Vimeo’s Video School video helps explain Frame Rate v. Shutter Speed

One of the hardest things for my Digital Media students to grasp is frame rate. They get it confused with shutter speed, and they definitely don’t buy my assertion that 24 frames per second is standard for no other reason than that is the way it has always been! This is especially true these days when they see world class directors like Peter Jackson and James Cameron buck the 24fps trend with high frame rate films such as The Hobbit and the Avatar sequels.

Assuming you can get them to agree that shutter speed should be set double the frame rate when shooting video, sometimes it is hard to convince them when it is appropriate to tweak those settings.

The Video School on Vimeo is an invaluable tool to mine for resources. One such video that stands out is the Frame Rate vs. Shutter Speed video by Story & Heart. I like how it shows the effect of various shutter speeds on the action in video. It visualizes the frenetic feel a high shutter creates and how that can be used to a filmmakers advantage. After all, it all boils down to how well you tell the story.

Kevin Berns

Kevin is the Director of Student Media at De Smet Jesuit High School, his alma mater, in St. Louis, Missouri. This is his 8th year advising high school publications. Prior to that, he spent 10 years as a television reporter and anchor in Tyler, TX, Rockford, IL and Murray, KY. You can find him on Twitter @kevlaur97.

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