FORUMS: list search recent posts

Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?

COW Forums : Cinematography

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
ryan elder
Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?
on Aug 26, 2018 at 9:51:20 pm

I wanted to shoot a scene of actors talking while driving and I thought of a shot and reverse shot, like this:







However, I was wondering what tool could do it and I thought maybe the Fat Gecko:







But what do you think? I am guessing the lens in that shot is a 35mm so if it is, can the Fat Gecko house a 35 at a far enough distance from the car, to get that kind of framing?

What do you think?


Return to posts index

Todd Terry
Re: Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?
on Aug 26, 2018 at 10:18:58 pm
Last Edited By Todd Terry on Aug 26, 2018 at 10:20:11 pm

That little suction mount won't get a camera far enough back for the two-shot with exactly that framing.

For exactly that shot, you need a camera mount that is known as a "hostess tray"... give it a Google.

Those suction mounts are good for shots that are more just driver-oriented, though, not so much for two shots....

All of the driver/car interiors from this piece were shot with my DJI Osmo Zenmuse X3 camera head suctioned to the windshield...







I would have normally used the slightly larger (though much better) X5 camera head... but it was having an issue and was being repaired. I used my X5 for all of the car interiors in this commercial...







As you can see, interior-mounted positions are good for single shots, not so much for two-shots.

If you ever watch Jerry Seinfeld's "Comedians in Cars" or any of James Corden's "Carpool Karaoke" segments, you'll see that they do plenty of two-shots from suction-mounted interior cameras (GoPros), but they do have that warped perspective almost-fisheye look that you probably don't want.

Also keep in mind.... the example you posted might have been none of these mounts... the vast vast majority of car interiors these days are composited (greenscreen or bluescreen), so then the mount is a moot point. Compositing has gotten so good (look up some of the amazing samples from the post house The Molecule) that towing a car and doing it practically is getting more rare.

T2

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



Return to posts index

ryan elder
Re: Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?
on Aug 26, 2018 at 10:38:31 pm

Okay thanks. In the example you posted, looks like it might have some barrel distortion in compared to the example I posted.

I looked up the hostess tray and it is quite a bit more money for me. What is it about that one that can get me a two shot compared to the fat gecko? Why can't the suction mounts get a two shot, as you say?


Return to posts index


Todd Terry
Re: Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?
on Aug 26, 2018 at 10:44:28 pm

For the shot you reference, you want to get the camera a good foot or two feet outside the car, to get the camera position far enough away from the talent to get that two-shot with the perspective that you want.

I haven't used it in a while, but I have a hostess tray that I built myself, mostly out of PVC pipe and fittings. It fits over the edge of the car door with struts that support it on the outside, and a small platform for a tripod head. Probably spent less than $15 on it.

T2

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



Return to posts index

Mark Suszko
Re: Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?
on Aug 26, 2018 at 10:52:33 pm

That's your answer. A couple of shelf brackets, some 2x4, wood, and imagination, you're good to go.

When I made a rig related to this, I added web strapping loops that could be captured in the hinge and latch areas of the car door, or pinned by the closed window, as an extra safety/security measure. The loop gets pinched in the door, and you can add a cross piece of something like dowel rod to the end of the loop as a toggle to prevent it slipping out again.

Making these improvised rigs to suit a shot is part of the fun for me, and I never spend more tan 20 bucks but get a great result.


Return to posts index

ryan elder
Re: Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?
on Aug 26, 2018 at 10:57:36 pm

Oh okay. Everytime I go DIY, the equipment always falls apart, needs repares, or they make noise when trying to record dialogue.

So I don't know if I trust my own equipment compared to professional. I tried the DIY boompole, made too much noise, and needed too much maintenance, as well as the DIY steadicam I tried building. I can try to go DIY for the car mount, just afraid it will fail, resulting in a broken camera and lens.


Return to posts index


ryan elder
Re: Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?
on Aug 26, 2018 at 11:01:37 pm

I was told before that I would have a lot less hassle in equipment failure if I just buy pro instead of going DIY all the time, like I did wit the boompole and steadicam. Do you think that's true, and that with pro, you get what you pay for, or is DIY equipment just good, even if it means having more maintenance after scene shoots?


Return to posts index

ryan elder
Re: Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?
on Aug 26, 2018 at 11:11:00 pm

Also, in the previous posts it was said that I cannot get a two shot, but mounting the fat gecko on the inside of the car. But what if I mount it on the outside, pointed through the window, but on the outside, will that help any?


Return to posts index

ryan elder
Re: Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?
on Aug 26, 2018 at 11:17:16 pm

Actually I was watching other car shots in movies to compared and I watched the one in Terminator 2 and I noticed how it looked like the camera was moving from side to side during the two shot.

It looked as though it might have been shot by mounting the camera to another car and then driving that car lined up with the other car. Is that how they shot it though?


Return to posts index


Mark Suszko
Re: Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?
on Aug 27, 2018 at 2:53:03 pm

Movies with "Terminator" budgets often shoot car scenes on a "process trailer": a very low trailer that holds the car and has enough room around the sides to hold the grip gear, camera rigs, etc. The actors then can act, and not have to also drive... this is safest and gives great results. Alternately, they put a techno-crane on a Porche Cayanne and have a pro driver drive parallel to the actor vehicle, "flying" the camera alongside. Much cooler results... if you can afford that. You can't.

