February 13, 2013

Shooting Video on a DSLR sort of feels like home


Shooting with a DSLR on a slider on the Space Coast for a TV commercial

We’ve been shooting with video ever since we’ve done video production in Brevard. The only opportunity that we’ve ever had to shoot on Super 16 and 35mm was in film school! I might sound like a bit of a romantic here, but there was an organic sense in shooting on celluloid. There was a connection that you had working with the machinery, you had to have a certain respect for the process to know what to expect when your reels came back from the lab. Equipment aside, you also worked as a team with others to get the shoot done, everyone knew their part and what they had to do.

Through the years, especially in the smaller markets, a lot of film makers turned into videographers and a lot of them turned into what we called one-man-bands. Video cameras were more simple to operate, they had fixed lenses and you could plug your XLRs for audio right into the camera. Videographers went to shoots on their own acting not only as the camera operator but also as the sound tech, grip, DP, director, and producer and in most cases as the editor. This jack of all trades approach kept cost down in a competitive market and in most cases the work got done and the client was happy.  But we lost something in working on a crew with others.

In the last couple of years DSLRs and video cameras with removable lenses started showing up in the field and brought a whole new way to look at videography. I say “new” but what I really mean is “old”, and I mean old in a good way.  These cameras have removable lenses, so now we need a camera assistant to help change lenses and pull focus. The DSLRs don’t really have a good way to capture professional audio, so now we need a audio tech. And before you know it, the crew’s back!

Video production in Brevard

Jessica carrying a tripod back after we wrapped on the shoot.

Now I know what you’re thinking, more crew means more money. And this sometimes might be the case, but I can almost guarantee that the client will definitely see a difference in the final product.  When a good crew gets together a synergy can form a good ideas will just come naturally. Also when you work with a good crew, everyone watches each others back and makes sure that everyone in their best form.

Last week we were working with a small 2 two man crew on a DSLR shoot while we shot B-roll to advertise the Space Coast and next week we will be part of a larger crew filming a cooking show with a total of six cameras in Tallahassee. It’s a great feeling working with a crew where everybody knows what they have to do and it makes me a little reminiscent of my days shooting on film.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not knocking the one-man-band. It’s a necessity to the video production business. Whether the client needs a 30 second broadcast commercial, a web video for their business website, or a corporate video to send out on a DVD, there is a crew to match almost any budget out there. With 4k and beyond already making it’s foothold, I’m really excited about what lies ahead.


Submit a Comment