FRAME RATES for Video: How to Master Slow Motion, Speed Ramping and Cinematic Video | Dennis Schrader | Skillshare

FRAME RATES for Video: How to Master Slow Motion, Speed Ramping and Cinematic Video

Dennis Schrader, Freelance Videographer and Creator

FRAME RATES for Video: How to Master Slow Motion, Speed Ramping and Cinematic Video

Dennis Schrader, Freelance Videographer and Creator

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12 Lessons (23m)
    • 1. Frame Rates for Video

    • 2. What are frame rates?

    • 3. What are the common frame rates?

    • 4. 24/25 frames per second (24fps)

    • 5. 30 frames per second (30fps)

    • 6. 60 frames per second (60fps)

    • 7. 120 frames per second (120fps)

    • 8. The 180° shutter rule

    • 9. Slow Motion Tutorial

    • 10. Speed Ramping Tutorial

    • 11. The Assignment

    • 12. Must watch!

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About This Class


The Email Script that got me 3 Real Estate Video Clients in 3 Days!: 

My Personal Folder Structure for Video Projects (Ready to Use!): 

Understand the Basics of Filmmaking PDF (Free Download): 

The Camera Gear I use and recommend:

Frame Rates are a big source of confusion! Certainly it was for me when I started out. In this class you will learn:

  • How to create real Slow Motion video
  • When to use which frame rates
  • The difference between 24fps and 25fps
  • When to use 30fps
  • How to set the correct shutter speed for each frame rate
  • How to do Speed Ramping

I hope this class provides a lot of value to you. When I started making videos, I remember that I literally didn't even know that there IS anything to know about frame rates. So this short class gives you all you need to start out in a better position than most do.

You will know how to make images look natural. How to do proper slow motion video with the correct motion blur.

Excited to see you in the class!

Meet Your Teacher

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Dennis Schrader

Freelance Videographer and Creator


Hey guys! My name is Dennis - I am a one-man video production company based out of Hamburg, Germany. I love sharing my experiences with others so they can do the same!

