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Old June 13th, 2012, 01:23 AM   #16
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

I´m looking forward to this one! It´s been avail since my last challenge!

I am one week off work next week, planning to do most of the filming in that period. Got some exciting new gear to try out.

I feel a bit rusty regarding wildlife filming, but old horses never forget how to ride, right?!!

Looking forward to view what all of you come up with this round
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Old June 13th, 2012, 07:58 AM   #17
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

Hi Per Johan. I’m glad you’re here. How did your work with the arctic foxes at Dovrefjell–Sunndalsfjella turn out? I can’t wait to hear about your exciting new gear. I have been getting more comfortable using the Samurai, but you were right. The extra cables pose management problems in the field. One of the biggest problems for me has turned out to be juggling the charging of three different batteries in remote areas. Old horses never forget. I just hope that, unlike old dogs, we can learn new tricks.
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Old June 13th, 2012, 08:58 AM   #18
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

Well I was as as busy as a beaver yesterday when I went location scouting for my force of nature.

Unfortunately I was driving my car like a bat out of hell and it broke down, which made me as gruff as a bear.

Trying to get it going was like flogging a dead horse, so eventually I managed to get it towed to a bush garage. The mechanic was as stubborn as a mule and got it running (after bleeding the radiator).

I had lost so much time I had to book into to a campsite to spend the night as I didn't want to drive back in the dark (4 hours drive on rough roads), so instead I got as drunk as a skunk and as blind as a bat at the campfire.

I'm sure I looked like something the cat dragged in this morning, wearing the same clothes, no toothbrush, but I had a quick hair of the dog that bit me, and all was well. So I took the bull by the horns and got back to work.

Anyway, to cut a long shaggy dog story short; I managed to find some good locations. I'll post a photo later.

PS. (And in case someone smells a rat; all the above is true; not a cock and bull story; straight from the horses mouth.)

PPS. I better stop here. I could go on until the cows come home....
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Old June 18th, 2012, 08:03 AM   #19
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

So I'm heading off to my location early tomorrow morning for a couple of nights.

The roads are bad there, mostly clay, and there has been heavy rains (clay and water make a messy mixture for cars). So I had to get a land rover that I usually use for photographic safaris ready for the journey. It has a big roof hatch which works as a nice filming platform (with a sandbag). Unfortunately there was not enough room for all the video equipment so I had to dismantle the 3rd row of seats and a luggage rack to make room.

Also had to get a set of pioneering equipment ready (hi-lift jack, some mud waffles, panga, spade etc).

If you look closely in the background you will see 'the Anti-Christ' (a Series One Land Rover from the early 1950's) who made a cameo appearance in 'Mondo Safari' for the Christmas Challenge. Anyone who saw the movie 'The Gods must be crazy' will get the Anti-Christ' reference; that movie nicely summed up the love/hate relationship most Land Rover owners have for their vehicles. Mostly hate.

Hoep everyone else is on track. I'll post some photos out in the field.
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Old June 18th, 2012, 09:34 AM   #20
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon Wood View Post
If you look closely in the background you will see 'the Anti-Christ' (a Series One Land Rover from the early 1950's) who made a cameo appearance in 'Mondo Safari' for the Christmas Challenge. Anyone who saw the movie 'The Gods must be crazy' will get the Anti-Christ' reference; that movie nicely summed up the love/hate relationship most Land Rover owners have for their vehicles. Mostly hate.
One of my favorite movies. And now that I think about it, Mondo Safari contained nuances of this movie...which has something to do with why I loved it so much. Good luck in the field, Simon. Sounds like an adventure! And a challenge!!
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Old June 20th, 2012, 08:06 AM   #21
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

Ok, just a small update. I´m still out in the field. Got some of my wanted scenes, but weather are not cooperating. Very much rain showers recently forced me to abandon some great scenes, but this is uwol right?!
Still I think I will get most of my plan A done this week!!! Weather forcast for the next 3 days are good.
Tonight I´m in a small cottage, with electricity. Get all my batteries top loaded and ready for tomorrow.
Hurra, it´s great to back in the field, even if I have slept for only 6 hours the last 3 days :)

How are you doing? Very quiet on the forum. Guess your are all out shooting great video!
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Old June 20th, 2012, 01:01 PM   #22
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

