2017 Here we come

Here are the best bits from a fantastic 2016.  Thanks to all our wonderful couples for trusting us to capture their special day and the suppliers we worked with to achieve this.  This year is going to be our biggest yet and we can’t wait to start.

New website!

Well as you can see i’ve finally got around to designing a new website for the wedding arm of my business.  For a few years now i’ve just had a scrappy page on The Motion Farm site which i’ve neglected for too long.  I hope you like this new modern design and find it easier to see my work.  Really looking forward to pushing on this year and filming some great weddings.

Lowepro Fastpack 350AW Quick Review

I’ve been using the Lowepro Fastpack Video 350AW bag now for a few weeks and I’m really liking it so far.  It has more than enough room for all of my main equipment when out shooting video.  The separation of compartments for audio and video is the thing I like the most about the bag.  It even has a handy compartment for a 17″ MacbookPro!  I can fit my Canon 550D body with 24-105mm f4 lens attached, Tokina 11-16mm, 50mm, 24mm, video light, GoPro, Rode Mic, LCDVF in the video compartment with a little room to spare, whilst in the top compartment you’ll find my Tascam DR40, audio cable pouch with Sennheiser radio mics, Headphones, cables & batteries.

When fully loaded this bag weighs a tonne.  It has waist & chest straps to help spread the load away from just your back though.  One of my only quibbles of the bag is that when it’s only your back you’re supposed to be able to sling it round off one shoulder for quick access to the camera.  I don’t find this is the case as the zip appears to open from the opposite side that is natural to me as a right-hander.  I’ve heard only people mention this in their reviews too and it’s slightly annoying.  Otherwise this bag is a great all-round solution to carrying kit on the move.


Red Arrows @ Fowey Regatta

Decided last minute to go see the Red Arrows @ Fowey Regatta Week and thought I’d take the 550D down to capture their show on my new Canon 24-105mm lens. We setup on the Polruan side of the river which I was told was the best viewing point as you’re literally at eye-level with the pilots as they dive down into the harbour. It was unfortunately a dull overcast evening and I was hoping for blue sky and ‘magic-hour’ sunlight to get that Top-Gun feel to my footage. I hadn’t filmed planes before so I had no idea how the footage would turn out. I decided to shoot from my Vinten Vison Blue tripod as I though handheld would be too difficult. I was not wrong.

The speed of the planes is so immense it was so hard to track them accurately when zoomed into the full 105 end of the lens, even with the tripod! I experimented with OIS turned on and off and it seemed that when it was off even the slightest knock or pressure from me panning the tripod quickly would make the image wobble. With OIS on sometimes panning too fast would cause the lens to get confused and compensate, glitching the image in an unwanted way. Keeping the aircraft in focus when they are hurtling towards you at 800 or so mph is very hard but this was probably due to the light conditions being low and me having to open up the aperture as a result. My cousin Josh also filmed with his 550D and 30mm sigma f1.8 handheld. I’ve used a few shots of his in my film too but most of it was too shaky to use really but thanks to him for taking some great snaps on the night.

The display lasted for about 10 minutes which was enough for me to experiment and get a few half decent shots to pull together this short film. I think next year I’ll have another go, hopefully with a new camera, probably a Canon 5d mk3 which should help with light sensitivity & motion jello issues. I’ll have a 70-200mm lens by then so we’ll be able to see right into the cockpit!

[vimeo 48883159]



Glidecam Testing

We currently have our grubby hands on a borrowed Glidecam vest, arm and HD-4000 to do some testing for upcoming projects. All I can say is wow! The footage we’ve shot so far looks amazing and it’s easier to balance the camera on the sled than I thought it would be. We plan to use a Glidecam for upcoming weddings and promotional videos but I will definatly have to strengthen my back muscles as even with the support vest & spring arm the pressure it puts on your back is incredible.

Upgrade to Mountain Lion & CS6

I’ve finally made the jump to Mountain Lion for MacbookPro along with Adobe CS6. I was initially holding off because of reports of instability but couldn’t hold out any longer. Initial thoughts are that there’s not much difference from to Snow Leopard. The iCloud functionality is probably the best thing about it but I’ve turned that off already as it was hogging too much bandwidth constantly backing up data when it didn’t need to. I don’t like change.

The jury is out on Adobe CS6. I mainly use Premiere, After Effects & Photoshop, and I was very disappointed that Adobe had stripped Premiere of it’s Shuttle jog feature as I had become used to jogging finely through footage with the mouse at a manual rate. It does however seem a bit quicker than 5.5 but I’ve also had it crash on me several times which isn’t good in the middle of editing projects. I’ve since gone back to using CS 5.5.