Filmmaking is for Warriors: Introducing Baby Cam #1

10 years this summer. That’s how long I’ve been living the good life and making films. Yep, that’s my first set. Aren’t we adorable?

Whats Life Worth
Sometimes it’s easy to make films. But mostly it’s like climbing a mountain while getting shot at by snipers and Stormtroopers in the freezing rain without the right kind of ropes and helping a 2-year-old climb next to you. Yeah, I’m not gonna comment on whether the 2-year-old is the cast or crew or your own childlike heart.

Maybe it’s all three.

Filmmaking is for Warriors 1

This is baby #1. She’s the best little workhorse of a camera that I’ve ever encountered. With the look of a cinema camera, the ease of use of a DSLR and the perfect in-between size from consumer to pro, the Sony FS100 gives guerrilla filmmakers like me the versatility we need to make a legitimate-looking film without the hassle of dealing with millions of dollars (what am I talking about, that’s not a hassle…).

Sony Handycam NEX-FS100UK Digital Camcorder – 3.5″ LCD – CMOS – Full HD [Camera]

Now, I didn’t originally get this beast from Amazon, but I have bought several of her accessories through the company and they have all arrived in good condition. Also, Amazon is cool because with Prime you can get things shipped cheaply and swiftly.

You should be asking me now what’s up with me calling a camera my baby. Well, you try braving the wind, rain, cold, snow, water, ice, woods, tics, blazing hot sun, grouchy cast and crew, lack of food, lack of water, lack of coffee (why is the coffee always gone?), car trouble, location trouble, cops, lost actors, lost crew, lost mind and forgotten shotlist and see if you keep thinking of the beast-that-never-stops-going as anything less than your own baby.

This thing is the only way you can tell your story. Treat it with respect. And you can show the world things like this. Filmmaking is for warriors ya’ll, we gotta fight to make the best story we can.

Kevin StillMargie Still

And that my peoples, is my Baby Cam #1.

As always, feel free to comment with feedback, comments or projects of your own!

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Time To Be Thankful

I realize that Thanksgiving is an inherent American holiday.  It was started by a group of travelers who had made it to a new land and then suffered horribly.  Many–most really–of them died the first year or so they were here.  When they had a colony established, including houses, they were blessed with enough food to keep them alive.

And they were thankful.

Okay, a lot of Americans don’t really remember or care about the origin of Thanksgiving.  And this is a bare minimum summary of it, at best.  But in the words of my fellow Co-Producer, “I believe that this is the time I was meant to be born.  All the technology…I feel right here.  I belong now.”

So I’d like to take this moment–3 days after the American holiday of Thanksgiving–to list some things I’m thankful for in the realm of technology, artistry, and filmmaking.

1.  The continuing evolution of the camcorder, from RED cameras to my Sony FS100, to the Blackmagic Cameras to the DSLR in all its forms.  I am so thankful that we found a way to record motion.  Thank you French guys who worked on the first cameras.  Thank you to every filmmaker and inventor since then.

2.  Every tablet on the market.  I love tablets.  Read more about my obsession with tablets here or here.

3.  Youtube, Vimeo and every single outlet with which I am able to share my work with the rest of the world, and see theirs.  I don’t know about you, but I think that this time period is the best for opening up our world–Americans, Canadians, New Zealanders, Indians, British folk, Germans, Japanese, Chinese, Egyptians, Italians, etc–to other cultures, artists, technology, friendships and new thinking.

4.  Texting.  Yup.

5.  Books.  In every form.  And the access I have to hundreds upon thousands of them.  There was a time when money, gender and social status would’ve kept me from reading like I do.  And technology, whether or not you prefer to read digital books, is preserving books beyond what mere paper could do.  When all the physical books are gone, I will be the last person printing an entire book from my computer.

That’s my top five technological thank yous.  I’m thankful for a lot more stuff, including you.  But ain’t nobody got time to read all that.