by Douglas Black enerficiency
Alright, let’s forget about the herky-jerky, Blair Witchy jitters and get smooth. If you like uploading your short bursts of creativity to YouTube, it’s time to step it up a notch.
I was at my favorite camera store, Calumet Photo, last week and found some really fun toys. First I found this little go-kart for your camera. The Pico Flex Dolly gives you the freedom of straight line and circling movement, hands-free.
According to the manufacturer you can create Cinematic movements right from your desktop with your Smart Phone, Compact Point and shoot Cameras, or even DSLR Video. The Pico Dolly offers high quality and unique camera tracking movements from any smooth surface. Adjusting the two axles allows for side to side tracking, push or pull dolly shots, and even unique 360 degree rotating movements.
Just looking at this video makes my head spin with ideas.
Smoother Shots Walking
The little rover is great for hard surface shots, but if you want to really get smooth over rough terrain, how about a Steadicam setup? Whoooa cowboy, you might be sayin’ – way too much money! Not so.
Garrett Brown, the genius who revolutionized moviemaking with the original Steadicam (which can run north of $50,000) has helped introduce the Steadicam Merlin, a hand-held stabilizer that runs less than $1000!
I was allowed to test drive, and I can tell you I am convinced it can make my short takes better by tenfold. Even the new smaller body cameras can be mounted and balanced properly to provide smoothness unmatched in any built-in stability system.
iSmooth and droidSmoother
Finally, have you tried using your ‘Droid or iPad or iThingy-whatever for video off your dashboard while going down a mountain road at 70? No? Well, when you do, this is how you can mount your video capture device for that smooth shot.
Novoflex, the German manufacturer known for precision craftsmanship, has a phone kit. It’s called Phone Kit. Simple is best I say. The rep demonstrated to me the many ways the jig can be set up – from sliding holders to accommodate tablets to mini tripods to suction cup and swivel gimbal.
A bit pricey but very well made and comes with a designer-like travel bag!