Interesting video re: street cinematography. What do you think?

MOMENTS // NEW YORK CITY from Tim Sessler on Vimeo.
This is a collaborative cinematography film by Tim Sessler and Cameron Michael, using the FREEFLY MIMIC.

Shot over the course of 3 days on the RED Epic Dragon with a 50mm KOWA Prominar and stabilized with the MōVI M15.

Check out our blog post to read more about our process and the Freefly Mimic: http://www.brooklynaerials.com/blog


Production: Brooklyn Aerials / http://brooklynaerials.com/

Cinematography and Edit: Cameron Michael / https://vimeo.com/cameronmichael and Tim Sessler / http://timsessler.com

Music: Michael Marantz / http://michaelmarantz.com/

Assistant Camera: Drew English / http://drewenglish.com and Joe Victorine / http://joevictorine.com/

Behind The Scenes: Ryan Emanuel, Drew English


Special thanks goes out to NYC for being such an awesome and inspirational city and to all the people featured in this video!

Also huge thanks to Already Alive, Michael Marantz, TCS Rentals, Zak Mulligan, Sean Donnelly, Michael Burke and Ryan Emanuel for supporting us with gear - without you guys this wouldn't have been possible.

This is very interesting to me... Kirk


Anonymous said...

Having lived close to NYC for a number of years (a short ride from NJ) this video screams "this is what NYC is about." However what it does not capture is the frenetic nature of the city. Too much slo mo, too smooth almost trance like. Perhaps that is what they wanted, or not.
Do you believe the average viewer could ascertain the difference on a 24 inch computer monitor Red vs say a Gh4?

Techfan said...

Two years ago at NY's Metropolitan Museum of Art there was a film made by James Nares which featured a slow motion film of street life shot from a moving vehicle that was 2 1/2 minutes of action slowed down to 61 minutes. An amazing experience that left most viewers literally glued to the screen.

Michael Matthews said...

Nice edits. Otherwise, pointless.

You could have shot the same thing with your EM5II handheld at waist level, roaming around the city.

And, as people making TV will someday learn, putting it in slow motion does not add drama. Nor does it make the commonplace art.

Fred said...

Since I don't watch a lot of video (well some TV) this was interesting to me. Because I don't know much about video equipment my take is about the possibilities of video outside of traditional TV narrative.

Goff said...

Don't New Yorkers look miserable! Only the little girl had a smile on her face. Perhaps Austin is a happier place to live. Goff

Peter Wright said...

I thought this was a wonderful short film. It reminds me that in spite of superficial differences that sometimes make us afraid of others, we are all much the same and struggling with similar problems. Lots of lessons here for a street orientated photog like me.

I don't give a rats a** what camera was used - I'm not video literate. But loved it all the same.

Joseph Ferrari said...

The "hard" pan at the beginning is something I see many filmmakers do—and can't figure out. Do they find the breakup of the image artistic?

Another thing I see many filmmakers do is the non-critical selection of the music. Music is an integral part of maintaining interest—or is this interest not important?

I don't mean to be negative, because overall, I liked what I saw.

Howard said...

Video as street photography does not seem to have the same impact as still B&W. The focus point of interest passes before we are able to analyze the overall, i.e. the rat munching away. Slow motion does not do anything for me, except be somewhat annoying. Lastly, agreed that a camera such as was used, does not improve picture quality in monitor resolutions.

Kepano said...

Unsure if your question was about the concept of street videography or about the technology. Both are interesting, but the technology is amazing. Watch the focus pulls carefully - the isolated Chinese man in the crowd looking back towards the camera; the baseball player running to first base - all while the camera is moving. The Mimic is amazing, but does require at least two operators to crew it.

On the idea of street videography, sure, why not? People have been "shooting street" forever. Rather than a single frame, however, you see the action unfold in front of you. All the things that apply to street photography apply to video as well - expressions, light vs shadow, framing, more DOF for environment vs less DOF for isolation. The main difference is capturing the so called decisive moment vs watching the decisive moment unfold through time.

I don't shoot much street (I live in Hawaii - there are more beautiful things the shoot here :), but I like the genre, and I like this twist. A lot. I do shoot a lot of run-and-gun video, and this demo is amazing (a more artistic demo than the one by Case Jarvis a few days back). My only issue with the Mimic is that it requires a second operator, and I'm predominately a one-man-band.

Gato said...

Have to admit I didn't make it through the video - my mind drifted off to a project I had been working on and my body followed.

Reflecting some of the other comments, the slow motion got old quickly and the constant camera movement distracted me from the subject.

If your question was about does the gear have potential, sure it does. If you're asking about this video, well I made it a little more than halfway through.

To me this was a reminder of your earlier post. It seemed more about "Hey, I got a cool new toy" than about the people in front of the camera.

Art in LA said...

Nice work. Where did they find that "stunt rat" on the subway platform? Excellent portrayal of subterranean life by the little vermin.

For me, I prefer stills. I like to be able to study what's in a single frame. I can't image pausing the video to do something similar.

I don't do much video myself (editing takes so much time!), but my son is taking a TV production class in school, so I've been having fun watching him use my gear. Maybe he'll change my mind, open me up to more video options.

Anonymous said...

I don't usually have the patience to watch video clips like this but I did enjoy this one. Thanks for sharing. The focus and slow motion was engaging. I don't think it would have been interesting at all in real time. It comes across as very genuine and captures some nice "decisive moments." I'm sure the slow motion has a lot to do with that feel. Given the conspicuous nature of the rig this was shot with, it's interesting how the subjects largely seem uninterrupted in their moments. Is this sort of cinematography a replacement for still street photography? I don't think so - at least for me. I do think something like this would be a neat accompaniment to a collection of street photos on a web site.

Dave said...

I like the slow motion for getting a chance to really pick out the characters and ponder them. If it were real-time all it would be is a glance.

Kirk if you can do something similar with the EM5ii IBIS that would be a great reason to consider it as a great tool for this kind of shooting.

Heck I'm thinking it could be done with an iPhone as the slowmo works pretty well on that infernal gadget.

For this piece I like the concentration on the people, their expressions, etc. Not sure I'm totally on-board with the panning replacement for the wide establishing shot at the beginning but what do I know?

Thanks for sharing this one.

Scott Kirkpatrick said...

I'd love to have the little hot rod drone car, but a lot of the slo-mo left me cold. My all-time best example of video capture of an semi-urban setting was the 30 second intro to The Sopranos. That never got old.


Michael Matthews said...

Seconding Scott on the Sopranos open.
With an added salute to the first season or two, before the music had been dubbed too many times -- or modified -- diminishing the driving bass.

Anonymous said...

The extended moment rather than the decisive moment. I like it.

Mike Rosiak said...

Technically intriguing. Might be a good piece for B&H to advertise their video department.

I saw a lot of good still B&W, but not impressed by the motion. Made it seem nightmarish.

Otherwise? Well, there you have it, New York City. I'll be there tomorrow. Field trip.

Mark Davidson said...

OK, somewhat interesting but then what next? This actually does not advance any particular vision of NYC that does not adhere to the established cliches. Sadly still street photography is chained to the same narratives.
After Robert Frank and his visual descendants/imitators we have nothing new. Really just the shtick of B&W, despair, hypnotic walkers, people trapped in the big , dirty city with snippets of cute to imply the hope everlasting.
These formulas are everywhere. we need a new dish.