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class="style16"> Helicopter Rotor Flicker

Published : 19th September 2009


I'm going to do some stationary on the ground shooting of a copter in flight. Won't be able to have the rotors turning very much..but want some rotor flicker in the shots.
I have been thinking in cu's a flicker box and for wider shots a mole or Ritter fan with a par shooting through it.


Any other thoughts on creating a low tech lighting gag to get the look greatly appreciated.


Thanks


Rich Lerner
DP USA



>> any other thoughts on creating a low tech lighting gag to get the look greatly appreciated.


If you are Day/Ext maybe you could try shooting off speed to get HMI flicker?

You'd have to test...


David Perrault, CSC



Rich Lerner wrote :


>>any other thoughts on creating a low tech lighting gag to get the look greatly appreciated.


Rich


How about a five blade ceiling fan with two blades pulled for an A star--or a four blade with two pulled for a Jet ranger. Goal Post or mount high on a c stand and control with a dimmer for speed?


Just a thought.


Kent Hughes
DoP
SoCal



For the current US Army TV ads we just taped some foam core together to make a plus sign and had it spin in front of the head about 3 feet. You can add some gels to the open areas for a moodier effect.


This was for shooting the Rangers inside the Blackhawk when it was on the ground, but to simulate flight. It worked ok.


It does take a body to maintain and control the spin


JR Anderson
Photographer



Rich Lerner writes :


>>I'm going to do some stationary on the ground shooting of a copter in flight.? Won't be able to have the >>rotors turning very much..but want some rotor? flicker in the shots.


If you plan your shots right you just might be able to do it in post by supering a source of flicker, like a looped series of slug frames of varying brightness, synched to your wild track of chopper sound. This would tend to work best on close-ups.? You could probably test this approach using a car in place of the chopper.?Just make sure your POV isn't one that would normally see the actual rotor blades.


Not sure what you mean by "not turning very much."? Do you mean turning slowly or not very much of the time? With turbine-powered helos you can maintain a high idle speed on the ground to simulate flight. Most or all piston-powered craft need forward airspeed to maintain engine cooling. (Brian Heller might chime in here...)


Dan Drasin
Producer/DP
Marin County, CA



There's an interesting video at www.DigitalEngineStudios.com


It's called "Huey Take Down". I'd post the link, but it's all flash and I can't copy it from the page.
Go to the page, click on Gallery, click on the thumbnail picture of the helicopter.
It was created entirely from still images, a 3D model, and After Effects.


Andrew Fraser
Austin, TX
Editor