It may be a little known fact that the Saturday Night Live sequence, which was shot about four years ago, using a Canon 7D and a 5D Mark II. The NBC show isn’t the only one to have opted for using a digital SLR to shoot a sequence. In fact, the popular Fox show, House, used a 5D Mark II to shoot the entire season finale. Around the same time, an entire feature film, Searching for Sonny, was shot using a 5D Mark II. The quality these, and other DSLR cameras, are able to offer up when shooting video is impressive.
A quick search on Vimeo or YouTube is a good indication of just how accessible video making has become using even an entry level DSLR. Whether it’s shooting action movies, documentaries, or short films, the sheer variety of the types of films shot on these DSLRs demonstrates just how much can be done using a camera and a good lens. And while the practice certainly has its pros and cons, there’s no denying that it’s here to stay.
We’ve put together a list of 10 stunning videos shot using a digital SLR camera that you an use as a point of inspiration for shooting your own videos. Be sure to also check out some great resources on MakeUseOf about how to shoot video with your DSLR, whether it’s some great tutorial sites on how to shoot video and how to add effects to your videos after you shoot them.
1. Beet Cake
Beet Cake is a short video shot using a Canon 5D Mark II and a 7D. Shot using two lenses, the video is a perfect example of how creative you can get with your subject matter, and it comes out looking gorgeous shooting with a DSLR. Walking the viewer through the steps of making a Beet Cake, the video has a dreamy quality you wouldn’t expect to find in a video that is essentially, when it comes down to it, a cooking video. Watching it however, you’ll see it becomes much more than that.
2. Last Day Dream
Last Day Dream, as the title may indicate, is another video shot using a DSLR that has a dreamy quality to it. This is helped, in large part, by the lenses that were used. Also shot with a Canon 5D Mark II, the filmmaker opted instead to use lenses from the Lensbaby line, which we’ve reviewed in the past, to really enhance the dreamlike quality needed for a film which is about a man seeing his life flash before him in under two minutes.
3. Thailand’s Diversity
Another situation where using a DSLR to shoot video makes life easier is when you’re traveling. Rather than lug around several cameras, why not do everything using your DSLR? And you don’t even need a camera that costs almost $3,000 to get some decent shots. This video, shot in Thailand using a Canon T4i is a perfect example of that. While there are a few moments when you can spot the camera’s shortcomings, it’s certainly an impressive video.
4. Charlie Stemen Action Cinematography Reel
This video was shot using the T2i, a camera which now costs about $550. We chose it, not only because it’s another example of not having to have a state of the art camera, but it also demonstrates how DSLRs can handle the more active shots.
5. Bye Bye Bunny
Bye Bye Bunny, shot using a 5D Mark II, is an example of how well the camera can do in a fast paced environment. Capturing all the various facets, and chaos, of a fashion show is not easy task, but with a decent DSLR you can easily handle the more active, quick shots, that you could miss if you’re not paying attention.
6. Kate Desforges – Stone Lithography
Shot with a 7D, this video will give you an indication of the kinds of short documentaries you can shoot using your DSLR. The video follows the work of visual artist and printmaker Kate Desforges, as she works on a stone lithography print.
7. Summer Feelings
Summer Feelings is a beautiful, vignette-filled video, shot using a Canon 7D, 5D Mark II and several lenses. Shot in the French and Italian Alps, the video is a gorgeous example of how you can bring out the best in your own home town using your DSLR. (Of course, living in an area as beautiful as the Alps probably helped a little too.)
8. Four Hundred Years
This video, shot using a Canon 7D, is an example of how an interesting script, some well-thought out shots, a willing actor, and a bit of experience in color grading, can allow youto create an incredibly creative video using your DSLR.
9. John Obi Mikel Interview
Throwing in some decent graphics can add to the incredibly professional feel that your DSLR videos bring to the table. This Nike interview with John Obi Mikel, a Nigerian footballer, was shot using a Canon 5D Mark II and steadicam, also shows how well the camera handles in low light or night settings.
10. Bad is Bad
Bad is Bad is a full length feature film that was shot in 18 and a half days, using a Canon 7D, and a budget of $6,000 (including the cost of the camera.) So not only are these cameras great for shooting quick, short videos composed of vignettes, they can be used to shoot an entire film.
Do you have any videos to add to the list? Share them in the comments.
Image Credit: Nile Livesey