Essential Video gear – The C Stand

There is an ever increasing range of camera and lighting gear, new LED lights through to camera gimbals. But the C stand is probably the piece of gear that will be used on almost every shoot. The term ‘Century Stand’ goes back to the early days of motion picture production. Century Stands also known as “C Stands” are one of the most frequently used stands in the film industry. They are mainly used by grip and lighting and can support other things on film sets.

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A typical professional video shoot

A typical professional video shoot normally means you need a wide range of gear. Even the seemingly simplest shoot can need a huge amount of gear to make the end video look fabulous.

Keep in mind, there is no “one size fits all” equipment package for everyone since there are so many variables including budget, type of project, shoot style and shoot locations to name just a few.
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Which lights should I use?

When you are starting out or want to try a new lighting look, people always ask which lights should I use. While this is a great question, it’s not an easy answer. There is no one light that is great for every shoot. There are however lights that can be used in a variety of ways easily that make them worth considering.
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Gear reviews

Coming soon are gear reviews. I will post what gear I use and why I use it. I will let you know how the gear stacks up to professional use on set. I’ll describe the advantages and disadvantages to any of the gear. I work on a wide range of productions, tv commercials, corporate and web videos so can recommend gear that’s versatile and worth considering taking on your next shoot.
Also if you have questions on film and tv gear let me know and I will pass on an industry veteran opinion.
With the range of gear options increasing everyday it’s important to know what works well and why.
First up I will let you know about my lighting gear and will give the pros and cons for HMI lighting.
Happy shooting til then.

At last a really useful drone

It seems every man and his dog has a drone these days. The sad fact is though that the vast majority of these are either not equipped with a decent camera or are flown badly or even worse illegally.
To get great results you do need to get a professional drone crew. On shoots that I have been on by far the best results have been achieved by a two person Drone crew. One person to fly the drone and the second to frame the camera.
The good news is that there are better drones everyday equipped with better cameras giving more options to get the shot. I have to admit though I am old school and can easily see the advantages in shooting from a Helicopter with a stabilised mount. In this type of setup you can choose the camera and lenses you need rather than having to accept a fixed lense that distorts the image from prosumer type drones.

But all that aside, here is the best way to enjoy using a drone I have seen.

Is this the future ?

Cameras are getting smaller and stranger shaped, but this one even with its odd looking body just maybe the future or cameras. Say hello to the DJI Osmo, a new handheld camera that lets you shoot 12MP photos and 4K video while being stabilized with a 3-axis brushless gimbal.

The camera system is basically a sleek handheld stabilizer that comes standard with the Inspire 1’s X3 camera, which packs a 1/2.3-inch Sony Exmor R sensor with an ISO range of 100-1600 (100-3200 for video), a 20mm (35mm equiv.) lens with a 94° field of view, and DNG support or You can also choose to buy the grip for a new X5 camera if you’d like a Micro Four Thirds sensor and mount.

Epic & Scarlet cameras shoot reality TV

Today’s the final gear prep day before we start shooting a reality TV series. I can’t name the show yet, but I am really looking forward to shooting it on my Epic camera. We have mainly Epics, but have one Scarlet camera in the mix.
Keeping on top of the data backup is going to be one challenge, but I am told that’s in good hands with plenty of on set computing power at hand.
There has been a great crew brought together for this show, so will be great fun to shoot!