Vancouver Diamond Fashion Show

With the winter Olympics around the corner, Vancouver is becoming a very active city. Lots of events everywhere, many volunteers with blue jackets, shows, expositions, conferences, media, and.. tonight for me, a fashion show.
I got hired to shoot a fashion show, a diamond fashion show, full of rich people, beautiful girls, and.. diamonds.
I really enjoy going out on these kind of random events. I don’t shoot much anymore, last time was almost a year ago.

My friend Jesse got me this gig as well, he likes to work with me, we get along, he is a very nice guy and remembers me.
I have never promoted myself to find jobs either in web development or shooting. All my work comes from friends and connections from all my previous lives, as an IT guy, programmer, editor, shooter.. I love the variety.
These past 18 months there hasn’t been as much variety as I really like.

I committed to building a company. A web development company which I named Bitmain Studios Inc. Most of the past year and a half has been spent in front of a computer screen, programming, reading, learning, building a product called PointKit.
It gets lonely working by yourself alone at home, seeing your savings slowly but surely vanishing on behalf of a dream.
So when I get these glamorous assignments, it feels like a nice injection of fresh air, I love it, it feels like play time, a little adventure.

I just finished downloading all the footage shot in slow motion with my camera. I own a HVX200, a nice HD camera from Panasonic, about 2 years old.
It shoots beautifully except in low light, and don’t even think about using the gain button, it gets all grainy and ugly.
Today was quite a challenge, despite the obvious eye candy in the form of beautiful models, I had the hardest job of all.
I was the main camera on stage, my job to get the beauty shots, the close ups, capture the beauty, the glamour, and of course, the diamonds, the precious rocks that the show is all about!

Here is the whole show as a slide shot composed of some of my favourite video frame grabs:

I shot hand held, fully open iris, manual focus, at 60 frames per second, which means the footage will play back in smooth beautiful slow motion, about 2.5 slower than normal speed.
It was very hard to focus manually, adjust the iris, frame, and zoom at the same time.
Many shots have turned out blurry and unusable. It bothers me but it was expected. Everything goes so fast, lights, camera, girls..
they get on the stage, they twirl, they pose.. and running I go to get close ups of the jewelry.

I rented 2 64GB P2 cards, for $50 each. We thought we had to film the whole event, about 3 hours. It turned out to be a lot shorter, the important stuff, the girls, the diamonds. I never used the second card, I barely filled half of the first one! just 24GB of DVCPRO-HD footage. Well, better safe than sorry.
While shooting, I was also rigged with a wireless video transmitter. We had Paul switching live among the 3 cameras.
My friend Jesse was also shooting hand held, grabbing pick up shots, b-roll and also by the stage on occasions.
The wireless video was shown at times projected onto 2 screens wrapped around the stage. Some times I could see my camera live on the screens, every single move amplified on the big screens.

I had fun, Gary the producer and Viktoria the model coordinator are wonderful to work with, the show was a success, the job was done, the diamonds shown, the rich mingled.. and me happy, and tired.. bed, come over here!

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