Philippians 4:8 from stillswordsandmotion on Vimeo.

Years ago, back when I used a Canon HV20 (an amazing tape-based HDV camera that I caught the filmmaking bug with), I filmed a snippet of my son in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park reciting Proverbs 26:4. I used a Rode Video Mic mounted to the camera and edited the 33 second video in Final Cut Express 4 on a 20” iMac with 2GB or RAM (antiquated, I know). It was a great little movie with some advanced camera work (I used one camera to record several angles) and good color correction. The exposure and sound were acceptable to me—back then. Today? Not by a long shot.

This video—Philippians 4:8—was shot in a similar style to Proverbs 26:4 (and uses my daughter, not my son). It’s still a one-camera shoot using multiple angles to give the appearance of having shot it with multiple cameras. The difference is I used a Canon EOS 60D and a 17-40mm f/4 L lens shooting in 24p with the CineStyle picture style, the camera’s built-in mic, and edited the video using Adobe Premiere Pro CC on a 27” iMac.

Going forward, I would color grade my footage to match the subject and environment, not just strive for purity of color. While you can’t watch Proverbs 26:4 online anymore, I assure you that the color was akin to a saturated smartphone JPG. It was good, just not great. This footage, featuring a pre-teen little girl, would do well with a high-key, low-contrast treatment. My audio would be recorded on a separate device and sweetened in post.

I’m surprised at the overall quality the 60D can produce. Remember this is using the CineStyle picture style (hence the flatness) and I didn’t do any color grading to the footage—it’s as-shot, straight from the camera. No adjustments to curves, levels, color balance, contrast, sharpening, or anything else. Camera audio should never to be used, so disregard the unnatural sound. I never intended to do anything with this footage except test the movie controls and practice shots for narrative shorts, however the final edit made me decide to keep it.

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