Abraham Joffe | Blog
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15 Sep Canon 7Dm2 release film – Behind the Scenes

Canon 7Dm2 shoot

Abraham Joffe: “Every photographer or cinematographer dreams of getting their hands on an unreleased camera, let alone an unannounced one. We were very fortunate to get that opportunity this month with the CANON 7Dm2. Only three weeks ago, Canon Australia invited me in to discuss filming a spot for the new 7Dm2 -the next-generation of the uber-successful 7D. The brief was to create a short trailer highlighting some of the new camera’s features. Not a review, but a first-look piece – something to get people excited for when the announcement was made during Photokina.”

The decision was made for one of Australia’s Canon Masters – Mark Horsburgh to be the onscreen photographer using and talking about the 7Dm2’s features. We had worked with Mark last year producing a short bio piece for his Master’s portfolio. Mark is arguably Australia’s leading Motor-sports photographer and is just an already great bloke! His enthusiasm and energy on this shoot was sensational.

With such a short window of time to develop the concept for the piece, and to shoot and deliver it, we had to get moving. The over-riding theme of the new 7Dm2 is speed. It shoots 20.2M images at up to 10 frames per second. And is powered by Canon’s new dual Digic6 processors. Its new 65 point auto focus system was also a key feature. So with speed being the main theme, action sports seemed a perfect choice for the spot. Canon 7Dm2 The previous 7D was also a hit with many people shooting sports and action.

Working with only a few days to shoot and varying sports in mind, the obvious location to shoot it quickly became Queenstown in the South Island of New Zealand. Queenstown and the surrounding areas are a Mecca for action sports. The close proximity of different sports, be it skiing, bungee, mountain biking and motor racing – Queenstown has the lot. We knew that this would enable us to quickly and efficiently move between locations and shoot multiple scenes each day.

We allocated three days to shoot Mark with the 7Dm2 and jammed the schedule with activities.

The Race Day

The first day saw us head down to Highlands Racetrack in Cromwell, about an hour out of Queenstown. Mark has many connections in the Racing world and the owners of Highlands was one of them . They kindly let us take over part of the track for the day and even supplied a Lamborghini and driver. Mark is most at home on the racetrack and it was a good place to start the shoot and get everyone working together as a team. 7Dm2 BTS making of

Having the car race past at high speed was a perfect way of testing out the camera’s speed in both frames per second and auto focus.

We had two specialists join our team for the shoot. The first being Toby De Jong, a super talented drone operator from Australia and somebody that I work with practically every month. His skills at building and operating drones is in my opinion the best in Australia. Toby launched the 7Dm2 on a newly constructed hex-copter and was able to pull off some amazing imagery during the production. We decided it was worth bringing a second operator to ensure we were able to capture the 7Dm2 in-flight hanging under the drone.

Some words from Toby De Jong – drone operator:

“We had an amazing crew, spectacular locations and a very cool new camera to film. Technically we had a few challenges with the extreme cold and high elevation, for the drone it limited our flight time by around 1/2. Having the larger 18 inch blades and low KV motors really helped otherwise we might have been grounded. It’s every shooters dream to get a job like this.”

7Dm2 BTS droneThe other specialist was the uber-talented Hyperlapse guru – Matthew Vandeputte. Matthew has been making a splash online recently with his amazing timelapse skills. He has been an innovator in the new craft of Hyperlapse and when I knew he was available for the trip we just had to involve him.

Matthew’s task was to create some stunning environmental Timelapses and help set the scene in the dramatic landscape. Matthew was up every day before sunrise and well after sunset and created dozens of sequences over our time there.

