Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Yesterday I worked as a videographer shooting behind the scenes footage of a photo-shoot to promote Christian Audigier's new Tequila, Paco Chicano. There were 3 main setups that the photographer chose for his shoot, all of which were in a high end bar called the "R-Lounge." He was shooting on the 7D and the pictures that I got to see looked really great. He used a lot of his lights to create lens flares in the background of his photos. It was something different and I liked that. All the setups were basically models posing around the bar showcasing the new Tequila. It was a long night but it turned out to be a pretty fun shoot.
Sunday, February 21, 2010
On Saturday I worked as a 1st A.C on a web-series called M.E.N. We shot it on the RED with Zeis lenses. The D.P. had a pretty cool and relatively inexpensive setup in terms of RED. He owned all his gear and his kit was much more manageable than than the massive kits I've seen with RED in the past. One thing I really liked was that he had a Red Rock mattebox that he customized with an Arri filter mount on the back. It was pretty cool because you could put rectangular filters in the front as well as circular filters in the back. A few shots outside we used ND in the front and a polarizer in the back. The polarizer was really cool, we could spin it around in the matte box to take glare off of certain parts of the image. There weren't too many difficult focus pulls but it's always good to get to work with lenses etc. I also got to really study the "false color" mode on the red, which this D.P. used a lot. It is a really interesting and different way to judge exposure and I like using it. It was a pretty laid back shoot and I learned a lot.
The other day I worked on my first 3D camera project. The camera operator from "Mother's Little Helpers" was shooting test footage for a documentary that will be pitched to Gatorade and he invited me to come with. It was a pretty guerrilla style shoot, no permits. The Sony 3D rig was set up inside a van which served as our portable video village as well. We spent the night following bikers around the city streets of L.A shooting first out the back of the van and then out the sliding side door. The rig was so big and complex it took us about 45 minutes to move it from one shooting position to the other. The rig itself was made up of two identical cameras, one that shot straight out like normal and another that shot straight down into a mirror that was attached to the bottom of the matte box. This allows both camera to shoot basically the same image at the same time. In video village, the DIT could adjust the "ocular distance" of the two cameras remotely. This adjustment changes how close or far away the two image beams intersect and become one. Any object that is in front of the image intersection will pop forward on the screen and anything behind it will fade into the background. The DIT can control exactly what elements in the frame will pop out.
I learned a lot about 3D but there is sill a ton that I don't understand. Hopefully if Gatorade likes the test footage, the project will get a green light and I will get a chance to work with the 3D rig again.
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
Over the weekend I shot a pilot for a television series called, "Day Trippin." It's a documentary style show that follows a female host around as she visits various attractions in California. On saturday we shot in a spa, at the beach, at a wine tasting venue, and then a roller derby. Santa Barbara is a pretty beautiful place. There were a ton of people surfing on the beach, I want to try it so bad. Once I start making a little more money surfing is the first thing on my list of things to try.
Sunday I got to shoot out of a helicopter, it was insane. They took the door off so I could basically hang out and shoot straight down. I got some really cool footage. I wish I had a better mount but I got some pretty steady shots for just being hand held. The biggest challenge was the difference in exposure between the inside and outside of the helicopter. Every time the host wanted to be on camera or talk to the pilot I had to quickly readjust exposure/ND level for the inside of the helicopter and vice versa for when I wanted to shoot the landscape. Overall it was an awesome weekend and the client seemed happy with what myself and the other camera operators had captured. They will sure have plenty of footage to sort through in the edit. I'm excited to see how the final 30 minute show comes together in post.
Saturday, February 6, 2010
After getting settled in LA for a few days I managed to get on board a feature called "Mother's Little Helpers" starring Denise Richards and Jim Belushi. I can't believe after 4 days here I'm already a part of very legit production. I've gathered from people so far that it is extremely hard to break into the industry and to get on any sets at all, never mind a feature with some big names attached to it. I consider myself extremely lucky to have already gotten such a great opportunity and I'm working hard to make it count. This one job could make or break my career out here.
I really like everyone on set and I'm trying to learn as much as I can from the people in each department. There is a really fine line between not asking enough questions and asking too many. It's hard because you want people to notice you and the fact that you want to learn, but at the same time you don't want to be annoying and interrupt the flow on set. It's only my second day but I'm already beginning to feel that camaraderie that can only come from spending 14 hours a day in a hotel room with the same people night after night. I forgot how much fun it was to be a part of a team again.
Hopefully if I work hard enough on set this next week and a half, someone on the crew will be impressed enough to want to hire me on their next project, and so on and so forth until I can start making some money and officially say I made it in this crazy industry.
Monday, February 1, 2010
I'm officially heading out to the west coast in search of feature film work. Ever since wrapping principle on my first feature, I have been dieing to get on board another and start the movie making process all over again.Doing freelance work around the Boston area has been great, but I miss being part of a larger crew. I will be staying with a friend in Hollywood for at least the month of February to see what I can get myself into. I'm excited to see what the scene is like and hopefully find some work on any kind of feature film, indie or mainstream. My flight leaves today and the job hunting starts tonight.