ZOOM!

Show everyone the latest shots which make you feel dead chuffed with your camera choice
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Lonnie Utah
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Re: ZOOM!

Unread postby Lonnie Utah » Fri Apr 06, 2012 2:34 am

Attempt #2
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Last edited by Lonnie Utah on Fri Apr 06, 2012 3:17 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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mvanrheenen
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Re: ZOOM!

Unread postby mvanrheenen » Fri Apr 06, 2012 6:57 am

Sweet. I like that one better than the first because of the smoother background.

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Juanito200
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Re: ZOOM!

Unread postby Juanito200 » Sat Apr 07, 2012 5:47 am

Thanks for the tutorial on this Lonnie. That is a really great effect.
If the last thing you remember hearing is somebody yelling 'CLEAR!!!', assume you've had a problem!!
a77, a700, a200, Minolta 8000i, NEX C3, NEX 5N and more lenses than my wife suspects!

Lonnie Utah
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Re: ZOOM!

Unread postby Lonnie Utah » Sun Apr 08, 2012 5:47 am

#3
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Exposure Time 2.5 sec
F Number f / 14
Aperture priority
ISO Speed Ratings 200
Focal Length 16mm (24 mm 35mm equlv)

Lonnie Utah
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Re: ZOOM!

Unread postby Lonnie Utah » Wed Apr 11, 2012 8:41 pm

So lot's of folks on other forums wanted to know how I pulled these shots off. I put about $100 into this MPC project, about about 10-20 hours work of work to get those two shots.

Google is your friend and I found lots of setups for lots of money. Some rigs cost upwards of $1K. I knew that was kinda outta my league for this thing so I started doing some more research. The break through came when I found these tile suction cups online, and the locally at the Home Depot. I then had to figure out how to make a boom and how to attach my camera to it. Home depot to the rescue again. What I figured out would work was heavy duty electrical conduit. My first attempt was with 3/4", but as I quickly found out it was way too flexable and I ended up buying 10 feet of 1 1/4" which worked much better. At this point, all I had to figure out how to do was attach the conduit to the suction cups. A bunch of simple U bolts did the trick. I think I used 6 of them, one on each suction cup, two to attach a bent piece of 3/4" conduit and 2 to attach the center column and ball head from a mini tripod of mine. So with my raw materials, I proceeded to put everything together. I cut the 10' conduit into two pieces and re attached with a coupler joint.

Once I got all of my pieces together, the first step in taking one of these shots is to get a car wash. Since the suction cup attach directly to the paint, any sand or grit could do real damage to the car's paint. Make sure that it's CLEAN. Once it's clean wipe the area where you'll be attaching the suction cups down with a wet rag or towel. Do the same to the base of the suction cups. When you attach them to the car, make sure the handles are parallel to the direction your conduit is going to run. This will become apparent later.

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The next step (which I've skipped to in the above photo) is to attache the first piece of conduit. In this photo I have the U-bolts inverted, but for a real shoot you want them pointed down. tighten then down with a wrench so the conduit will not rotate, but not too tight that it losesnes the suction cup handles (the handles provide the bulk of the suction.)

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When you get this snug, attach the 2nd piece of conduit with the coupler.

Image

Lonnie Utah
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Re: ZOOM!

Unread postby Lonnie Utah » Wed Apr 11, 2012 8:42 pm

In my rig I already attached the u arm and tripod/ballhead mount. It's simple enough to borrow the pipe bender at your home improvement store when you are there. Here's what that piece looks like (it was a nice U shape when I left the store, but a run-in with the pavement reworked it for me. Scared me to death at the time, but it's still functional.

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At this point it's time to attach the camera. I couldn't have done this without my mirrorless. The LCD screen made it a snap to compose the image and the light weight really helped with the flex of the entire rig.

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Here's what the whole thing looks like once it assembled and ready to roll.

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Lonnie Utah
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Re: ZOOM!

Unread postby Lonnie Utah » Wed Apr 11, 2012 8:43 pm

The shutter was trigger by remote inside the vehicle while I was driving. The trick is to go REALLY slowly. I would take about 5-10 shots at a time, and then chimp and re-compose.

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When you are done, you get a bunch of shots that look like this (OOC jpg, dust spots and all...)

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That's the easy part.

Once you get back home, the real work begins. I think I had about 60 mins post processing the first pic I posted, and about 90-120 mins post processing the one that's up for voting. Needless to say, you're going to be doing ALOT of work with the clone tool. The trick to making this look decent is to zoom in and using a good sized "soft" brush, work in a very detailed way to brush away the boom. It really helps to copy the back ground layer and work on that one. That way, you can bring back any loss of detail if it gets fuzzy from your cloning technique. It's a very tedious and slow process so don't rush it. This is where taking off you front plate, and making sure the suction cups are parallel to the conduit saves a lot of cloning work.

When I shot these, on the first one, I processed the background and the foreground separately because I wanted different effects for each. I then blended them together using a clipping mask.

That's the nuts and bolts of it. Now, some words of caution.

1). There is significant risk of damaging your car or your camera taking shots like this. There are any number of things that can go wrong from a suction cup failure, to the cups scratching your paint to God knows what. If you do this and fubar your stuff, don't blame, me, I told you so! :D

2). Make sure you are in a vacant parking lot. I figured the boom stuck about 6-7 feet off the end of my car. I rubbed it on the ground more than once and bumped it into the curb a time or two. When you move the rig can really flex, so just because it's off the ground now doesn't mean it will stay off the ground.

3). Try to find the most solid points in teh body work to attach the cups. You're putting alot of weight on them, and they can bend/flex (maybe permanently) if you're not careful.

That's all I can think of right now. I'm sure I'll think of more stuff later. Anyway, that's my guide to the poor man's boom rig. They can get way more fancy, I had a guy wire system devised to help stop boom flex that I never really used. I usually didn't have alot of time away from the house so the faster the setup, the better.

Any questions, just fire away.

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Birma
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Re: ZOOM!

Unread postby Birma » Wed Apr 11, 2012 10:43 pm

Great description - thanks Lonnie :D .
Nex 5, Nex 6 (IR), A7M2, A99 and a bunch of lenses.

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Dr. Harout
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Re: ZOOM!

Unread postby Dr. Harout » Thu Apr 12, 2012 12:49 am

Kudos Lonnie.
A99 + a7rII + Sony, Zeiss, Minolta, Rokinon and M42 lenses

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mvanrheenen
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Re: ZOOM!

Unread postby mvanrheenen » Thu Apr 12, 2012 7:45 am

Great stuff Lonnie, you really made some work of this experiment.

Mark


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