Feb 082012
 February 8, 2012

Towards the end of the summer 2011 I went out with the boys on a few occasions to various skateparks around the Bristol area. They were more social occasions than video shoots, but I managed to string together a pretty lengthy edit of what went down!

The footage was shot over 4 sessions, at Filton, Hereford, Emerson’s Green and Midsomer Norton Skateparks. The very first bit of footage of Nick was shot by Sam Williams (co-Exotope Rituals writer) and myself  at the very start of the summer. At the time it was planned to be one of many shoots we’d do, to piece together a nice cinematic skate edit to depict the summer skate season. But I never got round to doing anything more! I thought I’d let the footage go, rather than wait until next year when it could potentially get outdated. Who knows I may use it again!

The time-lapsed pieces in the intro were shot using my Delkin car suction mount. They were originally just test pieces used to see how well it held up with my 7D and heavier lenses, but I needed an intro and these fitted the bill. Here is a picture of the setup when I used in San Diego with my lens skirt (ignore the TomTom!):

Kit wise I used my 7D and jag 35 cage. This setup it great for skateboarding, I can bolt on my SmallHD monitor on top, and Sennheiser mic coming off the side. This adds a nice weight to the rig, resulting in a reduction of micro shakes you always encounter when shooting handheld on DSLRs. You can also tripod this rig in seconds which is really handy. A further thing I found useful on one of the shoots was using my counter weight on a bottom set of rails to balance things out. It adds more weight, looks funny and takes some getting used to, but ensures perfect balance in your hand.

Lens wise. There was a few used over the 4 sessions. Most of my own kit: Opteka fish, Tokina 11-16mm, Zeiss 50mm, Canon 70-200mm, and I also used a Canon 16-35mm f/2.8 mkII on one occasion which I had hired for a corporate shoot. The lens is really nice, very sharp and the focal length is perfect for skateboarding. Two things I was a little disappointed in; Although the lens is constant aperture, there is a definite shift in exposure when you zoom, not a massive deal for photos but vey noticeable when shooting video. It’s probably the worst lens I’ve seen for this. I also don’t like the size of the front element, it requires 82mm filters?! No thanks. Aside from this, it’s such a solid lens, which is why I’ve just bought one for my 5D, although I went for the mark 1 as the 77mm filter thread is much more appealing!

This was actually the last footage I shot on my 7D, it was a shame to sell it. if I could have afforded to keep it alongside my 5D I would have!

And where there’s a last there’s a first, this edit shows the first footage I’ve shot of FSTL rider Tom Steele. Expect a lot more! In fact, expect something real soon..


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