Let's face it, for the money the Blackmagic Cinema Camera is a killer camera. Add the sub-$1,000 Pocket Cinema Camera and DaVinci Resolve 10 and you have a powerful workflow. This music video by the band Spiderbait follows three puppets around gritty Melbourne, Australia and turns cityscapes into objects of beauty.
Director Toby Angwin emphasizes how both cameras' affordable prices made owning versus renting a viable option. With unlimited access to the cameras, he could shoot whenever he saw the need, even during editing. The same argument could be made for DSLR's – less costly, highly capable, and available 24/7. But few DSLR's can match the BMCC's low price, ability to shoot RAW, and 13 stops of dynamic range.
Blackmagic Press Release
Blackmagic Design today announced that Australian rock band Spiderbait’s new “It’s Beautiful” music video was shot with Blackmagic Cinema Camera by Toby Angwin, a Melbourne, Australia based director. Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera was also used as a B camera on the shoot, with DaVinci Resolve 10 used for color grading.
Formed in 1989, Spiderbait has enjoyed more than 20 years in the music industry, with its cover of “Black Betty” reaching number one on the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) Singles Chart, five top 20 albums and two ARIA Music Awards. For its seventh album, the self titled “SPIDERBAIT,” the band encapsulated its history while experimenting with new sounds. “It’s Beautiful” is a personal, delicate and heavenly sounding song.
“For the ‘It’s Beautiful’ music video, the band wanted the song to speak for itself with pure imagery that helped portray the transcendental sound, so we shot three puppets walking around downtown Melbourne finding beauty in everything they see,” explained Toby. “As it was my first time working with puppets, I couldn’t predict how long it would take to shoot. And instead of hiring a camera, it was more affordable to purchase the Blackmagic Cinema Camera, which I had my eye on because of its compact size, RAW shooting capability, 13 stops of dynamic range and affordable cost.
“Our schedule was crazy because of the unpredictable weather, but because I owned the camera, I could film extra pickups whenever the weather allowed or just because I wanted to. Soon, I stopped filming extra pickups because I needed them to make the music video and instead, because I wanted to make the music video better,” said Toby. “There were moments when I would literally turn around from the editing desk, pick up the camera and shoot against the green screen. Thanks to the camera’s flexibility and affordability, I was able to make both the project and the camera my own.”
Blackmagic Press Continued
During shooting, the weather would often transition from full sun to clouds within shots or just after Toby started recording. “This shoot would have been impossible without the camera’s wide dynamic range and ISO settings,” said Toby. “When we weren’t being blown off set by the wind, the constantly changing light was a challenge. But the camera’s latitude and extra stops made fixing the light in post easy. The images looked absolutely amazing, and I loved being able to shoot flat in RAW.”
Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera’s small size was helpful in getting shots in extremely tight spaces that were too small for even the compact Blackmagic Cinema Camera. “The puppets were so small that we had to get down extremely low for some shots. The Pocket Cinema Camera was perfect and could get shots in really tight spaces,” said Toby.
Once in post, Toby relied on DaVinci Resolve’s tracker and Power Windows to achieve the perfect grade, and he also took advantage of version 10’s new tools, such as new online editing features and OpenFX plug-ins, to help streamline his workflow and the finishing process.
“I needed to make one or two edits, and it was so handy to have that functionality right there in DaVinci Resolve,” said Toby. “Also, having the Sapphire plug-ins meant I could give the footage a little sparkle at the end without having to go through another step. These finishing tools are a necessary part of the post process, and instead of wasting time going back and forth between programs, I’m able to have efficient and seamless access to them within DaVinci Resolve.
“The resulting images were impressive considering we had two cameras sitting in a laneway with a green screen taped up. We were able to get very detailed keys,” concluded Toby. “The end result was certainly comparable to many of the international feature films that I have worked on over the years.”
About Blackmagic Design
Blackmagic Design creates the world’s highest quality video editing products, digital film cameras, color correctors, video converters, video monitoring, routers, live production switchers, disk recorders, waveform monitors and film restoration software for the feature film, post production and television broadcast industries. Blackmagic Design’s DeckLink capture cards launched a revolution in quality and affordability, while the company’s Emmy™ award winning DaVinci color correction products have dominated the television and film industry since 1984. Blackmagic Design continues ground breaking innovations including stereoscopic 3D and 4K workflows. Founded by world leading post production editors and engineers, Blackmagic Design has offices in the USA, United Kingdom, Japan, Singapore, and Australia. For more information, please check www.blackmagicdesign.com.
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(cover photo credit: snap from Blackmagic Press Release)