1. Geoff Stock

    Watch Geoff’s intro to the Video Camera Courses website

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    ‘The Video Camera Course’ is a combination of simple and advanced camera skills that I have developed into an easy to understand complete learning system.  A fast and effective method to help you to be able to shoot any type of video project like a Professional Cameraman.  How to shoot professional looking video with your video camera or DSLR, it doesn't matter what type of camera it is. Many times in my thirty plus years as a professional television cameraman I have helped people to start to learn the skills that us old guys just take for granted. They then go off and start their own long slow faltering path. The same path that we all had to take to learn how to do this thing well. About three years ago I made a decision to put a concerted effort into building a course, that could considerably shorten...
  2. Geoff Stock

    Read an overview of Geoff’s industry experience

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    I have been shooting location camera for over 30 years. My first 5 years were at TNQ Channel 7 Townsville and I started my career using 16mm film. When video cameras came in I knew that was the way of the future and happily learnt the new technology. I was then given the opportunity to move to BTQ Channel 7 Brisbane to work on a Current Affairs show and stayed at Seven for the next seven years, working on all of their shows including Childrens shows and Sports shows and Magazine shows. The last 20 years I have been a freelance location lighting cinematographer based in Brisbane but shooting all around Australia. Some of the television clients over these years have been Better Homes and Gardens The Great Outdoors The Sunday Program A Current Affair 60 Minutes The Hot House Location, Location Inside Franchising So you think you can Dance Biggest Loser...
  3. Geoff Stock

    Read why the Video Camera Course came about

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    I have been shooting for nearly forty years, the first twelve years were with the television networks and during that time I worked on every conceivable TV show from current affairs to children's shows to commercials. Once I made the decision to leave the Seven Network and to go and work freelance I found that I was getting work from even more of the major national shows such as Better Homes and Gardens, Great Outdoors, and the Sunday programme. To this day I still work on many national television programs. When I went Freelance I also began to get a lot of work shooting staff training videos, safety induction videos, corporate videos, and government information videos. I still shoot in all these fields today and some of the projects have been for Caltex, BP, Origin Energy, Ergon, Yamaha, Sandvic, Qld Rail, Qld Transport, and the list is nearly endless. Whilst working in these various...
  4. Geoff Stock

    Filming at Uluru

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    During my Video Camera Courses and even in general conversation people regularly ask me what my favourite shoot has been and I find that to be an impossible question to answer.  There have been too many fantastic experiences in my career, but I would like to share at least some of the more memorable ones with you. Tony Gordon was an amazingly talented presenter. He was also my best friend, like a brother to me. He died a few years ago doing what he loved best in this world, flying his Pitts Special aerobatics plane. It took me a long time to come to terms with that. We met when we both worked for the Seven Television Network in Australia. We worked together on a children’s show called “Wombat”, and we travelled all around Australia shooting stories about anything interesting, unusual or out of the ordinary. Hundreds of stories and...
  5. Geoff Stock

    The 4 Biggest Mistakes when Shooting Video

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    1 - Panning and Zooming. This a very basic error for people when they first start using their video camera as they have no idea of the correct way of shooting professional looking video. It is easy to start the camera recording and just walk around and pan and zoom at everything that moves. The trouble is that their footage will always look like home movies and will be impossible to edit into anything that looks good. If this is you, without learning the correct skills this will never change and whatever you shoot will always look like home movies. If you want to start to learn how to change this check out How to Stop Panning and Zooming . 2 - Shooting on Auto. Similar to 1, this problem relates back to ease of use. It is very easy to put the camera on Auto and expect that it...
  6. Geoff Stock

    Testimonial for the Video Camera Course

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    Testimonial from Tom MacFarlane. Hi Geoff, Tom here, first of all I just wanted to say thank you for allowing me to do this course. I appreciate it beyond words! I enjoy watching the videos as they make sense, and are impossible to not understand. You have made them incredibly clear and straight forward from the get-go! I have already begun to put the methods I have learnt into practice, and I can instantly see the results. I learnt more in 10 minutes of your course than I did in the 18 months of my Diploma of Screen and Media course! I especially liked the 'Lead Room' video as it has relation to filming sports, something I am very passionate about, as well as the 'Shot Sizes' videos. All in all I look forward to getting through all the videos and leaving you as much feedback as possible! Many Thanks,...
  7. Geoff Stock

    You may be Destroying the Story with Your Camera

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    A Little Bit of Knowledge is a Dangerous Thing There are so many ways to tell visual stories with your video camera. Interviews, pieces to camera , voice over’s with overlay vision or sequences showing what a piece of VO is describing, music montages, people telling their own stories, scripted dramas, and a mixture any or all of these. You may already be using some of these styles but are still not happy about your results and you can’t understand what the problem is. Let me just start by saying that this is a wonderful passion that we all share. There is so much to learn and I love that, because even after more than three decades in the business I can still see something new and exciting and learn from it. I can still admire someone else’s work and be inspired by it. But let’s get back to...
  8. Geoff Stock

    Why You Don’t Know What Shots to Take

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    Are you having a problem working out all the different shots you could take with your camera to tell your story. In the blog on How to Stop Panning and Zooming I have introduced you to the understanding that you can actually become aware of all the different images that your eyes are seeing.  Of how your brain pieces these images together so that you can understand what is happening around you. The even bigger problem is how and where you can learn these camera skills. Most of you will have watched an enormous amount of television, documentaries and movies, but that doesn’t help. If you have seen so much of it why can’t you just do it. It may be that you are still suffering the Curse of the Handycam and continuously rolling on everything, but help is at hand. One of the Biggest Principles of Film Making To...
  9. Geoff Stock

    Why Auto Mode is Ruining Your Shots

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    Do you have the problem that you can only use your video camera in Auto mode? One of the big problems with most small “handycams” is that they really are made to be used in Auto mode. It is by far the easiest way to use them. If you are still trying to learn to use the camera and also trying to learn how to shoot you will be tempted to always leave the camera set on Auto. I can teach you how to think and shoot like a professional cameraman, but it is up to you to learn how to use your camera and to start practicing the skills that I show you.  Just understand that television cameramen and women shoot every day of the week, so the camera becomes second nature for them to use. If you want to improve you need to start shooting as often as...
  10. Geoff Stock

    To Video or to DSLR, That is the Question

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    What a can of worms. What will be your next video camera? You certainly ramp up the confusion level at the moment, when you start to think about this problem that is common to all of us. No matter what the level of your experience, the decision about which camera you should spend your hard-earned cash on next, is a biggie. Where do we start, Sony, Canon, JVC, Panasonic, GoPro, Red, Etc., Etc.? Tape, Hard drive, Disc, Memory Cards, Etc.,Etc. Should we have a video camera that can take stills? $500, $1000, $2000, $5000, $8000, $10000, $20000, $50000, where does it all end? It is really hard. Yes, and then along comes the Digital SLR stills camera and some bright spark decides to add a feature to make it able to shoot Hi Def Video. Thanks very much. Let’s all join hands and run around in circles singing “What the...
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