Many LED luminaires do not use high frequency drivers to eliminate flicker in the same way high frequency fluorescent lamp ballasts eliminate flicker. Shooting video in environments with  a lot of LED luminaires can produce video with distracting flicker. Viewers do not want to be distracted, and will switch off  if they see annoying flickering.

LED Lighting Video Recording Tips?

To eliminate flicker, for 120V 60Hz locations, the best shutter speeds to use are at multiples of 120, while at 220/230V 50Hz power locations, best shutter speeds are in multiples of 100. This Telegraph video seems to have been shot at 25 fps, which may be why a lot of annoying flicker can be seen. For flicker free video in 50Hz electrical environments, shooting at 50 or 100 fps should give best flicker free results, for 60Hz, 60 to 120 fps should give best results

For 50Hz 1/100, 1/50, 1/33, 1/25. 50 & 100 fps should = best results
For 60Hz 1/120, 1/60, 1/40, 1/30. 60 & 120 fps should = best results

This video should most likely have been recorded at 100 fps or 50 fps. In post-production there is no fix for this strobing effect. The only solution is to test other camera settings & re-shoot.

A best approach when Designing Architectural Lighting is to specify LED luminaires with high frequency, flicker free dimming drivers.

See full video & Telegraph article here: http://bit.ly/1cvuZxH

Conversations on film making often seem to start with hardware.

Film making is not about hardware, there are no magic bullets, it is all about the story.

What do you want to say, and how do you want to say it?

For film the next question is what do you want to see & how do you want to see it?

Robert Primes at [3 min] discusses how words are poor descriptors of visual information.

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The time investment to craft a well told story or marketing program is not well understood. In a 4 month re-write of product catalogues & manuals, the product never changed, but 18 months later, sales doubled because the story changed.

Consider a Play.
Well written Scripts take time, and Actors must rehearse. When the Director is satisfied, the first curtain goes up.

We end up back to the idea that it all starts with the story.
What do you want to say, and how do you say it?
What will viewers see, and how will they see it?

With limited viewer attention time you must have effective efficient delivery of stories and video can deliver. Jack Welch is quoted as saying, “You can’t manage what you do not measure.” It is easy to measure video viewers. However now there may be new tools to measure the effectiveness of the well told story.

Dr. Paul Zak used an emotional film to measure how our brains respond to effective storytelling.  As part of this research brain neural activity was measured of viewers. He discovered even a simple narrative, if it follows elements of the dramatic arc of exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, and dénouement, described by playwright Gustav Freytag, can evoke powerful empathic responses associated with neurochemicals cortisol and oxytocin.

Brain responses to storytelling can translate into actions. In Dr. Zak’s research his subjects increased donations to charity and gifts to others in the research group.  He found stories that did not follow the dramatic arc, no matter how happy or pleasant they may be, produced little if any chemical or emotional response, and lacked a similar response to action. His research contains clues on measuring the well-made story.

This was the test story.

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What makes a well-made story for you?

Try these links:

http://futureofstorytelling.org/

Paul Zak: Trust, morality — and oxytocin

http://www.moralmolecule.com/

For discussions on script writing listen to the Script Notes podcast: http://johnaugust.com/podcast

The Digital Convergence Podcast Episode 94: The Producer Show included these topics

Why is story telling important to business?
What is your goal in story telling?
How do you develop an effective story?
What is the structure of a good story?
How do you know if a story is too long, short, or just right?

To listen to the podcast click here: Episode 94: The Producer Show If you have not seen, the funniest movie on producing is The Producers by Mel Brooks with Zero Mostel & Gene Widler. The Producers – 1968 (Trailer)

Jonathan Gottschall in his book The Story Telling Animal  suggests humans are “wired” for storytelling and offers a theory that we use storytelling to help navigate complex social problems in life.

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Nancy Duarte: The Secret Structure of Great Talks?
On the structure of Steve Job‘s presentations to Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream speech”, Nancy compares common construction of successful stories.

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Pictures Better Than Words?

Teachers know the problem is not content but delivery. Using text only email, introduces a reader time consumption problem. Best text is distilled like poetry with pictures & video for effective delivery. Understanding the Picture Superiority Effect helps deliver.

“When it comes to memory, researchers have known for more than 100 years that pictures and text follow very different rules. Put simply, the more visual the input becomes, the more likely it is to be recognized—and recalled. The phenomenon is so pervasive, it has been given its own name: the pictorial superiority effect, or PSE.”   John Medina

The Evolution of Communication?

Picture Superiority Effect Evolution

A brief history of writing from the British Museum (click for video)

A Research Paper on the Picture Superiority Effect.

