You’ve all seen some of the ‘matrix’ like multi-camera setups – we’ve featured several here on planet5D – this one from Marc Donahue is different because it is all done handheld with a special rack Marc had made for a bunch of GoPros so he could film Navene.

Marc has provided planet5D with this exclusive behind-the-scenes look at how he created this setup and recorded and edited this really dynamic music video!

Marc with his GoPro rig

Marc with his GoPro rig


On Smash Live by Navene-K

Marc rocking the goPros filming Navene

Marc rocking the goPros filming Navene

From Marc

After Dream Music Part 2 I had a couple crazy ideas, one using a bunch of gopro cameras. I wanted to make a curved rig that pointed all the gopros in a certain direction. My buddy Shea Nyquist (BeltsByShea.com) welded me a couple prototype rigs that I used and tested, and the results were pretty cool.

Test goPro rig with SmallHD monitor

Test goPro rig with SmallHD monitor

Test Run

I ended up getting about 20 gopros and using 15 on the rigs we made. I used the other gopros with monitors (smallhd dp6) to check shots, and batteries when others ran out. Turned out to be an awesome setup!

I met Navene at a dredg concert (music from Dream Music Part 2) and it just so happens I was looking to shoot a drummer. We chatted and were happy to have run into each other. A week later we found a historical warehouse on a pier in San Francisco and shot the video. We felt the industrial look fit perfectly for the style of this video. Navene used to be the drummer for Animals As Leaders, and is working on a solo project where he plays acoustic drums with a MIDI controller to trigger synths/baselines. He is focusing on having live performance based pieces. This is what we tried to capture with On Smash.

Behind The Scenes Video

Navene played and recorded the song 5 times, took the best take and mixed it on his computer. I noted which take he used and built the edit around it. He nailed every single take so it was pretty easy for me to match everything up.

Of course all the editing was very tedious but I made sure to be as organized as possible. I labeled every card and camera and had gopros charging all over the apartment. Although the edit was difficult, it was exciting to cut through so many camera angles and match the shots to the music. I also added additional dslr camera angles (canon 5d2, 5d3, 60d) shot by Beau Brigham and I.

Marc's timeline! Crazy!

Marc’s timeline! Crazy!

When I was finished with the edit, there were 65 layers on the timeline and empty energy drinks covering my desk. I got through the edit in three days, with little sleep. We were thrilled with the outcome of the video and it’s uniqueness.

I want to further my involvement with gopro and create more arrays in the future. My head is swimming in ideas. I have already shot another music video with this technique and it will be out next month. I used the rig vertically for some shots in that video. I am also going to shoot Shea’s brother Ryan Nyquist do some dirt jumping and hopefully get some clips on his new show Getting Awesome.

Navene pounding the music out

Navene pounding the music out

planet5D thanks Marc!

Thanks so much Marc for that amazing video and behind-the-scenes.

Everyone can catch up with Marc on his site permagrinfilms.com/ and on his twitter @PermaGrinFilms!

Wasn’t that cool?

(cover photo credit: snap from the video)