How Slow Should You Go? A Case For Slow Motion

There are various degrees of slow motion and each brings along a set of characteristics that we associate with different types of media. Slow motion can be informative as it reveals what the human eye cannot see, whether it’s slowing down the fluttering of a dragonfly’s wings or understanding natural phenomena like lightning traveling across the […]

Creating the Habit of Backups

Creating a new habit isn’t easy. We all know that. And I’m not talking about major changes (like exercising more, eating better, or working less) but simple things like backing up our projects, especially when working on locations. The “I’ll do it later” or “this is not a good time” will always be there so […]

Breaking the Rules of Cinematic Composition

“You have to learn the rules of the game. And then you have to play better than anyone else.” – Albert Einstein Filmmaking and photography have a lot of rules. Once we learn these rules, we then have the ability to choose to apply or break them. Let’s discuss three traditional cinematic composition “rules” and how to […]

The Many Advantages of Using the Atomos Shogun External Monitor/Recorder

For the past couple of months I’ve been using an Atomos Shogun. While I had very clear reasons to pick up this device, I’ve found some other very valuable and attractive features that I want to share. Longer recording times The first and most obvious reason was to record 4K and HD for extended periods […]

What’s the Big Deal with Anamorphic Imagery?

Just days after launching a video featuring Panasonic’s new anamorphic feature for the GH4, it had received more than 15,000 views. That’s awesome, but we also received a lot of tweets and emails asking “What’s the big deal with anamorphic?” As we attempted to reply to the messages it was obvious that a better approach […]

Best Gear for Hybrid Assignments

Let’s start with the definition of “Hybrid.” What I mean by this term are productions or assignments where one or two people are required to be the photographer, filmmaker, sound recordist, producer, and even editor. These gigs are becoming increasingly popular. It sounds crazy and these sorts of shoots can be. One of the keys […]

New Lessons I’ve Learned About Video Production

A while back I wrote about some of the “Lessons I’ve Learned On Set.” Today I’d like to share a few more I’ve learned recently, not only while shooting, but from reading several different books, discussing this topic with colleagues, and receiving feedback from the first article. • If you learn how to shoot like […]

Practical Interview Tips

I’ve been presenting a series of workshops about “Interview Techniques” both from a producer’s perspective (things to consider) as well as from a DP’s perspective (equipment considerations and lighting approaches). Here are some of the essential tips I share during these events. 1. Interview Structure An interview is a conversation that involves three people, not […]

On Music: Masterful Uses in Cinema

In cinema, music can be used just as color, like a filter that tints the story (or stories) with different shades and tints. The great director Wong Kar-wai states that “film music must be visual” and adds “when I hear a song that inspires something visual on me, I record it and put it aside, knowing […]