I’ve known Emm from Cheesycam for quite some time but our first collaboration was a shoot for Heineken, Complex and Team Epiphany who wanted a branded content piece featuring big names in fashion such as Chris Gibbs from Union LA and luxury brand Parabellum. The task was straightforward: a multi-camera shoot featuring three on camera talent intercut with slick fashion product shots and Heineken branding.
A slew of Panasonic GH4’s are great for multi-camera interview shoots
Since I knew he’d be in the area, I reached out to Emm to help with the shoot and we came up with a simple gear list: 4 Panasonic GH4’s, tripods, a Zoom H6 recorder, a few Sennheiser G3 wireless lav kits, a Rode NTG-2 shotgun mic, F&V K4000 LED Light panels with stands, and of course one of his homemade gimbal stabilizers.
Panasonic GH4 + Panasonic Lumix 14mm 2.5 pancake lens + Homemade Gimbal
The size and weight of the Panasonic GH4 means less gear you are required to pack. With the compact size of the GH4, we were able to use smaller lenses, smaller tripods, and smaller stabilizers. Traveling to different locations, we knew this would make moving around the city fast and easy while being able to manage multiple camera angles.
Panasonic GH4 4K Video Recording
The Zoom H6 was chosen specifically as we knew we would be recording audio from at least three subjects and used the Rode NTG-2 as a backup audio source. The Zoom H6 can input at least 5 audio sources – (4) XLR (1) 3.5mm.
Zoom H6 Portable Audio Recorder
When working with wireless audio, there is always the potential of interference. To avoid any issues, stick with using a high quality proven system. The Sennheiser G3 Wireless Kits are a solid and reliable industry standard that I’ve been using for years. A Rode NTG-2 Shotgun mic was placed close to the subjects mainly as a backup audio recording.
Sennheiser G3 Wireless Audio
Rode NTG-2 Shotgun Microphone
We knew all of the shots would take place during the day, so we mainly needed a set of lights as fill for our subjects. We wanted to work with a set of panels that offered soft lighting and can be battery operated. The F&V K4000 LED Light Panels offers a good amount of light output and were powered by cheap Sony NPF batteries through a V-Mount Adapter. These worked great and supplemented a lot of the natural daylight setups that we were fortunate enough to shoot in. I wanted a very subtle lighting setup that highlighted some of the cool products featured in the designer’s studios.
F&V K4000 LED Light Panel Kit
V-Mount Battery Adapter using Sony NPF Batteries
For the detail shots and closeups we used my GH4 + Metabones Canon FD Speedbooster combo while everything else was shot on Panasonic Lumix lenses. GH4’s are great for long conversational style interviews because the batteries seem to last forever. The less interruptions, the better the soundbites.
Panasonic GH4 + Metabones Canon FD Speedbooster + Canon FD 35-105mm 3.5 lens
Although we matched our color profiles and settings across each camera, Emm and I noticed the Speedboosted GH4 had a much creamier quality than his sharper digital cousins. I couldn’t part with the “lived in” look of the Metabones Speedbooster so we decided to roll with it anyway.
Panasonic GH4 + Panasonic Lumix 14mm 2.5 pancake lens + Homemade Gimbal + Electric Skateboard
The opening and outro shots were shot with Emm’s homemade gimbal while walking or riding on his electric skateboard. And seriously Emm is like Q from James Bond in that he’d present and demonstrate a new gadget for me and it was a near guarantee that each tool would be invaluable to the shoot. The final product was a hit with the agency and client and a lot of it was attributed to the flawless performance of the GH4 and some solid DIY technology. Check it out below.
Heineken 100 “Open Your World” Branded Content