Thursday, August 18, 2011

Clematis Street, West Palm Beach

This was a little exercise I created for myself, kind of a homework assignment. I wanted to shoot a number of street scenes, at night, using only available light, then edit them together like a television commercial for the area. I selected Clematis Street in downtown West Palm Beach, FL. Its an older area of town that has been transformed into a lively destination for tourists as well as locals. There are upscale restaurants as well as pizza parlors. There are wine bars, a tequila bar, nightclubs, and various shops along Clematis that all stay open late on certain nights of the week.

For this video, I used my Nikon D7000 and Nikon 35mm f/1.8 lens. This lens has become my favorite for shooting at night, whether stills or video. For sound, I used a Zoom H2 digital recorder. I'm learning to edit in Adobe Premiere and like I said, this video was a homework assignment. Working on this project, I learned simple transitions, syncing audio tracks, and the overall pacing of the different shots. I realize I still have a lot to learn but I think it turned out pretty well. I also learned that you need to shoot a LOT of footage to have enough for editing. The more you shoot, the more creative choices you can make later. I invite all constructive criticism so please leave me comments. =)

Something that's already been brought to my attention is that I should use a tripod. The irony is that I frequently carry a tripod with me to shoot still images at night, but it didn't occur to me to use a tripod for this video. For some of the shots, like the fountain, I simply set the camera down on a wall. Also, I need to buy a pan/tilt head for my tripod. Anyone have any suggestions for a good DSLR pan/tilt head?