Some words from Matthew on the shoot:

“I have been waiting for the new 7D MkII to come out for such a long time now. Getting the invite to join the Untitled Film Works crew to shoot it’s launch video was an honour I couldn’t even dream of. When I heard we’d be heading to the south island of New Zealand I was overly ecstatic. As a timelapse photographer you always have a list of places you’d love to visit, Queenstown and it’s surrounding areas have always been number one on that list. NewZealand-BehindTheScenes-Matthew-31
Just to give you an idea: within a 40 minute drive radius you have amazing skiing fields, the ‘Narnia forest’, insane mountain bike tracks, crystal clear glacial lakes etc. It just doesn’t end. There are so many spots to shoot, I honestly had a hard time choosing my frames, even with a dual camera setup, as everywhere I looked there was incredible beauty to be captured!
Having such an extremely talented and inspirational crew to work with is a dream come true. Everyone knows exactly what they’re doing, and having worked together for a number of times we could pretty much jump out of the car, set the gear up and start shooting within 15 minutes. The backdrops of some of the shots look so pristine you just can’t believe it. We actually joked around about how it all looked green screened with some of the views we had.”
We were also assisted enormously by a local action sports photographer Camilla Rutherford who helped source locations, permits and athletes. Although usually working as a photographer, she was happy to switch roles and help out.

Ski Shoot

We were fortunate enough to be granted pre-opening access to one of New Zealand’s premiere ski fields – Cardrona – about an hour out of Queenstown. 7Dm2 skiingCamilla had organised two amazing skiers Nick Rapley + Harry Pettit for Mark to capture. We headed to the terrain park via our own snow-mobile and started shooting. The AF system of the 7D was truly impressive. Mark was able to capture the skiers hitting the sky every time they launched and was able to fire of numerous frames. One comment that Mark made is that the great thing about having 10FPS shooting rate is not actually the need to capture 10 images but the interval time between shots is halved when compared to a DSLR that shoots 5FPS.

A nice surprise came to this shoot when skier Nick offered to have a run down the mountain with the glidecam and 7D attached. After a little time convincing me that he could ski, jump and film, I handed him the balanced camera and prayed it came back in once piece! He filmed like a star and gave us a unique perspective to video capabilities of the camera.

We finished off this huge second day with a arduous climb up above the hills overlooking Queenstown to shoot a timelapse and discuss the camera’s built-in intervalometer. Everywhere you look in New Zealand is a speculator landscape.. I think even if you drop the camera you get a great shot of something!

Mountain Bike Shoot
The final day involved shooting a portrait shoot of a top Mountain biking athlete – Jeremy Little. We returned to the area of the timelapse shoot only to see a great sea of mist rolling in towards our location. Canon 7Dm2Thinking quickly, we decided to incorporate the weather into the script as it perfectly highlighted the rugged build and weather-sealing of the 7Dm2. I don’t think we could have scripted this but acting quickly as a team gave us something special.

The shoot began with a lifestyle shoot of the rider up above the mountains. Photographing athletes with their vehicles is something Mark does regularly so it was a perfect fit. We snuck in the built-in GPS feature into this part of the production as Mark decided it was a fantastic location, one worthy of returning to!

The CANON G7X

Something that was added last minute was the idea to produce a piece on the new and unannounced Canon G7X compact. Matthew Vandeputte is a world traveller, always on the move, and as he was already a part of the production on the 7Dm2 clip it was decided that he would be a perfect person to talk about this new camera.G7X We had only one day to produce a piece on this amazing compact and after shooting the 7Dm2 promo we were all pretty exhausted.

The G7x has some amazing specs – a 1 inch 20.2 megapixel backlit CMOS sensor powered by a Digic6 processor, 6.5 frames per second shooting, Wi-fi and a beautifully fast and sharp 1.8-2.8 zoom lens. All in a rugged little body. A perfect camera for people wanting great quality but ultra portability._06I6438

We filmed the promo around Queenstown including the forest where the Adventures of Narnia was filmed.

Matthew was a star. Here are some words from him about the shoot: “The experience of producing something to a hard deadline with a small crew in a stunning location is not something that comes along every day and I was honoured to be asked by Canon Australia to take the challenge on. The short film that we created was to be in good fun and to help create a splash for this exciting new camera and I hope we delivered.”

Here is the list of our team. Hope you enjoyed this Behind-the-scenes blog of our exciting week in NZ!

Our team:
Director/DP: Abraham Joffe
Production company: Untitled Film Works
Drone Operator: Toby De Jong (+ Mark Denmeade as 2nd drone)
Timelapse Photographer: Matthew Vandeputte
2nd Camera: Andrew Prochuk7D mark 2 BTS team
Editors: Hayley Yeoh + Andrew Prochuk.

