View Full Version : My Video Processing Workflow

01-05-2013, 05:10 PM
My setup and work flow in more detail.

I have the GoPro Hero 2 camera mounted in the GoPro underwater housing; the one with a flat lens so the GoPro can focus underwater correctly. The original housing is waterproof, but not designed to have shots taken underwater. I also have a two foot pole that the camera is mounted on to assist getting closer to fish without having them swim away. I set the camera to shoot upside down and I flip the camera so that it hangs down when holding the pole. I have two GoPro underwater housings, one always has the Magic Filter on it, and the other does not. I use the Magic Filter one when diving, and the other one when snorkelling. I got the second housing on sale once the Hero 3 came on the market. The Magic Filter makes the difference between usable footage and not usable footage when shooting below about 6-10 feet and above 40 feet. You will find a lot of information and comparative videos on their web site: http://www.magic-filters.com/ . They donít sell the filter that goes on the dive housing, but they manufacture the one that Backscatter sells, which is the one I use. http://www.backscatter.com/sku/bs-gp-mf-flip.lasso. The new Hero 3 filter they sell is here: http://www.backscatter.com/sku/bs-gp-h3-flip.lasso
Picture (http://gordalder.smugmug.com/Hobbies/GoPro-Pole/27414032_6sMCcS#!i=2305589348&k=3tsRDL4) of my GoPro on the pole as I hold it.

It is my opinion that all/most underwater photos and video require some post processing to improve the image. For video from my GoPro the following is the process I am currently following:
1) Open the file directly from the memory card loaded into my computer card reader using QuickTime Pro. (I am not coping the entire raw footage on to the computer)
2) I then start to select the clips I like, creating new files for each clip; saving them on my computer.
3) As I save the clip, I load it into software called vReveal (http://www.vreveal.com/). This software has a free version and a paid version, I have the paid version. It allows you to make the necessary corrections to your video, including image stabilization. I have loaded a side-by-side comparison video (http://youtu.be/rLcLupecVQ4) showing the changes to the video after the settings are applied. Remember to select a High Quality 720p when viewing. The following corrections were applied in vReveal: Auto White Balance, Fill Light, Stabilize, Clean, and Auto Contrast.


4) Once I have completed the clip extraction, and improvement process I load the clips into software called ProShow Producer (http://www.photodex.com/proshow/producer) to create the final video that is loaded to YouTube.
My YouTube Channel is the following: https://www.youtube.com/user/Galder1313?feature=mhee

As you can see, it is not as simple as shoot the video, copy it to your computer, and then upload it to YouTube. All good quality video requires some post processing to make it look good. My videos are simple amateur videos, meant to record some memories from a dive or snorkel. It does not really tell a story, but I want it to look as good as it can.

01-05-2013, 06:29 PM
Wow Gordo, thank you so much for this extensive description.
That magic filter makes a big difference.
vReveal looks very interesting too.
I will safe this for future reference.

Why do you use the camera upside down? Can you film more stable this way?

01-05-2013, 07:53 PM
I found a web site that indicated that it was easier to hold the camera stable when it was hanging down. I looked for the site and the video when I did the above post but was unable to locate it again. They showed some example footage and the image was much stabler with the camera down. I haven't tried it the other way, just going on their recommendation.

01-06-2013, 01:15 AM
I found a web site that indicated that it was easier to hold the camera stable when it was hanging down. I looked for the site and the video when I did the above post but was unable to locate it again. They showed some example footage and the image was much stabler with the camera down. I haven't tried it the other way, just going on their recommendation.
The camera on top of the pole is an unstable position....you are always having to hold it up so it doesn't rotate down. On the down side of the pole it does not want to rise. This is only because the camera is slightly negative in the water, so gravity is your friend.

But I don't see the value of the pole.

01-06-2013, 06:05 AM
But I don't see the value of the pole.

The pole has been a huge advantage in a number of situations:

1) Snorkeling, it gives you that added depth to take video from the surface while having the camera at a low angle;
2) For both diving and snorkeling I find the fish are not as afraid of a small camera on a pole, so you can get much closer; in fact you have to be careful that you don't get so close that you are within the minimum focus distance;
3) In a couple of my videos I was able to carefully position the camera in places that would otherwise not have been able to get to. One example is the Drum Fish footage, which was not out in the open, but I was able to carefully position the camera between the coral outcropping to get the footage.

