1. 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...
  2. 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...
  3. 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...
  4. Geoff Stock

    The Power of Positive Thinking

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    I will change that a little to “The Power of Positive Reward”. Whether you are getting into Video Production or want to be a Videographer it is important to feel you are moving forward in your learning. Hopefully you have noticed that much of what I talk about concerns how to use your mind when learning about how to improve the results you are achieving with your video camera. One of the first things that people who do The Video Camera Course say is how everything they see on TV is the exactly the same as I have shown them in the course. They suddenly understand how it all works. This excites me because not only has their shooting improved immediately, but they are also starting to understand everything else they see, and they can then keep learning long after they have finished the course. Even if you don’t do...
  5. Geoff Stock

    Taking Pictures is like Life

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    That’s right, it is a long slow path to wisdom and knowledge. When you are right at the beginning of your journey, just about everything you see is exciting. Good documentaries, movies, magazine programs can all amaze you, touch you and inspire you. You look at them and say wow that is what I want to be able to do with my video camera. The internet has made it possible for an enormous number to people to share their stories with the world. It seems our desire to do that is tremendous, as you can see when you search through Youtube or Vimeo or any number of other video hosting sites. Many, many people want to use their cameras to share a part of their world, with their stories. However as you will also know, the skill level to be able to do this in an inspiring or riveting or...
  6. Geoff Stock

    What is the Online Essential Skills Video Camera Course?

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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 or even your iPhone, it doesn't matter what type of camera it is, it is about the skills and knowledge. The great thing is, you can do the whole course online, in your own time. Many times in my nearly forty 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...
  7. Geoff Stock

    How to Stop Panning and Zooming with Your Video Camera

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    Stop Panning and Zooming! Yes, right, so you want me to tell you how.  Just about every book or reference guide on how to use a video camera will give you this wonderful piece of advice.  It is exactly right, but knowing ‘what to shoot instead’ is very difficult if there is not a lot of follow-up advice. So, do you have a problem knowing what to shoot when you can’t Pan and Zoom? Welcome to the tribe. Just about everybody who starts using a video camera or wants to shoot moving pictures of any sort, will most probably have this problem at the beginning. That included me . Good news! Much of what you need to learn does not even require a camera. Learn How We Actually See Things We need to start to see what we see. Read that last line again....
  8. Geoff Stock

    The Curse of the Handycam

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    Do you have the problem with your handycam that you just keep recording everything and you aren’t able to think of framing specific shots? I call this the curse of the handycam. It Always Looks Like Home Movies The problem is that it is just too easy to walk around any event you are shooting with your video camera and just keep recording everything continuously. Yes, it is easy and you don’t have to think too much about anything.  And hey, that may be OK for your kid’s birthday party, but if you are trying to shoot something that looks better than just home movies, you need to kick your brain into gear. If you want to start shooting professional looking videos or short films, you need to take a giant step forward.  You need to learn How to Stop Panning and Zooming and how to start seeing the individual...
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