We shot for five days in the Hawkes Bay. The countryside was beautiful, and in a way the cars were beautiful too! We decided that we wanted the show to be as cinematic as possible. I did not want to make the show in the edit, I wanted the cars to be graceful and look their best, which I know is odd for beat up Paddock Hack, but I think that by treating them with respect and filming them as I would a car commercial the look is really interesting and respectful to the sport.
To achieve this I decided to shoot on the Sony EX3 with my Letus lens adaptor. I used mainly Zeiss primes with a few telephoto Nikon primes as well. This gave me the shallow depth of field that I needed to separate the cars from the background. To help with the action we shot most of the car scenes at 50 fps. This gave us the slow motion look that we needed, and we could of course edit back to 25 fps or speed ramp in shot as required.
The promo does not show it, but a large part of the show is made up of interviews with the various drivers. We went to their work places and filmed them there, and also interviewed them. David White was the presenter and we decided early on that he would be very involved in the story. We put him in the action - literally in the case of driving the cars, but also in terms of the interaction with our guests. To fully capture this we decided that two cameras would be the best way to proceed. We sourced a second EX3 and Letus from Wellington and we were fortunate enough to have Paul Wedel to operate. Paul is the editor of the show and it was great having him on B Camera as not only did he film great coverage, but he also shot all the cut-aways that he knew he would need later on!
Wherever possible I placed Minicams in or on the cars. I used both the Contour HD and the GoPro HD Hero. The cameras were subjected to extreme knocks and so I supplemented the standard rigs by borrowing a mini rig kit from Josh Dunn and using that to securely lockdown the cameras. They did not miss a beat and the pictures were very impressive.
We also used the Canon 5D2 for some of the low light filming in sheds. I also shot a bit of tracking with it off the back of a Quad Bike with David driving in front of the Paddock Hacks. It cut in nicely with the main cameras and really added to the overall look.
The reaction to the promo has been huge! We have had over 70,000 views on YouTube. David has given radio interviews and even a piece on Campbell Live. Really looking forward to getting the green light and filming the show!
I recently received a call from Chris Kirkham at NZ Greenroom Productions. Chris very kindly put me forward to Shoot and Direct a Nike 6.0 spot for Phil Young at Urb-Orbis in London.
The concept of the spot was "Lone Man on Mountain". The backbone of the spot is made up with a very slow jib up his body (showing the Nike 6.0 product) as other riders talk about Peetu's skills in the voice over. Peetu is famous for being very softly spoken. He is quiet and does not boast about his talent at all, he just gets on with the job at hand. So in the spot, Peetu does what he does best, and other riders do the talking for him.
We decided to shoot at Snow Park as we wanted to take advantage of the golden hour light at dusk. The pipe was closed to the public, shaped and we had Sam Lee on a Skidoo to reset Peetu and move equipment.
The concept called for a slow motion, shallow depth of field look. To achieve this I decided to use my Sony PMW-EX3 with Letus Lens Adaptor. This allowed me to use my beautiful Nikon Prime Lenses. I used a Cine Gamma Profile that makes the images look really nice, and gives some room in post for the colour grade. I also added a NanoFlash to the camera. The NanoFlash is a fantastic box of tricks that allowed me to record at 4:2:2 220mbs 720 50P. So we were capturing everything in the highest possible quality and colourspace at 50 frames per second.
A bit of shooting was done on my Canon 5D2. I used it for the timelapses and for a couple of the shots of Peetu. It cuts in nicely with the main camera, even with the reduced colourspace. I used the same Nikon lenses on the Canon camera.
My Grip Josh Dunn helped me out on the mountain with a Panther Mini Jib from Chief Grips. The Jib was excellent. Fast and easy to set up and the movements were very smooth.
The only other bit of grip gear that we had was a ladder. It made for some great shots!
It was a great spot, put together quickly with a small crew and I really enjoyed shooting it.