Faced with a shoot literally in the dark at a ski race, I needed to know how to balance getting enough light into the camera with getting good, smooth, clear video. (As a kind of extra challenge, mother nature threw a snow storm at us that night too.)
As a new video shooter, I’m still learning the difference between AVCHD and MOV, between 60P and 24P, and loads of other vital information. Sometimes my need to create (because of an opportunity) arises before my knowledge has been developed. What to do? Ask an expert for a recipe and keep working on knowledge acquisition!
My friend and Hybrid Hero colleague Mark Toal helped me out of the pinch I was in with this opportunity. He knew that I planned to use my Lumix GH3 with the f2.8 12-35 lens. The recipe is to set the video recording to AVCHD (to make a compact file) at 60P (to get smooth video) with an Exposure Mode of “M” (manual). Then set the aperture to f2.8 and the shutter speed to 125 (roughly double the frame rate of 60). I then used ISO to get the right exposure (in this case it was 3200). This worked well for the race in the dark and snow storm, and when I tried it again a few days later on a clear and bright day, it worked great too (with a lower ISO of 400). Thanks Mark!!!!
While this recipe is not the be all and end all of settings for getting great video, it’s a great place to start and yields amazing results. Until the knowledge is there, I have a way to keep shooting, and all is well in my world!