The "poor man's process trailer" is to use a wrecker truck or car towing hitch from U-Haul with a pickup truck to tow the car and shoot from. But check local laws about being in the towed car under way.

The advent of gopros and the like means a lot of what used to only be done on process trailers is now done with "stick-ons",

But your Gecko thing seems like it would be too close for the shot, unless you used the fisheye lens of the gopro. You can flatten out that fisheye in post, of course, but Todd was correct that what you really want is to frame the shot from a foot or two further back, perhaps even using the outline of the window as a framing tool.


As for potentially losing the rig... well, build it good. ☺ Use a LOT of gaffer tape. Also, add safety cables so if it breaks free, it doesn't hit the road or become a hazard.

Driving shots should always be done under the most careful conditions possible: un-used or blocked-off roads, and low speeds, if the talent is driving.

And don't have the driver actor take their eyes off the road at all. Ever. I can't count how many times in a movie, the driver turns his attention to the passenger for what seems like days, and I'm just cringing, waiting for the car crash that *should* be happening.


Return to posts index

Todd Terry
Re: Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?
on Aug 27, 2018 at 3:42:10 pm

Hey, I'm ALL about buying and using good/proper gear.... and for the last decade or so that's what I've done, buy the RIGHT stuff and buy the GOOD stuff. But I haven't always been that way and it doesn't always make sense. The first couple of years of my company we didn't have any money and I made tons of DIY camera mounts and rigs and such. I made my first full-blown camera crane a zillion years ago when I was just a kid... I like making things.

And sometimes still do.... if I need to do something in particular, and the "right" way is a $3000 job but the DIY way is a 30-buck job and will do it JUST AS WELL and is only needed for a couple of times, then I'll DIY in a heartbeat.

A homemade hostess tray is painfully easy... here's mine, made of PVC pipe and fittings and a hardboard camera platform...



Of course when I really use it there are lots of straps and pads, etc... I just threw it on my own car window quickly to show how it works.

Now... I fully understand not everyone is a do-it-yourselfer. We all have different gifts. Myself, I can make or rig just about any kind of camera mount to do just about anything, it's just something I'm good at.... but I totally have a brown thumb in the garden, and God forbid I have a mechanical problem with a car or one of my motorcycles because I am clueless in the garage (I will call a mechanic in a heartbeat and not feel emasculated about that in the slightest). Not everyone is good at everything. So DIY rigs might not be your thing.

I will say though, as a side note, I'm not sure how anyone can screw up a DIY boom pole... it's really just two steps...
1) Drive to Home Depot and buy a painter's pole
2) Enjoy

So... if you can't DIY it, there's no shame in that. BUT... you might know someone who can. I have a friend who will tackle building things that I'd never dream of, and sometimes I have to go to him and say "Hey how can we make this work?"

It all depends on what you need. If I was doing tons of driving shots, I'd buy the real thing...either a real hostess tray, or a three-point suction-mount system. If I needed a couple of shots... absolutely not.

T2

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



Return to posts index

Todd Terry
Re: Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?
on Aug 27, 2018 at 3:50:11 pm

And in case you need other mounting points... this page shows a couple of other car camera mounts we've built....

http://fantasticplastic.com/portfolio/news031.html

I've used that hood mount both for driver's perspective, and turned around pointing back at the driver/passenger as well. It is made out of two suction-cup shower grab bars from Home Depot's plumbing department, with a piece of plywood bolted to it. People used to wonder why I'd trust them to hold 40 or 50K worth of camera gear on a moving vehicle... but the suction cups hold SO well, they are actually difficult to get to un-seal when I'm ready to take it apart. I used to put lots of straps on it, but I don't even bother with them any more. I figure the people who make them don't need any lawsuits from Granny falling in the shower, so they are made to hold really well, and they do. I'll also use them to put lighting instruments on a car hood when we're shooting from the side, even in daylight, to give a little kick in to the driver.

T2

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



Return to posts index


ryan elder
Re: Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?
on Aug 27, 2018 at 9:59:58 pm

Oh okay, the way I screwed up the DIY boompole is that the painter's pole makes noise when booming from actor to actor, since they are not built to be quiet while recording dialogue.

And the DIY steadicam I made, just didn't work well, balance wise, cause I couldn't get the weights exactly the right weight, for when switching lenses.

What about this car mount, which is priced pretty cheap:

https://www.proaim.com/camtree-gripper-campod-suction-car-mount.html

Would that get the shot I am looking for? If not I could try DIY.

I also want to hook the mount onto the windshield and get a front close up of the driver. I want to get the close up shot on an 85mm lens, kind of like the shot in The French Connection. However, would there be too much shake with an 85mm or would the audience assume that is natural of the shot, since it's a car?


Return to posts index

ryan elder
Re: Would the Delkin Fat Gecko get me shots like this, without too much shake?
on Aug 27, 2018 at 10:22:45 pm

Also, if I go DIY, I was thinking of making a mount where I can get other car shots too, such as pointed through the windshield as we as a lower angle on the front of the car. In order to do this, I would have to build a DIY mount where the height and angle is adjustable, or I would just have to build different ones.

What about hooking an 85mm lens on for close ups, through the windshield though, would that cause too much that is not acceptable, do you think?


Return to posts index

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
© 2018 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]