March 31st, 2011

In my search for what I think is my “perfect” way to shoot video and dual system audio, I’ve paid attention to a lot of other people’s solutions. What quickly becomes apparent is there is no single answer. Your needs will change with the situation, and there’s any number of ways to address it.

For instance, are you running after subjects? Maybe a Glidecam would be best. Can you “eyeball” it or will you need a monitor? Can you take a tripod with you? Do you need to be discrete? Do you have a sound person?

To make a climbing analogy (sorry, I can’t help it), documentary still photography is like free-soloing or climbing without a rope. There’s minimal equipment. Shooting HDSLR video is more like aid climbing, where every inch of vertical is gained by using highly specialized equipment. If you don’t have the right piece, you’ll have to find a different path.

When HDSLR videographers realize the need for dual system sound, because the cameras cannot record good sound, one of the first questions is where to put the microphone quickly followed by where to put the recorder.

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Posted in audio, Canon 5D Mark II, gear, multimedia, technique, video Comments Off on HDSLR CAMERA “RIG” SOLUTIONS: BUILD YOUR OWN


March 16th, 2011

Matt Allard, for Al Jezeera, and Dan Chung, for the Guardian, have filed some video reports from Japan’s earthquake and tsunami.

Allard for Al Jezeera (more newsy):

Japan Earthquake, Natori from Matthew Allard.

Chung for The Guardian (more cinematic with a lot of dolly shots):

Aftermath – The Japanese Tsunami from Dan Chung.

Courtesy of DSLR Shooter.

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Posted in Canon 5D Mark II, media, video, work of others Comments Off on FROM JAPAN’S TSUNAMI


March 3rd, 2011

Thanks to the Twitter Feed, I came across this time lapse work by Tom Lowe. Aside from getting in some climbing and canyoneering, I can’t thing of a better way to spend a summer than to travel across the American Southwest and shoot amazing footage with all this gear. Yes, I do like gear, and I can’t wait to have a shoot where I get to use such a long dolly shot or incorporate a crane! Here’s a behind the scenes video of this shoot.

TimeScapes: Rapture from Tom Lowe @ Timescapes on Vimeo.

Says Tom Lowe (included in total because I know how important sponsors and assistants are!):

“This is production footage I shot over the summer for my debut film, “TimeScapes,” a modern portrait of the American Southwest. I used Canon and Red MX cameras.

“Follow the production of the film at:

“Also here: and here

“A huge thank you to my assistants/Associate Producers who helped me film this, Dustin Kukuk (, Nilo Recalde ( and Chris M ( And, as always, my most sincere and humble respect goes to Ron Fricke, Mark Magidson, Terrence Malick and Godfrey Reggio.

“Thank you to my sponsors: Kessler Crane, camBLOCK Canon USA, Vinten, KATA & Cinevate.

“Music is by the film’s composer Nigel “John” Stanford: Make sure to turn the volume and bass way up!”

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Posted in Canon 5D Mark II, coolness, gear, photography, RED, technique, video, work of others Comments Off on TIMELAPSE CINEMATOGRAPHY


February 18th, 2011

shot_1296176000907In January, I spent 14 days on assignment for eBay and PayPal. The work was through the multimedia agency Aurora-Novus.

We had a firm–and close–deadline as the video would lead eBay CEO John Donahoe’s presentation at the company’s Analyst’s Day. “This is How I Shop” is about the convergence of online and offline shopping and how eBay and PayPal are well positioned to support this trend. I learned a lot about the company from the client, who traveled with us to interview the customers. I had no idea about some of the technologies being integrated into daily life; as the client said “the future of shopping is now.”

Our itinerary evolved as we worked. We shot in San Francisco, LA, New York City, Houston, and New Orleans, sometimes buying flights only a day ahead. I was Director, and I shot video and stills, but I couldn’t have done this without strong second shooters. It was a pleasure to work with talented people like Dane Henry of Deep Roots Media, Andrew Hida, and Wes Pope. Each joined me on a leg of the journey, bringing their own skill set and creative eye to the project. I would love working with all of them again. (iphone photo by Wes Pope)

I then spent a long weekend of long days working with Aurora-Novus video editor Jason Bosch, eating take out Indian and Thai food in the editing suite as we pulled select clips, hashed out the stories, and began building what became the final piece.

It was exhausting, but it was fun; I just wish I’d been able to enjoy each city a little more!

