Love Is An Easy Thing To Miss
A music video by Michael Bernard Fitzgerald
By Nick Thomas of DDG
The images from the Canon C300 are amazing and once the Canon C500 was announced we were very interested in the possibilities of capturing 4K RAW images. We decided to pre-order the C500 and once we received the camera in November 2012 we wanted to test the 4K capabilities and thought it would be best to shoot a real project. The biggest obstacle was the Canon 4K RAW codec was so new there were very few recorders on the market. We had used the Nanoflash before with excellent results so we decided the Gemini 444 was the best solution.
We reached out to musician and friend Michael Bernard Fitzgerald to shoot a music video for "Love is an Easy Thing to Miss”. It is an acoustic song which we thought would be perfect for a minimal set-up and a faster shoot. Once we spoke with Michael and he was committed to the project we organized everything in a week. Nathan Holley at Fusion Cine in Vancouver provided us with a demo unit of the Gemini 444. Our production company is in Calgary so the Gemini 444 had to be shipped to us and It arrived one day before our shoot. We were a little apprehensive about receiving an unknown piece of gear a day before a shoot but everything about the Gemini 444 was very straightforward and user-friendly. The Convergent Design website provided a Gemini 444 C500 Quick Start User Guide and allowed us to set-up the unit and shoot a couple tests and and test out the workflow for ingesting the footage.
To import the files Convergent Design also provides the Gemini Transfer Utility. About 1 hour of footage equals about 1 TB and we had 2 x 512 GB SSD drives for the Gemini 444 so we shot about 10 complete takes and then took a break for lunch while we ingested about 1 TB of footage. We had on set for DIT an Apple 15" Retina Display laptop, a G-Tech 8TB RAID Thunderbolt external hard drive and the Seagate Thunderbolt adapter with the card reader. It then took just about 1 hour to copy the files before we could begin shooting again because we only had the 2 x 512 GB cards.
The Canon 4K RAW files are very large and require recording the frames separately to the 2 SSD cards. It is then required to merge the frames together using the Gemini Clip Merger software which merges the frames into one folder. This only took a matter of seconds.
Our offline edit was completed with Apple Final Cut Pro 7 in 1920 x 1080 Canon .mxf transcoded as ProRes 422. For the online edit we worked with Jump Studios and we used the Canon Cinema RAW Development software to convert the 4K RAW to DPX in the native LOG mode. When were able to quickly conform the DPX files in Adobe Premiere. We then exported the sequences to SpeedGrade for color design. In grading we used LookLabs new plug-in for SpeedGrade, SpeedLooks which instantly gave us the filmic image we were looking for. We also utilized SpeedLooks new camera patch for the C500 which translates Canon LOG to LOG-C (SpeedLog). Jeff August is a senior colorist at Jump Studios and after seeing and working with the Canon C500 and images recorded on the Gemini 444 all he had to say was…”wow!!!".Photo Gallery
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Nick Thomas is a Canon Northern Explorer of Light and the Co-founder / Director of Photography of the Canadian based production boutique DDG. He has over 15 years experience working in the film and television industry and has worked on a wide variety of productions which have aired on HBO, CBC, GLOBAL, CTV, ESPN, IFC, MTV, The Discovery Channel and Movie Central. Corporate clients include 3M, Siemens, Mercedes Benz, Volkswagen, Shaw, Bell, Telus, Molson Canadian, Heineken, Chivas, Husky, Enbridge, and Tenaris.
Nick has also shot on location in various locations including London, Berlin, Munich, Cannes, New York, LA, Chicago, San Francisco, Toronto,
Montreal, Ottawa, Vancouver.