“Conceptual and perceptual factors in the picture superiority”
EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF COGNITIVE PSYCHOLOGY 2006, p.1-35, Georg Stenberg, Kristianstad University, Kristianstad, Sweden

Screencasting Delivers Video Based Demonstrations & Lectures.

Teachers know the problem is not content the problem is delivery. They know what they need to teach. Their challenge is to ensure higher content retention in the time available. Screencasting allows lectures on-line providing more class time spent on homework.

Richard E. Mayer’s cognitive theory of multimedia learning suggests maximum performance occurs when visual & verbal materials are presented together. His book Multimedia Learning examines research on instructional based design and if we learn more deeply when ideas are expressed in words and pictures rather than by words alone.

Sales & Marketing’s problem is to deliver presentations, lectures, video based demonstrations and step-by-step instructions, delivering content “asynchronously”, at the audience’s convenience, regardless of their time zone, and “unattended” without a lecturer present and without the travel & expense costs. Successful screencasts are remembered and repeated.

Every organization is a learning organization, every student & employee needs to be kept up to date. Equipment and processes change, you can’t stop the factory and put everyone into a lecture hall. It is everyone’s problem. On-demand, just-in time multimedia learning is much more productive as it can focus on those who need it, when they need it.

Screencasting starts with a Script.
Successful screencasts are re-written many times. When draft is written, consider how it may be reduced to essential ideas. What will it sound like when spoken? Could three points tell the story in 140 characters? Guy Kawasaki uses a 10-20-30 Rule of 10 Slides, 20 Minutes and a Font Size 30 for start-up funding presentations.

Editing allows segment distillation by cutting recorded elements and allows voice over & background music adjustments. Graphic call-outs and zoom & pan effects can be added to call attention to specific information.

Rendering edited projects allows completed video screencasts saved in a range of sizes & formats. Uploading of projects to YouTube, Vimeo and other hosting services such as Screencast.com or MediaCore. Provide iTunes podcast subscriptions, render in multiple video formats and embed completed videos on your website.

Examples of Screencasts:

  • Snagit is screen capture & image editing software . This screencast shows how to use the Send tab to share images with Skype contacts.
  • Another Sending Files tip. Try free XOOMFILE software.

Power Point to Video:
Convert presentations into video, don’t leave them on your desktop.

Audio – Sounding Good:

  • Good audio starts with a good microphone and a quiet room.
  • Record script dialogue with free Audacity software.
  • A recorded voice track serves as a guide to production length.
  • Voice recordings can be added into Power Point or Camtasia before rendering as a completed video.
  • Adding royalty free background music on a second audio track fills blanks & maintains listener interest.
  • When recording Voice Tracks, if you make an error, pause then repeat.
  • Record using a Dog Clicker to help you see audio errors for easy editing & deletion post recording.
  • For in-depth Audacity screencasts see Lisa Hartwell’s YouTube Channel.
  • Clicker sound leaves a convenient visual marker allowing accurate alignment of recorded or edited audio along the timeline for many projects. See image tip here: http://bit.ly/AudioVisualSyncTip
  • For multi-camera video shoots, to sync video clips on the timeline, camera recorded audio is used as a reference to sync clips to the primary recorded audio. Once all clips are synced to the primary recorded reference audio track, camera audio in the video clips is silenced or deleted. Singular Software’s PuralEyes is a sync tool of choice for complex project edits.

In-Depth Tutorial:
Ryan Eash Instructional Designer for Camtasia Studio has an excellent 30 minute tutorial on his screencasting process with dynamic Table Of Contents.

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Lecture Presentations: Recording & Playback
Two camera set ups, where one records the screen and the second a presenter, are easy to blend into single video recordings with Singular Software Presto. This is a low-cost seamless method for blending video recorded elements of lecture presentations. For examples click here For equipment & set up info on recording lectures click here. Click below to see a 2 minute notated example of blended video with Steve Jobs introducing the iBook app for the iPad.

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TechSmith’s Camtasia Relay  is an excellent lecture capture system for Teachers. Permanent installations with rich media integration of PTC (Pan Tilt Cameras),  document cameras, PC output feeds and microphones are more expensive due to hardware needed. Options to consider are Sonic Foundry  and Winnov

Web Meetings: Remote Groups OnLine
There are many options, most include post meeting playback of recorded events, click here for a current list of software & service providers

Video in WordPress has differences WordPress.com Vs WordPress.org

  • This screencast a shows Windows 7 search tip & plays on VideoPress.
  • VideoPress seems to compresses videos reducing image quality playback creating blurred images not present in the original. There seems no default control to force the HD setting to stay on, so original rendering quality is reduced and looks fuzzy in standard playback.
  • Compare with the original screencast below:

To integrate & auto size video on WordPress sites see Chris Coyier’s screencast

Hosting Screencasts & Video – There are many options.