Production co-ordinator: Camilla Rutherford
Assistant: Neal Danby – Canon NZ

Canon Australia www.canon.com.au
Untitled film works www.untitledfilmworks.com
Abraham Joffe http://www.canon.com.au/en-AU/Professional-Imaging/Masters/Abraham-Joffe
Mark Horsburgh http://www.canon.com.au/en-AU/Professional-Imaging/Masters/Mark-Horsburgh
Matthew Vandeputte www.tjoez.com
Toby De Jong www.44magnumproductions.com
Camilla Rutherford www.camillarutherford.co.nz

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12 Dec Jewels of the Arctic

Aurora Expeditions takes people to all corners of the globe. Jewels of the Arctic is a journey that combines the best of Spitsbergen and Greenland, with a taste of Iceland. Spitsbergen’s rugged northwest coast comprises mountains, tundra and fjords. Greenland’s remote east coast shows off the immensity of the icecap, fantastic icebergs and a fairytale landscape of granite spires rising 1000 m above exquisite fjords.

 

Untitled Film Works was assigned to capture the spirit of this unforgettable expedition into a short film.

 

Whilst on board, the crew was lucky enough to capture a rarely witnessed event – a collapse of a free-standing iceberg. The phenomenon of thousands of tonnes of ice crashing down is one that will never be forgotten.

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29 Nov Shoot, Edit, Deliver 4K. Now.

I have been hooked on 4K the moment I first saw it in April 2012 at NAB. 18 months later we are finally shooting, editing and delivering 4K productions to the screen. This blog post is a “as-of-now” report on what we do to make it happen.

 

We first experimented with pulling 8.8megapixel still frames from the footage and this resulted in shooting a short piece about our foray in this area. Micro Expressions got some good traffic (100,000 views in the first week) even though it was released on Christmas day. That project didn’t come without its critics – most vocally being from people who were aghast that we called it a revolution or that we didn’t credit RED for being first to offer printable frames from a motion camera.

 

1DC underwaterHopefully the people who did take time to read the accompanying blog post would have understood that the project expressed our honest opinions a possible use for this new DSLR. The film never had any input or influence from Canon either, they were simply kind enough to lend us two cameras and let us produce what we wanted. I still stand by the fact that we are seeing the early days of a shift towards mixed media from a single source.

 

I think there will always be dedicated still cameras but in the next few years more images will come from both formats. And why not? Having said all that, I am a cinematographer first, not a photographer, so my main intention was always to start shooting 4K motion and deliver it. It has been painfully slow this 4K workflow roll-out and this blog is to give you a current report on our experiences so far.

 

 

Firstly I’ll discuss our experiences shooting 4K with the 1DC having coming from a DSLR (5D) background.

 

 

 

1DC 5Dm3 comparison1DC Stabilization
The first thing about migrating to the 1DC for your productions is probably the increase in body size. Ok, its not like moving to a RED or Alexia, but DSLR shooters will find the size and weight increase a little to get used to. Its a 1 series body from Canon, meaning it feels like a 5Dm3 on steroids. The weight (1.5kg/3.5lb) is 76% greater than a 5Dm3 (850g/ 1.89lb) and notably the height (16cm/6.4”) is 36% greater than the 5Dm3 (11.7cm/4.6”).

 

Atlas10 slider

 

The stabilisation tools you are used to working with can become inadequate unless you are already using heavy duty models. For example, light sliders like CINEVATE’s FLT wont handle the weight of the 1DC, especially if working with sizeable lenses. I am a fan of the CINEVATE ATLAS10 for my sliding- its solid but has been the most reliable and performing slider I have owned.

 

 

 

I am a glidecam addict and although I manage to shoot with the HD4000 with the 1DC, it takes some more grunt and work on your shoulder to manage it. You will also need to increase the weights on the bottom of the glidecam to accommodate the additional load on top.

 

1DC glidecam

 

If you use an eyepiece like the ZACUTO Z-Finder, you will need a “Tall DSLR” frame upgrade to fit the new height of your camera. Finally, if you have gotten away with super light tripods in the past, once shooting with a 1DC and assumed 70-200mm lens, you’ll find yourself pushing the limits of your sticks. Manfrotto’s HDV561 monopod just handles the 1DC, however the new 500 series monopod from Manfrotto with its heavier head, will be welcomed.

