Paul Gwilliams - Lighting Cameraman

Working With DSLR & Super 35

The 'shallow depth of field' look has taken all areas of video production by storm over the past few years. I was an early adopter of DSLR's for shooting video over 5 years ago with Canon’s 5Dmk2 and have become fluent with the techniques and workflow this format requires. I've undertaken a variety of projects both broadcast and corporate and clients have included BBC, ITV, Ch4 and Ch5 plus corporates for the clients such as British Heart Foundation, The Dorchester Hotel Group & General Electric.

Most notably I’ve been involved in a large number of DSLR projects for Television Chef Jamie Oliver. These have included video for an iPhone app and an ebook, considerable web video content and also the award winning 'Jamie’s 30 Minute Meals' television series which found me responsible for shooting with 4 DSLR's alongside RED cameras. You can see my 8 page feature in HD magazine here.'

I’ve subsequently invested in Canon’s update to the 5Dmk2 the 5Dmk3 which includes improved on board sound & timecode. I recently took this to the summit of Africa when I shot a climb of the 19,000ft Mt. Kilimanjaro.

I have always kept abreast of the latest developments in large sensor cameras & as soon as Canon announced their C300 Super 35 broadcast camera in Nov 2011 I decided this would be my next camera of choice. I've been shooting with the C300 since early 2012 (i was lucky enough to be given a loan camera by Canon for a pre-release test shoot here & do a write up for HD magazine here) The Canon C300 is now the most popular camera in broadcast & rentals and certainly my most used camera for both broadcast & corporate work because of its ability to shoot both shallow depth of field and deep depth field with ease, and because of it’s modular design which makes it great for travelling.

My Gopro Hero3 Black HD minicam is always packed too suitable for all sorts of unusual angles be it a car shoot or some snorkelling in the sea. In addition to my cameras I’ve also built a comprehensive kit in order to have the right gear for the wide variety of work I do.

There has been a big trend in camera gear over the last few years to achieve a cinematic look in many areas of video production and with that in mind I’ve carefully chosen the right bits of kit to enable me to offer this look to clients.

My extensive kit now includes a Hollywood Microdolly track/dolly a 0.5m camera slider, heavy & lightweight jibs, a quadcopter for aerial shots (which I will soon be offering) and most recently a DJI Ronin 3 axis camera stabiliser which I’m offering Wet/Dry hire (see Ronin page).

These are complimented by comprehensive lighting kit, suitable for most situations, basic sound equipment and DIT kit.

paul with a C300 rig

My current kit is as follows:

  • Canon C300 Super35 Camera 50mps 4:2:2 BBC HD approved
  • Canon 5Dmk2 full frame 35mm DSLR’s with latest firmware
  • Canon 5Dmk3 full frame 35mm DSLR’s with latest firmware
  • GoPro Hero3 Black HD wifi minicam with a variety of mounts.
  • Tokina 11-16 super wide zoom lens
  • Canon 17-40mm wide zoom lens
  • Canon 18-200 zoom lens
  • Canon 24-70mm zoom lens
  • Canon 70-200mm zoom lens
  • Canon 50mm prime lens
  • Canon 85mm prime lens
  • Canon 100mm macro lens
  • Zacuto Z-Finder & EVF
  • 7” SD wireless Directors monitor
  • Teradek HD wireless monitoring for iPad or iPad mini
  • Shoulder mounts, rails, grips,follow focus, mattebox and filters.
  • Satchler video 18 fluid head tripod
  • Miller DS10 fluid head tripod
  • Miller monopod
  • Hollywood micro dolly & 30ft track
  • Duzi 0.5m camera slider
  • Jib for large cameras
  • Genus Mini jib (perfect for travel)
  • DJI Phantom quadcopter with Zenmuse 3 axis gimbal (available for shoots soon)
  • DJI Ronin 3 axis camera stabiliser (5D,C300/C100, RED, Blackmagic) Wet/Dry hire
  • Zoom H4N solid-state sound recorder/mixer
  • Rode top mic with rycote mount & wind gag
  • Sennhieser boom mic, rycote mount, wind gag & boom pole
  • Sennhieser radio mic channel
  • Walkie talkies
  • Tungsten/daylight lighting kit including latest LED hard/soft lights, stands, filters and reflectors
  • DIT Kit inc. Macbook Pro, Fast CF cards, card reader & back-up drives.

I shoot on other lots of other broadcast cameras too so if say a SonyF800 is required for a more ENG style or a RED is needed for 4K aquisition then no problem, I have good relationships with a number of hire houses and can easily source different cameras, lenses, extra lighting or grip. Just ask!

Transport: Landrover Discovery 4x4, Seats 5 including kit, mains power on-board.

The Landrover Discovery is one of only a few vehicles recognised by the Metropolitain Police Film Unit as safe for car to car filming due to its design & construction. It also has air suspension making it perfect for such filming and in addition serious off-road capability.