Video compresses time, Photography expands the moment
What a great quote and it perfectly sums up this whole video/stills balance.
So, I thought I'd drop in a few thoughts of my own about this whole "convergence" debate of mixing stills and video for the professional photographer.
First up, I've tried a few bits and pieces and I can't see a way of making it work. I'll get that right off my chest now. Just because my camera can take excellent video (and Vince Laforet's work shows that) doesn't mean I should.
Issue 1) When I'm in stills frame of mind, I'm not in video and vice-versa. When I'm looking and thinking about stills the way I view a scene, frame it, look for the important moment is completely different than looking for video time. The way you compose for video is very different to my mind (and no portrait shots by the way - that doesn't work for video!!!)
Issue 2) Editing is a nightmare - everything almost seems to become a real-time exercise when editing, the timetable goes out the window. And it's pernickety, fiddle-arse kind of stuff too. It took me nearly two days to edit down to a 5 minute video the standard of which I was NOT happy with. Goodness knows how long it would have taken to make me happy.
Issue 3) Video without Sound is barely worth it. And sound is a different game altogether. So wedding photographers who were thinking about videoing the vows for example - how you gonna get the sound quality? And trust me - the video can be as ropey as hell, but if the sound isn't up to snuff people hate it and your material is instantly amateur.
Issue 4) What you gonna do with it? Just how do you present this to the customer? If you are just videoing snippets where is the presentation medium? You can't put them in the album, so that means a DVD, where will the video fit in the DVD? How much longer will it take to put together?
Issue 5) Who's paying for the time? Video takes longer - much longer. Who's gonna pay for your hours in front of your computer screen. Hours the customer never sees and never appreciates.
Issue 6) Why do you think you are any good as a video maker?
Issue 7) Why not get a video expert?
Same question two different ways - if I was a client I would want an expert videographer and an expert photographer. As a supplier to my clients I want exactly the same. If I am genuinely offering a video service then it has to be done well.
Issue 8) Two places one time? Particularly the whole wedding video/stills convergence topic - I am absolutely convinced you need a second shooter doing the video. They are equipped differently, looking for completely different opportunities, their interaction with guests is completely different, etc., etc.,
Issue 9) Is your DSLR the best video camera? We've sort of been suckered here, we've seen a couple of people make some extraordinary videos using the SLR, but it has to be said in terms of usability they are not as easy as most video cameras - you know there's a reason why they are designed in completely different ways from an ergonomic viewpoint.
Issue 10) PC/Mac hardware and resources. If you think RAW files are big and slow to process you wait until you see video files. They are humungous beasts slow to move, slow to edit, slow to backup and consuming acres of your hard disk real estate. You also need a computer system that really is video capable, that covers things like the graphics card - and the sound card - and connections like firewire, colour calibration for maybe even a dedicated TV style monitor.
Has that put you off yet ??
I love the fact that my camera does video. But making it fit with my business is a different story.
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