Thursday, March 8, 2012

It didn't suck to film in Saxnäs


I've been working as a 1st Assistant Camera at Lapland Memories since the end of 2011 and the most interesting case so far has been filming new snowmobiles in Saxnäs, Sweden. The days we spent there filming were 13.-17.2.2012. The equipment I spent most of my time working with were RED Epic camera and Kessler Shuttle Pod and Revolution head.

                      There they are: Epic on Shuttle Pod and Revolution head (I'm the one on the left)

The weather there was very diverse and sometimes quite extreme. It wasn't very cold but I've seldom seen it snowing that heavy. Because of that I was a bit worried how our equipment would hold up. We had good weather protection kits for Epic so I new that if we just were careful enough it would be fine but I wasn't so sure about the Shuttle Pod. Or to be precise I was more worried about the Shuttle Pod's controllers. They don't feel exactly waterproof and they couldn't be covered all the time because I had to use them. But to my big surprise they had no trouble working. I love it when things work as they should.

But I didn't always appreciate that Shuttle Pod the way I do now. In the beginning I thought it was one of the most annoying pieces of equipment I had used during my career. I felt that way because there's one major flaw with it in my opinion. It is that you can't turn the Revolution head without electricity. And it has to be positioned precisely so it can be placed in it's carrying case. So every time when there was a wrap up and I forgot to position the revolution head correctly I had to pull the cables again to get it working so I could turn it the way it should be. But after our Director of Photography made me promise to buy everyone a beer if I forgot to turn the Revolution head, then my memory got better. Now I usually remember to do it so there's not much to complain about the Shuttle Pod / Revolution head anymore.

But back to filming in Saxnäs. So there we were filming Lynx's new snowmobiles in the mountains. After I had learned that I didn't need to worry about our equipment I also had to learn to be a bit more careful about my own health. Now I now that it's not very wise to be riding a snowmobile (not driving) when it's going up a steep slope and I'm holding a huge camera tripod on my lap. It was very close that I didn't fall of and probably broken a few bones while rolling down the mountainside with the tripod. Luckily the driver noticed that I was about to fall of and pulled over. After that I started to be a bit more careful.

                                                                         Safety first

But in the end it was one of the best productions I've been working in. Beautiful sceneries, usually good weather and I even got to drive those state-of-the-art snowmobiles myself.

                                                                       That's not me

-Timo Paulin / 1st Assistant Camera

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