Using Sony Handicams and Importing to FCP

Instructions courtesy of Stephen Elliott.  Cronkite News Service Director

USING SONY HD HANDYCAMS AND GETTING VIDEO INTO FINALCUT

Take a Deep Breath

Seriously – I want you to take a deep breath. Close your eyes and find a place of zen. Envision yourself turning on the camera, pointing it at something or someone you want to document, hitting the record button and capturing crisp video. Believe it or not, most video cameras today are this easy to use. This doesn’t make it easier to choose the right scenes and subjects, frame properly, etc., but it makes things a lot easier before you do. The camera you will use in this class also has a hard drive, making exporting video much easier than a camera recording on tape.

Camera Basics

Here is a rough representation of the business end of the Handycam, focusing on the few features you need to understand to make it work.

  1. This wheel turns the camcorder off and on.
  2. This button stops and starts recording.
  3. Here’s the viewscreen. Flip it out from the side of the camera.
  4. The battery goes here. It’s secured by a latch underneath.
  5. Direct view into lens. Just forget this exists. Use the viewscreen.
  6. These are various items on the viewscreen that it helps to know.
  7. Zoom lever. Continue reading

Video Tips and Tricks

People always seem to make the same mistakes when shooting video.
•Making a subject appear as if they are in the witness protection plan because the background is too bright.
•Positioning a person in such a way it looks like a tree is growing out of his/her head.
•Shooting boring shots of buildings with no action.
•Placing a subject in front of a background that is the same color as their clothing.

We’ve all seen them so why do they keep happening? Here are a few tips to help you shoot better video. Continue reading