Homemade Rostrum camera setup

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mnagaha
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Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by mnagaha » Tue Feb 18, 2014 12:37 am

Hi everyone.

posting back on this forum after about 7 years!!
this post is not really related to ASP.
But since its related to animation I thought I would share it.

I've always been fascinated by the early history of animation. especially how everything was done by hand in a painstaking way back before the use of computers.
so to try out some of the ideas that are described in books etc.
A friend (http://www.kaveen.name) and I decided to build a rostrum camera setup!

Have been working on this on and off for about 6 months.
We learnt a lot of cool things doing this, and it was my first time welding with an arc welder!

we made it a bit large, fully assembled it stands about 7.5 feet.
the whole thing can be taken apart.

it weighs a bit as its mostly made of 1" L iron bars.
as I didn't know if it will have problems with vibrations or sway, I made it as sturdy as possible.
without making it weigh a ton.

a counter weight makes it possible to move the horizontal arm (with the camera) up and down (by hand).
A winch of sorts makes it possible to move the camera horizontally along the arm.

the arm is fitted with a tripod head.

camera is cannon powershot, and it has been modified with a external gel acid battery.
and an old air pressure cable release (to minimize shake when triggering).

the side panels are 95 gsm DC paper.
homemade lights with 11 watt LED daylight bulbs (not professional).

still working on getting the lighting even on the table, have figured out that it needs more space between the DC paper and the light, so the rostrum has to be moved to a less cramped space.
the last 2 pics are stills taken on the set up.
the rabbit is made of photocopy paper cutout parts painted with acrylic.

some of the animation tests we have done have really shown me how refreshingly different it is from working on the computer.
but I've not had the courage to go beyond silly stuff as yet :)

will try to post some clips we do eventually...

thanks for reading!
Have a nice day.

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Little Yamori
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Re: Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by Little Yamori » Tue Feb 18, 2014 4:57 am

Wow,

Now that's passion, I hope your efforts produce some great rewards. Hat's off
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jahnocli
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Re: Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by jahnocli » Tue Feb 18, 2014 12:06 pm

Old school.
You can't have everything. Where would you put it?
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GCharb
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Re: Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by GCharb » Tue Feb 18, 2014 2:08 pm

Impressive, haven't seen one of these in a long time, any plan on making it multi plane?

Again, very impressive! :shock:
mnagaha
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Re: Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by mnagaha » Tue Feb 18, 2014 10:58 pm

Little Yamori wrote:Wow,

Now that's passion, I hope your efforts produce some great rewards. Hat's off
Thanks a lot!
really appreciate your encouragement! :)
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Re: Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by mnagaha » Tue Feb 18, 2014 10:59 pm

jahnocli wrote:Old school.
..no school like... :D
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Re: Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by mnagaha » Tue Feb 18, 2014 11:14 pm

GCharb wrote:Impressive, haven't seen one of these in a long time, any plan on making it multi plane?

Again, very impressive! :shock:
Thanks a lot!
when you say that you 'haven't seen one in a long time'..does that mean you have worked on one before??!!

I'm hoping to get 3 glass layers in (there is one pic here with one glass layer held up with drinking glasses), but each glass layer has to spaced so that I can get my arm in between the glass without hitting the glass pane. This means at least 5" space per layer...so a total of 15" doesn't seem very practical at the moment.
But I'm trying to find ways around it.

But a background layer and only one layer on top is easy to do. Ex. pic from an earlier test. (the head and body is on top, the limbs are on the layer below)
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also need to look into how the camera manages the depth as these smaller point and shoot cams have a small sensor which effects how much depth it can provide.

and the distance between the glass layers also creates a parallax which means, as the character moves away from the center screen. the body and head need to be aligned not vertically, but in relation to the angle to the camera. This makes animation very difficult...but that's part of the fun of this whole setup :D
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GCharb
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Re: Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by GCharb » Wed Feb 19, 2014 12:38 am

mnagaha wrote: when you say that you 'haven't seen one in a long time'..does that mean you have worked on one before??!!

Yes, when I was working for Cinegroupe, was a very impressive piece of equipment!
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AmigaMan
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Re: Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by AmigaMan » Wed Feb 19, 2014 12:40 am

Very nice. I built a rostrum years ago from (I think it was called) Link 51 square metal tubing that hammered tightly into plastic corner sections. I will see if I can find some pictures. I made a few films on it then years later I animated a shot of santa, sleigh and reindeer on cel for a Bob The Builder Christmas special (it was a sillhouette seen from a plane window) and we used my rostrum. I eventually donated it to a local media training college.
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Re: Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by mnagaha » Fri Feb 21, 2014 5:32 pm

GCharb wrote:Yes, when I was working for Cinegroupe, was a very impressive piece of equipment!
Nice! :)
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Re: Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by mnagaha » Fri Feb 21, 2014 5:34 pm

AmigaMan wrote:Very nice. I built a rostrum years ago from (I think it was called) Link 51 square metal tubing that hammered tightly into plastic corner sections. I will see if I can find some pictures. I made a few films on it then years later I animated a shot of santa, sleigh and reindeer on cel for a Bob The Builder Christmas special (it was a sillhouette seen from a plane window) and we used my rostrum. I eventually donated it to a local media training college.

Please do share the pics, would be great to see it!
Also, could you explain how you setup the lighting?

Thanks!
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AmigaMan
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Re: Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by AmigaMan » Sun Feb 23, 2014 9:12 pm

I have been searching for the pictures but not found them yet. It was 1990 when I built the rostrum after all. I also have a short documentary on video that a friend of mine made and the rostrum features in that. I'm sure I had a copy on DVD but do you think I can find it?? I may have to re digitise the footage.
The lighting was just a photoflood placed each side. I think I had diffusers placed in front also. I remember they used to get very hot and not last very long.
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AmigaMan
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Re: Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by AmigaMan » Sun Mar 02, 2014 6:26 pm

I found a VHS with the documentary on and I edited it to just a few clips of a colleague, Kevan Goode, and I shooting the animation in 1989. There's just a couple of very brief shots of the rostrum. No audio on this clip.

mnagaha
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Re: Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by mnagaha » Sun Mar 09, 2014 11:33 pm

AmigaMan wrote:I found a VHS with the documentary on and I edited it to just a few clips of a colleague, Kevan Goode, and I shooting the animation in 1989. There's just a couple of very brief shots of the rostrum. No audio on this clip.
Wow! :shock: thanks for putting this up!
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Re: Homemade Rostrum camera setup

Post by Danimal » Tue Mar 18, 2014 12:16 am

Looks very cool - a definite labor of love!
~Danimal
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