Video Shooting With Chroma Key

Video Shooting With a Green Screen (or Chroma Key)

Last week I had a new potential client tell me something of interest. Someone from another video production company had told him about doing a chroma key (or green screen) shoot.  He was so impressed that he could be virtually anywhere by using this technology. He wanted to know if I had ever considered doing this. I was somewhat taken aback. That’s because we’ve been doing these chroma key shoots for years, even before we started shooting digitally. 

For someone to ask if this was possible reminded me of something I have to keep learning: just because we do something all the time, it doesn’t mean that our customers know that. We have to keep educating them about what is possible. What we take as “givens” might be brand new and innovative to the client.

We have done this before.

In the picture below are some shots from a training video we shot in 2000. The men were sitting in a boat talking about the topic being covered in the video. (I don’t remember what that was, but not important for this discussion). They were “on a lake.” In post-production we electronically eliminated the green and added footage of a mountain lake and there they were. chroma key

What is fascinating about this is that a well-done chroma key combining actual footage can convince the viewer that the subject is actually in the location we want to portray.

Another chroma key example.

These pictures are from a shoot from last year. We were able to go to the client’s office and take a portable green screen. He was placed over a futuristic TV news set background as he addressed his viewers.

chroma key

We were even using green screens in the last century. In fact, this Adecco new hire video we produced used actors and was shot as a green screen video production about 15 years ago. Then we added music and sound effects and graphics too.

In contrast to the pictures from the “fishing” chroma key above, this contains animation as the background, so we know we’re not fooling anyone about where the subjects are.

Where would you like your next shoot to appear to be?