Storm Grenade wrote:Great idea Rogolo. (I like saying that name.)
Hehe, thank you sir! You know, it is
scientifically proven to have the perfect ratio of vowels to consonants, as well as the ideal amount of rhyming, and unparalleled memorability. Your approval, however, means the world to me, and will be noted in my memoirs.
With that, on to my incredibly long, but entertaining (and correct
) assessment of your post, Mr. GoodBomb:
MrGoodbomb wrote:Here's the stock footage I have to work with.
This is for both the fire and the sprinklers (rain, as the ceiling is from another floor, I don't think that kind of dispersion and range would be unreasonable).
So, you are asking us to go through DetFilm's library looking for clips for you? I would think that it would be very easy to simply look at their directory
to find the burning timbers, DV embers, and various fire elements on this page
as well as the assorted rippers and molotovs on this page
. Pretty simple stuff, wouldn't you say?
MrGoodbomb wrote:I think fake push-ins digitally are tacky, and I'm not interested in altering her reaction shot unless it's a color/aesthetic change to match the fire footage before and after.
In certain cases, I'd agree with you. However, if done subtly and in the right context, it will
enhance the shot and, accordingly, the audience's connection with the character/film. To me, the shot, as it is, is a bit awkward, since her profile was to the camera in the previous shot, which then cuts to a full-on front angle with no stairs in the background (which is disorienting, since they should be behind her) and she is looking directly down at the landing where her feet should be, which further skews the layout of the scene.
Your framing of her is also peculiar. The long edit suggests this is a big decision/moment for the character, but your framing does little to mirror this sentiment. Instead of getting close up to her, it is at an awkward medium shot with TONS of boring negative space on either side. This does not convey intensity at all, which makes the shot length monotonous. Her body position and acting don't really do much to help the shot either.
A SUBTLE digital zoom will help to pare away the excess negative space and allow the audience to focus on her and her feelings. In this particular instance, I think it would save the shot, and make the sequence more monumental.
MrGoodbomb wrote:I could try, with a cheaper camera, to shoot some stuff (boards, a few fake stairs, etc) getting set on fire, but it'd be in broad daylight or, at best, overcast (IE not inside) and impossible to match to the existing shots. I just don't see how it could possible match up any better than some pre-existing flame effects on no base.
Obviously, it would be near-impossible to exactly
match the shots, but it would be quite simple to approximate the measurements. Of course they won't be perfect, but it will look MUCH
better with tweaking than generic stock footage which is not tailored to your shot. As pdrg stated, the problem with fire is that it interacts with its surroundings. Combining and blending together multiple layers of custom flaming steps and banisters overlaid with embers, smoke, and heat haze will look leagues better than cut-and-paste generic stock. This method allows the fire to interact realistically with the assorted objects in the shot, which will undeniably look more realistic than pre-existing stock, so I can't see how your argument makes any sense whatsoever.
MrGoodbomb wrote:Shot 4 can start out with the flames fairly high (covering the steps more or less) and getting higher until the sprinklers turn the fire to smoke (fade to grey, credits).
Last thing to keep in mind is that having the flames "get higher" with stock footage is very tricky - there's no good way to do it, unless the fire emitter has a variable ignition source, which is unlikely to be in any existing stock in the way you want it, which means having to film it yourself. Having your fire extinguish onscreen is another obstacle that you will face, which is another reason to use my shot sequence that I posted above, or (sounding like a broken record) do your own stock.
Overall, just keep in mind that this is will be very tricky to pull off convincingly without lots of creative editing and FX work. Most likely it will not end up looking like you imagined, which is (unfortunately) a real-life lesson not to wholly rely on someone you don't trust for major parts of your films.
I do wish you good luck with it all the same and hope to see your results when it's finished.