 

Upgrading one’s stabilisation kit is probably often overlooked by people’s excitement for moving up to the 1DC. To get the most out any camera system, you must invest in adequate supporting gear.

 

 

TIPS WHEN SHOOTING IN 4K with the 1DC

1. Your attention to detail has to enhance. In the past, clutter in the background of your shots, imperfections in your talent’s appearance, wouldn’t be noticed. But with 4K, everything is suddenly there for everyone to see. A hair dangling out of place, or even some fine dust on your lens can be picked up with incredible clarity. Whilst this is the reason some are of the view 4K isn’t the way to go, for me its just a reason to be more disciplined in my productions. There are ways to shoot to reduce the digital sharpness that 4K can bring, and most of that comes down to your lens and depth of field choices. I think now, more than ever, its time to shoot with the best quality glass you can afford and if you want to reduce the “too sharp it hurts” affect, then trend towards lenses that can give deeper compression of the image (like telephotos) and reduce your DOF by opening up your aperture. This I do by using high quality filters (both ND and Polarizers) – my choice being the Tiffen range. They are superbly manufactured and don’t affect the white balance of your image (unless you start to use extremely dense NDs)

 

Santorini wedding film
2. Focus become more critical than ever
In the past, getting a subject just slightly out of focus could be included in a scene and go by unnoticed. Not in 4K. Even the slightest degree of being out of focus will strike the eye very quickly. So practising your focus pulling has never been more needed.

 

3. 4K doesn’t mean your productions automatically increase in production value. Sloppy shooting, as always will remain that way. And I believe this is even more pronounced when the images are so crisp. A bump on a tracking shot will scream out to you in 4K, as will a wobble from a tripod bump. It may not in camera, but once you playback your material on a 65inch screen you will be harshly reminded. Don’t say you haven’t been warned!

 

4. 1DC contrast quirk – like shooting with all Canon DSLR’s I like to reduce the contrast of the image in the picture profile settings. This flattens out the contrast a little producing a greater dynamic range. The much hyped Canon-log feature I have found to be incredibly flat, so much so that I cant bring the image contrast back in post to an acceptable level. The camera isn’t shooting raw, and I just believe you should let the camera’s internal processors do the job they were designed for. (if only with a slight nudge in the lower contrast direction via picture profile).

 

MEDIA
We have all heard about the greedy data requirements of the 1DC, and its true: it hogs media. Its a pretty simple formula – you need to spend on new cards.
I have not recorded to anything but the SANDISK 128G 100MBS cards with the 1DC (for shooting 4k that is, if shooting 1080P, then your standard “small” cards will work just fine). With 30 minutes of footage only per 128G card, the math is quite simple. If you are shooting commercial work, then around 4 cards will probably manage your requirements, especially if running a download station on set. But if you are shooting events and weddings, then the idea of managing with only 4 cards becomes a fairy tail.

 

Sandisk 128G

Our first real 4K wedding shoot took place in Santorini Greece in August this year. I say real, because the test shoots were controlled and we had more crew and assistants on board. The wedding in Santorini was shot with two shooters, Wissam Abdallah and myself, and we had to manage our data and shoot simultaneously.
We had six 128G cards on this shoot, which in hindsight was really stretching it. We had two 1DC’s for the trip and 2 x Download laptops. Over a USB3 connection, you will experience at best 100MBS download, but usually more like 70MBS-90MBS to your hard drive. So a typical download takes appox 30minutes. That is equal to the time it takes to fill up a card when recording. We took two laptops so we could obviously capture two cards at one time.

 

On this 4K wedding shoot we just had enough cards to get us through shooting the morning preps, ceremony and location shoot. Once at the reception we began downloading the data and recycling the cards through the night. Its not something I enjoy doing, so in time I will invest in several more cards, enough to cover an entire wedding shoot without having to reuse a card on the shoot. Currently these CF’s are still prohibitively expensive, but we all know they will certainly become cheaper.