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1. Frame Rates for Video: What's up you all? My name is Dennis, and I'm a freelance videographer based out of Germany. I shoot events, commercials, real estate videos, and lots of other stuff. In this course you're going to learn all about frame rates. Honestly, I remember when I started out as a totally unexperienced filmmaker, I was so convinced that I got it all figured out. I thought I knew it all. I filmed travel blogs and did some small gigs for restaurants and even somehow convinced the chef to hire me before even having real camera to work with. With all those mistakes that I made, frame rates were really right up there. I had no idea what fame rates really mean, how to use them. Actually even worse, I didn't even know that there was something to know about. I thought, you just switch on the camera, and there you go. So in this course, you are going to be safe from all of this. You're going to learn about all the mistakes that you shouldn't do. You're going to learn the very fundamentals that you need to get great images and not more than that. No complicated calculations, no science behind that because at the end of the day, I want you to know what you have to do when you're working, when you're creating something, things like what are frame rates? Which frame rates should I use in which situation? How do I get this better smooth slow motion that I see everywhere? In this class I will give you exactly that knowledge that I didn't even know I was missing. I don't want to bore you with too technical details. This is all about practicality of a working filmmaker, who wants to use the tools available, and I will give you a bunch of tips and tricks that took me months and years to learn. So you can start producing professional level results today and be safe from making those common rookie mistakes that I made early on. So that sounds interesting to you. Let's get started right away and see how we can make some beautiful things happen. See you in the class, bye bye. 2. What are frame rates?: Welcome to this course on frame rates. Today we are going to learn everything we need to know about frame rates. How to use them, when to use them. But before we go into all the details, let's start with some background knowledge. You probably already know that a video is not really a video, right? Let me explain. Have you ever used a flipbook before? They're really fun. My research for this class, I've seen some wild creative flipbooks out there. The way it works is that each separate page of those tiny little books is designed individually, and in a way that when you flip through them really, really fast. I mean, you know how that works if you're not too young. It's designed in a way that it appears like there's movement happening in the book between the pages. This is the effect that turns ordinary pictures into motion picture, and that's basically what a video is. Your camera records still images really fast. Later on they look like a video. The question is, how fast does my camera actually capture those images for it to look like a video? That my friends is the frame rate. It's the rate in which those frames are captured. For example, 24 frames per second is exactly that. It's one second of video that consists of 24 still images. That has some implications for our creative use for those frame rates because different frame rates allow us to get different styles of video and realize different effects afterwards if we want to. To be honest, there's not one right frame rate. It all depends on what you want to do and what you use it for. 3. What are the common frame rates?: So which frame rates exist? So technically, there's all kinds of frame rates from one frame per second up to several hundreds of frames per second. But we will focus on those frame rates that are actually more common and really more practically important for us freelance filmmakers, YouTubers, online course creators, things like that. So the probably most important frame rate for you out there is 24 or 25 frames per second. But for now, just remember 24 FPS or frames per second is mostly used in the US and Canada and 25 frames per second is used in the Europe and big parts of Asia and Africa. Then there's also seeCam, but I literally don't even know anything about it. I think it's used in Russia or something, but at least in the Western Hemisphere, it's not really typical. So 24 frames per second is known as the cinematic frame rate. Now you might ask why, what makes it so cinematic? That's a good question because there's lots of extremely technical talk out there about how our eyes work and how it perceives motion etc. But the most common answer seems to be that the film industry in the US, particularly in the US, basically just one day decided to go 24 FPS because it offers smooth image and it was affordable to produce. The thing is by now, we all basically got trained to perceive that this is the normal. When we go to the cinema, to the movies, it's always 24 FPS because that's what Hollywood does and it gives you the most cinematic image. Cinematic literally because that's what we see in cinema. Then there's 30 FPS, which gives an even smoother image and is used, for example, in TV production a lot. So then we have 60 frames, which brings us into the territory of real slow motion frame rates. Because think about it, if we want 24 frames in the end, because it gives us the most cinematic image, we can stretch out those 60 frames of one second to two-and-half seconds of 24 frames each. More on that later, don't worry, but that will result in a slow motion effect where the image is still smooth, although it seems to happen slower. Another common frame rate is actually 120 FPS, which gives you actually the same ability to stretch out the footage. But compared to the 60 frames, it gives you double the amount of frame rates. So one second of 120 FPS footage can actually be stretched out to five seconds without losing any smoothness of the image because it still retains those 24 frames per second, which makes it smooth. 4. 