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Originally Posted by Lorinda Norton View Post
One of my favorite movies. And now that I think about it, Mondo Safari contained nuances of this movie...which has something to do with why I loved it so much. Good luck in the field, Simon. Sounds like an adventure! And a challenge!!
Thanks Linda. The director of 'Gods must be crazy', Jamie Uys made a true/pseudo documentary called "(Animals are) Beautiful People" which was a type of modo documentary, and very funny. I have been influenced by that movie since I was a kid.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Per Johan Naesje View Post
Ok, just a small update. I´m still out in the field. Got some of my wanted scenes, but weather are not cooperating. Very much rain showers recently forced me to abandon some great scenes, but this is uwol right?!
Still I think I will get most of my plan A done this week!!! Weather forcast for the next 3 days are good.
Tonight I´m in a small cottage, with electricity. Get all my batteries top loaded and ready for tomorrow.
Hurra, it´s great to back in the field, even if I have slept for only 6 hours the last 3 days :)

How are you doing? Very quiet on the forum. Guess your are all out shooting great video!
I'm still out in the field. Staying in a backpacker camp at the moment that has wi-fi so I'm posting this from here.

Things have gone terribly for me. I ripped a calf muscle so I've been hobbling around. The weather has been a washout. We couldn't get decent location audio due to wind and other factors. The funny thing is every time wrap up, the sun comes out!

I'm shooting this with a small crew; Ali Musoke is doing 'B' camera, and Shantos Ssekito is my audio engineer. Shooting DSLR and XLH1 (plus GoPro). I have attached a photo of our editing workstation (with a view, complete with beers).

Anyway, I'm finishing up tomorrow and going to try to work around what we have. I'll have to make or break this one in the edit....
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Old June 20th, 2012, 04:35 PM   #23
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

“Things have gone terribly for me….I'll have to make or break this one in the edit.…”

Sounds like a motto for UWOL 23. I just got in for a while. It has been interesting. (What’s that curse-”May you live an interesting life”?) I had just got to the top of the mountain when a thunder storm cropped up in the valley. I rushed to put the camera away against the rain when a funnel cloud popped out. I rushed to get the camera out, thinking “At least I’ll get some Force-of Nature tornado shots before this thing kills me.”, then it hooks back into the cloud. Missed the rain, got the forty mile per hour wind. I wrote this script to be all field audio- no VO. “Yeah, like that’s gonna work in this wind.” Once the storm passed the problem was tourists. Why do people think that when they are outside they have to scream? It took over two hours to get one ten second clip with dialogue because people were all around and they wouldn’t shut up. By this time I was so frustrated things like framing and exposure had gone out the window. I just wanted to get a shot, any shot. I’m also hobbling a bit. I stubbed my toe on a cactus while climbing the rock and filming myself with one hand. The whole time my own version of Bill Thesken’s angel/devil video kept playing in my mind (and no ice cream in sight). The devil was myself in a fume and the angel was Trond Saetre saying “Relax. Remember Rule 11. Have fun!” Fortunately, Rule 11 managed to prevail after a while. (Thanks, Bill and Trond- I needed that!) I saw gray fox, bobcat, jackrabbit, cottontail, white-tailed deer, and elk (where the heck did That thing come from?). Unfortunately, the camera only saw the deer. Still, always fun to see them. I managed to get the bare minimum on my shot list but I have a nagging suspicion that every shot stinks. Tomorrow I’ll do a rough edit and determine whether another trip might yield enough band-aids to patch this pig.

To keep things in perspective, it could have been much worse. Below I’ve attached a still of the area I’ve been working in (Texans will, no doubt, recognize it). The rocks in the center are the place one of my relatives took refuge after being attacked by fourteen Comanche. He fought them off with a muzzle loading rifle and a Colt Patterson revolver. As a boy I used to find arrow heads there and I always wondered if they had been fired at Great-uncle Jack. Thank goodness the tourists were shouting not shooting at me!
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Old June 20th, 2012, 08:18 PM   #24
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

I feel bad about all the woes, Mike, and I also feel a little bit bad about laughing during your well-written tale...though not bad enough to be able to read it again without laughing some more! Some of you guys are going to be lucky to get out of UWOL 23 alive, I'm thinking. ;)

Have fun, y'all, but be careful!!!
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Old June 21st, 2012, 06:45 AM   #25
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

This has been the only month in many years I have wished for a storm or at least strong wind...
And what do I get... almost calm wind and mirror flat ocean! Do I hear "missing forces of nature"?

