“Ascension Day”: TURIN BRAKES music video shot on the Panasonic AF-101

Before you read my post here are some words from Turin Brakes’ Olly Knights on the track and the video…

‘We have loved Talk Talk’s work for years, especially the final two albums but have never dared tackle their intricate and difficult music ourselves. However with the spirit of a new year ahead and the suggestion of a future Talk Talk tribute album of which we were to provide a track we decided to do our own version of “Ascension Day” and instead of competing with the hugely layered original we felt a “demix” was the best approach, something that played with silence and space and allowed the truth of the song to stand out loud and proud. Phil has echoed this sentiment with the video for the track…. He knew we had no money and no time and a tiny crew so he took those limitations and managed to create something larger than the sum of those parts, avoiding any tricks or linear narrative he’s allowed the song space and time to breath. This is NOT the language of the majority of music videos and after making at least ten of them over the years with budgets bigger than most people mortgages and all the ball aches that come with that and major record label involvement it’s safe to say this has been the most refreshing and creative video experiences to date and we hope it’s just the start….”

Below is the video and underneath that is the commentary track I have done. You can download it or stream it. It’s MUCH longer than the video so the way it works is get the video loaded up but don’t play it, then play the commentary and when I say press play on the video do so and when I say press pause on video…etc…!

Turin Brakes: Ascension Day from Philip Bloom on Vimeo.

Turin Brakes: Ascension day commentary by PhilipBloom
This is my first proper music video that I have shot and directed (I also edited and coloured it). I did shoot a music video for Monarchs in Austin last year but it was totally unplanned, spontaneous, let’s make a video right now deal. I love that video but have wanted to do a more controlled formal one for some time. I have had many offers but my schedule has always been so rammed I just have had no time  to do one.

Turin Brakes are one of my favourite bands of the past ten years. Ever since their “The Optimist LP” I have been hooked. Beautiful songs with incredible vocals and strong music. If you don’t know of them, get onto itunes now and get some of their back catalogue! Here are a few of their past tracks/ music videos and are definitely worth checking out!

Olly Knights from Turin Brakes contacted me quite some time ago via twitter actually (do follow him as he is quite funny!), he is a camera geek too, and loves his GH1. We chatted a fair bit ever since and always planned to do something together, but again I was just out of the country so much it never happened. Anyway, with my building work on my house dragging on and my desire to stay home more this year i was in England all of January so we decided to make something happen. To cut a long story short after having been approached to do a track for a possible Talk Talk tribute album the guys recorded their cover of the very intense album track “Ascension Day” We had a tiny crew of myself as Director and DP/ Operator. Suresh Kara as co-Director. Karen Abad as 1st AC and Jon Connor/ Cristina Valdivieso as 2nds and BTS/ stills photographers.

Turin Brakes are one of my favourite bands from the past decade, beautiful music and their albums have been a regular feature on my ipod ever since The Optimist LP. We have been talking (mostly on twitter!) for quite a while about collaborating on something so in between my foreign jaunts we decided to make this video. They recorded the song especially for it, a cover version of an early 90’s track by Talk Talk.

We originally planned to shoot out on location outside, down on the coast somewhere, but the unpredictability of English weather at any time of the year to be honest and especially this cold winter meant an indoor location was the best bet. Way more controlled and much warmer/ drier!

I brought my friend Suresh Kara from Documovie.co.uk on board, initially just to help out as he has recently invested in the AF101 and wanted to see it in action as his had not arrived yet. But as the I realised the amount of work that would be needed to do this music video in the one single day we had with a location that had to be lit I got him to co-direct with me so he could watch performances when I was making sure dolly moves where right etc and I was operating the camera not just the DP.

We shot the video on the AF101…actually that word video…it’s funny, it’s a word I don’t like to use. Not because I am being pretentious but it always has felt like such an ugly word, it just reminds me of interlacing and VHS! Film is a beautiful world associated with a beautiful medium but these days films are mostly shot on video so it’s all blurred. But we don’t call Music promos “films” we call them Music Videos. Funny that…anyway I digress. Why the AF101? Why not to be honest? It is my latest, newest camera and I had not shot anything with it since I was in Japan and shot for one day around Kyoto and then it was with a pre-production camera. Also I had these lovely new lenses for it and not used them. Initially it made sense as I was planning on overcranking to 50fps and getting the guys to sing at double speed but when I decided that it was going to be much more static I decided to go normal speed 25p.