  • YouTube free, but visually noisy & distracts viewers with links to other sites.
  • Vimeo has free & paid versions all of which work well.
  • Screencast.com allows a range of viewing flexibility with public, private, or viewer password log-in options in 25 gigabyte+ accounts.
  • MediaCore provides outstanding end-to end site control with noise free customisable web pages & detailed analytics.

This topic to be presented at WordCamp Victoria BC Jan 14th 2011.
Tickets are on sale now, to register click here.

Warning: Portions of the presentation are prerecorded ; )

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Khan Academy: Flipping the Classroom
Excellent examples how screencasting helps students learn.
A library of over 3,000 educational videos: http://www.khanacademy.org/

Khan Academy Explained on 60 Minutes

Khan Academy on TED



Light & Colour – Conversations:
For insights on conventional light sources vs. LED sources and their colour rendering performance for Film & DSLR video see these tests.

I. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, Science & Technology Council Solid State Lighting Project

“The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, Science and Technology Council has identified a need for an unbiased investigation of solid state lighting (SSL) technologies, which includes LED emitters, for motion picture production. Issues with SSL have been identified regarding its ability to supplement and integrate with existing lighting technologies such as tungsten, fluorescent, HMI, and Xenon that are currently used in the production of motion pictures. The primary purpose of this investigation is to provide the industry with data needed to properly evaluate the impact of using SSL, as well as to provide a framework for the evaluation of future light emitting technologies as they are developed. The Council’s current efforts are focused on providing the motion picture industry with accurate and previously unpublished radiometric and photometric measurements (e.g., spectral power distribution, radiant flux, luminous flux, etc.) typical of various LED light sources currently in use.”

Seven Symposium Videos:

  1. Jonathan Erland Speaks on the Science of Color
  2. Perception of Color
  3. Reproduction of Color
  4. Council Studies
  5. Measurements
  6. Emulsion and Color
  7. Summary

Six Lighting Test Shoots:

  1. Makeup Case
  2. Costume Case: Part 1
  3. Costume Case: Part 2
  4. Props Case: Part 1
  5. Props Case: Part 2
  6. Props Case: Part 3

IIa. Zacuto 2010 Shoot Out – Film Vs DSLR 2010 (episodes 1,2,3)

Zacuto Films presents, “The Great Camera Shootout 2010: a three part web series where gunslinging HD DSLRs face-off against legendary 35mm Film.” The webisodic series showcases the top performing hybrid HD-DSLR cameras: Canon: 5D MKII, 7D, 1D, 550D/T2i Rebel, Nikon D3s, Panasonic GH1 and compares the image quality of these cameras against the gold standard of 35mm film. In addition, the Canon 5D MKII test includes the new 24p firmware. “This was an enormous undertaking,” says Steve Weiss, Web Series Director, “and great care was to make this an apples-to-apples test with scientific accuracy behind it.”

Each webisode of the series features various controlled camera assessment tests which include: resolution, latitude, sensitivity, speed & ultra high speed, noise, color & green screen. The battery of tests were administered under strict controls and conducted by Robert Primes ASC, Gary Adcock, Philip Bloom, Jens Bogehegn and colorist Ryan Emerson.

See the reactions to this test following 2K screenings, where “HD DSLR is compared to 35mm Film”. The test results were projected in a 2K theatrical environment at three screening locations: Stag Theater at Skywalker Ranch, LucasFilms Ltd., AFI (American Film Institute) Theater in Hollywood and the FilmWorkers Astro Color Timing Theater in Chicago. Hear commentary from the screenings by top ASC, Hollywood, Indie Film and Event & Convergence Photographers.

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IIb. Zacuto 2011 Shoot Out – Film Cameras Vs High end Digital Film Cameras (episodes 1,2,3)

The 2011 shoot out includes new cameras & tests of Single Chip Camera Evaluation (SCCE) which is a large scale technical camera comparison administered by Robert Primes, ASC. Side by side comparisons of the newest cameras manufactured by Sony, Canon, Panasonic, Phantom, Weisscam, Nikon, Arri, RED as well as the gold standard of 35mm film are included.

Film Stock: 2-Perf & 3-Perf 35mm Motion Picture Film Demo

More on Colour Editing & Management in Post Production
From Shane Hurlbut:  7 Tips for HD Color Correction and DSLR Color Correction

A Short History of Compositing for Film & Video

Oscar Winner Petro Vlahos Inventor of the Ultimatte discusses his invention and how he used UV and Low Pressure Sodium lighting methods, which evolved into to the Blue & Green Screen chroma key compositing methods we use today.



A video demo from NAB 09