Well, this is a loaded topic! Of course every video production is different and this list will be quite subjective to our own personal preferences and shooting style but that doesn't mean you can’t learn something from it!
Well, this is a loaded topic! Of course every video production is different and this list will be quite subjective to our own personal preferences and shooting style but that doesn’t mean you can’t learn something from it!
One of our favorites by far! You see these things everywhere from low budget shorts, weddings, corporate videos, and big hollywood film productions. There is literally a stabilizer for every budget when it comes to these things. For us, we’ve always been a big fan of Glidecam. We use their HD-2000 and HD-4000 series depending on the camera payload that we’re operating. These stabilizers tend to come with the option to mount them to an articulating arm that attaches to a vest that you then strap on. It’s great to be able to operate this way as it gives you the most stability, but at the same time restricts your camera movement somewhat. For us, we’re always on the move when it comes to video production so it’s important for us to have a rig that is versatile. We will often only use the stabilizer/sled portion of the Glidecam. By doing this, we’re able to shoot in low mode, de-rig quicker for stealth shooting, and have more camera movement options overall.
Where would a video production company be these days without a drone? With the ease of use and the price being so affordable, it’s hard to justify not having one. The popularity is so high that we often get requests from our Vancouver clients to include aerials in their video productions. We love the production value that aerials add and are always trying to think of new ways in which we can use them for our video productions. We fly a DJI Phantom 3 Professional. For us, it’s just the right amount of quality we need when it comes to aerials. If you’re wanting to spend a bit more money and opt for something with better specs, we would suggest looking into the DJI Inspire 1 with the Zenmuse X5R. 4k Raw video with interchangeable lenses!? YES PLEASE. However, there are so many options out there nowadays and the technology on these things keep changing. Don’t feel bad when you drop the cash on one of these bad boys and something bigger, better, and cheaper comes out a few months later.
Ah the slider – it’s like having a mini dolly that stores easily away. You can get these things in so many different shapes and sizes. There are a lot of different models out in the market. Some good and some bad, so make sure to do your research on which one will work for you best. Kessler, Cinevate, Edelkrone all make pretty decent rigs.
We own and operate the Pocket Dolly from Kessler Crane. It works perfectly for video productions as it runs on a belt system with a motor. This allows us to dial in the ideal speed of our camera motion. We can feather in the beginning of the slide and then feather down the speed at the end. We can also recreate the same motion multiple times which allows us to get funky in post-production when we want to composite shots. Through the remote we’re also able to do motion controlled time lapses. We would recommend something with a belt driven system to get the most out of your slider.
We’ve all seen that Ronin work it’s magic on set. Motorized gimbals are a great resource to have on any video production. We were one of the first Vancouver video production companies to actually own a MoVi M5 from Freefly. Freefly was the original innovator of the handheld gimbals and blew everyone away when they first announced the technology. Although DJI is making fantastic strides with their Ronin series gimbals, we’ve found that the software that Freefly operates under is much more intuitive. Either way, there are a ton of other brand options out there but please note that not all gimbals are created equal!
We love using our Movi for very specific shots. Whether we’re filming out of the back of a van while driving down a busy Vancouver street or we’re flying in a helicopter capturing aerials – our Movi comes along with us on just about every shoot. We’ve been able to mount it on a jib and have used it as a remote head while having the remote control opening up a whole range of options in dual operator mode.
So simple, yet so important. Having a shoulder rig is the most quintessential piece of gear you’ll ever own. Every rig is fairly unique in their own way coming right down to the specifics of how it feels and how it configures with your camera. Most manufactures design rigs for very specific cameras which are designed to fit its ergonomics. We’ve found that even the best rigs are never perfect and most times you’re left to create your own “frankin rig” comprised of different components from different systems. Some of the key components you should consider when looking at a rig are the overall size, counterbalance option, rail circumference and length, and offset mounting options. Ideally, you want a rig that is flexible and that fits your current camera setup comfortably while still allowing for upgrades and interchangeability with other systems.
May 2016Greater Vancouver Board of Trade is Canada’s most active and influential business association. They act as a vibrant hub for commerce, trade, and free enterprise all while impacting those who work, live or visit the Vancouver region.
Greater Vancouver Board of Trade is Canada’s most active and influential business association. They act as a vibrant hub for commerce, trade, and free enterprise all while impacting those who work, live or visit the Vancouver region. As such, they help contribute to the success and growth of young entrepreneurs and business professionals through their Company of Young Professionals program. They host several networking events and seminars that specifically cultivate business education and community engagement.