Me and the band before the shoot

The song “Ascension Day” is very dark and intense so I wanted the video to compliment it but not in a heavy handed way. The location was a blessing. We had the whole 4 floors and loads of different rooms to work with. Most of them were unsuitable but the ground floor, basement, 1st floor sitting room and top floor bedroom were spot on, although all had electrical issues with wiring…We dressed the rooms with some of the very eclectic furniture that was throughout the house and made the most of the parts of the house that had quite distressed run down walls. This is a song about the end of the world and death but I didn’t want it to be overtly dark and gloomy, the song itself says so much, I wanted the visuals to enhance not overwhelm the song so there is a real contrast between the different locations. The very dark and moody basement, almost bunker like waiting for the nukes to hit, to the very odd ground floor with the lockers and distressed wallpaper and “Olly’s” Rocking Horse! Also the clean more sterile mirror room which gave a real contrast to the rest but suited Gale. Gale was to be the serene calm member of the band whilst Olly was going to be the more agitated, distressed character. Both gave great performances, Olly does agitated very well!

I played on framing and composition heavily. It’s an uneasy song and I wanted the framing to be uneasy. I wanted some unconventional framing with lots of negative space and some extremely close ups to bring you back and forth in the video. We criss-crossed locations too, cutting between them to keep the video moving and give it a sense of pace. I am not a huge fan of the cliche of fast cuts in music videos so I wanted the viewer to be able to take in the visuals and hear the lyrics so there was a deliberate pace to it that I felt suited the song. Also with the lighting and colour grading, each floor had it’s own unique look which I will go into later.

Me and the band halfway through the shoot!

I had never seen the location until we were let in at 9am on Sunday. I had seen pictures but that was all. Far from ideal. But at least the pictures gave me some food for thought. So when we arrived I ran around the house to get a feel for where would work and for what bits. My documentary/ news background helped enormously as I am so used to arriving somewhere new and making it work quickly!

We started off on the ground floor first, dressed the set  and lit it using the available light, the practicals from the mirror and two Kino Flow 4 bank divas with 3 Daylight and 1 Tungsten bulbs in. I like my lighting to look as natural as possible, so I wanted them to look like it was natural light on them. Kino’s give off a wonderful soft light.

So kit wise downstairs I used the Kessler Crane Flex Track, a Wally Dolly with my Vinten Vision 8AS tripod. The two kinos as mentioned, my panasonic HD-SDI monitor and an excellent new monitor from Bon which has live vectorscopes and waveforms…Lense used were the Voigtlander 25mm F0.95, Olympus Zuiko 14-35mm F2, 35-100 F2, and an SLR Magic Toy Lens 26mm F1.4! The Toy lens is excellent, but looks utterly inadequate on the AF101 as it is SO small! It was actually Olly’s wife Rachel’s lens and I used it on quite a few shots as i loved the look, a real soft distorted Diana lens type look, not as intense as a lensbaby.

Olly downstairs
The toy lens on the AF-101

The Panasonic monitor
The 14-35mm Olympus F2 on the Philip Bloom Kessler Crane Pocket Dolly
The Bon monitor

For the intense close ups I used the Voigtlander F.95 25mm which has a really short hyperfocal distance like a macro lens. Although I had to get very close to Olly to do these. The barrel distortion on some of the shots caused by the lens were deliberate which you see later on in the video. Described in more detail on the commentary track.

I used a few tracking shots in here, but as I said before I wanted most of the it to be static. There was no motivational movement going on for me in the frame that shouted out “move the camera” but there are some dolly shots and some camera tilts and pans at the right points in the song. I really don’t like movement for the hell of it. It can easily be overdone, like shallow depth of field. It has a time and a place. This video has a number of Shallow DOF shots, mostly on the macro but also lots of deep DOF shots too…

Having Karen Abad as my 1st AC was a joy. She really knows her stuff and is a very talented DP. Her help was essential for the very short amount of time we had to shoot this. By the time we started rolling we had literally 5 and a half hours before we had to stop and pack up to be out by 530pm. That is a huge challenge as each room needed lighting and track laying, although both the K-Flex from Kessler Crane and especially the Wally Dolly are simple to set up, the Wally Dolly is very easy to pick up and move quickly as it is just straight track. Karen got the lights I needed set up and tweaked under my direction. She was a joy on set and took a lot of pressure off of me!

