Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Photography & Opinions: Fun Of Sport Videography

Sorry guys, soon after I have completed my first official video, came the second one above. I have devoted another weekend on video making and movie editing, which is why I am kind of behind my schedule for blogging. I will try to get back on track after this, and I believe I should be able to since my students won't be having another match any time soon. I must say though, videography, especially filming my students, is really addictive.

Fast moving subjects, (Issac)  the player and the people in the background
Image from Locky's English Playground

For me, filming the subjects when they play football at high speed is never as exciting as watching it live. Even with a tripod this time I still had to take great care of many technical aspects, one of which requires constant attention is manual focusing. For most cases, auto-focusing does work, but with so many players on the field jumping up and down, running left and right, the camera cannot understand which one I actually intend to zoom into, which is why I had to do it manually.

Camera is positioned a little too high, thus the absence of (Michael's) feet and the ball
Image from Locky's English Playground
Another technique is quick panning, usually needed when the ball is kicked to high. Too quick and I will lose the ball movements in between, but too slow and I will easily make the viewer dizzy. To make sure that the panning is at its right pace, looking at the LCD display on my camera is almost always necessary.

Image from Locky's English Playground

The best part actually comes when the post-production begins, the time that I will sit in front of the computer and work with Adobe Premiere Pro CS6. It is really a joy to use once I have picked up the skills, and after making the first video which took around 5 hours, the second one barely took me a little more than an hour.

Matching my students' best moves to the beat of the song was invigorating! The selection of useful video was already the most tedious process, afterwards it was just cutting up videos and rearranging the fragments, pretty simple task.
Image from Locky's English Playground

What I have learnt from using the software is surprisingly more than just pressing buttons. I have learnt the difference types of video formats and their effect on the length of the encoding time, the file size and the image quality.

For example, for AVI uncompressed 1080p, a 5-minute video will be over 30Gb!!! But FLV 1080p will only be 258Mb and has more or less the same video image quality. In order words, FLV is many times better for web upload than AVI. As for the encoding time, I didn't actually time it but I feel that FLV is faster because writing 30Gb of data onto the hard disk also takes considerable amount of time. I happen to have come across these knowledge at the surface when I search and download videos from the internet, but they are never as clear to me now that I am a real video-maker / producer.

A little word for Adobe, it would be so much easier for users if the next Premiere can show the estimated video size even before exporting, then I will know which one I should choose even if I don't know the minor differences in file format.
Me (left) and Kenny (middle), the man -of-the-match Po Sang (Right No. 2)
Image from Locky's English Playground

Finally, I feel that the best part about making videos is the satisfaction from producing one awesome product and then getting great response from the viewers. Many students gave me thumbs up while some can who had their share of slow-motion and describe their special skills to me.

After making these videos, I can feel how much love I have for my students which was unaware of, I hope that they can feel that too. Some day when they grow up and look back at the videos, they may remember that there was an English teacher who supported them every "match" of the way.

videography -- (n)[U] refers to the process of capturing moving images on electronic media (e.g., videotape, direct to disk recording, or solid state storage like a tapeless camcorder) even streaming media. The term includes methods of video production and post-production. It is the equivalent of cinematography, but with images recorded on electronic media instead of film stock.
addictive -- (adj) describes an activity or food that you cannot stop doing or eating once you have started
pan -- (vb) [I] (of a film camera) to move slowly from one side to another or up and down
invigorating -- (adj) to make someone feel fresher, healthier and more energetic
tedious -- (adj) boring
every "match" of the way -- (word play) from "every step of the way"


Photography: Sport Video Capturing (feat. Adobe Premiere Pro CS6) @ Locky's English Playground

[MTV]  Boys 'A' Grade 2012 TSKVGSS 5-0 Man Kiu College

Videography @ Wikipedia