One of their more recent initiatives was the “Big Idea Contest” which was a video competition aimed at a growing trend and problem that Vancouver’s Millennial population faces. Recent studies have showed that by 2025 over 50% of the world’s working population will be Millennials. Vancouver faces the dilemma of losing out on attracting this generation as the cost of living in the region rises beyond affordability.
Our help in this contest was based around one group’s submission of solutions to the growing problem. We used our storytelling abilities to tie together perspectives from various business leaders, business influencers and Millennials themselves to establish the conversation that lead into the group’s innovative and transformative ideas.
To support our ideas behind Vancouver’s Millennial Crisis, please visit the contest page and vote for team number 5 and help us bring our solutions to reality! For more information about the project please visit our page at PixelMotionFilms/Millennials.
Jan 2016During our recent exploration into the Northern regions of Vietnam, we were contacted through our local producer by luxury cruiseliner, Aphrodite Cruises. They were hoping to create a video that showcased their tours of UNESCO World Heritage Site, Ha Long Bay.
During our recent exploration into the Northern regions of Vietnam, we were contacted through our local producer by luxury cruiseliner, Aphrodite Cruises. They were hoping to create a video that showcased their tours of UNESCO World Heritage Site, Ha Long Bay.
As fates collided, we were able to fit the creation of their commercial into our tight production schedule. We descended from the northern mountains back into the capital city of Hanoi where a charter bus awaited to take us into the city of Ha Long, the jumping off point for nautical adventure. From there we boarded Aphrodite’s flagship “junk boat” and sailed into the maze of limestone giants. Thousands of islands appeared rapidly as if out of thin air as we ventured further.
Ultimately we were there to capture not only the beauty of the islands, but the luxury experience of Aphrodite’s 5 star services. We were taken in with warm hospitality as we enjoyed and captured the amazing cuisine and luxury accommodations.
We interacted with the many guests – most from international regions ranging from European and North American decent. We awoke every day to a rigorous ritual of Tai Chi on the top deck as the early morning sun blazingly rose from the earth’s eastern horizon. From that point on, we were always on the first boat to the day’s excursion.
From exploring the bay’s many caves and secret grottos to hearing personal stories from floating village inhabitants, we felt our Ha Long Bay experience couldn’t have been more successful.
Check out the commercial made for Aphrodite Cruises here and be on the lookout for more content from our recent journeys in Northern Vietnam.
Sep 2015Nestled on the Northern side of South America’s Eastern edge, the forgotten French Guiana stands the testament of time reminding us of the long forgotten French colonization of the 19th century.
Nestled on the Northern side of South America’s Eastern edge, the forgotten French Guiana stands the testament of time reminding us of the long forgotten French colonization of the 19th century. An infusion of French culture and history intermingle with South America’s ancient indigenous populations. Flying high above the rich ecosystems of the Amazon rain forest, a symphony of sounds radiate vertically above the clouded canopy. Navigating through the dusty streets of the capital city of Cayenne, it’s a city society with flavors and experiences unrivaled in its diversity. Their flag and tongue may be both French in form, but their people, are far from Parisian. French Roots in the heart of the Amazon jungle. This is French Guiana.
Our time in the country encompassed one busy week centering around the capital of Cayenne and journeying to nearby Kourou for an amazing space launch. It’s tough to put into words just what we experienced but if we didn’t at least try, we wouldn’t be able to share with you some of the most amazing features of this country.
May 2015The Coast Capital Go for It Challenge is a company sponsored initiative that inspires, motivates and gives back to the employees who help them reach their corporate goals all year long. Coast Capital selects three inspiring entries and provides all of the tools...
The Coast Capital Go for It Challenge is a company sponsored initiative that inspires, motivates and gives back to the employees who help them reach their corporate goals all year long. To be chosen for the Go for It challenge, employees submit a short video detailing what they hope to learn or take on. Coast Capital then selects three inspiring entries and provides all of the tools and resources necessary to enable them to reach their goals. It’s Coast Capital’s way of saying Go for It! We’ve got your back!
Producing the Coast Capital Go for It challenge videos was a challenge in itself, but an experience beyond rewarding. This project was extremely personal for those involved. They not only opened their doors and welcomed us into their homes, but also allowed us to closely film them during a time of weakness and hardship.
We produced three separate videos during the more than two months of filming. We traveled to Vancouver Island, we climbed the Coquitlam crunch and we ventured into a professional chef’s kitchen. The variety of filming locations, environments, and themes were all seamlessly connected. However, the scope of work was so varied that we mentally transitioned from one style to the next. It was important to ensure each video had its own unique feel that held true to the video’s topic but still respected the client’s overall vision.
