What I learned today from multicam vlog shoots

I’ve recorded a bunch of multicam shoots over the last 22 years. Most have been recording single cameras then put those cameras together. However, they run continuously. Much, much easier to sync.

Today, I was sporadic when recording. I tried to shoot like I would a sitcom – that did not work as well. I set up one wide camera. I had my phone for selfie-talk. I had the Crosstour for more interesting shots. And I had a Nikon for alternative wide shots.

Here are the basic statistics. The Nikon shuts off after 20 minutes of recording. I didn’t notice that until later. The FX7 records always – to tape so I have to change tapes at 60 minutes. The Crosstour died in the middle but will record 14 hours of footage. My phone has a lot of memory capacity so it could record a lot.

Normally I would have someone manning cameras so we could cut when needed. The challenge today is that I don’t have someone else. I have to watch all cameras all of the time. I like each of my cameras for different reasons, but I’m going to have to cut some out just for the sake of editing or give them specialties and markers for shoots. I think I’ve talked about this before.

This would mean I’d have one camera running for wide angles (probably the FX7 since I have like 32 hours of batteries and a bunch of tapes). I’d set up the Crosstour for closer different angle shots – like when I cut boards today or when I used it for a closer to the action camera. If it gave less of a fisheye look I’d certainly use it for wide shots. My phone I’ll keep as the selfie recordings – it does well and using FilmicPro it gives a good flat look that’s easy to edit. I may relegate the Nikon to only photos. It records well, but at 20 minutes I don’t have time to check on it. It’s either that or I manage my time so that I record for 20 minutes at a time and set reminders. The problem is I wouldn’t get good timelapse footage the way I want, but with the right cuts it shouldn’t matter much in the end.

The biggest change I’m going to have to make is probably cutting down recording to two cameras most of the time – the Crosstour and my phone. Then if I need to set up something else I can set up the FX7. And if I want to do office static setups for recording me talking while working on a screen recording then I’ll use the Nikon with the 55-200 lens and set up an actual recording area. And absolutely not do multicam recording again unless I could sync the cameras better – because recording 6 hours of footage on two cameras and then using two other cameras elsewhere just doesn’t work like it does when you’re recording at a venue.

For today’s work I’ll cut the footage down to a quick intro then cut some smaller shots of the cutting and putting up the shelving and then an outro. I’ll make it about 5 mins long instead of the current 5 mins just for the intro where I was outlining my camera setups. Then maybe (maybe) I’ll edit each section of footage and do a longer cut. And I’ll cut out all of the jokes I did and make one joke reel.

Oh one other thing I found that annoys me. I hadn’t ever tried to do multicam editing with just clips before. I could not find a way to do it. So I’d have to sync the videos then export each one with an in and out point set the way I wanted and then reimport the footage and then make a multicam timeline to edit. I really wanted to take the in and out points I already had for each clip and make a subclip that I could then throw those into a multicam edit. No such luck.

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