Karen Abad

For more info on my thoughts on each shot and the thought behind them please listen to my commentary as I describe each one in detail.

So what was the AF-101 like to shoot with? It was a pleasure, the ability to focus easily (although no digital punch in is a shame) and the HD-SDI outs were a huge plus, also the image is very pleasing indeed. I was getting very nice dynamic range even though it is hard to tell in the graded version. Here are a few frame grabs before grading…

I shot with a pretty flat picture profile although I still haven’t found the perfect one. Mostly I was at 200 ISO. I did go up to 1000 ISO a couple of times. 1600 was a bit noisy to be honest for his sort of thing. The AF-101 is definitely more noisy than the Sony F3. My little short I did with my sister was pumped all the way up and is clean as anything! I really do want that F3 but it’s a lot of cash!

So in the end I used 4 lenses. The Voigtlander F.95 25mm, The Olympus F2 14-35mm and 35-100mm and the Toy Lens.The majority was on the Voigtlander and the 14-35mm F2.

Although as you can see the clean images above look very nice, although a couple are a wee bit under I wanted to give the video a more bleached contrasty look but also give each room a different feel, which the lighting did first off but the grade then accentuated, always light! The basement was the most extreme, I made it very cold and harsh. I graded with Magic Bullet Looks and used Stu Maschwitz’s Guru Preset 50/50 for the main part although with a lot of tweaks. You can get Magic bullet looks for 20% off with the code bloom20 at checkout from redgiantsoftware.com and get the preset pack there too. Also check out Nick Campbell’s vintage film pack. It’s awesome

The turnaround was pretty quick on this. I shot it on the Sunday and had it up the following Friday morning. Not because I was under pressure to do so but I like to get things done and not sit on them too long. I would have had it up earlier but I was shooting every day that week and editing this in the evening. The editing was a real challenge and I talk about it a lot more in the commentary. I now know how to use multicam very well!!

I am extremely happy with the performance of the camera but I really could have shot this on any one of my DSLRs if I wanted to including the GH2 (it probably would have looked identical!)  but I am glad I chose the AF-101 for it as the SDI out and other perks made it a pleasure to shoot with and every time I shoot with it I get to know the camera better and get more confident with it.

At the end of the shoot with the band!!

At the end of the day, for my first “proper” music video I am extremely pleased with how it turned out. I learnt a lot from it too. My vision was realised from conception through to the end product. Most importantly the band love it, hopefully their fans and you lot will too. But it’s always going to be impossible to please everyone, the lack of narrative will irritate a few for sure but I don’t think it needs it, it’s a performance video with a distinct style and feel to it, the deliberate pacing will delight and frustrate in equal numbers…everything is subjective and everyone has different opinions. If we all thought the same way how dull would life be?

I look forward to doing more music videos in future and will start calling them music films then too 😉

Any questions drop a comment on this post and I will answer. Do check out the photos below by Cristina Valdivieso and Rachel Knights showing all the gear, the locations, the band and some right daft photos. I will have  a little BTS video up soon too! Phew!


  1. Sweet Phil…I’m excited to read your Full Blog Post on your experience with the AF100 on this music video..! I just added the AF100 to my kit…looking forward to shooting my next music video with it..!

  2. Nice to see a video that isn’t splitting the atom in the edit mate, good work Phil and that AF100 is certainly rocking it image wise, looking forward to the blog on its making.

    Best wishes

  3. Hello Philip,

    premiere!! This is my first time, im writing a comment on one of your blogs. I’m following you`r page for almost a year now.
    Thanks for sharing all your great work with us. I`ve learned a lot from you.

    The music video is very nice. Did you use a screenplay for it and did you write it by yourself?

    Important question for a newbie like me:
    In what format do you render your videos for vimeo? How do you keep longer videos under a gigabite of size or even under 500 mb but keeping the quality high?

    I’m working on the editing for my first shortfilm, but when I render it in mpeg2 one minute of film is about a 100 mb. Thats too much as I want to keep it under 500 mb.

    Thanks a lot.

    greets from northern Germany.