 

underwater housing

With the Darren Jew Whale shoot in Tonga for Canon Australia, we found that six cards was more than enough for a day’s filming. The dual CF slot is brilliant for extending the time between having to reload, especially when shooting with an underwater housing.

 

Understandably, the total volume of data you will accrue when shooting with the 1DC will be substantial. For a typical three camera wedding shooting 1080P, we would normally shoot around 100G or so of data. With only two 1DC’s we shot around 1.2TB. And we didn’t overshoot, if anything we were tighter with our coverage as to not unnecessarily fill up cards. So the other cost that needs to be factored in is the increased storage dedicated to backup each 4K production.

 

EDITING
We have successfully edited 4K content on Adobe Premiere CS6 and Edius7. For RED footage, the clear choice is Premiere as it has been well designed to handle the REDCineX codec and even allow direct manipulation of the Metadata source settings from within Premiere. But seeing as this is a 1DC focused blog, we’ll stick with Edius. Edius7 is not a hugely used NL software, but for the people who do work with it, love it. We have been editing with Edius for the past five years, having come from Premiere, and its been certainly the most stable and reliable editing program I’ve used. IT also has great power in mixing formats on the same timeline. Having said that, Premiere has come forward leaps and bounds in the past couple of years. (ever since FinalCut self-destructed) so I’d probably rate them equally now. If you want to read more about the awesomeness of Edius, you should check out the great blog of cinematographer Matt Scott who is an Edius wizard.

 

Edius 7 4K

 

But as of the time of writing this blog, Edius7 is the only NL software I’m aware of that can handle the native 4K (4096x 2160) files from the 1DC. You will need a fairly beefy machine to handle the files without lag, with the recommended specs found on the Edius website.

 

Edius 4K export settingsWhen setting up your project in Edius7 to your 1DC footage, its fairly straight forward. Choose 4096×2160 as the resolution. One big piece of advice I can give PC users is to ensure your system drive for your computer is a SSD with at least 500MBS of read/write speeds and also install a second equally rated SSD as a dedicated drive for your windows page file. This will see a big increase in the performance of your programs. I would also recommend raiding your media drives together (ensure HD speeds of 7200RM) for increased speed. I have mentioned these suggestions as they don’t appear on the Edius7 recommended specs page and I have found through experience that it makes a huge difference.

 

Of course there are people who have found that editing in proxy mode is speedier and more efficient, however I prefer to have a workflow that sees us editing with the native files, in their full 4K glory.

 

export settings 4k

EXPORTING:
This is the area of production that I enjoy the least. We all know exporting correctly is super important, but at the same time its just plain dull. But through much trial and error, here are the settings that we have found work best with the 1DC.

 

EXPORTING 4K
Our best results so far has been to export a H264 MP4 with a data rate of around 50MBS. The most important thing to remember when exporting for playback on an Ultra-def display is that you will need to slightly downsample the size from 4096 x 2160 (aspect 1.896) to 3840 x 2160 (16:9). This is because the majority of 4K TVS are standardised not to the Digital Cinema Initiatives agreed 4K, but to 16:9 4K which is called UHD (Ultra high definition) which kind of makes sense to keep the frame size the same as most current TV’s on the market.

 

If you are in love with the Super35 aspect ration of the 1DC, then export at 3840 x 2025 and you will have small black bars top and bottom but will remain true to the aspect. I personally would just resize to 16:9 for a more pleasing look.

 

Please note: The black bars top and bottom on the embedded vimeo links in this blog are just a word-press blog quirk (if anyone know’s how to avoid these please let me know!) When watching these films on our vimeo channel you will notice they don’t have this letterbox effect.

 

EXPORTING TO HD FROM 4K:

 

ASPECT RATIO:
Firstly, you must remember that 4K footage that is produced by the 1DC is shot in the Super35 Aspect ratio (1.896) so export settings that you may have saved for your usual applications like Vimeo and PlayStation need to be adjusted.

