Time To Add More Video To My Photography

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It has been a while since my last post. The pandemic here finally got to me. Travel, doing things, meeting people usually stimulate my output of photos and video. A combination of darker colder weather plus almost all of the events, volunteer work, travel, many family visits being cancelled has just put a damper on things. But, thankfully things are getting better. Some of my flowers are blooming, a few of the early wildflowers are coming out on the hiking trails, much of the blackened hike a few miles from our house is beginning to come back to life. Plus a few adventures for this year seem to be looking like they are going to happen. Oh, and I have had my first Covid vaccine shot. So that is all good.

My 11 year old grand daughter got a digital camera for Christmas and she is interested in photography-videos. So I offered to help her with that new hobby. Here is one of the early results of that.

The video was taken with my Nikon Z7 and the 24-70 f4 lens. I did not spend a lot of time on it, but the camera worked quite well and is extremely easy to use for both video and stills. I put the video together using Adobe Rush which I have just bought. I have made a few videos over the years that combined stills and video using the Apple iMovie. So I thought I would give Rush a try. To me this is a very simple program. It is quite similar to iMovie but the operation and controls are not the same as iMovie.

I am currently using for capturing video clips my iPhone 12 max, Nikon Z50, and Nikon Z7. Over the last month I have made videos from all three of these systems in both 4K 30 and 2K HD 30. My impression so far is that just like stills the more money you have invested in a camera the better it performs. And if you use the higher setting of 4K to record video you can see better results. Although the better video results or more obvious on my computer monitor than when I project it on our big screen OLED TV. The issue with 4K video is the huge files. I also find it much easier to take video using a camera versus a phone. With a regular camera I normally use the viewfinder and it is just easier than holding a cell phone out in front of you. I learned to take video using a compact Sony camera and a number of cell phones. I thought I preferred using the back screen for video until I started to take a lot of them a couple of months ago. Viewfinders are just easier and a big plus is you hold cameras more steady when they are at you eye on a finder as opposed to a back screen. You can walk along when viewing with a viewfinder and not get so much up and down motion. Plus having a camera on a good strap at your hip makes it very easy to access instead of rummaging through your pocket to get the iPhone out. Regular cameras are just easier to operate than the iPhone. You can zoom a camera lens so that your work looks better than using the controls on a phone. The two Nikons are easier to switch between video and stills. The Nikons auto focus are easier to control than the iPhone, and they are fairly easy to manual focus. An iPhone is hard to manual focus.

This is a shot with my iPhone. The focus and clarity for this is not that great.
This is Nikon Z7 and shows details and sharp detail clearly.

As far as my initial reaction to Adobe Rush vs Apple iMovie I think they are about equal. But if you use apple gear including a Mac getting iMovie for free saves you ten dollars a month. Some advantages of the Rush software is that it backs your project to Adobe’s cloud automatically and you can use it with the Adobe cloud to work on your video from more than one device. Rush has some license free music to add to your videos. iMovie has sound effects and you can use downloaded music from iTunes but if music from your iTunes needs a license you cannot post to Instagram or YouTube. Also the presets on Rush are actually useful and the ones on iMovie to me are not. I am still using both and will keep you updated as time goes on.

About six months ago I got a new Apple TV box. It is a LOT faster than my old Apple TV box was. I think Apple keeps working on the TV box software to make it better. The new Apple TV 4K makes it possible to see photos and videos I make quickly using this unit. I used to use screen mirroring with my phone, iPad, or Mac, and still do sometimes. But overall the Apple TV setup with both the box and screen mirroring on my OLED TV screen is a useful good system. You can go out in your back yard, take a photo or video with your iPhone, and go back inside to watch it on your TV very easily and quickly. Or as I do, you can capture photos and video, edit them, view the results on the TV. I would say this is replacing my photo prints for albums and for sure slide projector. But you need to make sure that you have copies of your work both local and preferably cloud too. For me Apple iCloud works well. If I could get used to and like LightRoom CC as well as Lightroom Classic Adobe’s cloud would work for me too. I don’t though and likely never will. To save videos using iCloud you can just import them into the Apple Photos app.

Update on local back up storage. I switched to faster SSD type storage a couple of years ago from disk drives. The SSD drives have been fine, but the USB C connector worries me as opposed to the older style USB type A. The bigger older style type A plugs are sturdier than the type C. One of my type C plug SSD drives has become a bit finicky and you have to play with it a lot to get it to work sometimes. So when I got a larger 1T SSD storage unit a couple weeks ago I got a new 2T Seagate drive with type A and C connector. The SSD has an adaptor but it is not as good as the one that comes with the spinner drive. The SSD is 4 1/2 times as fast as the hard drive. The SSD costs about 2 1/2 times as much.

Why take more videos now? I have taken video clips for a long time and like the different effect you get seeing things move and sounds of the scene take place. But I have stuck with mostly taking stills. Adding video more adds another dimension to my collection of work and keeps me interested in learning how to do it. They are absolutely two different art forms though and require different thoughts to get good results. I am a very long way from being good at capturing video. But I will post how my learning is going.

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