As the experts number one recommendation in underwater photos is to "Get Closer"; I applied the same recommendation to my shooting of video and find that it is much easier to get closer with the camera mounted on a pole. With the GoPro having a very wide angle lens I find it is very important that I get as close to my subjects as possible.

In addition to the pole mount I did purchase the traditional underwater camera Handle mount, but have not tired it yet. I have used an DSLR housed in an Ikelite housing with a flash attached, and I am just loving the freedom the GoPro give me when diving. My DSLR rig is quite old and not capable of shooting video, which the primary reason I purchased the GoPro.

01-12-2013, 10:03 AM
Dear Gordo--where did you locate your pole for the GoPro-On-A-Pole [sounds like a daily special at a diner]? I have located various ones and majority of them all show camera on top and some say it can be used with 2, but I just want something simple. If you made yours it looks quite amazing and you might start up a new company!


PS--we did look at Backscatter and flip-up model for GP3 is not going out until late February and we will be back at that time so trying diffent style and will try and post pics.

01-12-2013, 10:27 AM
I found the pole on a web site and purchased it: http://www.ulcs.com/gopro.html

For the world I cannot find a link now that will let you make the purchase on their web site. As you can see from my photo and their photo it does look like an easy pole to make. Once I purchased mine, I decided I wanted a longer one for other purposes. I went out and purchased the material and made my own. If you look at the pictures you will see the parts you need to make the "polecam". If you go to your hardware store you will find the two plastic parts you need, I believe they are plastic electrical conduit parts. You need an end cap and a joiner piece. The joiner piece is the one that you need to get the dowel to fit into. When I made mine it was pretty snug but I twisted it on. You also need the Tripod mount and you need to purchase a bolt that is the same thread as a tripod; this bolt is inserted into the cap that you drill a hole into.

Or you can take a much simpler route and purchase the following: http://www.photographyandcinema.com/products/palo-alto

Then you purchase a painters pole and cut it to the desired length. I did this also, but rather than shorter I got the painter pole that extends so I could get shots that were from a very high angle, with the pole mounted to something solid. This way I could video an event like a wedding from an angle no one else can get.

01-12-2013, 10:36 AM
Thanks for the info--will go to the hardware store and see what pcv exists to make one, and if not just order one to go!


01-12-2013, 10:42 AM
I thought I would post a couple of additional closeup pictures of the polecam and describe the modifications I made.

The first shot shows the top with the GoPro Tripod mount that is supplied with the polcam. They also paint the pole for you.


The second shot shows the handle. They added the white part on the end so that you can add additional poles to this one to create a longer pole. I chose not to go this route as you can see from my above post. I however, did had the red wrist loop. I screwed an eye hook into the pole and added a extra camera wrist strap so that any time I need two hands while underwater, I can drop the pole and it remains attached to me.


01-20-2013, 10:34 PM
I found the video I saw that showed why holding the PoleCam with the camera hanging down is better.


01-21-2013, 04:10 PM
video was very helpful along with the others he has showing how to hold it for less movement.

11-days and we leaving.


02-24-2013, 12:18 PM
we are back and had a great time---next question is what software do you use for editing your video or pictures? Any program/software that you found easier or better than the other? Have been looking at Adobe program and when reading did see some other rated pretty good---main thing I believe is amount of space program takes up on the hard drive.


02-24-2013, 12:56 PM
There are many software programs out there for editing the video, I just use QuickTime Pro to create the clips I want to use, then any of the free editors will allow you to put the clips together, add some music, and publish. If you are looking for a more professional, feature rich program then I am not your expert.

The space on your hard drive will be taken up with your raw video footage, not the program. Video footage is HUGE compared to photos.


02-26-2013, 07:52 PM
Thanks for the quick reply--we will start looking harder at our options and see how much we can mess things up!


02-26-2013, 08:16 PM
OMG Royce.. make sure you keep the original video !!! make copies to fool with PLEASE !!!