Autonomous cameraman

Dries Hulens

Phd Research project

This PhD research project focuses on the development of a robotic flying camera man. Within the Cametron project we aim at making the process of filming an event completely automatic. A human camera crew will be replaced by automated static PTZ cameras and UAV-drones sporting a camera and microphone. The movie director will be replaced by a virtual director so that an event, for example a music performance or a sports game, can be captured in real time with minimal human intervention. This project focuses on the virtual camera man part of Cametron, in which an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), sporting a PTZ camera and microphone, is robotized such that it totally autonomously can gather video of an event, based on high abstraction level instructions from the virtual director. These instructions are no more detailed than framing a certain (set of) actor(s) in a certain cinematographic shot composition (long shot, shoulder shot, mid shot, close-up, extreme close-up, etc.). The main challenges that have to be conquered in this project are real-time actor detection and tracking, topological localization, and image-based visual servoing and motion planning.


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