The approach of this project was to create a music video that had hardcore elements with a touch of hip-hop. Our overall goal, was to showcase energy and have fans wanting to come back and view over and over. We mixed performance in studio with slow motion and singular shots with heavy red saturation to break the film up. This all mixed together created a dynamic viewing experience.
The first thing we considered after getting our budget, was a location that would allow us to work fast, create our desired look and still allow us to have enough crew. Location is important, but having the right crew is even more important in our book. We settled on Sabo Studios in Columbus, Oh. Greg is easy to work with and has a great space for interior house shots and the studio we used. We wanted to hang lights from above with the red splash that we tied into the singular shots as well as lights for the band.
Overhead lighting has a special place in our hearts. It tends to be moodier as a benefit for this genre, but it also opens up the shooting floor, when you don’t have to worry about shooting light stands and cords. With an open floor plan we could move between the takes back to back and then have a floating fill light to bring out all the needed detail.
We used two KinoFlo Select 20’s and two 2’ four banks for a soft but dramatic effect on skin tones. From above we hung two Lekos and one 650w Arri for hard downward light and gelled these red. The Kino Selects have slowly become our go to lighting, because they have full RGB and allow us to spend less time gelling and moves production along quicker. We can then afford to spend our time on creative ideas and getting our cinematography perfect. The KinoFlo Selects were also used for the singular shots that are washed red. Achieving that deep saturated red was the hardest part of this project.
This video is a pretty straight forward performance based, but we knew we wanted it to feel dynamic. Early on we decided to use the Canon 1dxmkii. There’s a few reasons we enjoy this camera. It’s lightweight, dependable, easy to rig quickly, has 4k, c-log, shoots 24fps and 120fps and performs super well in dramatic lighting situations. This project had moments of deep saturation, moody band performance and slow motion. The 1dxmkii let us work through everything quickly and consistently in post-production from assembly, transcoding and color grading. It may not be the most epic camera on the market, but it’s a solid low-end, cinema camera, contender that we can depend on.
With every project we try to find balance with in the budget and relationships. We try to consider not just making a cool project, but how it gets done and on time. "Downpour" was approached with only a crew of four and a minimal light package. With a smaller crew we can’t have tools that hold us up learning or setting up. This led into the camera, because we needed to focus more on keeping the project moving and keep light looking good, so camera needed to be a powerhouse that we could set up in under 20 minutes. While it’s always nice having the best tools, it’s never our idea of a good project to cut day rates, leave needed players off the job, or ask our vendors for too many favors. It’s all about respecting relationships while making the best project.
We were really happy with how Downpour turned out for Ghost Key and Invogue Records. Hope you enjoyed this behind the scenes look at the project.
GHOST KEY | DOWNPOUR