The past two days, I've spent a lot of time playing with a MiniDV camera. (The ETC now lets any student check one out.) The college group from church is doing a short movie. I'm the cameraman, producer, and editor. I didn't have to do any of the writing or acting. Later this week, I get to learn how to use Adobe Premiere to get the skit ready to show Saturday night. My sisters and their friends also did a short skit. That gave me some more practice using a video camera.

The continuous nature of video will take some getting used to. With a still camera, I can pick just one instant to take a picture. With video, I have to worry about a continuous stream of pictures fitting together. (Heh . . . the definition of still and video photography.) Even with image stabilization, shooting smooth video by hand is hard. I wasn't able to use a tripod as much as I should have. It would have been much easier if I had control over the set.

Using a consumer level camera was frustrating. The camera lens had a fairly long zoom, but the wide angle shots were in the normal range. Some scenes would have been much better with a wide angle lens. Automatic exposure is far inferior to manual exposure. I would have preferred to use a spotmeter and set the aperture and shutter speed manually. The autofocus worked pretty well, but it is nice to have the option of manual focus.

Even with the limitations, it was fun messing around with video. A pro camera would be even more fun. I would like to spend more time working with video.