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Topic: Tech question - how to show both close-up mat and face/torso in a video session
Message: Posted by: Bob G (Dec 6, 2020 10:37AM)
Hi folks,

In a word, my question is: During a video chat, how can I arrange things so that the person I'm chatting with can see my face, torso, and closeup mat all at once?

In more words: My computer is a desktop. I occasionally have video chats about magic with people, and it's physically awkward because to show my face I have to sit, but to show my hands I have to stand. And I can't show the table without moving unreasonably far from the computer, so that it's hard for my companion to see. Any thoughts? My preference would be something simple and inexpensive. Additional obstacle: I don't have a smart phone (and don't want to -- I know I'd find it addictive).

Thanks for any advice.

Message: Posted by: MGordonB (Dec 6, 2020 10:50AM)
Dual webcams?
A second person to operate a camera for you?
Message: Posted by: padre rich (Dec 6, 2020 03:26PM)
Forget your face,make the trick the star/focus.see brick Tilley on youtube,no need to show his face...
Message: Posted by: Bob G (Dec 6, 2020 04:45PM)
Thanks, people. I have rigged up a simple way to show just my hands and mat. Still, part of a performance is the eyes and facial expressions...
Message: Posted by: Ray Pierce (Dec 7, 2020 11:14PM)
If youíre doing a teaching video for magicians, no, your face isnít as important. In this case you are a performer and yes, your face is VITALLY important. You can use a higher angle larger shot that will show both your face and hands/mat if you only have 1 camera... but a second camera would sure help you out a it would give you a closer view of the mat and objects which is pretty important as the viewer might just be watching it on a laptop monitor.
Message: Posted by: Alan Munro (Dec 16, 2020 07:12PM)
I imagine there's software out there to switch between two webcams - one is close-up and one is wide-angle.
Message: Posted by: Ray Pierce (Dec 16, 2020 07:25PM)
There are software AND hardware options. The most popular free software is OBS.. The most popular hardware solution for switching HDMI inputs (keep in mind that most webcams are USB) is currently the Blackmagic Design ATEM Mini or the Mini Pro which has a few more features.
Message: Posted by: padre rich (Dec 19, 2020 11:25AM)
Clint Eastwood said,"Audiences are very smart.You don't have to show them everything."
Message: Posted by: juan (Dec 27, 2020 08:20AM)
Hi Bob,

In my show in some of the tricks I use this scene: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1pn5GgUtxgGR-XU57k9mSaCgNq4MzSMPX/view?usp=sharing

The orange rectangle would be showing my closeup mat, and the rectangle in rigth bottom corner would be showing the spectator.
I teach how to do in my OBS course: https://hotmart.com/product/obs-for-performers-improving-your-virtual-shows/L44999204D
Message: Posted by: Bob G (Dec 27, 2020 01:26PM)
Hi Juan,

Thanks. I'll be honest: although I like your set-up, I'm looking for something less expensive.

See you,