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Video Shooter: Storytelling with HD Cameras 2nd Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 31 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0240810881
ISBN-10: 0240810880
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Editorial Reviews


"One of the strengths of this book is the author's tone, which manages to present both basic and complex material in a way that is easily understandable to the neophyte." --Gustavo Mercado, Hunter College

From the Back Cover

Tired of the dry rudimentary guidebooks that ignore the art of telling compelling video stories?Video Shooter takes you to a new level of competence and expertise by presenting the camera as a potent storytelling tool. Sure, you will learn the basics of HD formats, the fundamentals of compression and color space, but only so much as these technical areas serve your craft, which includes more fundamentally camera placement and eyeline, choice of lens focal length and the power of the triangle in creating powerful compositions. Throughout the book you will come to understand the master shooter's guiding principle, that story is the conduit through which all creative and technical decisions flow.

Humorous and opinionated, the author provides insightful anecdotes and tutorials that help you learn the video shooter's craft. While the book focuses primarily on how to get the most out of your entry- and mid-level P2, XDCAM, and AVCHD camcorder, the principles and lessons covered such as shooting for green screen and understanding point of view apply just as well to video shooters and storytellers of any level.

As apprenticeships in the industry have largely disappeared, aspiring shooters and film students have had to seek alternative sources for training and guidance. InVideo Shooter , you will find a master teacher offering perceptive lessons with a healthy dose of inspiration; these pages are as close to a living and breathing mentor as one can get in a printed form.

Hundreds of full-color photos and illustrations present the many lessons throughout the book.

* Engaging and informative, veteran shooter Barry Braverman shares the craft and emotion of constructing compelling visual stories with HD cameras
* Explores the video storyteller's window on the world, the use of perspective and choice of lens, the crafting of close-ups, control of depth of field and recommended use of cine lenses and adapters
* Considers the art of tweaking the HD image through proper camera setup, supplemental glass filters and postproduction software to control noise, contrast and detail level
* Covers the latest tapeless technologies and workflow from recording to flash memory and optical disc to outputting to DVD, Blu-ray and the Web
* Companion website offers tutorials, bonus illustrations, equipment reviews, tips and tricks, a reader's help line and the author's blog


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 300 pages
  • Publisher: Focal Press; 2 edition (October 5, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0240810880
  • ISBN-13: 978-0240810881
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 7.5 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #778,962 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Barry Braverman is a veteran cinematographer and digital media expert with over thirty years experience in television documentaries and feature films.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
The first thing you'll notice about this book is its high production quality.

This is a very pleasant book right from the feel of its cover, to the richness of its full color images, and (at about 280 pages) to the right heft. Yes, I'm odd enough to enjoy the "tactile feel" of a good book :)

The second thing you'll notice is the almost equal distribution between its text and images. Every paragraph of text is balanced by an image or a photograph. The quality of these images is top rate, and even more importantly, very relevant. Unlike most books, the cool thing is that the images do not play second fiddle to the text. Instead, the images are first class citizens and often tell a more compelling story than the text.

The third thing you'll notice is that the book is a second edition. This often indicates that the first edition was well received - at least well enough to merit further attention. And on that count, this book doesn't disappoint.

What I liked:

Chapter 2 is a definite must-read. It forms the soul of the book, and reads like a how-to manual of good techniques and hints. These rules feel like a distillation of the author's decades of experience, and cover things that when you read them feel mostly like commonsense ... as all good ideas tend to be.

This is also the first chapter that you see a very unique pedagogical device used by the author - that of reproducing paintings to show how many of these techniques are actually timeless (such as the Law of Thirds or the Golden Rectangle).

If you are a HD afficionado, this book is manna from heaven. Chapters 3 and 4 provide a one stop shop for all things High Definition.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Yet again, another book on my buy list shows up in Vine for review. I was really hoping this guide would be a well-written insider's view to many of the aspects of video production, and that's exactly what it is. I've gotten a few other books on the same subject and they were so wordy and technical, they now collect dust. Barry Braverman has assembled an excellent guide for amateurs and pros alike, but he's done it in such a way that can be easily read and understood even if you were reading it at a bus stop. His real-life experiences are priceless and quite interesting to read and learn from. But what makes this especially important is that there is a new emergence of video amateurs growing by leaps and bounds now that DSLRs are providing full HD video (that includes me!). I have a Canon 5D Mark II, and the video is so good on it that I have become overly interested in how to actually shoot the way real productions are shot, not just churning out home video. I wanted something to guide me on how to best plan and shoot with this new video marvel. THAT'S where this book shines, it's like a full year of film school in an understandable form!

If you have a video DSLR and the video bug has bitten, click the Buy Now button ASAP. You won't regret it. I'm about to read it through AGAIN, this time with a notebook on my lap.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was disappointed in this, I had the first edition of this book and was jazzed up to dig into the new edition with all it's HD information. Sadly, after looking the book over quickly, I found there just wasn't enough information there compared to the previous edition to justify the purchase price; it's edition one reprinted in a different page format with some very minor HD sections spliced in. If you have the first edition, save your money - it's basically the same book with only a chapter or two of new information that's extremely general. I wanted more. Sorry Barry.
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Format: Paperback
"Video Shooter", 2nd edition, is an indispensable tool for filmmakers. Richly infused with feeling and experience as well as abundant information, tips, and procedures, it reads quickly, covering a wide ambit, a veritable film school in less than 300 pages with a consistent emphasis on what the author calls "the craft of ingenuity". As a production manager for feature films, I can see that this is one of a few books I'd like to keep carrying with me on the job.

On the surface, the book is a well thought-out and thorough professional manual, but it is also an entertainingly presented conversation with a seasoned master of the trade as he dispenses caring advice and lively support, fully cognizant of how swiftly changing technology challenges tomorrow's shooter, who is compelled to wear ever more hats.

It is clear that the author has his feet firmly planted in classic techniques and time tested theory, but he also evinces a great curiosity about and mastery of any and all camera tools that range from Christian Dior Diorissimo #4443 women's stockings (black color preferred) to the most recherché new digital tools that bombard gear magazines daily. I am looking forward to the companion websites to keep up with all the innovations through the author's accessible and clear reviews.

The reader travels not only the length and breadth of the craft of shooting and filmmaking but also across the world, vicariously experiencing everything from amusing anecdotal events to dramatic historical lessons and their impact on or from filmmaking.

You will be thankful for the balance between presenting a lot of trivia and technical facts while maintaining a good grasp of and eagle eye view of the fundamentals of becoming an accomplished shooter.
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