24/25 frames per second (24fps): Which frame rate should you use when? Let's start with 24, because that's the most common and the most important. I would even say, before I get into this, I want to give you a quick disclaimer. No matter what I or anyone else tells you, there is no such thing as the one right frame rate here. There's things that are common practice and you can make cases for what makes more sense or less sense in a certain situation. But it's certainly not a black and white issue. That's why my recommendation is stick to the rules until you have a enough knowledge and real reason to break them. If you don't know why you would want to film an interview at 120 frames per second, maybe you shouldn't. Because now it's starting to talk about 24 FPS. Interviews are actually one of the most common use cases for when to use 24 FPS. If you don't have reason to not to. But anyways, let's start at the beginning. This is what 24 frames per second actually looks like. It's what you see right now actually the whole time. When do we use 24 frames? I use it whenever I don't want to do slow motion later on. That's basically the simple rule for 99 percent of my production. I export all my work in 24 FPS. That means that all normal speed footage needs to be shut at that exact frame rate, because you cannot match frame rates. Also, I want to mention the importance of, especially audio that you record with your camera. Let's say you want to export in 24 FPS, but you insert 30 FPS clip that you want to slow down in post to match the 24 because that might look actually good visually. It going to make it a little bit slower than usual, but your audio will not match the sound and it's going to be totally distorted. Even if you correct it back, which you can do, then the image won't match the sound anymore. Therefore, anything that you record where you either need the audio or you need the visual synchronization with the lips or other movements, record that in 24 FPS, and that's basically it. I record 24 FPS if I don't have a good reason to change that. 5. 30 frames per second (30fps): All right, now let's look into 30 FPS. I cannot show you the visual difference right now because I can only Export one frame rate. If I would put a 30 FPS clip onto a 24 FPS timeline and then Export it in 24 FPS, you wouldn't really see what 30 frames per second feel like. But for my recommendation, you don't really need that anyway; because where 30 frames per second comes in really handy is in the super slide slow-motion to 80 percent of the original speed, which brings us just a bit of smoothness that you almost don't notice. Also, going to be the slow motion where you think is that slow-motion or is not is it slow motion or is it not. This is what it looks like when you slow down 30 FPS footage to 80 percent of the speed so it matches 24 frames per second. People walk a bit smoother. It all just looks more cinematic, whatever that means today. But it looks good and for me personally, since I shot on the Sony SM3 at the moment 30 FPS gives me a bit of a slow motion while still filming in full-frame for k. When I go up to 60 FPS, the camera will give me more slow motion, but it can only record that in 1080 full HD. I like using this specific technique when I film people walking or also on weddings, looks really nice to have a little bit more smoothness in there. Just be careful and remember to switch back to 24 especially on weddings when you need to record audio, because otherwise you will get in big trouble and post-production and with your clients potentially. 6. 60 frames per second (60fps): Here we are at 60 frames per second. Why do I use that? 60 frames per second is the standard slow-motion option for me. It gives me more than enough room to slow down the footage without being too crazy slow. So let's take a quick look. This is what it looks like when I slow down 60 FPS to 60 percent of the speed to match 24 frames per second. Another good thing is that it leaves me a considerable amount of light since I have to raise my shutter speed to 1 over 125. I use 60 frames per second primarily on real estate shoots, when I want to slow down people dancing, for event videos for example, or actually generally anytime I want to capture anything in slow motion, no much else to say about it. 7. 120 frames per second (120fps): 120FPS. 120 Frames Per Second allow us to slow down our footage to 20 percent of the original speed, to match our target 24 Frames Per Second. Let's take a look at what this strong slow motion looks like. Pretty impressive. But when do we need this extreme slow motion? I personally use it for the moments where I intentionally want to slow down rather fast movements. Let's think of something, the pour of a drink, a running person, a car driving by, things like that. Another good idea is to use it when you want to put a lot of focus on a movement that would otherwise pass passively. Slowing down parts of the clip where a certain action is happening that you want to focus on. You pay more attention to it because you see it in such detail in slow motion. This is what it could look like, here are few example shots from one of my event recap videos last year. Those are moments where 120 FPS makes sense to me, because I couldn't have gotten the same shot in 60 FPS or 24 FPS, and that all being said overall, if I look at all my shoots, I really rarely use 120 FPS. In the beginning I loved it and I totally overused it because it's such an easy way out if you think about it. Because you can make an ordinary moment of a person walking by or walking down the road somehow look "cinematic", I have used that word way too often right now. But don't worry that time will pass and you will be more interested in more nuanced choices. 8. The 180° shutter rule: Now that we have all the theory down, I want to tell you about a few important things that you need to know before you go out shooting. One important thing to remember is the relationship between shutter speed and the brightness of your image. What do I mean by that? If you film on high frame rates, you need to raise your shutter speed and that in turn, lowers the exposure of your image. That needs to be compensated, either with more light, higher ISO or lower aperture. You could ask, why is that? That's when I want to tell you about the 180 degree shutter rule. That basically says that the shutter speed always should be double your frame rate. If you record in 24fps, you're perfect train rate would be at one over 48. If you record in 120fps, the perfect shutter speed would be at one over 240. The rule and this topic in general can get really tedious and scientific and all that stuff. There's some discussion about when to use which shutter speed or which shutter angle. But for all intensive purposes and in my personal experience and I've done that for a few years now, the majority of people I know and the rule that I have followed my whole work life is this one. You will get a natural-looking image, really nice results and more importantly, you will not end up making stupid mistakes because nobody will look at this be like, "You dumb-ass, you've messed it up." If you really end up digging deeper into this topic, that's awesome. More power to you, but for a quick and more importantly practical understanding of it, remember, shutter speed should be one over frame rate times two. That means you have to keep in mind the lighting situation because like I said, you will need more light to get the same shot with the same exposure and, that's just really important to remember. 9. Slow Motion Tutorial: We've talked about slow-motion so much. Let's actually do some slow-motion with some clips. I have a bunch of clips here in different frame rates and we will compare them and I will show you how to do basic slow motion. First off, there's a few ways how you can actually do that. Because the clips we import are shot in different frame rates and therefore in order to have them play back in slow motion, we can either reduce the speed of the clip in the sequence, and for that we just drag the clip into the timeline, right click it, click on "Speed" and reduce it by the correct amount. Now, ideally you want to reduce it so it matches up with the 24 frames per second because that's important so that it looks natural and looks real. That would mean 120 FPS needs to be slowed down to 20 percent of the speed. 