Moriaty – ‘Esperanza’ shoot

My colleague Tom at Paramore Productions made this video last year for a great Rock n’ Roll band from Plymouth called ‘Moriaty‘.  The band have been signed to EasyAction Records and are about to release a new EP, from which they wanted an accompanying video to the track ‘Esperanza’ ; an awesome thumping tune with a spanish tinge to it.  The band asked Tom & I to shoot the video for them on a low budget, however they had some big ideas with a story revolving around strippers, drugs, booze and revenge!

The shoot came together very quickly with the band pulling in favours from friends and fans on Facebook.  We filmed the first part of the narrative on the 8th June down in a converted chapel in Hayle which happened to be their record label boss’s home.  What a great location! It certainly looked the part for a drug-fulled stripper party!

Lighting was difficult seeing as we were limited with what we had to light with.  Luckily enough the gantry above provided a great overhead platform from where we could place our lights to illuminate a dance floor.

We were blessed to have a gorgeous model in Mia Northam to play our lady performer and she did a great job under some difficult circumstances with no prior acting experience.  Our actors all did a fine job with the lead bad guy, Steve, putting in an especially evil performance.

I must say when we turned up we only had a very loose idea of what the story was going to be.  There was no script! We just kind of made it up as we went along.  In hindsight we probably should have at least storyboarded something together beforehand, as there was a lot of waiting around and talking to try to piece together a useable scene.

We shot on 2 Canon 5Dmk3’s at 50p simultaneously to save time as we were aiming to have the narrative portions of the video play in slow motion.  I mainly got tight detail shots from my 70-200mm and some handheld 50mm stuff whilst Tom got some great dolly and steadicam action.  After setting up for a couple hours we only started filming at around 10pm but didn’t finish until 4am!  At first it was slow going, but as the beer & wine before to flow (and there was a LOT of beer & wine consumed that night) everyone started to relaxed and we ploughed through the shotlist.

It was a bit of a rush to get the final shots of the night completed, which were also probably the more technical shots involving a 14ft jib arm sweeping over the gantry to reveal a room full of carnage.  I didn’t actually make it to bed until 7am as we were so anxious to see how the shots were going to look & grade.  We’re now prepping for the performance part of the video and the 2nd half of the narrative part which is being scheduled to be filmed in Torquay in the next few weeks.

What a great bunch of people to work with! We had so much fun and I can’t wait to complete this video for the guys to start pushing it out there.

Helen Clare Yoga session filming

Helen Clare is a qualified teacher who also teaches yoga lessons in both Primary & Secondary schools in Cornwall. She came to us to commission a couple of short promotional films to show prospective schools how her lessons work and how they can benefit the children. I decided to attempt to film the videos alone and although it was tough I think I just about managed it.

The first location was Pool Academy in Redruth where Helen was teaching an afterschool club of about 10 pupils & teachers. We decided that she should just teach a normal session and that I would do my best to capture the essence without intruding too much on the lesson. This meant staying silent throughout and keeping movement to a minimum so to not disturb the concentration of the class.

I was shooting on the 5DMk3 with Tokina 11-16mm @ 16mm, Canon 24-105 & Nikon 50mm 1.8. The dance studio we filmed in was quite light & spacious so there was plenty of room for me to use the Glidetrack Hybrid to achieve some dolly shots. I filmed mostly at 25p 1080 but also grabbed some 720p 50p shots which worked quite well. I rigged up the Sennheiser wireless mic to Helen to record Helen’s instructions nice and crisply.

The second location was Bodriggy Academy in Hayle where Helen was teaching 2 classes of primary school children, one after another. This session was more challenging to film as the classroom was darker and there were 30 kids to a class which made safely moving around much more difficult. Luckily as there were 2 identical lessons I was able to grab the shots that I missed in the 1st lesson in the 2nd one.

It was an enjoyable experience working with Helen & the young people and I hope the resulting films convey that.