(Los Angeles, California--January 28, 2014) The deadline and budget were tight. The client – a leading maker of iconic, affordable jeans – wanted stills and a beautifully photographed film-style location-shoot commercial turned around in one day. Christopher Laughter, a director at the Los Angeles-based creative content production company Snackhaus, knew that the session, depicting a young woman’s quiet contemplations in a rustic cabin, would require a camera capable of providing superb still and motion-image quality, as well as minimal downtime between setups. This meant there would have to be minimal lighting adjustments, versatility, and mobility from take-to-take in order to make the deadline. “Thrilling our clients and exceeding their expectations is something we constantly strive for,” said Laughter. “These days that seems to get harder and harder as budgets get smaller and smaller. Any time we can find ways to increase our creative capabilities and deliver great results for our clients, we’re quick to act.”|
Director Christopher Laughter (standing) simultaneously shooting 4K video and stills using the Canon Cinema EOS-1D C digital SLR camera. First AC Paul Mocey-Hanton stands at left.
The solution Laughter chose to meet these challenges was the Cinema EOS-1D C Digital SLR camera equipped with a variety of L-Series photographic lenses from Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions. Delivering outstanding video performance, the compact, lightweight Canon Cinema EOS-1D C is a fully self-contained still camera that also provides on-board video recording at 4K (4096 x 2160-pixel) or full HD (1920 x 1080-pixel) resolution for shooting high-end TV content and motion pictures. “With the Canon EOS-1D C camera we were able to shoot 4K video, and then pull 4K stills from the same video file, enabling us to move quickly and capture what we needed for the commercial as well as the print and digital campaigns in the same day, with the same camera,” Laughter explained.
Designed for Commercials
The first-ever digital SLR camera with 4K recording capability*, the EOS-1D C camera is part of Canon’s Cinema EOS product line and is unique in that line for its ability to capture both high resolution still images as well as 4K video (or full 1920 x 1080 HD) on its 18.1-megapixel full-frame (24mm x 36mm) CMOS image sensor. The camera’s less than 4 lb. body and its compatibility with a wide variety of compact Canon EF L-Series lenses enabled Laughter to maneuver into tight spaces to capture the intimate shots he needed. “The size of it is perfect,” Laughter said. “I really value the ability to work hand held with these EOS-1D C cameras because they’re not off-putting or scary to the model.”
“The lightweight Cinema EOS-1D C camera reduced the weight of our rigs and support,” added first AC Paul Mocey-Hanton. “This not only made us more maneuverable, but also saved on equipment-related expenses.” The Canon Cinema EOS-1D C camera also features a wide sensitivity range of up to ISO 25600 for outstanding low-light performance with reduced noise even at higher ISO settings. This further increased Laughter’s mobility and helped minimize the need for extensive set-ups, as it freed him from needing all but a bare minimum of lighting gear.
The Canon Cinema EOS-1D C camera combines the convenient form factor of a Canon Digital SLR camera with the ability to deliver 8-bit 4:2:2 4K and 8-bit 4:2:0 full HD video to internal CF cards. The Cinema EOS-1D C camera can also shoot in Canon Log Gamma mode to enable the recording of high-quality video with rich gradations maximizing both highlight and shadow detail retention while also providing the high level of color-grading freedom needed for television and motion pictures. If desired, captured video (excluding 4K video) can be output from the camera’s HDMI terminal to an external recorder using an uncompressed YCbCr 8-bit 4:2:2 signal. The EOS-1D C camera also features a Live View capability, enabling users to frame and compose images using either the viewfinder or a rear-panel 3.2-inch ultra-sharp 1.04 million-dot Clear View LCD II panel.
Crucial to the Look
Employing an EF lens mount, the Cinema EOS-1D C camera is compatible with Canon’s line of more than 60 interchangeable EF Series lenses (including primes, zooms, telephoto, and specialty lenses such as macro, tilt/shift, and fisheye) and Canon’s line of EF Cinema lenses, which include six Cinema primes, two Cinema Zoom lenses, and two Compact Cinema Zoom models. Laughter used a variety of Canon EF L Series lenses on the campaign, including the EF 24mm f/1.4L II USM, EF 35mm f/1.4L USM, and EF 50mm f/1.2L USM prime lenses, and the EF 70-200mm f/2.8L II zoom lens.
“The Canon lenses we used were crucial to the look of the commercial,” Hanton confirmed. “We knew we wanted a very sharp image with great color rendition, and the 24mm, 35mm, 50mm, and 70-200mm lenses fit the bill. Pulling all the detail out of the 4K files from the Canon Cinema EOS-1D C camera is highly dependent on these lenses. They resolved the detail we needed not only for the 4K video, but also the still frames pulled from the footage.”
“Overall, the Canon lenses I have used have been very impressive,” Hanton added. “Each lens displays great resolving power, beautiful color and pleasing bokeh while minimizing distortion and chromatic aberration. Also of note is their fabulous ability to mitigate unwanted flare. My favorite lenses are the 24mm f/1.4L II and the 50mm f/1.2L. With these two lenses I feel ready for any situation under any lighting condition.”
“Using the Canon Cinema EOS-1D C Digital SLR camera we were able to capture everything the client wanted for the print and video campaign in just one day of shooting,” Laughter concluded. "Not only were they very happy with the cost savings, they were thrilled with the image quality. The EOS-1D C camera absolutely allowed us to exceed their expectations.”
You can watch a behind the scenes video from Laughter’s shoot by visiting Canon Pro on Vimeo at http://vimeo.com/67321110 and be sure to check out more of Laughter’s work at http://www.snackhaus.com .
Using Apple FCPX for A DocumenTree
After 25 years of working on other people's documentaries, commercials, feature films, filmmaker Michael Angelo's first original project is the inspirational story of the Treeman of Venice Beach, a singular creation of a singular man whose combination of costume, body paint, live foliage, and 10-foot stilts is gently beguiling and deeply inspirational. With over 1000 hours of footage in a crazy number of formats over a period of years, collaboration among a far-flung team of volunteers with varying degrees of expertise (including none at all), A DocumenTree seemed like the ideal project for Michael to jump into Final Cut Pro X. Michael's longtime experience in a variety of disciplines has nevertheless allowed him to come at the issues of media management, metadata, offline-online workflows, and a variety of complex technical issues in some unusual, and, dare we say it, organic ways.
Read Article Subscribe
more articles »