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Posted in Canon 5D Mark II, client, clients, media, multimedia, photography, video Comments Off on EBAY: THIS IS HOW I SHOP


November 1st, 2010

Andrew started out as an intern with me. His work ethic, intelligence, and eye impressed me. I asked him to stick around. Over the years we’ve gone from eating tuna melt sandwiches while keywording images, to video co-production for commercial jobs. Right now Andrew is pursuing a masters degree at Syracuse, and this is one of the pieces he put together in a quick 36 hours workshop. Check out his website:

Rayn With Me from Andrew Hida on Vimeo.

Since 2001, Vince Carnicelli has been a police officer of the Auburn Police Department. As one of two officers assigned to the K9 unit, Carnicelli has trained, handled, and cared for Rayn, his black Sable German Shepard, since he was 14-months old.

As a valuable asset to the Auburn Police Department, Rayn provides the unique service of protecting his partner during volatile situations while on patrol. Often sent in as the first line of defense, Rayn prevents violent situations from escalating by calming the, “biggest, toughest, yellingest, maddest person in the world.”

Through a grant funded by a partnership between Walgreens and Milk-Bone, the Auburn Police Department acquired Rayn four years ago. Since receiving his police dog, Carnicelli and Rayn have developed a powerful bond that bridges their professional working relationship, and that of friendship, companionship, and love.

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August 17th, 2010

20100802_TIM-cpyrtI am a photojournalist who has evolved into a multimedia journalist and producer. When I work in the field I have a minimal footprint, often trying to do the work of an entire production crew on my own.

Being a one-person-band isn’t preferable and, having spent time working with MediaStorm I am an advocate of working as a team. But, sometimes the budget, location, or story don’t allow for more than one, maybe two people.

Part of a series, this post is intended for others journalists who are shooting, or starting to shoot, video with the HDSLR Canon 5D Mark II. I’m posting because I’ve spent a lot of time researching blogs, forums, and testing through trial and error.

I hope this becomes the one-stop-shop I wish I’d stumbled upon and, as such, I would like to encourage reader comments. What tips do you have? What links, videos, or content pertinent to the post would you like to share? Help us grow in this new world of media production.

However, please note the date of the post. HDSLR videography is a rapidly changing field and this information may soon be old.

Click through the jump to learn more about the 180 degree shutter rule, shutter speed, ND filters, and the “rolling shutter” of CMOS sensors.

(Many thanks to my sweetie for her iPhone picture of me wandering around home figuring out gear).

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Posted in Canon 5D Mark II, gear, multimedia, photography, technique, video Comments Off on CANON 5DMKII HDSLR TIPS: THE CAMERA SHUTTER

Seattle Zombie Walk Breaks World Record

July 5th, 2010

20100703_ZMB_060Saturday, on the third of July, the Center of the Universe (Fremont) was crowded with thousands of zombies as Seattle broke the world record for the zombie walk. According to organizers there were 4900 signed entries and 4233 solid entries.

I had no idea there was a world record for zombies, nor that there was such a zombie following, but I remember seeing zombies last year around Fremont. Then, on Friday, Lu saw the notice for the zombie walk and Saturday morning we made a run to the local thrift store…along with our costumes we scored on a shirt, bathrobe, and tuxedo for T!

Out came the costume makeup kit and in short order we were the zombie family.

According to organizers, Zombies have gathered in Seattle since 2005, and in 2009 set the world record for the largest gathering. In short order, the record was broken in the UK at a rave. Proud of its oddities, Seattle decided to take it back this year.

If you’re into zombies check out the links, photos and video on the jump.

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Posted in Canon 5D Mark II, community, coolness, events, family, fun stuff, gear, photography, thriller, zombies Comments Off on Seattle Zombie Walk Breaks World Record


July 2nd, 2010

Morris_ObamaLast week I had the honor of sharing the podium with Martin de Boer and Christopher Morris during the opening of the Our World at War exhibition at the Seattle Center. Martin is the Deputy Head of the Regional Delegation for the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) for the US, Canada, and the prison at Guantanamo Bay. Christopher is a founding member of the VII Photo Agency, contract photographer for Time, and has decades of war photography under his belt; he also contributed to the exhibition.

The event was hosted by the Seattle chapter of the Red Cross, and it was through these people Lu and I had the chance to learn more about what the Red Cross actually does. Martin spoke of the organization’s history, then he segued into the exhibition itself. The idea was to put a face on the statistics, to tell stories about individuals who live in conflict zones or who are coping with the aftermath of war.

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Posted in activisim, advocacy, Canon 5D Mark II, events, multimedia, recognition, speaking event Comments Off on ICRC AND VII PHOTOGRAPHER CHRISTOPHER MORRIS


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