Sumeet Dahl wanted to learn to play guitar so he could feel included in his girlfriend’s musical family gatherings. His journey to strum alongside started with private lessons from the talented musician Vince Vaccaro. He taught Sumeet guitar basics and the rhythm, all in the comfortable and intimate setting of his home. At the end of the 10 weeks, we joined Sumeet by the fire as he confidently inserted himself into a music circle joined by his girlfriend’s family. As the fire crackled, and the smoke rose high above the overhanging trees, Sumeet’s effortless strumming perfectly harmonized with the family, and at last he felt genuinely a part of the family.
Danielle Nori was on a weight loss mission. After beginning her fight to shed fat earlier in the year, she didn’t want to stop at the 50 pounds she already lost. So she joined for the Go for It challenge to continue the process and to remotivate herself to continue her personal journey. World famous personal trainer Tommy Europe injected energy and a flurry of motivation, reinvigorating Danielle’s fitness mission. Her ten week challenge saw her training at anytime fitness in Coquitlam, going through a gruelling circuit at Trout Lake, and climbing the Coquitlam crunch in the pouring rain all with Tommy alongside every step of the way. At the end of Danielle’s ten week challenge, she was healthier, happier and looking amazing. The best part, Danielle is passionate and committed to continuing her healthy lifestyle and inspiring everyone around her.
The third go for it challenge participant was Dan Dante. He wanted to learn to cook and feel comfortable in the kitchen. With his new house and fiancé, learning the skills to cook and impress his wife to be was the main motivation behind him taking on this challenge. He admitted he was about a beginner as possible in the kitchen and wasn’t ashamed to let this be known. Helping him find his way among the knives and forks was Jonathan Chovancek, the celebrated and executive chef of Cafe Medina. Cooking is not easy, and Dan faced many difficulties that he had to overcome during the 10 weeks. Getting familiar with different ingredients and combinations is not something someone can learn overnight. In between his scheduled sessions with Chef Jonathan, Dan became comfortable with making some of the dishes he had learnt, and found himself firing up the oven instead of calling for delivery. Eventually, his confidence improved and the kitchen didn’t feel so hostile. During the ten weeks, Dan learned to make Chicken stuffed with Chorizo sausage, smoked bacon Bolognese and even a chocolate cake! The best part was being able to set the table and provide a delicious home cooked meal to his fiancé. In Dan’s own words, this challenge has changed my life.
WATCH ALL THE CHALLENGES BELOW:
Sumeet Dhaul & Vince Vaccaro
Dan Dante & Jonathan Chovancek
Danielle Nori & Tommy Europe
The original inception of the shot came from the “Bullet Time” shot from the feature film, “The Matrix”. The idea is to have several cameras lined up in a 360 degree space that would all fire in one single take in order to...
Sometimes a shot comes together so perfectly that it surprises you no matter how much you planned and anticipated it. This was the case for our grand finale ender for our newest film, “DOCZILLA”.
The original inception of the shot came from the “Bullet Time” shot from the feature film, “The Matrix”. The idea is to have several cameras lined up in a 360 degree space that would all fire in one single take in order to freeze time around any given object in the center. Of course, we had limited resources and budget constraints on this project, and didn’t have access to dozens of cameras nor the lighting equipment to illuminate everything properly. So, how did we achieve that effect? With one camera, a tripod, two strobe lights and a whole lot of patience!
To start with, the concept was simple; we basically wanted the camera to spin around the GT-R multiple times (similar to our shot in the SEMA Show 2014 video of the Aventador). Having said that, we only wanted to spin around twice; once with the car, and once without.
We knew we first needed to create a space that would allow us to have a perfect 360-degree circle. We did this by finding out where we wanted our center point in relation to the vehicle. From there we strung a line of rope tied off at the center point and stretched it out as far as we wanted. We then started to draw a chalk line at the end of the rope circling around the center point while keeping the rope pulled tight. This resulted in a perfect circle in which we could base our whole movement around. This would allow us to keep an equal distance to the car at all times allowing us to move the camera freely on a tripod around the circle. We would then use this circle to take hundreds of individual frames to freeze time and create the bullet time effect.
Another challenge we faced was making sure each photo was exactly framed from the last so there would be no jarring motion – we needed this thing as smooth and seamless as possible! In order to maintain a constant frame, we needed a reference point in the frame so our panning and tilting would line up. To do this, we hung a metal rod that we gaffer taped to the ceiling that sported a bright orange tennis ball at the end of it and positioned it at the exact center point in which we drew our circle. This rod and tennis ball would float above the vehicle at a distance of about 2 feet. This enabled us to line up each frame within the camera’s gridlines in the viewfinder. At that point, all we needed to do was align the tennis ball to the top center line on the grid, take a photo, and then move the camera over on the circle, and repeat the process. For each frame we moved the camera about 10 inches around the circle and marked the position for future reference. This allowed us to revisit those same frames for when we wanted to do our second take around the circle without the car.
