June 2014

Viewing posts from June , 2014

My RØDE Reel Film Competition – Still in the Hollow

Just last month we at Field Technique Films had the opportunity to participate in a short film competition sponsored by RØDE Microphones, and it was quite the experience.

Video production isn’t all business and every once in awhile we need to stretch those creative muscles; and what better way to show off our skills on the screen than competing in a national contest? With up to $70,000 in prizes (of some of the industry’s top gear including lenses, microphones, cameras, and software) we couldn’t pass this one up. It was our chance to escape from the constant workload and come together as a team, also it was just plain fun to get out in the woods and film something for us. You ask any filmmaker and they’ll tell you, there’s something special about filming on location, and add to that an opportunity to work with your closest friends and you’ve got one hell of a good time.

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Filming in the north woods presented a few challenges for us so naturally the trip wasn’t all fun and games. For three consecutive weekends we had to share a cabin with each other (roughly six guys) and all of our camera equipment, plus the three feet of snow and non-functional shower didn’t exactly make it easier. Despite these inconveniences though, the experience really brought us together as a team and we ended up learning a lot about each other going forward. Just like bottling syrup can be a bittersweet process of beautiful scenery and hard work, filming in the woods of Northern Wisconsin can be as well, but if it wasn’t for that dichotomy the product wouldn’t be as sweet.

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It’s a truly great thing when you can do something you love with the people closest to you. For us, going out on location to new and sometimes difficult places together to shoot these videos (whether they’re for a competition or for a business) is really what it’s all about, not only as a team but also as friends. Having the opportunity to shoot on location right in the heart of the story where the real magic happens gives Still in the Hollow a realism that otherwise would have been lost. All of us here at FTF had an absolute blast working on this video the past few weeks and we can’t wait to hit the trails again soon.

 

We Need A Bigger Office

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Making a living for one’s self can be monotonous. One of my life mottos I constantly strive for is: “Find something you love to do, and you’ll never work a day in your life.” I realize that it can come off as so simple and cliché, but I often wonder how many people stop and think about how a mantra like that could benefit them, let alone act on it. I am fortunate enough to not have to worry about that when I come into work for Field Technique. Monotony is a foreign concept to us.

Photo shoots are not something Field Technique does. So when Striker Ice, A fairly established client with us, came looking for some product photography for their new lines of clothing to try to break into big box store catalogs, our first response was; “Absolutely.” Opportunity and experience is King in my book, so a chance to try something we’ve never done seemed like a no brainer. If you get the right people in a small basement corner office with the right equipment, knowledge, and Chipotle then you have yourself the makings of our first photo shoot.

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Creative questioning is an everyday workplace hazard. What the customer and consumer sees as the final product is worlds apart from where the start point is begrudgingly agreed upon by us. With access to a lavish photo studio and professional lighting gear in the heart of Minneapolis, the group came to a conclusion of turning the everyday editing facility in Hudson into a makeshift photo studio itself. Since we love pushing our limits and capabilities to see what we can do with the resources at hand to deliver a great finial product, we MacGyver’d our tiny workplace into a full-fledged temporary studio. Did I mention we like a challenge?

With the help of a few Keno Flos and an AlienBee Remote Flash with a 3-Foot Softbox, all borrowed from fellow photographers, we were able to nail down 35 product shots. All of which using different articles of clothing, all using different positions and lighting, and most importantly all requiring different editing techniques. The unanimous tagline of the shoot became “We need a bigger office.” I fully understood the literal aspect of the saying. We had too much equipment in such a confined space to model, shoot, and edit the shots all at once. I feel cramped when we are each in our designated spaces to work and we try to find a spot to eat lunch together in such a small room.

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The literal term to that declaration isn’t what stuck with me though. I took it beyond face value. The exploration of trying a new field of work that had never been done by us, let alone in the space we call our everyday workplace, represents a bigger need. Our constant drive to experiment with new fields of marketing, whether it be a foreign concept or something we can do in our sleep, we are constantly needing space to move forward. So when Pat or Chad tells me “We Need A Bigger Office,” I know exactly what they mean, and I’m excited to see what this new space will bring us.