Posts Tagged ‘ SmallHD

Ecosystem Justice Matters

This was a fun little talking head film I made for the International Development team at the University of East Anglia. The guys at the UEA had opted for a style they wanted to use so it was really just a case of lighting and framing accordingly to achieve the desired results.

One interesting challenge was that I didn’t want the backdrop framing to be changing between shots so we had to set the camera fairly high and then use a stack of magazines to raise the subjects to the desired height, which was fun! In the end I opted to crop into some of the shots anyway and the background changes were not overly noticeable but it’s better to air on the side of caution sometimes.

The subjects were lit with a single Rifa softbox on the left and a reflector to throw some of that same light back onto the right side of their faces just to bring up some detail. I also used my Litepanels 1×1 to throw some light against the white backdrop. I wanted to achieve a very shallow depth of field so I used the Canon 50mm f1.2 throughout at an aperture of f1.4.

One of the nice things about the modular design of the C300 is that you can remove the audio controls and LCD unit from the body of the camera. I set these up on a light stand so that I could adjust the audio levels etc without any risk of causing unwanted camera movement.

  

I actually shot with two cameras, the Canon C300 with the 50mm f/1.2 locked off and my 5D on the Kesller Stealth slider. I’d planned to show some shots with the camera tracking towards the subjects face as they talked but in comparison to the images from the C300 the 5D material looked mushy. The 5D produces great results but it does stand out as being soft when compared to the C300, I’ve decided to pre-order an EOS C100 to use as a B cam in the future.

You can just see in the image above that I monitored both cameras with SmallHD monitors, the DP6 on the C300 and the DP4 attached underneath the Stealth with a Noga arm.

The audio was all recorded from an overhead Rode NTG-3 and I haven’t messed around with the EQ at all on that. I’m really impressed with the results from that mic.

Comments welcomed.

Bluestar Eye Cushions – a little bit of luxury for your face!

I’ve been using Bluestar Eye Cushions on my cameras and viewfinders for a few years now, they are one of those little luxuries that once you’ve tried you just can’t live without. Using a camera without an eye cushion now feels like wearing shoes without socks!

Bluestar make a wide range of sizes for various viewfinders, they come in three materials, natural chamois, Microfibre & Fleece. The micro-fibre option comes in eight colours which is very handy if you need to quickly identify cameras. The fleece eye cushions come in four colours and are the most gentle on the skin, great if you like to snuggle in to your camera!

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15th European Bike Week

Once again, the picturesque and mountainous region of Carinthia played host to Europe’s biggest bike event in early September. Approximately 110,000 people descended upon the area surrounding Faaker See, turning the tranquil landscape into a tumultuous party of roaring V-Twin engines.

I flew out to shoot the event for Harley-Davidson again this year and as with previous years it turned out to be a very hectic yet amazing experience. I used the Canon C300 exclusively, mostly with the Canon 17-55 EFs lens although I did break out the 70-200 at one point to grab some close shots of the crowds enjoying bands.

The C300 is such a great all-round camera for this kind of work, during the day I configure it with the full monitor rig and a shotgun mic and then when I prefer to be a little less conspicuous I tend to remove the handle and monitor and just run either without a mic at all or with the Rode VideoMic Pro.

Towards the end of each rally I ride pillion in the parade and again the C300′s modular build proves useful as I hang my smallHD DP4 around my neck on a lanyard and just run the camera with it’s handle attached allowing me to shot using many angles that would be impossible using the cameras onboard monitor.

Because I had to fly out to Brasil to shoot another rally for Harley-Davidson soon after returning from Austria this one was edited by Paul Pearson (@pearsonpost) on twitter.

The wonderful, “Wild Blood” by Lovedrug was supplied by The Music Bed.

 

Harley-Davidson in Cascais, Portugal

Here’s the latest video I shot and edited for Harley-Davidson Europe. The location of this rally was Cascais and surrounding areas in Portugal. The flag parade that happens towards the end of the rally (and the end of the video) started out on the famous Estoril race circuit which was a real blast to ride around.

Everything in the above video was shot on the Canon C300 and I made a lot of use of over cranking again this time. It’s a real shame to have to revert to 720p to do that on the C300 but I think the camera still manages to retain a lot of detail and certainly enough for these projects as the required delivery is 720p anyway.

For the flag parade I attached my SmallHD DP4 to a lanyard and help it in front of my whilst using the other hand to position the camera. This all happens on the back of a motorcycle with other bikes everywhere so it was a little bit daunting but worked great.

I only use two lenses throughout the whole shoot, the Canon 17-55 f2.8 IS EFs and the Canon 24-105mm f4 IS L . The 17-55 did more than 80% of the shooting though and I find that lens to be the most practical for this subject as bikes just look great wide!

The only other notable kit was a glide track shooter HD and my Miller Tripod with the later only being used on five of the shots. I make a lot of use of the image stabilisers in the lenses and the warp stabiliser in CS6 so that I rarely have to use a tripod.

The song is by the excellent “Lovedrug” and was licensed with the help of The Music Bed.

If you have any questions about camera settings etc then just shout. These event videos have to be produced immediately after the shoot itself without any time off so I’m going to have a much needed day or two off :)

 

 

 

Zacuto EVF or SmallHD DP4 – Both EVF’s reviewed

Stand alone EVF’s (Electronic View Finders) have become quite popular recently mainly because they solve a few of the niggles associated with shooting video on a DSLR. It’s very limiting trying to shoot handheld using the built in LCD on a DSLR, even if your’e using a viewfinder attachment like the Z-Finder or LCDF because you’re stuck behind the camera making it impractical to get anything where you would like to detach your head from the camera.

The SmallHD DP4 and Zacuto EVF have both become the most popular choices so I put them to the test to see how they compare.

Read the full review