These are exciting times to be in the video production world as we seem to learn of new cameras, drones, and other high tech video production gadgets on a weekly basis. While I will always stress that professional visual story-telling trumps everything else, these new gizmos and gadgets also present creative opportunities.
This was certainly the case for one of our long time clients, a luxury apartment builder based here in Phoenix, who had an immediate need for a high volume of professional quality videos. The client, Mark-Taylor Residential, has many properties and dozens of models all over the Phoenix area and they needed video tours of every single property and model. This work had originally been attempted, in-house, using an I-Phone. As you can imagine, the results were less than professional. While contracting with a professional video production company seemed like a no-brainer, the available budget would not allow for traditional full scale video production as we know it. Not when the client needed 31 individual videos.
This forced me to approach this particular assignment differently. How could we produce a volume of videos and keep costs in check? Several months before this project, I had purchased the DJI Osmo, a hand-held gimbal based camera which has the ability to shoot relatively smooth moving video, which was exactly what this client was looking for. I had used this camera for other clients and projects, but more as a “B” camera, an additional tool in the tool box to add value to my projects. I never bought it to serve as a primary camera. But the more I learned of the clients needs, and available budget, it became clear it could provide a solution. After all, I can operate the Osmo myself, without the need for a full size video crew. So, we used the Osmo and teamed up with a drone operator. That’s it. Here is one of the videos we created for Mark-Taylor:
Are the results perfect? Of course not. The Osmo works great in outdoor light but struggles a bit in low light. Still, the client is thrilled with results and maybe more importantly, that we were able to deliver all 31 videos, professionally shot and edited, at the required budget.
It’s just one example of how you can use some of those tools in your tool box, by thinking outside of the box.