A great friend of planet5D, @tylerginter sent us this one – video from the front lines in Afghanistan shot with the Canon EOS 5D Mark II. The original coverage was on frontline (see info in clip) and tyler pointed us to this gizmodo post. Tyler said this about Danfung Dennis: “helped me plan out my kit after he started testing the 5DMKII in Afghan. Pushed some great lessons learned my way in the early stages of the cam”.
And there's an interview with Danfung Dennis, who filmed this wonderful piece, on frontline.
“Danfung Dennis, who filmed the opening scene of Obama's War, is a freelance photojournalist who has covered Afghanistan and Iraq since 2006. He was embedded with Echo Company, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Company, for three weeks in early July 2009 to chronicle the beginning of Operation Strike of the Sword, a U.S.-led offensive in southern Helmand province. He is currently based in London. More of his work can be seen here.”
“Did that take its toll, being under fire?
It did. You're just exhausted. I couldn't imagine staying there for another five months like the Marines are doing. …
How did you manage to film in this situation?
You just stay quite low and focus on working the camera. … I am using a new camera called the Cannon [EOS] 5D Mark II, shoots full HD video. I've custom built it so I can rig it onto a steady cam-like device, so that when I am running it will shoot a very smooth, steady picture.
It's a bit tricky because [the Marines are] running, you're running, you're wearing huge amount of equipment, and at the same time you're trying to stay very level and very steady. So it took a lot of practice. I believe I am the first to be using this set up in this situation.
I think more and more docs will be filmed like this because all you need is this camera, your own laptop and some editing skills, and you can put together your own documentary.”
Sitting in my little home office, I can hardly imagine what it is like out there filming this kind of piece with bullets flying over your head. My thoughts and prayers go out to all who are putting themselves in harms way to bring us news as well as those fighting these battles on our behalf.
(Photo credit: snap from the frontline website)