Just finished a couple days of shooting greenscreen as DoP for Glowfrog Studios at Camberwell Studios. It was great fun, and as ever it was great to be a part of the Glowfrog Family. We were shooting people to be comped into some of the high end visualisation work that Glowfrog specialises in alongside the VFX with which I usually work with them on, but will leave the actual description of the work to them.
From my point of view it was great to get to use the Canon EOS C300 for a couple of days. After the initial surprise of it’s size, which was a bit bigger than I expected, once mounted with a EF 24-70 2.8L lens to give us control on focal length, it wasn’t too much of an issue size wise. We brought a 22” 1080 HDMI monitor with us which we were able to use as a table mounted monitor for all of us to check composition no matter where we where in the studio and allow me to double check focus away from the little screen and EVF, which even with the excellent peaking on the C300, it was good to have the ability to check everything on a proper screen.
The C300 is, as is almost every bit of Canon kit, a joy to use, once you have read the manual, which is handily available in PDF form, so that you can do your homework before you turn up on set. If your familiar with Canon DSLR shooting, I wouldn’t say you feel at home, but at least your on holiday in a country that speaks the same language. The best bit was the way that the camera comes with everything we needed to get a decent picture out of it at an affordable price point. It comes with the EVF, it comes with a screen, it comes with all necessary grips, it uses standard media with compact cards, and for the work that we were doing the camera would prefer if you defaulted to use the Canon Log format which gives you the most dynamic range when moved to post, and as we were shooting Greenscreen that’s exactly what we wanted. Once loaded onto a computer (which was more straightforward on a codec loaded PC using CS 5.5, rather than a mac running Mountain Lion and CS6) the footage keyed well, and we had the latitude we wanted thanks to the dynamic range available in the Canon Log as well as the 50Mbps we were getting in the MXF codec shooting at 25p with shutter speed set to 50.
Things to think for next time are bring more lights to pump our green screen, but we were moving in and out of shots and setups, so we lived with what we could knowing we had the fallback of the Canon Log format to help us and as we had brought a loaded After Effects workstation with us, the ever brilliant Nathan from Glowfrog who had the lucky job of data wrangler and AE checker was able to get some convincing initial slap comps setup by end of the morning session.
The other thing that Glowfrog had arranged was an afternoon the day before the shoot to allow us to work through setups and get us familiar with the camera and workflow for the next days shooting.
It’s attention to details like this, that make Glowfrog a pleasure to work with. The team led by Creative Director Nigel Hunt, and Producer Rebecca Marie-Perry provided exactly what the shoot needed in terms of time and equipment while keeping to a clear budget as well as always referring to the client brief.
We have had a great couple of days, which would be great to do again soon.