I’m likely guilty of having used the term “dream assignment” in this blog a time or two in the past but never was it more accurate than when applied to this year’s epic adventures for Sporting Life!
The mission was to shoot stills and video featuring the activities of six Sporting Life brand ambassadors for the opening of Sporting Life’s new store here in Calgary. In summary, running around in the outdoors under the burden of high expectations shooting stills and video with minimal crew. Yup, deep in dream assignmentville!
The shoots covered everything from skiing, hiking and cycling to cooking & fashion styling – consistent with the broad range of lifestyle apparel sold by Sporting Life. My job was to find an engaging way to to shoot each subject in action and tell their story. Easy to do when you’re standing on the sidewalk but less so at 50km/hr on a ski hill or 5 miles from the nearest road atop a hiking trail.
So here are the key ways I got the job done:
1 Shoot great environmental portraits. There’s a reason the business name is Photovideo these days. I love shooting both stills & video and I’m pretty darn good at them too. Environmental portraits are where it all started for me and I love any chance I get to tell someone’s story in a single frame.
2 Create an elevated interview experience. They were simple 1-camera interviews but they had to look & sound the part. I think good looking interviews best demonstrate why it is that I suddenly got into video: for the longest time video looked ugly. It looked like…video! Then suddenly it started to look like cinema, like photography. For me the cool thing is I can do this just as easily on a ski hill or hiking trail as in a Calgary office building. Well, not quite just as easily. But I sure as hell can do it! And I don’t need a big crew to make it so for me.
3 Create Moving B-Roll. And I mean moving – both physically & emotionally. The client is Sporting Life. The social media hook is #mysportinglife. So we’d best be capturing some b-roll that draws the viewer in with some energy and engagement. Fortunately, the same forces that suddenly made video pretty a few years ago also made the cameras small and portable. Throw in a gimbal & a slider or two (and some skis) and almost any move is possible, even with a crew of just me. When the only limit is your imagination it really is not terribly difficult to come to work each day.
4 Edit the Bejesus out of it all. The miracle of the video edit never ceases to blow my mind. There’s all the thought that went into the brief, all the magic that happened on location and still I don’t know exactly what the final result will be until I sit down to bring it all to life in Premiere Pro. Sure, it’s an unspeakably good way to miss weekends and go to bed 5 hours after my wife. But Oh My God It’s Fun!
5 Work for awesome clients. None of this would have happened without the wonderful ladies at Anstice Communications having the faith to let me go do what I do…
Hike Bike Travel
Style by JR
Velvet & Vino
Dinner with Julie
YYC Cycle – Andrew Obrecht