60 FPS needs to be slowed down to 40 percent of the speed and 30 FPS needs to be slowed down to 80 percent of the speed. If you don't do that, you might end up with a non-matching amount of frames per second and without going into too much detail, it will just result in a somewhat choppy image. You will see it in the image and it will look weird and people will not understand why that is. But there is another way to do the slow motion, which is actually we can have Premiere Pro reinterpret the footage as if it were 24 frames per second. That way the clip we dragged into our timeline is already slowed down because it's stretched out to 24 FPS. The way we do that is by going into our media bin, select the clip or the clips that we want to change. Right click, "Modify", reinterpret footage and then set it to 23.976, which basically means 24. Now our footage is back to 24 FPS and we will have the specific amount of slow motion that we wanted. Which way you use is obviously totally up to you. I usually prefer to change things later in the timeline because I like using speed ramps and that's actually easier to do if I leave them at the original frame rate. But more on speed ramps later. 10. Speed Ramping Tutorial: Speed ramping is another cool editing technique that perfectly fits your slow-motion footage, and it's basically just slowing down your footage rather strongly, and then ramping it back up to have the slow-motion effects, and it's called ramping because if you set key frames in Premiere Pro, it actually has this graphic that looks a little bit like a ramp because it ramps down and ramps up, and so the thing about it is that your shot is not abruptly getting slower, but slowly slows down over a few frames, which gives it a smooth look, and here's how it works. All right guys so let's take a look at speed ramping, we are here in Premier Pro and I already have a clip from my last vacation to Italy last year in summer to Venice, and we have this beautiful shot of Gonjulo driving by and a faster motor boat, which I find beautiful contrast, this old and the modern driving past each other, and my idea was speed ramping because speed ramping allows us to make smooth transitions between fast and slow, it's not just a cut or something suddenly starts to be slow, but it's gradually going into a slower or faster for that matter, speed, which is why it's called ramping, because it makes this ramp slides in, and we will see this ramp right now in Premiere Pro, and we already have our clip right here, this is shot in 1080p, 60 frames per second, so we can slow it down to 40 percent of the speed to match the 24, and the first thing we want to do, is go to this effects fx button right here, right-click ''Time remapping and speed'', it changes this line here because what this line now does, it controls the speed. So by using key frames, and I'll show you how to do that, by using key frames we can influence this, so let's see, first I want to go because my idea is that I want slow it down as soon as the boat comes in, the bigger motor boat, let's see. I think about here, I wanted to get slow and what we do is we hit P to select the pen tool, you can also go on the left side to select the pen tool, click on the white line, okay, that was not completely accurate, but that's fine, I'll zoom in a little bit and then we can stretch it out, and this time here those two frames or what it is is the time for the ramp to exist. On the left side for now we'll leave it at a 100 percent of speed, and on the right side of this selection here, we can go down and drag down to 40 percent, and you can already see the downfall here, and then you click one of those two brackets, doesn't matter, and pull this little thing here, and now you can see the ramp coming right, now it's a rough cut, and now it starts to become a ramp, and that's what makes it the smooth transition, and let's see how that looks. Yes, exactly this here comes slow, so that's already cool, but I wanted a little bit more extreme, so what we can also do, we cannot make it slower because then it's going to get choppy, because it's only 60 frames per second, but what we can do is we can make this footage faster, so let's play around and go to a 130, let's see how that looks, yeah, and then my idea is to make it fast again, so I'll make another key frame, drag it over, pull this up to a 130 again, make it a little ramp, and then see what we got, slow and out again, and this ladies and gentlemen is how you do speed ramping, and you can obviously have so many creative uses for it. I just want to show you the technique and now it's your turn to experiment such a powerful technique, I love doing it when it fits the mood of the video, yeah, go have at it. 11. The Assignment: Like in all my courses, here's a little homework for you. A lot of film making comes down to creativity and working with what we have available.You don't always have the perfect tool. You don't always have the perfect light or the perfect subject. So let's do the following. Your task is to look around in your room, where you are watching this right now. Don't lie and find an object or person or whatever you want to shoot a creative slow motion sequence with. So here's the rules. The sequence should be at least ten seconds. It should contain some music and maybe even some sound effects if you want to get that extra accolades. At least half of it should be shot in some kind of slow motion, so at least 50% of the duration of the video needs to be slow motion. If you are in your kitchen, maybe you want to shoot how you brew your coffee, how you make your pizza, maybe you want to show how you're playing with your cat or maybe it's a cinematic sequence of you pouring a drink. What can you come up with? Let's use this chance to really get creative and just make something for the fun of it, get back to creation mode and not just client, work or whatever. Obviously, the homework is not just for you. Here's the sequence that I came up with. 12. Must watch!: We did it. Thank you so much for taking this course. You have learned a lot about frame rates now and you know everything that you need to know to start doing perfect slow motions and cinematic B-roll and all the cool stuff all the YouTubers talk about. Don't forget to check out the other classes I have on here, and I would love you to give me an honest review of this class. I'd really love to know what I should work on and maybe even some other topics you guys are interested in. But until then, keep creating and I'll see you guys in the next one, bye. Ti Dan, Ti Dan, no, no. Stay here, stay. No, maybe don't do it with your cat. Ti Dan, come here.