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Part One: Capturing DV Footage > Turning Home Video into Pro Video - Pg. 45

iMovie. Your job while flming is simply to capture the two or three different shots, each at a different zoom level. · You don't have to avoid zooming altogether. As noted above, professional movie- makers rarely zoom. One of the exceptions, however, is when the director wants to pick one face out of a crowd, often just as some horrifc realization is dawning. Furthermore, when you're flming somebody who's doing a lot of talking, a very slow, almost imperceptible zoom is extremely effective, especially if you do it when the speech is getting more personal, emotional, ominous, or important. The point is to use zooming meaningfully, when there's a reason to do it. · For the lowest motion-sickness quotient, use the hold-zoom-hold technique. In other words, begin your shot by flming without zooming for a moment; zoom slowly and smoothly; and end the shot by holding on the resulting closeup or wide shot. Don't begin or end the shot in mid-zoom. Tip: Documentary makers frequently flm with this pattern: Hold for fve seconds; zoom in, and then hold for fve seconds; zoom out again, and hold for fve, then stop the shot. This technique gives the flmmaker a variety of shots, providing choice when editing the fnal movie. All of this sheds light on another reason to hold at the end of a zoom, and another reason to avoid zooming in general: When editing, it's very diffcult to make a smooth cut during a zoom. Cutting from one nonzooming shot to another is smoother and less noticeable than cutting in mid-zoom. Limit Zooming and Panning · Consider how much to zoom. There's no law that says that every zoom must use the entire 500X magnifcation range of your camcorder. · Did you ever see Wayne's World--either the movie or the Saturday Night Live skit on which it was based? Wayne's World, of course, was a spoof of a hilariously ama- teurish public-access cable TV show that was supposedly shot with a camcorder in somebody's basement. The show's trademark camerawork: multiple zooms in a single shot. (Such annoying shots are always accompanied by Wayne and Garth shouting, "Unnecessary zoom!") As rare as zooming is in professional TV and flm, multiple zooms in a single shot are virtually unheard of. To avoid creating a Wayne's World of your own, consider zooming only once, in only one direction, and then stop to focus on the target. Don't zoom in, linger, and then continue zooming; and don't zoom in, linger, and then zoom back out (unless you intend to discard half of that shot during editing). Furthermore, on camcorders equipped with a variable-speed zoom, keep the zoom speed consistent. (The slowest zoom is usually the most effective.) Note: There's an exception to the avoid-zooming-in-and-out-while-shooting rule. That's when you're flming a one-of-a-kind event and you're desperate to keep the camera rolling for fear of missing even a second of priceless footage. In that case, zoom all you want to get the shots you want. But do so with the understanding that the good stuff won't be the zooming footage--it will be the scenes between zooms. Later, you can eliminate the unnecessary zooms during iMovie editing. chapter2:turninghomevideointoprovideo 45