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Visual Effects for Film and Television by Mitch Mitchell

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4 Front of camera

The very earliest and simplest effects were created in the camera. Playing with the actual controls available is the first line of attack. This basically means cranking the camera more slowly for speeded-up motion and more quickly to slow things down. Another option is to open up or close down the iris, thus making light or dark shots, respectively. The remaining control is focus and the only effect possible with this is to make the subject soft. These are the only options using the standard controls of a motion-picture camera.

The next line of attack is to look at the subject pictured by the camera. The simplest trick possible – since it requires no special or additional equipment – is to stop and start the camera on shot and, ...

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