The Bathroom Epiphanies – an HDSLR college thesis

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We've talked about many ways that HDSLRs have changed the world and here's another: using the Canon EOS 7D (reviews) for putting together your thesis! That's exactly what Sebastian Tomczak has done.

I am excited to present you “THE BATHROOM EPIPHANIES”, my final thesis project which i created at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Dortmund. It was filmed entirely on HDSLR cameras, but takes it a bit further with an interactive website.

Based on the concept of an epiphany (a moment of revelation) i directed/animated 6 videos to the music of Daddy Weyland. The idea was to illustrate each individual “epiphany” the singer/songwriter is having during his normal bathroom routine. Within an interactive flash experience the user can “trigger” the different epiphanies and watch the videos.

Sebastian Tomczak does his thesis on the Canon EOS 7D

The whole project would not have been possible without the very affordable HDSLRs, in this special case a Canon 7D. We had no budget at all (except for the film permission at the Spreepark Berlin) – so i did everything by myself. Beginning with the concept, the shooting, the editing and the post-production.

For a video like “Ash Wednesday” it was essential to blend in the crowd without drawing attention. Nobody even realized we were filming, everybody thought we were just taking photographs. We needed to be mobile and just used a tripod and the cam to get the shots done and move on to the next location.

On the set of “Fair is over” we only had some hours of shooting time due to the expensive permission to film. We began filming at sunrise with no additional light or preparation in the park. Without an extremely small setup and the versatility of HDSLRs the shooting would have been much more complicated and not manageable by only one person.

The Canon 7D came in handy when it came to photography too. I did not scan the cut out cardboard for the “Broken Flowers” Video. Everything was photographed with the 7D and its built in flash to achieve some hard shadows that give the paper depth. The “Take you there” video is assembled of printed out photographs (taken with the 7D too) which were hung up and photographed again. And the 7D performed extremely well on the greenscreen shots for “I know” too.

So without the affordable DSLR solutions it would not have been possible for me to get an extensive project like “The Bathroom Epiphanies” done. We were able to shoot spontaneously (film and photography), stay mobile and flexible – with an extremely small team of people. Just myself – and Daddy Weyland, the protagonist.

Canon EOS 7D
Tamron 17-50mm
Glidecam HD2000

The website of my project is – and my homepage will be relaunched next week!

Some of the videos from the thesis

  • “Broken Flowers” tells the sad story of a bird looking for love and is entirely made out of paper, which was cut, scanned and animated afterwards.
  • “I know” uses old pictures found in second hand stores – with the singer appearing in these funny or awkward scenes.
  • “Fair is over” was filmed at an abandoned fair, the Spreepark Berlin, with its scenery of rotting rides.
  • “Take you there” is assembled of still photos of the singers journey – the city was plastered with those printouts functioning as “missing” signs.
  • “Ash Wednesday” shows Daddy Weyland in the middle of the carnival – singing a sad tale of loss and solitude within masses of dancing people.
  • “Cowboys and Bootjacks” tells the story of a loner who finds happiness through music.
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Daddy Weyland – Broken Flowers

Daddy Weyland – Broken Flowers from Sebastian Tomczak on Vimeo.

Everything in this video is cut out from grey paper, digitized and animated afterwards.

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Daddy Weyland – Fair is over

Daddy Weyland – Fair is over from Sebastian Tomczak on Vimeo.

Shot at the abandoned theme park “Spreepark” in Berlin.

(cover photo credit: snap from the video)

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