Filmed a little, but still need lots more to complete. Or is it time to think about a plan B?

But from the bright side... The filming was fun in bright and nice weather! Can't complain.
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Old June 23rd, 2012, 03:32 PM   #26
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

I´m back from a exciting tour to one of my favorite places in Norway. Visited one of the highland region in my country.
Spend 6 days out in the field and I think I have enough footage to get some in for this round.
One of the highlights of the tour was a trip to one of the ten highest waterfalls in Europe, the Mardalsfossen (Mardal Waterfall). This is one of the most powerful waterfall I ever witnessed. Manage to get all the way up to the pouring, rainy and wet environment where the water hits the ground after a vertical drop of 360 meters! The total fall is more than 700 meters high.
This time of year the tiered waterfall is floating free, throwing 45 cubic meter of water per second out from the mountain peak.
Of course doing any serious recording in this kind of environment is very difficult, but I got some exciting footage after all.
Below you see a screen capture of how the waterfall is like at some distance. Even at this distance the front lens glass was covered with vapor in seconds
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Last edited by Per Johan Naesje; June 23rd, 2012 at 04:05 PM. Reason: spelling error
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Old June 23rd, 2012, 04:37 PM   #27
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

Looks pretty dramatic!

Well, I have managed to pull together a story in the edit; I also managed to get some workable location audio after a bit of scrubbing.

Also, I'm happy to say that after 2 previous UWOL entries I have finally managed to get an underwater shot, which has pride of place at the very end of the story (a fleeting scene, but an important one).

Lorinda; I was just wondering if we can open the Vimeo site for uploading (with a password lock until the start date)? My internet is really poor at the moment so I'm going to need as much time as possible to upload this one without any disruptions.
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Old June 24th, 2012, 10:19 PM   #28
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

Sure thing, Simon. If everyone will shoot me an email at uwol@dvinfo.net when ready I'll send the upload info. Once uploaded if you send back the link that would be great!
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Old June 24th, 2012, 11:58 PM   #29
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

Alright, well when I first heard the theme I thought cool, then when I thought more, it seemed impossible.
How can anyone explain "A Force of Nature" in under 3 minutes. Too vast. Then I considered more, and thought to take a small bit of that force and show it in all it's glory, to the best of my surroundings and camera's ability. I've been getting some snippets here and there, but needed to go out and take a physical beating to get the shots that I really needed to bring it out. Luckily I have some kids that were willing to go out in the danger zone and get the shots I need. Good old Dad! So I gave them some quick tutoring on how to work the camera while getting pummeled and they came back with so-so footage, we picked it apart and I re-coached on how to hold your line and keep the camera level against all odds and real forces of nature. Charged up the camera and sent them back out and they came back with some epic shots. We were all hooting when we saw some of the results. And now they are hooked on photography, big time.

Last edited by Bill Thesken; June 25th, 2012 at 04:12 AM.
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Old June 25th, 2012, 08:39 AM   #30
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Re: Tales of the Wonders and Woes - UWOL 23

Should be interesting to see what your kids came up with Bill! I find my kids are actually a kind of force of nature, so I generally never let them near the cameras (although the GoPro is the exception).

So I finished my video ahead of schedule for a change. I managed to get the edit done in a day, which was quick for me. It was a simple edit though; straight cuts all the way (no effects, no transitions, only a small amount of grading).

This round I filmed with 3 cameras; my trusty Canon XLH1 with a Nanoflash, a Canon T3i DSLR, and a GoPro Hero. This is the first documentary project I have done with a DSLR (I have only used the T3i for a couple music videos) . Although I shot as much with the XL as I did with the T3i I found in the edit that I only actually used 1 small shot from the XL. Other than 3 quick GoPro shots the whole thing was a DSLR edit.

This is very strange as the XL is clearly a better documentary camera, and much easier to use. The image from the T3i was technically a lot worse than the XL too (it was much softer, and lacked definition). However the T3i paired with a vintage 50mm Nikkor lens produced some 'dreamy' soft images that seemed to work well for the scenes, and I found myself repeatedly choosing these instead of the sharper XL shots.

I still think that the XL will be my go-to camera for documentary work, but I was really surprised at how much I was able to get out of the dslr for this project.
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