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Thread: "A Day in Guimarães" - The European Capital of Culture 2012

  1. Default "A Day in Guimarães" - The European Capital of Culture 2012

    Hey guys,

    This is a video I did about Guimarães, a very cool city in the north of Portugal which is this year the European Capital of Culture, thus completely full with cool things like fountains transformed in pools and other stuff.

    It's a simple collection of nice images with some fitting music behind. I think the final project is very nice, and I'd love some love or hate from filmmaking enthusiasts

    Here it goes, hope you like it!

    Last edited by João Gonçalves; 11-09-2012 at 10:51 PM.

  2. #2


    Just a couple of shots were you pressed the auto focus for some reason, apart from that a nice video with nice music. A bit more ambient sound might have helped to bring the atmosphere more to life.

  3. Default

    If you're talking about 1:22 and 1:47, that's not autofocus, that's me changing the focus manually on purpose. I think it looks good in these situations!

    About the ambient sound, I think you're right, but at the time I still didn't have any recording hardware, and the sound on the DSLRs, as you know, sucks a lot, so music was the only way to go for it.

    But I'm glad you liked it, thanks!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Surrey, UK
    Blog Entries


    I'm with Midnight. I thought the mucking about with focus was a distraction. Changing focus is best used to drwa attention to part of teh image, or move attention from one part to another, or as a "fade" in or out. This just rather drew attention to the fact you'd fiddled with the focus. But credit for trying it out and others may like it!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Blog Entries


    I liked the deliberate "de-focus". I thought it worked well. I also disagree on the ambient sounds point. What I felt lacked however was any camera movement. After a while it was a cut from on static shot to another. I wanted to see more energy, particularly after such a great opening section with the drummers.

  6. Default

    I personally also like the "de-focus" as you call it, so it's nice to know someone enjoyed it. I do agree with you on the lack of camera movement. Working with only a tripod, no rig, and mainly a 50mm which produces a really shaky image unless you have a rig for it, it's difficult to include movement in the video. But I get what you say, and I'm really glad you described the intro as "such a great opening section", I'm personally really proud of it!

  7. #7


    I often do focus pulls in my videos but yours looked like an accident. You pulled in and out which to me just looked like focus hunting. When you do a focus pull it should be from one thing to another particular object. That is the usual purpose of a focus pull.

    If yours was meant to be some sort of stylistic thing then it doesn't work for me. It's like copying bad habits from other DSLR shot videos BUT I'm just an old fart who knows nothing of these modern days.

  8. Default

    I'm aware that you're supposed to focus from one thing to another. I also generally tend to do things I think look good, even if they're not theoretically correct. Once I was focusing manually, going back and forth accidentaly and I thought it looked nice, so I started doing some small clips here and there with that style and sometimes I use them, sometimes I don't.

    I totally understand what you mean and appreciate what your saying. Even if personally I enjoy it, I can see it's something odd to some people, so I should just keep using it based on my personal taste but not use it too much risking to lose viewers for it. Oh, and "old farts" have always lots of things to teach "new farts" as myself. I appreciate it

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2012
    São Paulo - Brazil


    Nice discussion... I liked the film. The focus pulling is quite a personnal matter today I believe. Most classes and books on filming today start with something like "rules are to be broken".... No rights or wrongs, just what pleases you... Unfortunatelly our politicians took this saying too deep now!!

    Although I use a lot of "imported" songs, 90% of the time they are just instrumental (no deep link with where from). Since you used a music with lyrics, maybe you could try a portuguese song? I´m a big fan of Madredeus, so maybe that could be an alternative? As the main subject is a portuguese town, it seemd apropriate to me. But, again, I also use imported songs many times and understand that sometimes it´s hard to find a local option that fits the mood. I just posted a movie with a music with english lyrics.... Go figure!

    Camera movement is another point that brings doubts to me. Been trying it more, but my camera introduces too much flickering (?) to my taste.... so I discard most files while editing.

  10. Default

    I'm a believer in the "do what pleases you" saying. I think that's how art works, and I tend to look at filmmaking as an art. Theory is important, but it's also great to run away from it sometimes from my point of view. That's why I did the focus pulling differently, but I still understand that some people find it strange and don't like it.

    About music: I really wanted to use Portuguese music, but I just thought it didn't feel right with the video. I did a series of videos of Portuguese cities and none of them have portuguese songs. Either they're nostalgic or they're too rocky - love them, but they don't fit. I needed something catchy and cheerful!

    I'm editing a video about Girona at the moment and I found this spanish guitar inspired instrumental song, so I think I was finally able to follow what you say.
    Camera movement is nice, but like you, I'd rather do it when I have a proper rig than trying to do it and making it look bad. Let's hope I have a generous christmas

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