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Timelapses and Thomson: Shooting for Reuters

26th January 2015

Last November I was thrilled to be asked to produce a set of five talking heads videos of previous winners of Thomson Reuters’ prestigious Compliance Awards. Now, because of the relatively dry subject matter I thought it would be fun to jazz up the videos with some 4K timelapses of the recognisable sights of London. As the awards commend those in the law and finance sectors I predominantly focused on the main business areas of London (Canary Wharf and ‘the city’ itself). I also popped down to see the poppies exhibition at the Tower of London early one morning and got some nice results of the hustle and bustle and the display.

The videos are now online to view here.

As I was so pleased with some of the results of the timelapses, and being a keen stock footage contributor over at Shutterstock and Pond5, I decided to make them available there to buy in all resolutions from 4K down to SD. Here they are in a handy montage – watermarked of course! 😉


Sheringham 1940’s Weekend – Experimenting with 5D Mark III Raw

1st October 2014

Having owned the Canon 5D Mark III since it was released in March 2012, I’ve been using it on an almost daily basis for my work, and so I’ve gotten to know it’s strengths and weaknesses well. Whilst I love how it can effortlessly separate the subject from the background, give a beautiful softness to skin and perform unbelievably well in low-light, there is a certain mushy quality to the image that bugs me. When Magic Lantern announced they had hacked the 5D to write raw video internally to CF card I was both excited and dubious. I didn’t want to mess up my main workhorse but at the same time it’s mushy-ness and lack of detail in wide shots led me to eventually try it out myself.

I had a friend pick up a Lexar 128GB 1066x card from the US (thanks Rob Holding!) and once I received it I went about installing Magic Lantern’s raw firmware onto my camera. Later that week I took it to the Sheringham 1940’s weekend expecting to take just a few stills and maybe a few video clips. In fact I ended up mostly shooting raw video for the whole weekend, managing to fill the entire card with about 20 minutes of footage (it really did eat through the memory card quicker than I’d imagined!)

In post I used Rarevision’s RawMagic to convert the files to CinemaDNGs and then got those into Da Vinci Resolve to output the video clips in ProRes4444 for editing in FCPX. All of this was straightforward with the help of half a dozen tutorials online and a whole afternoon spent tweaking different settings in the various programs!

The resulting video is now finished and I’m keen to shoot more raw footage in the future. The amount of info’ I had to play with was astonishing and the sheer detail of the images were amazing.

Velvet Magazine A/W Fashion Show 2014

30th September 2014

Each year Velvet Magazine holds a fashion show in aid of charity showcasing a range of clothes from shops and designers in the Newmarket, Cambridge and Bury St. Edmunds area. This year’s autumn/winter catwalk event was in aid of The Niamh Henry Fairy Wish Fund and was sponsored by Toni & Guy Cambridge and Robinsons Mercedes Benz.

This year’s show was held at the Granary Barns in Wooditton, Suffolk. I went along on the first night to film a short promotional video.

Our Bury St Edmunds: My first use of 4K

8th September 2014

I have been working with Our Bury St. Edmunds pretty much since I started out freelance and since then I’ve produced a number of videos for them of their excellent events in my home town. The first video I put together for them was a simple tourism-style promo of the town, showing off the mix of history, culture and shopping that Bury has to offer. That video is one of my most watched to date with over 50,000 views.

In 2014 I was asked to update the video to show more of what the town has to offer as well as some of the new additions to the high street. It was my first project using my new Mac Pro editing system and it gave me the opportunity (due to it’s power) to experiment with some 4K time lapses. The first shot of the video is my absolute favourite, of the iconic Abbey Gardens and Cathedral. It’s one of Bury’s most beautiful spots and with the right weather I was able to shoot a great time-lapse to open the video.