‘VERT’ Documentary filming

We were commisioned to shoot footage for an upcoming documentary ‘Vert’ highlighting young skaters, and encouraging young kids to take up skateboarding.

It’s was a tight schedule, and tight circumstances. So we had to think nimble

Here’s what we used:

Canon 5D Mk2 :We had 2 5D’s

– One running free, using a 70-200mm stabilized lens for getting crowd reactions,the other on the Glidecam.

Canon 7D

for a lot of the time we had this running at 60fps. Whilst the resolution goes down to 720P, it can still look good.

Red One

As we were running at 120fps, this crops or ‘windows’ the shot. So it you are using a 20mm lens, it gets cropped and looks more like a 85mm ! However, we had a 12mm lens, which when cropped looked great.

Glidecam 4000

This is my old and trusty stabilizer. Everyone not hates the crappy ‘washers’ is utilized to balance the camera, but they recently saved me in Africa when I needed to change camera’s and needed different weights. Mild steel washers are slightly easier to get a hold of.

Portajib ‘Standard’

This was actually too big for the day. My brain told me I would get some great shots, but the reality is, if you in a place that you don’t have complete control over (i.e. we had a filming permit, but it is still a public place) the hassle of having something big swinging around is simply too much. We ended up just getting more creative with the glidecam shots, including me managing to run as fast as I can, without falling over !


  • If you’re in a public place, make sure you have all your gear in ONE place. i.e. pay a little extra for a small generator (one of those tiny Honda’s) so that you can charge and download in the same location.
  • The crew can only get so small before it is compromised, always insist on having a ‘download/charger’ assistant to is familiar with your workflow

Lenses Used:

Canon 16-35mm Wide Angle ES, Canon 15mm Fisheye, Canon 14mm (rectilinear), Canon 70-200mm IS.

Other equipment: Glidetrack slider & Manfroto heads.

Comments are closed.