I got a good response from an experimental motion picture I posted on my facebook page and a few people were interested to know how I did it so I thought I’d post a few more and explain how they were done. There was no post-processing tricks, it was all achieved in camera (aside from my standard edit) using a creative technique known as panning.
Panning is used to convey the feeling of movement. It is similar to a deliberate motion blur but gives the reverse effect – your subject stays relatively in focus while the background becomes blurred. The idea of panning is that it gives the viewer the feeling that they’re moving along with the subject.
To achieve this look the photographer uses a slow shutter speed of usually between 1/10s and 1/30s and will move along at the same speed as the subject.
The following images were all taken at 24mm with shutter speeds varying from 1/8s to 1/30s.
This was my first attempt at a shutter speed of 1/8s. The slower shutter speed meant that there was a good amount of motion blur in the background but handholding the camera at 1/8s meant he wasn’t quite as sharp as I would like.
The following images were taken at a slightly higher shutter speed of 1/25s. I found this worked better and I feel like I had a greater success rate at getting my subject in focus and maintaining a good amount of motion blur.
The last image was taken with a shutter speed of 1/15s and is probably my favourite image of the set.