 

The main one being frame size. When down-sampling to HD remember to adjust the height of the clip by the same ratio as the width. So your 1920 file will remain that width but the height needs to be adjusted to 1012 (not 1080) It will result in a narrower or skinnier export which is the Super35 one. Thankfully Vimeo automatically recognises the aspect of files uploaded to it so there is nothing different about sending it online. (when exporting to the narrower aspect of 2:1 – which has been recently popularised by RED – you need to make this number 960. If you prefer the narrower look of 2:1, then there is no problem exporting your wider 1DC footage to this aspect, just ensure you tick the option to “crop” to fit this new aspect ratio, not resize to fit. And of course you’ll want to check that head-room and framing isn’t negatively affected buy this stripping of image top and bottom.

 

 

This film above was down-sampled to S35-HD (1920×1012) from the original 1DC 4K (4096×2160)

 

MEGABYTES PER SECOND:
There is a heck of a lot of information that is being lost when stripping away resolution so you want to keep a high bitrate (at least 50MBS) to retain as much clarity through less compression as possible. it goes without saying that 2 PASS VBR encoding with maximum depth is recommended.

 

If you cheat by encoding with less quality can result in horrible banding through your shots, especially where graduated exposure occurs like skies and in water.

 

DISPLAY
One of the most frustrating thing about the release of all these fantastic 4K displays (actually most are Ultra-Def and “only” display 3840×2160) is that they haven’t offered any kind of 4K playback device for actually watching content! We are finally seeing a slow roll-out of 4K media players from the likes of RED (REDRAY) and SONY’S PlayStation4, but that “coming soon” tag hasn’t helped all of those content creators who impatiently want to revel in our 4k footage now.

 

4K TV

 

The day I saw the release of genuine 4K media players from Nuvola I ordered one. It arrived a couple of weeks ago and we immediately went to work hooking it up to our 4K Samsung 65inch F9000. After some a few hours of messing about with settings, we finally got our content playing back on the screen to an acceptable a quality. What through me for a while was as simple as the refresh rate. Being in Australia, we run on 50Hz power system (the US is 60Hz) and of course that is the main reason the US television standard is 30FPS (or 29.97 to be exact) and here in Aus we have 25FPS.

 

Nuvola NP-H1

 

The Nuvola NP-H1 is a great little mini-computer, which I suggest you get pre-installed with Windows7 and their 250G SSD. Its literally setup plug-and-play and for those of you in the US, it will immediately begin playing back 4K clips on your screen when powered up. (in Australia, you’ll find these clips lag due to your TV’s refresh rate – you’ll need to install your own content).

 

 

In the coming months many players will become available which is a great thing for all of us in production.

 

WHY SHOOT 4K NOW?

 

Here is my top reasons why you should shoot 4K now:

 

IT JUST LOOKS SO DAMN GOOD
Ok, not the most technical of answers, but you know what – I have listed this first for a reason. I think 4K rocks. I love it and Io love being passionate about my craft.
And of course that passion for what we do can become worn-down. How many of you found your passion for filmmaking re-ignited when DSLR’s first appeared? Remember how that excitement rubbed off on your clients? Passion can be infectious, and I have found the same thing happening again with 4K. I’ve even upgraded people to 4K production before even being able to show then the difference on screen, that’s how powerful genuine passion can be. (it also probably helps that every 2nd tv ad today is hyping-up 4K TVS!)

 

4K still frame

Click on image to see the original (untouched) 4K still frame

 

4K (SORRY, ULTRA-DEF) TVS ARE GETTING CHEAP – FAST!
TVS that offer 4K playback are dropping in price so fast that soon I believe all displays will become standard as 4K. Most films and a large number of high end Television shows like Breaking Bad and House of Cards have been shot in 4K. Unlike 3D, I do believe that higher resolutions are here to stay and will become more mainstream. It could be argued that ultra-definitions are more suited to documentary and wildlife films, not dramas. Whilst I can understand that argument – why do we need to see the pore marks on the nose of the actor? – but instead i’d like to think production techniques will adapt to the new format and make steps to ensure they work to its strengths and weaknesses. I remember when HD became more widespread in TV productions. Suddenly makeup and set-design had to lift their game and become more subtle otherwise cracks in both could be picked up easily by the viewer!

