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How to Shoot Practical Transition Elements

The Orlando Mograph Meetup group got together this weekend to shoot practical transition elements to be used amongst the group. Here’s how it went.

We started without thinking through all the props and things we would need logistically to complete the shoot. With only a small vase and two gallons of milk, we realized we would need a lot more, like windex to clean the glass, a bucket to transfer the milk to in-between takes, a funnel, lots of paper towels and a sink. It also would have been a huge help to shoot 120fps and use a studio monitor. Luckily we managed to find everything we needed as we went along, but next time I would come much more prepared.

1st Take: We had one light, from screen right, which caused a pretty nasty shadow on the left side of the frame that would have been difficult to fix in post.

2nd Take: We addressed the shadow issue by casting a second 1k from the left side. We poured from the bucket this time, which was fast and messy, but created a nice turbulent look.

3rd Take: There was some foamy goodness is this one. I think it was at this point we realized that we had another shadow problem on the front of the vase.

4th Take: We fixed the lighting by moving a single 1k to direct behind the camera. This made previewing the screen on the back the BMCC a little difficult. I would have corrected this my using a studio monitor. This was the last shot we need pouring the milk into an empty vase, and we tried to get the stream coming down over to one side so we could crop it out in post.

5th Take: Here we switched to pouring milk into water. I’m so glad Robert McCaffery mentioned this, as these shots came out great!

6th Take: On this take, we tried swirling the water around into a vortex before pouring the milk in. The water was moving a little too quickly and we didn’t give the vortex enough time to leave the shot, but there was still an interesting tornado-like effect.

7th Take: We tried the swirl again here and got what we were looking for, a whirling fill from the center out. In hindsight, the single center light was not evenly lighting the scene.

8th Take: This time we swirled fast and poured fast and let the milk explode through the scene.

All-in-all the shoot went over great. If you have any questions about getting or using the assets, or how to shoot your own, please email me.

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