For lighting, we were limited to only 2 Canon 430 EX II flashes paired with 2 Pocket Wizard Flex TT5 and 1 Pocket Wizard Plus X. Luckily. Because we only wanted to physically move around the car once but wanted a constant spinning effect, we needed to loop the frames. The look we wanted was to also have random flashes highlighting difference aspects of the car as we moved around it. If we looped it with only the same flashes going off on the same spots of the cars, it would get horribly repetitive. So in order to stop that from happening, we needed to take multiple shots for each frame around the circle. We needed to have one utilizing both flashes and one with no flash making the image underexposed. We wanted both frames so that we could pick and choose later on in post, where we wanted light and where didn’t.
Several hours later, and having the car removed and shooting the circle without it, we had our shot!
You can read more in Part two of “How we did it: The Matrix Bullet time effect with a Liberty Walk Nissan GT-R” for our entire post-production workflow.
“DOCZILLA” profiles Vancouver physician and automotive enthusiast, DR. JJ Dubec and his infamous Liberty Walk Nissan R-35 GT-R.
Things have been busier than ever here at the Speedline and Pixel Motion office. More notably in the last 5 months, we have been heavily working on creating our newest automotive film, Doczilla.
“DOCZILLA” profiles Vancouver physician and automotive enthusiast, DR. JJ Dubec and his infamous Liberty Walk Nissan R-35 GT-R. With world-wide recognition in the automotive tuning scene, JJ’s GT-R has received endless praise from countless magazines and after market company endorsements (AirRex, Armytrix, Skyforged) as well as secured a strong fan base of millions of people including Japanese tuning legend, Wataru Kato Son of Liberty Walk fame.
Through the film, JJ describes his experiences of meeting Kato for the first time during his exclusive invite to the SEMA Show in Las Vegas. Kato also gives his personal insight into JJ’s GT-R build and talks about the meaningful impact his own modified cars have had on the automotive tuning world.
As one if the largest films that we’ve worked on here at Pixel and Speedline, this film has been a challenge at the best of times. From run and gun filming in the busy crowds of Las Vegas to the extremely late night guerrilla shooting sessions in Vancouver’s downtown, it pushed us to our max.
The editing was also a challenge with us literally logging hundreds of hours of post-production breaking us to the point of exhaustion and creative drain. But when you watch the film, you don’t see the pain and the frustration, nor do you see the sweat equity put in and every rule in the book being broken to just get a single shot. No, all you really see and hear, is a story about the bond two enthusiasts have about their cars and how what they do can effect and change the lives of so many people. We were just there to deliver their story in a time span of 15 minutes or less told in a cinematic and cohesive way so that you as the viewer may hear and experience what we see in our creative minds.
All seriousness aside, the filming of this production was one of the greatest undertakings for us. It allowed for us to try out new filming techniques and various special FX in post production that we normally don’t have the time to do in our films. ‘Doczilla’ will be the first of many films that we hope to produce that help shed light on all of the different aspects and stories in the automotive communities.
Keep your eyes peeled for more behind the scenes content on how we went about creating some of the shots we did for Doczilla.
Feb 2015Here at Pixel Motion Films, we’re always in support of raising awareness for social issues that can really make an impact on our local communities and societies in Vancouver. So when our friends over at Coast Capital Savings approached us to help them...
Here at Pixel Motion Films, we’re always in support of raising awareness for social issues that can really make an impact on our local communities and societies in Vancouver. So when our friends over at Coast Capital Savings approached us to help them on their new video production, we couldn’t say no!
This year, Coast Capital has become the lead supporter for CKNW Orphans’ Fund’s “Pink Shirt Day”. We had a blast shooting the video that would run alongside Coast’s marketing efforts to raise awareness on the effects of bullying and how even the smallest of compliments can make all the difference in people’s lives. We feel proud to have been apart of the project as well apart of a much larger movement that aids in the deconstruction of bullying and brining in a unified voice of support by wearing pink on February 25th.
Dec 2014ver heard of French Guiana? Neither had we, so that’s why when Vancouver based mining and exploration company, Columbus Gold, asked us to tag along with them to tour their Gold deposit there, we couldn’t say no!
Ever heard of French Guiana? Neither had we, so that’s why when Vancouver based mining and exploration company, Columbus Gold, asked us to tag along with them to tour their Gold deposit there, we couldn’t say no!