  4. now that is a proper music video! subtle, clean, not overdone…I’m still very grateful and sometimes even slightly surprised by your generosity in sharing all the bts info. The one thing I’ve never understood about music vids is how they sync up the singers lip sync to the song in all those cuts.

    well done.

  5. Wonderful, Really well done. Great framing, lighting and use of DOF. Also really nice grading. Wish you could show us how you did the grading in this film! What the heck kinda lens wwas that little tiny thing?? LOL

  6. Great composition, great pacing, and awesome color grade. Love what im seeing out of this camera so far. I’m working at a Rental house in Nashville thats getting some AF100s and a few Epics. I’m super stoked to put these cameras through some serious tests. Couple of questions: What scenes did you use the dedos in? Did you use any lighting in the shot by the window…that to me was awesome. Super natural looking.


  7. Great pictures ! Even with the AVCHD codec it seems to be pretty good.
    Congratulations. Oh and a quick question I forgot to ask yesterday when you were live : how many markers can you display on the LCD of the camera ? Can you put the grid plus let’s say 1.85 markers ?

  8. I have a mixed feeling about Pana100.
    I just hope picture is better then 7d.
    for some reason i find Canon 7d more filmic.
    I am doing 1st job today on Pana100, I spent more then $10,000 on kit-i just hope i made right decision.

    Perhaps i should have spent much more on F3 …..i really do not know now…….


  9. Nice images and video. Very clean image. Just out of curiosity Philip. Are you only using the AF 101 and the GH2 now since they have a much cleaner image? Canon needs to step up soon, or else all their users will be gone.

  10. Philip. Great work, thank you for sharing as always. I was wondering if you might come up with some info that I can’t seem to find anywhere related to the Af-101 for your next blog post. Maybe you could ask your Panasonic contact if the Panasonic Af-101 will get a P2 version soon. I’m heavily invested in P2 and I’m a huge video camera guy, so I don’t want to spend money on DSLR rigs or Af-101 if there is an HVX170/Af-101 combo on the near horizon? This level of camera is missing from the market, and I can’t afford the bigger cameras that do this. Help me Obi-wan, er I mean, Phillip Bloom, you are my only hope. (I know it is not quite your focus, but you seem like the best one to comment.) Thank you.

  11. Steve remember that is not a short film or a movie, is a music video and is do to creativity and artistic decisions rather than the story of the song, never the less, there are very good videos out there with amazing stories, but is a creativity decision how to approach the music video!

  12. I love your work. View it often and it is certainly inspiring to me.
    You never did tell me what your point of view on 35 mm adapters is. Although I own and shoot with a Canon 5D I find a great beauty to your adapter work.

  13. Mark Hollis I’m sure would approve!!

    I’m not going to say too much about the technical aspects of this Phil other than it looks bloody awesome, loved the composition and the tension in the frame, really enjoyed the BCUs contrasted with the wide shots. Great work colour grading too. I look forward to the full write up!

    Growing up as a teenager in the 80s in New Zealand ,listening to Talk Talk was like a refuge for one’s mind and soul, I apologise for sounding a little melodramatic here, but you have to understand when everyone else was getting down to Duran Duran, Wham and Terence Trent D’Arby, a few of us down at the arse end of the world were surviving on the offerings of Mark Hollis, Barry Andrews (Shriekback), Adrian Borlan (The Sound) and the like. It was all we could do from keeping ourselves from going insane.

    Like a breath of fresh air today this video and song entered my mind stage left and swept out about 25 years of cobwebs. I constantly grieve at the loss of Hollis from the music scene but have some sympathy as to why he may have made that decision. A very fitting tribute. Congratulations to all those involved and a very big THANK YOU.

    1. I know Mark and his wife way back from the 80s when I worked at RIBA. He’s a family man through and through. Really nice bloke, and much more to him than just music. Life is what you make it…
      Now Adrian Borland from The Sound – brilliant singer/songwriter – wish he was still with us.

  14. Beautiful work Mr. Bloom. I must say I am stunned by some of the comments you receive on your blog posts. To put yourself ‘out there’ creatively is difficult enough already. You do it with grace and generosity. I don’t understand those who feel it necessary to criticize your choices in DOF or grading etc. It strikes me as rude and dismissive of your act of sharing.
    The film of your Mom cooking dinner really struck a chord with me. To take something so simple and ‘everyday’ and make it beautiful inspired me to pick up my camera more often and start filming.
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts, knowledge, and work. Your blog has become a daily stop and taught me a great deal-which I’ve in turn tried to pass on to others new to the DSLR filming world (which I guess we all are).
    Keep up the good work!