 

 

FUTURE PROOF
I think it is a wise move to insure your projects will still be technically relevant in years to come. How could I have gone to the Artic or Africa this year and not shot everything in 4K? I would only regret not having useable footage for future projects and increasing the longevity of the projects we complete today. Its for the same reasons that television shows are being produced in 4K today despite the added costs.

 

4K PRODUCED SUPERB HD
There is a very noticeable look to a production delivered in 4K that was originally shot in 4K. The HD that results from downsampling the high resolution original is a lovely off-shoot benefit. Its called “super sampling” or “oversampling an image and reaping a superior HD master. Its comparable to scanning 35mm film and showing it in HD. People who have watched our HD exports have asked if they are watching 4K. That says it all.

 

Santorini

 

MORE OPTIONS IN EDIT
The ability to crop into your picture for either re-framing, horizon correction or stabilisation is impressively advantageous. Finally we have some of the options available to our motion images that photographers have enjoyed with their stills for years.

 

BUILD 4K STOCK
Stock libraries around the world like Getty and T3Media are crying out for more 4Kcontent for their libraries. Its like the playing field has been levelled again and what were once extensive collections are having to be re-stocked with new material shot in higher resolution. So its a great time to start building your collection and benefit from selling online with limited competition.

 

In my opinion, if you are already producing in 4K and not taking full advantage of being an early adopter by actually playing back your 4K footage to new clients – you are squandering a big opportunity. Its called a “honeymoon period” for early adopters, where you find yourself being able to command a premium due to relatively little competition. (The same thing happens when people buy expensive new camera systems and rent them out at a high rate before the market becomes flooded.)

 

I hope this article helps those who are starting out in 4K production with the 1DC and saves you many hours of setting-tweaking. If you would like to learn more about shooting in 4K then you should really consider joining our Cinematography workshop taking place in Africa this year. Watch the promo film below or visit the link above for more info on this exciting in-the-field workshop taking place in June 2014.

 

 

We promised to post more regularly next year with a load of new projects from around the world.

 

Cheers!

 

Abraham Joffe

 

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Canon Master Abraham Joffe - David Stowe

17 Nov Canon Master films

Untitled film works is proud to have been commissioned by Canon Australia to produce a series of short films on each of the new Canon Masters.

 

Canon announced the launch of its new Masters Program in August, which unites 12 of Australia and New Zealand’s leading photographers in a program that aims to inspire Australians to be creative and bring out their originality.

 

The Canon Masters have been selected for their position as Australia and New Zealand’s most innovative image makers and will drive inspiration and creativity amongst consumers as well as both current and future professionals.Brought to life through a series of activities, the Masters Program will demonstrate how the best of our image makers use Canon products and services to realise their creativity and remain at the top of their game.

 

Abraham Joffe, of untitled film works, is humbled to be included in the set of 12 Masters.

 

For a full list of the Canon Masters, visit www.canon.com.au

 

 

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20 Oct African Wildlife Cinematography Workshop with Abraham Joffe – June 2015

It is for both still and video photographers who want to learn the skills and techniques to capture and create powerful cinematic wildlife footage in the wild.

 

DATES:: 19th – 27th June 2015
LOCATION:: BOTSWANA

 

It will be presented by Abraham Joffe, owner of Untitled Film Works, Sydney. Abraham is one of Australia’s foremost cinematographers and he has worked in Africa on a number of assignments for Iconic Images International, producing first rate film clips such as: An Elephant Bazaar, Balm for the Soul and Namibia with Iconic Images, with three more films in production.

 

CLICK HERE FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION AND HOW TO BOOK or email abraham@untitledfilms.com.au

 

Abraham initially conceived the idea of the cinematography workshop being a one-day event in Sydney. Following discussion with Denis Glennon AO, owner of Iconic Images International, it transformed into an eight day workshop in Africa!

 

It is being held in one of the best locations to capture stunning footage of Africa’s largest mammals and superior predators – Mashatu in Botswana.

 

If you wish, you will also have assistance with your still photography when there; you will photograph alongside wildlife photographer, Denis Glennon AO.

 

We will teach you how to capture the expanse of the African landscape to the most minute details in wildlife. While you learn about wildlife filming techniques from Abraham and Denis’ approach to composing nature and wildlife will transform both your still and motion photography, not merely add to it.

