to their offices (and maybe their offices suck, either visually or because they're right beside train tracks).

Thanks!


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Chris Tompkins
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 21, 2010 at 5:23:10 pm

Have u cruz'd the stock photog sites?
Istock photo etc...

Chris Tompkins
Video Atlanta


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Alan Lloyd
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 21, 2010 at 10:18:19 pm

Get a decent digital SLR and grab several different shots of every nice setting you see if you even think it might make a decent backdrop. Card space is cheap.

And manipulate them in Photoshop so they are not perfectly sharp. Softening them and placing accent lighting with filters does wonders for such things - or stock photos you might use, as suggested above.


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Stephen Smith
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 23, 2010 at 2:29:57 pm

iStock Photo has worked great for me. I've also gotten some backgrounds with a DSLR.

Stephen Smith
Utah Video Productions

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Mark Suszko
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 23, 2010 at 2:35:59 pm

A google search will turn up many synthetic background sources. However, a lot of these, to my eye, look like they were made by wannabe game designers who were playing with making new DOOM maps and levels. That is to say, unrealistic and abstract, versus highly realistic.

If you go to newteks' video toaster pages, I think there are links to sources they suggest for additional chromakey background element vendors. but you definitely get what you pay for, and not more, usually less, with a lot of these places.


Another place to try is Turbosquid; get a high-end architectural model of a room and render out the plates you need.


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Joanne Braithwaite
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 23, 2010 at 2:38:41 pm

Thanks, everyone!

Joanne


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Alan Lloyd
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 28, 2010 at 4:09:35 pm

Just to amplify - if you use a stock backdrop (the one here came from Adobe Ultra) you can mess with it in Photoshop.

This is from the "Library" set:



It's overly detailed and kind of bright, rather distracting for a background.

Here is the result of a very brief bit of experimentation:



Darkened, defocused, a bit of accent lighting and some shadows added.

Just an illustrative example - I'm sure there are far better Photoshoppers out there ready to pounce and thrash it.


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Joanne Braithwaite
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 29, 2010 at 1:11:00 am

Hi Alan,

That's the sort of thing I'm looking for! That shot looks like a virtual set and I'm hoping to find similar sorts of shots but real photos. A lot of what I've found doesn't look like the sort of background you'd have behind a talking head. I'd like to find a boardroom, a brick-walled loft, that sort of thing.

Thanks!


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Alan Lloyd
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 29, 2010 at 2:03:03 am

It is - it's from Adobe Ultra's virtual sets. Did the "treatment" for a client's use.

There are places all around with good "texture" for your purposes. Just find 'em and shoot some stills. The defocusing and lighting I did to make the detail in there less distracting when someone's keyed over it.


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Mark Suszko
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 29, 2010 at 3:05:16 am

One of the "tricks" that goes with what Alan is doing, is to make one version much more blurred and magnified than the other; you swap that BG in when your green screen cuts to a tighter shot. The natural depth of field illusion sort of insists on it, and if the background always stayed sharp, it would look more fake. We had a talk show set made with a sort of duratrans backdrop window, ands I sent the first version back to the photo printer because it was too sharp. people look at the set in real life and notice the blur immediately and comment on it... then comment AGAIN when they see the TV monitor with them in the shot. THEN they get it:-)


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Joanne Braithwaite
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 29, 2010 at 3:37:13 am

So Mark, if I find a stock photo and want to use just a small portion of it, I'm assuming that, as I push into the photo, it will naturally lose some of its sharpness.

Do you know whether that looks like a depth of field thing (good and desirable) or if it looks like a pixilated thing (bad and inappropriate)?

Or could there be a third option - I push into the photo, it loses some of its sharpness (so far, so good), it looks pixilated (not good) but then I soften all the edges and voila, it I've got depth of field. Pixilation is softened and it looks like the on-camera person is actually sitting in that room.

Am I on the right track?

I don't want to use any virtual sets - they'd have to be real photos. And although I'm happy to start shooting my own photos, it's going to take some time to build up a collection, so stock photos will have to do for a while.


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Mark Suszko
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 29, 2010 at 3:44:53 am

Yup.


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Alan Lloyd
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 29, 2010 at 3:31:18 pm

I use simple Gaussian blurring in Photoshop.

The biggest pain in the pix I put up was doing the ladder shadow.

My client was happy with the results, though.


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Joanne Braithwaite
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 29, 2010 at 3:38:11 pm

I'm thinking that, if I am using real photos instead of virtual sets, I can just knock the whole thing out of focus. Is that correct?

Thanks!


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Alan Lloyd
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 29, 2010 at 5:17:33 pm

You can. Photoshop is your friend.

(I'd shoot the original plate sharp, you just never know and varying degrees of defocus are easy to do!)


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Joanne Braithwaite
Re: green screen backdrops for corporates
on Aug 29, 2010 at 7:39:48 pm

Thanks! Now all I have to do is find the appropriate photos... onwards!


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