  15. Hi Philip

    I like a lot everything that you do. You work is Excellent. At this moment, I am researching about what lens I should buy for this type camcorder. I have 1700 dollars of cash. I will to record soon a short film and documentary.So I want to ask you whant lenses by whit 1700 dollars and what lens’ adapter is the best to work with different type ask nikkon, canon, etc. preferly I want to use Nikkon or Carl Zeiss for nikkon.

    thank you for your answer.


  16. Hey, great video! For the time you had it looks great! Don’t let anyone get you down. As we say across the pond, opinions are like a&##@les, everyone has one!

    I can tell you’ve been busy lately because your posts have been much more sporadic. I personally don’t know how you juggle all that you do and still serve a very demanding public. So thank you for your efforts. I’ll at least be patient to hear about the Olympus Zuikos, AF101, f.95, Canon 70-200 IS II, etc.

  17. Hello Philip,

    Did you use the AVCHD footage from the AF101 itself, or record to an external recorder via HD-SDI? I’m just wondering if the AF101 records progressive video saved in an 60i/50i interlaced container like the GH2. I’ve been wondering recently what a Nano Flash display would indicate if you took an HDMI feed out from a GH2. My understanding is that the HDMI is just for monitoring and unsuitable for output to an external recorder.

    Good to see examples of types of aesthetic micro 4/3 lenses can create, very nice.

  18. Narrative in music videos are pretentious and unnecessary; music videos should be about a performance and getting the atmosphere of the song across, that’s all. I hope you find it as easy as you should to ignore that particular criticism.
    You certainly seemed to have made the most of the available lights; many of the shots had good colour makeup.
    Some of the shots would really have looked better overcranked (particularly that chess board opening, which looks awkward and fumbling in realtime), so it’s nice to read you had the same thought. It’s certainly a trick for when you have more than a few hours to shoot, though.
    Can’t say I could listen to the music, though.

  19. I love this video. I don’t think music videos always need a narrative – I think the choice of shots, pace of editing, superb location, and lets not forget the great performances from Olly and Gale communicate a really uneasy feeling that would get lost in the detail of trying to tell a story. Great work Philip – I have just started shooting music videos as well – great to hear the feedback from the band – that you dont need massive budgets to make create amazing clips. Looking forward to seeing you in Sydney in a couple of weeks –

  20. I am not sure that I can make a valid criticism as I have been about to shoot a music video for about a year now without ever quite managing to start. I like to convince myself that its because of my lack of Dedos & Kinos or that my daughter’s band can’t make their mind up about the song. The real truth is probably more that I am a bit scared of it.

    First of all can I thank you for the commentary. For those of us hoping to take the plunge then its extremely useful to hear the thought processes and the info on the setups.

    You and the band were off to a good start by choosing a Talk Talk which were one of my favourite bands back in the day. I don’t really buy all the flak you have been taking over the whole narrative thing. Even my teenage daughter pulls a face when I suggest it. I might as well suggest Pan’s People doing literal dance interpretation as far as she is concerned. It can be made to work well, I really liked the video for The Suburbs by Arcade Fire recently, but it would be a really tough challenge to get something with the production value you achieved in such a limited time.

    I think your concept works well. I think that the band’s performance was both edgy but restrained (musically and visually) and I think the visuals matched that. I think this may be tied in to the question of style that has come up in the comments. I think its just that you have an innate ability to make things look beautiful. Most of the rest of us would probably donate important bits of our anatomy to have that gift. I think to be truely dark you would have to fight your instincts. That would have been too much here as the band had deliberately chosen a sparser less dramatic interpretation of the song than the original.

    Having watched it a few times through I really like the edit, particularly the second half and the grade. The only thing that I struggles with were the macro mouth shots. Sat at my PC with my monitor speakers it seemed a bit too much. Music Videos are always a deceit that the person you are watching sounds the same despite the fact you have just cut from the back seat of a limo to a mountain top. As a device to disconcert, it worked, but my brain couldn’t buy the deceit anymore. So I put the download version through my AppleTV to get a different aspect. That made a huge difference. With a different viewing and listening distance that shot worked a lot better for me. I also found that I started hearing new things in the sound mix which in turn let me notice new subtleties in your edit. I realised that my real problem was being too close to things both physically and metaphorically. I wasn’t watching your piece as I normally would a music video and was pixel peeping the life out of it!


