Hello all you film fanatics, foto geeks, and anything else that starts with an “F” 😉 — here’s the episode you asked for — a quick and dirty tour behind the scenes of our 30 Days of Genius set.
If you’re an OG of cjLIVE, you know the show is beautifully shot with cranes, dollies, and a full crew in front of a LIVE in-studio audience. Taking the show on the road for 30 Days of Genius required a stripped down kit that was easy to travel with, fast to setup, and easily operated by 2 people. So we adapted the kit to create the same look that could fit in a couple carry-on bags.
Our core kit to shoot a minimal viable product was comprised of three DSLR cameras: one on the guest, one on the host, and a wide 2-shot for safety and to establish the place. The light setup consisted of a key 1×1 + rim light for each person. And for those of you wondering about the audio gear … We kept with a simple lav setup using the Sennheiser E3 Wireless Lav kit with MKE2 Mics. For on camera, we used the either onboard sound for reference or the Rode Video Mic Pro.
From there, we added a little spice that would keep things interesting:
Kessler Second Shooter on the Kessler Shuttlepod Mini
With more cameras than we had operators, we wanted a dolly move that was predictable and required little operation during the shoot. Using the Kessler Second Shooter, we were able to pre-program a sliding move on a constant loop and add a slight parallax effect. By using the Kessler Shuttlepod mini as the track, we were able to expand or shorten the track based on room size. The entire system is modular, making it easy to break down for travel.
A roaming camera on a monopod
Adding a roaming camera gave us new opportunities to create visual interest & diversity, create a hand-held feel and even give a peek behind the scenes.
GoPros for a creative or unexpected angle
We had two GoPros in the kit and often them threw them into the mix. It was an opportunity for a unique view or a utility wide shot.
A stills camera for behind the scenes images + the episode thumbnail
I shot several stills of every guest with the Nikon 4DS to use as the episode thumbnail and when time allowed, the crew also snapped behind the scenes images & footage.
Here’s the gear list.
|Canon 5D Mark III (x3)||Canon 24-105mm 4.0|
|Canon 7D||Canon 16-35mm 2.8|
|GoPro Hero 3||Canon 70-200mm 4.0|
|GoPro Hero 4||Nikkor 24-70mm 2.8|
|DJI Osmo (BTS only)||Support:|
|Kessler Second Shooter|
|Lights:||Kessler Shuttlepod Mini|
|Lowel Fresnels 250w (x2)||Manfrotto 190CX Tripod (2)|
|1×1 Litepanels (x3)||Gitzo Tripod|
|Lightstands (x2)||Manfrotto Monopod|
|Sennheiser G3 Wireless Lav + MKE2 Mics|
|Rode Video Mic Pro (x2)|
Though we had many cameras on set, the reality is that you can still shoot a basic interview with very little gear. We set our minimum on 3, but you can achieve it with 2 or even 1. The benefit of 3, especially in long-form interviews, is the ability to switch angles to keep the visual interest. Also, when using DSLRs, you will be faced with a 30 minute (or shorter) record time. If your interview will go longer, you’ll need the coverage of multiple cameras to ensure nothing is lost.
That’s the nuts and bolts of it. If you have any questions, let me know in the comments… and of course, if you have no idea what 30 Days of Genius is, do check it out here.
Links From The Episode
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