Wednesday, March 26, 2014

If you're over 18, able bodied, not currently in college, have a job (and or money) and you have a desire to travel, then my question is, whats holding you back? There are so many things in life that seem really "important" but in the grand scope of your life, are so insignificant. Jobs and money come and go, friends will "grow up" and get boring, school doesn't guarantee anything and fame/recognition is frivolous! But, if  9-5 jobs, mini vans, white picket fences, coffee dates and Superbowl parties are really what you're into then, more power to you! I've only been to a handful of different states and countries, and even though my traveling experience is somewhat less than those who I look up and aspire to, I can tell you this I WOULDN'T TRADE MY ADVENTURES AND EXPERIENCES FOR ANYTHING! When I talk of traveling, I mean actually indulging yourself in another culture, not just being a tourist and seeing a new part of the world. You'll be surprised how much your outlook on life will change when you see life through the eyes of someone who  has so much joy having so much less. And the people who have more, and look down on you like a second rate citizen, you'll understand how it must feel when the less fortunate look at you. Getting out of this red, white and blue comfort zone will humble you and change the way you live your life. I wont lie its a lot harder than just sitting in front of your computer and re-blogging "wanderlust" tags on Tumblr, but if you seriously have wanderlust in your bones, the only one stopping you...... is you!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

I've owned 3 different video DSLR's in my filmmaking life, the T2i, T3i and 60D. After selling my T3i and buying a 60D, I kinda wanted a second camera, one that was small and cheap but still took great photo's and video. Camera like the new Eos-M, Sony RX's and the panasonic GH series cameras are great but since I'm already so familiar with canon DSLR's, those cameras didn't interest me much (plus the Sony's and Panasonic's have smaller sensors) The t2i was my first video DSLR and I really enjoyed using it despite its limitations (the latest "stable" version of magic lantern wasn't out at the time) and lets be honest, during the DSLR filmmaking revolution the only people who bought the T2i were the ones who couldn't afford the 7D, secretly we all wanted the bigger and more "professional" looking camera and I was no exception. I sold my T2i over 2 years ago and never looked back, I always thought it was the lesser of the canon DSLR's. What some people don't realize is that the 7D, 60D, T4i, T3i and yes the T2i all have the same sensor, so although some have different or better features the image overall will be the same quality. Since I'm going to Brazil soon I wanted a second camera to act as my "walk around" camera, I found a used T2i on craigslist for really cheap so I bought it, and here are the reasons why. 
1. It was cheap! I'm not made of money so I didn't want to spend a bunch of cash on something that might get stolen from me while I'm in Brazil.
2. Takes great photos! Like every canon DSLR, the T2i shoots great photos! The ability to shoot in RAW with an 18mp DSLR is great!
3. Great for video! Now that the  stable magic lantern (version 2.3) is out, it makes the little old T2i a very capable video camera and unlocks many features that I wanted before but didn't have back when I owned it (like the manual audio levels) and also having other free plugins like Cinestyle makes it great for filmmaking!
4. Its small! Being a traveler and a skate filmer, my style of filmmaking has always been "run and gun" so big camera set ups have never appealed to me. The T2i is small and innocent looking but it packs a powerful punch! 
I still own and love my 60D but I find myself using the little T2i for most of my video projects due to its size and the fact that I wont cry if it gets a little banged up. Combined with the nifty fifty I think its the perfect camera for the traveling filmmaker on a budget! 

Monday, July 22, 2013

So this is probably really impractical for most people but in some situations it is very helpful to own a "B" cam. Having a good (but in most cases cheaper) camera kit to cover second angles or to just serve as a back up, is really helpful if you're a one man show. For me having a cheaper camera like my newly acquired T2i, is great because it gives me the same quality images that my 60D does (both photo and video) but is smaller, attracts less attention and most of all, cheap! Combined with a nifty fifty the setup still gives me great images but I feel less paranoid about walking around in public or being a little more rough with it. Because I'm going to be in Brasil this fall I am obviously gonna be shooting photos and video a lot! So if I "ugly-fi" my little t2i I'll be less likely to get robbed ( it happens a lot down there ) and even if I do, better to lose my cheaper camera than my 60D and my spendy lenses.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

When I go out to shoot video there are so many different pieces of gear that I like to bring; tripods, sliders, steadicams, jibs, lights, mics etc. But when I go out to take photos I like to pack as light as possible. Since I am a huge fan of Joey L's work I know that it's possible to create stunning images using only one flash. Sure I don't use a phase one with professional studio strobes but the techniques are the same. Using natural light as the hair light then using a flash for the key really creates some cool photos. That's all I've been rolling with and it's all I've needed so far.
My light strobist set up:
-Canon 60D
-Sigma 17-50mm f2.8
-2x aperture trigmasters 
-1x Neewer TT-560

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

So I've always been a DIY enthusiast and I always aim to give my projects a polished and professional look, never really been into making the various PVC rigs that so many others do, cause to me they just scream "amateur!" So when I decided I wanted a jib I asked for help from my dad, who is very crafty and knows how to take my projects and make them look good and more importantly - work. He constructed my jib out of two pieces of very lightweight but strong aluminum, making the jib weigh less than 5lbs but still strong enough to support my 60D, 17-50 f2.8 and MKE-400 mic. With all that on the rig  it takes about 7.5 pounds to counter balance it on the other end, I use three 2.5lbs weights that are relatively easy to carry around. I've also standardized all my rigs to use the 717 tripod plate so my camera can go right from my jib to my flycam without changing plates. I'll have a more photos up on the blog soon to show you some close ups of the jib. 

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Over the years I've built many handles to accommodate the cameras I've owned, anything from an hv30 to a gripped T2i. Many people have said that they liked my  simple yet effective design and were wondering if I'd make them one. So now that I've found a way to make them for pretty cheap, I've been thinking to start making a few for anyone who'd want to purchase one. So many handles on the market today are either feeble quality, too expensive or don't offer the features that skate filmers want. My goal is to produce handles that are affordable, look good, well built and have the attachment and counter balancing features that skate filmers need. Stay tuned for more updates.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

So this coming November my friends and I are going to be funding our own trip back down to northeast Brasil to create a series of micro documentaries on the cultural lifestyles of people in the Northeast, the series will be called "Pessoas do Nordeste" which means " People of the Northeast". For most professionals who travel all the time its not too big of a deal, but for us it kinda is. So for the next 7 months I'm going to be planning, making contacts, packing, and just making sure everything that needs to happen, does. The biggest decisions that I'll have to be making is what gear I'm gonna bring with me. I have a bunch of filmmaking gizmos that i would love to bring with me but its just not that practical. So stay tuned cause I'll be doing some "pre-production" blog videos for the next 7 months on the progress and planning of this new adventure.

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