  21. Feckin’ love it Philip! The way you colour your films is beautiful.

    And, I’ve heard people talking about how you do too much non-narrative, collage films, bla bla bla but I couldn’t disagree more…You’re style is so unique that it just somehow manages to capture the viewers attention until the end of the video, which is so hard to do with the distraction of Facebook, Twitter etc.
    Also, I love how you say further up that you ‘learnt a lot from this shoot’. It shows that no one, even you – one of the masters – knows everything and is very encouraging to young film-makers like me 😀

    Cheers Philip, love the ‘video’!

  22. This is going to be one of those video’s which keep on growing… they get better and better each time you see them. Sometimes, when I’m editing, I get so moved by a sequence that I keep on playing it back (and wasting valuable editing time…)

    “My vision was realised from conception through to the end product”. Funny you mention this, because that’s a really special feeling, right? Completely different from registering people or events and building a nice documentary out of it, but something which starts as a little spark in your brain(s) (I mean: yours and Turin Brakes’) and ends like this film!

    And as always… thanks for sharing this, Philip.

      1. Hi Phillip,

        I just wanted to ask you how you mounted the Toy Lens? And if it is yet possible to obtain an adapter to use it on a 60D….I tried looking for a 4/3 to EF mount adapter, but there only seems to be the reverse of this (to allow EF lenses to be used on a 4/3 camera). Maybe there aren’t enough 4/3 lenses to warrant the need for them to be adapted for use on a Canon DSLR!?!

        Many thanks


  23. Can’t compare to 5d but shots out of AF100 are as good as from 7d.
    Will not use 7d again.
    I just wish for 2 things:
    1) REDROCK MICRO VF with SDI connectors.(PLS no USB)
    2) Micro 4/3 “mechanical” zoom with constant aperture…..15-50mm f2.8 Voigtlander built.
    Something like RED Zoom 17-50mm t2.9 but smaller and lighter…..and perhaps long zoom 50-150mm f2.8…am i dreaming ???

    Just finished shoot yesterday on AF100, all is very good-i was a bit worried 2 days ago.

    1. I am gathering the money to buy the Corduroy AF100. I take one month analyzing the camera for the web and I see bad things and good things. You this happy one with the panasonic af100?

      I have available, bony 7000 dollars that I have 1700 available dollars for eyeglasses. That eyeglasses you believe that I would should to have to record a documentary and a short Film with a good image?

  24. The video looks great.

    I’ve been shooting tests with the AF100 this week and I’ve run into a couple of issues. My initial shoot yielded a lot of noise in the entire picture, but most notably in the blacks. The resolution of the image overall seems a bit soft. I shot with 100mm, 85mm and 18mm Zeiss lenses, the Lumix 14-140 and a Canon FD mount 35-105. I found the close shots to be sharper and the wide shots soft. I consulted with others and did more tests with different settings. Cine-Like D, Norm2 matrix, reduced detail and video detail. I got much better results in picture noise, but the resolution remains, to my eye, not that sharp. I can easily compare the footage to my EX1 footage and so far the EX1 easily ‘pops out’ in terms of sheer image detail.

    I just finished a huge project that was shot on the EX1, 7D and Rebel t2i with great results and I was expecting to love the AF100. It’s early, but so far I’m not confident about it.

    Did you find any of these issues? Did your final grading help deal with any shortcomings?

    Thanks, by the way, for all your work and insight. I appreciate your methodical approach to discussing all the cameras.

  25. Great, you said you had many camera angles for each room; did you let the guys go through the whole song for each camera setup? Just wondering what a good tradeoff would be in your short timeframe regarding efficiency and flexibility in editing. Thanks!

  26. Ive studied this very closely. Its very well shot of course Philip. But I can’t say the AF101 is a game changer yet…. The noise in the blacks, and the softness of some of the facials (although probably intended?) leaves me thinking you can yield just as good results with the Canons, GH2 and my trusted EX3. I want to be proven technically that the AF101 really is all we need…. the boat is still out.

