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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been using a Hague stabilizer with a Panasonic TM700, and I'm reasonably happy with it. But, there's one kind of tracking shot that seems to be very difficult to do, and it's a big one: a reverse tracking shot.


The main problem lies in simply walking backwards, where the cameraman has to be mindful of the terrain as well as of framing the shot properly. In some situations, where the path is clear and straight and relatively flat, this isn't a problem. But, if I'm in a chaotic environment, it's very, very difficult.


For example, I tried an experiment at an event I was shooting: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QPZYH-Klps4 . There was no prep time for this, so it looks crummy; if I was doing this for a real shoot, I'd probably have borrowed a wheelchair, and had someone else pull it through a well-rehearsed crowd.


The best way of doing this with a Hague stabilizer is to walk sideways, towards my right side, and hold the camera sideways. Not the most intuitive way of holding a camera, especially with the Hague.


I'd much prefer a system where I could walk forward, with the camera behind me. and a small Lilliput monitor in front of me so I could walk normally and concentrate on framing-- similar to a full-blown Steadicam rig. I imagine this could be done with a light rig of some sort.


But how do all of you handle your reverse-tracking stabilizer shots?
 

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Not sure about the stabilizer but your shots looked good. Would love to see that shot with a Canon G10/M4xx. The low light areas are very dark.

While I see your concern, your technique looked good to me. You pulled it off well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Icyman /forum/post/20816560


Not sure about the stabilizer but your shots looked good. Would love to see that shot with a Canon G10/M4xx. The low light areas are very dark.

While I see your concern, your technique looked good to me. You pulled it off well.

Thanks. But I see all the problems. This was a spur o' the moment kind of thing; I was shooting the acts at this event, and I asked a friend to walk around a bit.I didn't calibrate the stabilizer too carefully, and as you see, I didn't try to find a good exposure level for both the bright and dark areas of the event.


For what it's worth, here's what I learned. These things _really_ require rehearsals or several takes. Also, it's probably best to put the cameraman on a dolly or wheelchair, and have someone else pull him: that way, the cameraman can concentrate on framing without having to worry about where he or she is stepping.


One important detail is in panning the camera. The Hague stabilizer is basically a ball gimbal, so the camera twists without any real regard to where you're pointing the stabilizer. It might be a good idea to add something to the stabilizer that lets the camera stay level, but limits its left-right movement so it points to where you want.
 
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