One-Man Band HDSLR How-to




Dan Chung has been one of the pioneers in the move to HDSLR video for news and features. He covers Asia for The Guardian, and his videos are outstanding.

Recently, he put together an instructional DVD video about the process called “DSLR Video: On Assignment.”  In it, he instructs us on the basics of shooting HDSLR videos, the additional gear, like braces and sliders, that the process involves, and some good solid technique tips.

But what makes this video a standout is how he then takes us on an assignment, and breaks down his process from the scouting to the execution. We see him trying to figure out how to cover a religious festival (Thaipusam) in Malaysia on a day when a million people will be involved in processions, ritual bathing, and self-mutilation (be warned, there are some pretty graphic scenes caught in all their shallow depth of field, HDSLR glory!)

Dan has to make some hard equipment and coverage choices, and to watch a top pro in action going through his process is worth the price of admission (which, alas, is a tad steep at $139.  However, If you think of it as only 89 British pounds, you might feel better!).

So much of what has been written in the way of HDSLR video instruction involves folks shooting with crews on music videos and indy films. This video is for those of us who are one-man bands, and that’s another big plus.

I don’t need instruction on how to work with a focus puller and a best boy. I need to know how to work alone like Dan does, and hopefully, someday, make videos that might look as great as his.

Another thing that shines through is the amount of dedication and sheer physical work it is to carry the gear that is required for this new specialty. I’m not sure I’m up to muling the amount of stuff Dan does (in all fairness, he’s a lot younger).

It’s enough to make you hope that the next rage will be iPhone or Flip or Kodak Zi 8 video….that stuff, I don’t mind carrying.

No matter how you end up shooting your videos, one thing is for sure: DSLR Video: On Assignment is a winner.




This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Bob,

    On your recommendation, I’m ordering this. If it’s not any good, at least I’ll have you to blame (s). I did look and it looks great. Thanks for the lead.

  2. Jack–I’m glad you liked it. It’s a terrific look at the process. I just wish it were a bit less expensive. But everything involving video is proving to be expensive I’m finding!

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