  27. I just wanna say, I conducted a live recording of a standup show in Brighton last night on a 5DMKII with 70-200 lens 640 ISO, 2.8, a Sony EX3 open shutter at 2.8 stock lens, and a GH2with 14-140 lens at 3200 ISO All WB the same. The GH2 results in the most clean pictures I have seen ever in a dark venue with an overhead lit stage. The subject was wearing a grey outfit which the Canon and EX3 had problems resolving cus of Moire. The GH2 which I just took along as a test resolved almost flawlessly. An hour long recording was easy on the GH2 taking just two record files. Im amazed by this little baby. Now having to attempt to mix in the 24P recording to a 25P recording. Any tips on a quick sync!!!!?

    1. After conducting loads of tests, I’m convinced the GH2 is technically on a par with AF101 failing decent outputs, and 25p PAL and the obvious benefits of what video cameras offer in their flexibility, the price of a AF101 fully kitted out is at least 5 times as much as a GH2 + 14-140 lens.

      I guarantee most low budget filmmakers will be happy with just a GH2 setup until the next round of HDSLRs take off. THIS is where its at, at the moment.

      We are still awaiting a decent video from you with the GH2. 😉

  28. ooo hmmz , did you re-edit ? i havnt time to read the extra blog , but have just watched the Video again today, and its either a grower or you’ve tweaked it . Anyway I’m liking it even better today feels like the cuts are shorter and maybe you’ve cut mid lyric ? But its definitely even better today !! Hope i’ve made some kind of sense. Good Stuff.

      1. Philip, Is there any way you could do a comparison review of the basics GH2 v AF101? This is what a lot of us want to see….

        I want to see your take on them side by side, I’m sure others do too.

        Thanks once again for your brilliant work.

  29. Hi Philip, liked the running commentary, getting my head into photography at the mo so good to hear about aperture and lighting etc was very interesting indeed. Nice video too, is a testament to simple and effective filmmaking – congratulations. If you haven’t already – you gotta check out the film ‘The Return’ directed by Andrei Zvyagintsev…is the most beautifully shot film.
    thanks again

  30. Very nice video. I am more impressed with the locations and props than the camera.

    You have the ‘Eye” mate! Though the camera’s will forever change, one thing will remain constant. That is the “Eye” the DP has developed over many years of experience.

    I give the Pana AF100 Two out of five stars.

    I give the DP Five out of five stars.

  31. Thanks Philip, great to have your info and thoughts on the shots and making of this video, you did a great job.
    Saw the ‘Kings Speech’ recently and noticed it had compositions similar to the negative space shots you point out in the video, was this an influence? I haven’t often seen composition like this, it works beautifully when used purposefully like you have here.
    Thanks for sharing the work you have all put in.

    Peter Greenway films do symmetry well;)

    1. Hi Robert

      I actually saw THe King’s Speech tonight. Wonderful. I loved the negative space but in particular the clever use of crossing the line to give a sense of unease and distance. What influenced my use of negative space here was the BBC series “Luther”. I cannot recommend it enough. Stunningly shot!



  32. Having seen PB,s fine camera work on this music video, I decided to go check out this new camera.

    Image wise it was stunning, THEN I did some hand held pans. The picket fence effect was horrible. That in of itself was a real deal killer for me.

  33. Well done Philip.
    I really enjoyed your walk through of what your thoughts were behind each shot. Like the fellow that asked earlier, “The one thing I’ve never understood about music vids is how they sync up the singers lip sync to the song in all those cuts.” I always wondered the same thing. When shooting within each set-up, do you run through the complete song or just a portion of it? You’re always good with explaining those things.
    Great job, really nicely done. Great song too.

    See you at the Miami Filmakers Live!

  34. Brilliant Phil , really liked the use of the space and love the lighting at 1:46… looking forward to some more music videos in the future from you!
    Will have to check out this Luther series you speak of, always striving to check out great cinematography / lighting..

    thanks again for the awesome commentary / great BTS photos ( using the voigt .95 on it ?? )



  35. Phillip – beautiful work as always. Loved the toy lens.

    Quick gear question. Monitors. You used 2, the Panasonic and the Bon. Was there a winner or were using them for different purposes? Also – what is the specific make of the Panasonic field monitor and what’s that nifty little tripod holding it?


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