Film making, Cinematography and the Blues Harmonica.

Saturday, 26 November 2011

Humber Bridge HDR and random Raw photos taken on the Canon 60D

A few HDR photos of the Humber Bridge which is just a couple of miles down the road from me plus a couple of photos edited on Photoshop's Camera Raw program.

Humber Bridge HDR

Humber Bridge HDR

Humber Bridge HDR

Seagull RAW

Me and my bird Shelley's cat Socks

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Jamie Gray Music video

Over the weekend just passed I was asked to help out on my first music video. The video is being made by my good friend Tom Lee for a local artist named Jamie Gray. I was given the role of second camera as Tom who is also a keen cinematographer was on first. This really suited me though as it allowed me much more creative freedom through out the shoot, I could look for new and interesting compositions to accompany his shots. I also filmed all of the glide track shots through out the video, which was my first really good practice with this bit of kit.

Friday (11 November 2011)

On Friday we filmed just Jamie on his own in a local music venue called The New Adelphi. This was a dramatic low-key lighting shoot which worked pretty well, lots of silhouettes and moving light sources. I used my glide track to get my favourite shot of the day, Jamie's fingers playing the keys on his keyboard as I tracked along with them, all as Tom waved a portable LED light around in time with the music. 

Me and Tom filming Jamie


On Saturday I was directed to a modern warehouse and when I went inside a large room had been converted in to a miniature war ground by set designer Olivia Young. The sort of thing you might expect at an indoor paint balling arena with two improvised barriers at each end and scattered debris throughout. We filmed two teams of four men dressed up as urban soldiers fighting each other with toy weapons and as you can imagine it soon became a hectic shoot. Sticky darts to the face, marbles flying and lots of minor injuries. We got through it all though in good time and with no real harm to equipment or cast. On this day most of the action was set up for the primary camera and it was harder for me to find usable shots, I filmed a lot of handheld footage of the fighting and I did get some nice glide track shots of all the soldiers playing dead at the end.

Me preparing to film some of the soldiers

Improvised barrier and soldiers

Me using my glide track shooter as a shoulder rig


On Sunday we filmed the two gangs with some 'real looking' weapons in their individual bases along with lots of running shots from their bases to the battle. All of these shots where filmed either outside or in derelict buildings so we only had natural light and a small portable LED box to work with. Once again I put my glide track to good use with some nice tracking establishing shots of the gangs. The rest of the shoot was me running around like a mad man using my glide track as a shoulder rig. Considering the abundant amount of distractions present we managed to get finished in good time once again, which was a bonus as the sun was slowly becoming less camera shy as the day rolled by. Once again my favourite shot was whilst using my glide track (obviously still surprised at how professional this piece of kit makes your work look). This time tracking forward into the shot as one of the gangs leave their base.

Me and Tom discussing an establishing shot on the glide track  

Me using the glide track as a shoulder rig

The weekend as a whole went very successfully and I loved having the opportunity to film something totally different. Each day brought a new set of challenges especially in relation to lighting and camera movements. Best of all I finally got to put all my new equipment to good use and it's all looking like a good investment.

A behind the scenes edit from the shoot made by my long time collaborator and one of the gang members Adam Hill, will be uploaded hopefully by the end of the day so keep coming back to this post if it's not on here yet! Also at some point in the near future I will be compiling a show reel of my own footage from the shoot so keep looking out for that as well as the finished music video itself which I will hopefully be able show you next month.


Behind the scenes video by Adam Hill.

James E. Gray - Chaos Concerto (behind the scenes) from Adam Hill on Vimeo.
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