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Free Camera Log for Film and Video Productions

Caleb Ward

Stay organized on-set and in the editing bay with this free camera log for use on film and video productions.

When it comes to filmmaking or video production, there’s always a lot of information to remember when you sit down in the editing bay. If you’ve ever been an editor on a disorganized set, you know it can be incredibly frustrating to not know which audio clips go with which video clips. This is where a camera log comes into play.

By using a camera log on-set, cinematographers and directors can convey information to the editor for each shot. By taking the time to fill out this form on set you can save you or your editor a lot of time in post.

Camera Crane

With that in mind, we’ve created a camera log for you to use on your next production – and it’s totally free. To download it, simply click the download link below. If you’ve never used a camera log on-set, here’s some quick information about how to use one:

What is a Camera Log?

A camera log serves as a tool to communicate information between the cinematographer and the editor. While on set, the cinematographer (or camera assistant, depending on the size of the production) will fill out information related to the camera settings for each shot. This helps both the editor and cinematographer understand details pertaining to each shot. On the form there is also a field for notes, where you can add any on-set notes that are important for post-production.

It’s important to note that a camera log is different than an editing log. Unlike an editing log, the camera log doesn’t have timecode information, which might be useful if you are working on a large-scale production or working with film. However, in the digital age you can usually get by with not physically writing down timecode information on-set. So depending on your shoot, you can probably simply replace a traditional editing log with a camera log like the free one provided below.

Free Camera Log

When is a camera log used?

A camera log is used anytime the cinematographer wants to save camera information for post-production or external referencing. While you probably won’t use a camera log if you are a director/cinematographer on a small shoot, having a camera log on a medium to large scale shoot can help you stay organized and help streamline the editing process.

Once inside the editing bay, an editor can use the camera log to help sync the correct audio and video together. The notes tab can also be used to convey information regarding the shoot and special considerations in the editing bay.

How is a camera log used?

A camera log is a fairly straight-forward form to use. Simply fill out each respective field for each shot. Let’s break down each field below:

  Scene      Scene #
  TK      Take #
  Lens      Focal Length
  Stop      F-Stop or T-Stop #
  Speed      ISO, Gain, or Film Speed
  SS      Shutter Speed or Shutter Angle
  Card      Video File #
  Filter      Types of Filters Used if Any (ND, Graduated, etc.)
  Sound     Sound File #
  Notes     Any extra notes regarding the camera or shot as it pertains to cinematography not continuity.

 

You will typically print out a few camera logs and bring them to the set. While on set, either the cinematographer or assistant camera operator will fill out the camera log with the appropriate information. After a shoot has wrapped, the camera log will be saved and given to the editor to be used in post production. If you are a cinematographer,  you might also want to save a copy for yourself to reference in the future.

You can download the form by clicking the text below. There are two templates included in the download: One to fill out by hand and another to fill out on a computer. You can use Preview on a Mac or Adobe Acrobat on a PC to edit the computer template. The interactive file can also be uploaded and filled out on an iPad if you want to go paper-free.

DOWNLOAD FREE CAMERA LOG HERE

Interested in learning more about filmmaking? Check out our blog here on PremiumBeat. We have hundreds of articles dedicated to helping you become a better filmmaker.

Have any tips for using a Camera Log? Share experiences with us in the comments below.