 

A primary focus of the workshop is to give you every assistance to capture iconic footage of leopards, lions, cheetahs (with a little luck) and elephants up-close from our own underground hide. The first arrival of an elephant herd, whilst you are in the hide, will leave you speechless, awestruck and do not be surprised if you find yourself so overwhelmed you forget to use your camera!

 

Workshop Content

 

It would be a challenge, anywhere in Africa, to match the photographic opportunities for filming of leopards, lions and elephants available at Mashatu, Botswana.

 

The workshop presentations and field practice will cover:

 

DSLR overview – choosing optimum camera settings, profiles and configurations for wilderness filming as well as preferred lens choices.
Stabilisation – maximising the benefits of tripods, sliders and glidecams, including hands-on training on each, particularly when filming from vehicles.
Filming wildlife – how to approach different species, understanding animal and bird behaviour and practical information on anticipating the action. This session will also cover shooting effectively from vehicles.
Working from a Hide – Mashatu is a fantastic workshop location as it has the underground elephant hide from which amazing and truly unique footage can be captured.
High speed cinematography – there will be at least one high-speed camera at the workshop for capturing fast action.

Audio – the optimum audio setups for recording atmospheric sound, interviews and on-camera options.
Undertaking interviews – how to plan, light and shoot an effective interview.
Time-lapse Photography – preparing for this exciting genre of photography plus practical shooting of nightscapes.
Editing – how to construct an effective pictorial story. This will be towards the end of the workshop when participants will have captured their own material to edit.

 

Our aim is to ensure you come home with the best possible footage and unforgettable memories of a “once-in-a-lifetime” experience photographing Africa’s magnificent animals with a small group of like-minded people.

 

Leopards are the most elusive and arguably the most beautiful of the African predators! They seem to choose who photographs or films them! Our experienced drivers/guides will amaze you at how well they can track them and with a little luck you will be astounded when you see how close we can get you to film these supreme predators.

 

Did you ever think you might film an elephant herd from a perspective similar to that lying on your stomach with the nearest elephant not more than five metres from your lens ?

 

When not attending presentations by Abraham, or filming in the underground hide, or in one of the bird hides, you will be on game drives each day. You will have very experienced drivers and expert animal trackers to give you the best opportunities of finding and filming a wide range of wildlife.

 

Whilst at the workshop, you are invited to participate in two special photography sessions run by Denis Glennon:
(i) “Tried & Tested Techniques for Capturing Outstanding Wildlife Images” and
(ii) “Transforming your Wildlife Images into Photographic Art”.

 

CLICK HERE FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION AND HOW TO BOOK or email abraham@untitledfilms.com.au

 

 

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04 Sep Ice light commercial shoot

Jerry Ghionis approached us only a few months ago to help him create an epic commercial to showcase his amazing ice light. Jerry, ever the creative, had a very strong view of what he wanted. Working with his strong vision was terribly refreshing. Jerry, a world-renowned photographer, had to my knowledge little experience in motion, but you wouldnt have guessed it being on location. He had story-boarded all of the scenes, organised locations, models and props. Really all we needed to bring was our skills with the shooting and to block-out the scenes.

 

Filming took place all over the city of Melbourne over two cold winter nights. A team of five including a talented aerial camera operator shot guerrilla-style on over fifteen separate locations.

 

The aerials were provided by the very talented Toby De Jong. He flew his impressive, custom-built hex-copter with incredible stability. He was able to position the camera to the exact locations which I desired. The on-ground monitor allowed us to review the shots happening in real-time. The main camera we used was the Canon 1DC. Its compact size enabled us to work at speed and in some very tight spots (stairwell for one) as well as exceptional low light performance. Many of the scenes were shot at up to 6400ISO. The other factor was that we wanted to shoot it all at 50FPS to add to the drama. Using the 1DC meant we could get through scenes quickly and achieve shots with relatively short setup time. One example of this was shooting from the back of the van whilst Jerry ran behind.

 

Overall, everyone had a blast working on this fun little project and we were all pretty exhausted after the two nights, no-one more than Jerry!

 

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