Nestled on the eastern side of the continent of South America bordering Surinam and Brazil is a little piece of Europe – France to be exact. You see, the French colonized French Guiana many years ago and has since become an overseas department of France. They are apart of EU, speak French and even host the European Space Port! Needless to say, we were both excited to have the chance to go to such a unique place. Our mission for Columbus Gold was simple – capture the unique presence of the European infrastructure and political stability in French Guiana, as well as film a first hand look at their mine site and drilling progress. The end product would result in an advertisement to encourage future investors and promote growing interests in their deposit.
Our adventures took us to the heart of the capital city, Cayenne, where we got in tune with the locals and their day-to-day culture and lifestyle. From there we flew across the remote jungle in a helicopter to capture aerials of the serene wilderness of the Amazon. We landed in Camp Citron and had a chance to meet the teams there that were manning the current drilling operations for Columbus Gold. Later on in the trip, we toured up the coast to the town of Koru where we filmed a satellite space launch at the European Space Port.
We had a fantastic time learning about the rich history in French Guiana and getting to see all of the spectacular sights around this European dwelling. You can watch the commercial we produced below!
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About Pixel Motion Films
Pixel Motion Films offers a young and innovative approach to modern-day storytelling through digital media. We are a tight-knit collective of cinematographers, photographers and interactive developers who all contribute unique perspective and individual expertise to our brand.
We believe that every product, every location and every brand has a culture behind it that can be found in the way people act, communicate, feel, and relate. Filmmaking is a medium of expression and a communication tool that brings people closer. Helping businesses and organizations visually connect with their culture and community has been our passion from the beginning.
That passion for visual storytelling and film production drives us to create compelling narratives that speak and appeal to a wide range of audiences, demographics and destinations around the world.
Interactive Developer & Film Producer/Co-founder
Wielding the naturally creative ability to turn any vision into reality, Peter understands the core principles of visionary cinematography. Where he finds himself limited by the natural images of the world, his experience with advanced motion graphics can bring limitless creative control to any project. More than five million people have viewed Peter's work online, establishing him as a premier content producer.
Creating high quality films allows him to continue to explore new and exciting ways to push the visual envelope. Working with numerous corporations and established businesses, Peter possesses the dedication required to bring any client's proposals to life. He has worked for both creative and technical organizations, creating promotional material in both video and interactive online media. Building upon his internet experience, Peter is also well versed in web development and coding. His ability to leverage technical skill and creativity with film and online content gives him ultimate control over all areas of production.
For over ten years, Mike's innovative approach to filmmaking has taken him around the world to destinations remote and inspiring. His love of exploration, both by foot and through the lens, has crafted an ability to look beyond the camera and discover the true stories behind every project. In addition, Mike is one of the pioneers of the automotive driven production company, SpeedlineFilmWerks. It was here that he developed his love for entrepreneurship. This segment of his film career has taken him all across the United States, producing videos for millions of viewers who have grown to appreciate Mike's attention to detail and original storytelling narratives.
Mike's career path has aligned him with several large national brands and organizations including Samsung, Ferrero, CPA-BC, Coast Capital Savings and BFL Canada. His commitment to brand alignment is a major factor in Mike's long standing relationship and reputation as a respected filmmaker and cinematographer. While having several industry related titles to his name, such as photographer, video editor, director and producer, Mike strives to continuously perfect his craft in all areas of visual media.
Our expertise in filmmaking and storytelling has resulted in authentic content that captures key messages and visuals that bring out the core values behind a subject.
We provide services to agencies, facilitators and established companies that wish to create visual content that engages their target audiences. We specialize in creating content for community engagement events, raising social awareness and building place brands.
We visually bring your event to life by engaging your audience – within the confines of a meeting room or around the world. The work we do captures seminars, workshops and conferences in an interactive way that jump-starts dialogs in and around your community. We’ve helped organizations communicate culture change, build teams and develop strategies. Our films raise awareness, generate social feedback and create relationships that are crucial to the strategic planning of any organization.
Our expertise includes the planning and logistics of production along with the filming and editing of the end product.
Simply put, we connect people to places through visual language. We focus on the key elements of a place by capturing the lifestyle, landscape and smallest details of the surrounding experiences that truly differentiate a place.
Compelling visual language and sense of place results in a powerful place brand., one that portrays the true culture and essence of a location or destination. Through cinematic storytelling, our work captures the culture and essence behind any location, destination, and most importantly, the place itself.
GET IN TOUCH
We are always looking to connect and engage in new projects all around the world, please get in touch with us to see how we can help you.