Je Revele – promotional video using the Nikon D4
My friends, Natalie Licini and Cate Scaglione, approached me a few weeks ago, after seeing the timelapse clip of New York city that I shot with the Nikon D4. They were curious how they could possibly incorporate something like this into a promotional piece for their newly launched studio, Je Revele. Well, this turned into a full-fledged video clip, all shot with the Nikon D4, with only a short time-lapse sequence thrown in there.
Today is the launch date of their new site, Je Revele, and the video clip we shot is very much part of the promotion of their brand.
I’ve shot some Fusion clips before, and this promotional video was similar, since it wouldn’t involve long video sequences. The shorter sequences made it easier to do retakes and shoot the same idea from different angles.
What really helped here was the storyboard that Cate had developed from the ideas that Natalie and Cate had brainstormed. Having a clear directive from which to assemble the footage, meant we could concentrate on capturing specific ideas – even if it meant we had to interpret or adapt the ideas.
Erik Colonese assisted me on the day of the shoot, and he was also primarily responsible for the subsequent editing of the video.
I’m proud of the video clip, and even more proud that Natalie and Cate loved it:
Working with Neil was a true collaboration, and it’s hard to now imagine working with anyone else on this. We sent Neil our storyboard, the blueprint of our cinematic dreams. Neil and Erik technical-directed the entire shoot with patience, fluidity and ease. Frame by frame, they brought our brand to life in motion picture. We edited this footage with collaboration and enthusiasm. We are proud to be the first among the many amazing commercial projects in Neil & Erik’s future and we are so thrilled to be able to partner with them going forward on our various commercial client projects. Timing truly is everything.
photo gear used during the video shoot
|The opening sequence with the camera moving through the entrance, and then towards the front door, was shot with the Nikon D4 balanced on the Glidecam HD2000 stabilizer(B&H).
Since it is an involved process balancing the camera and a lens on the Glidecam, it makes most sense to dedicate only one lens to the Glidecam.Most photographers use a prime lens, but I used the Nikon 14-24mm f2.8G ED AF-S (B&H). What counted in its favor, is that this lens has internal focusing. In other words, the lens barrel doesn’t extend when you focus. Neither does the lens change length when you zoom. Therefore the lens remains balanced, regardless of how you focus or zoom.
There are several sequences where I used a Cinevate Atlas 35″ Slider (B&H), to get some movement with the camera. Most notably, the short sequence with Michelle, (our model), where she was sitting on the stairs. The camera’s movement is past the railing of the staircase.The slider’s movement is fairly short, so it is most effectively used if there is something in the foreground which glides past as you view your subject.
I attached the camera to the slider with a Manfrotto 701HDV Pro Fluid Video Mini Head (B&H). There is one sequence where the camera moves past Natalie and Cate, where I used the Fluid Head to move the camera subtly from left to right to keep them centered in the frame while the camera moved on the slider.
Glidecam HD2000 (B&H)
Cinevate 35″ Atlas slider (B&H)
Manfrotto 701HDV Pro Fluid Video Mini Head (B&H)
Manfrotto fluid head monopod (B&H)
Manfrotto 458B tripod with NeoTec Pro Photo tripod legs (B&H)
continuous lighting for indoor sequences:
Spiderlite TD5 Light Kit (B&H)
Further details about shooting the video:
- We needed to keep the camera at 1/50th of a second shutter speed through-out. There are many articles online which will describe why 24fps gives a film-like appearance. And for specific reasons, it means we need to shoot at 1/50th shutter speed to maintain the 180 degree shutter rule, if we are shooting video at 24fps. So we kept the shutter speed to 1/50th shooting the video footage.
- To help keep to 1/50th of a second shutter speed, we had to use a 3-stop neutral density filter to keep the aperture within a possible range. We also had to change my ISO to suit, even though some sequences were shot at settings up to 3200 ISO. Of course, turning the footage into B&W, and even adding grain in post-production, masked any noise that may have appeared.
- We also used a Polarizer Filter with the time-lapse sequence, to help darken the skies a bit.
Editing the video:
- We use Final Cut Pro X to edit the video.
- For the romantic mood some sequences were slowed down by 20%. For the “old world look” we turned the clips black and white with a hint of sepia. To finish it off some film grain and a vignette were added as well.