As we mentioned several weeks back, 2015 is set to be a huge one for Quandary Productions. Having identified any weaker elements of our past work, it was apparent that, though we were headed in the right direction, there needed to be a bigger push. One result of these discussions was that I’d be buying a tonne of equipment to push the quality of our work visually. An early idea was to pay for a self-shooting cinematographer to shoot our projects, but then it soon become clear that, although it would cost more, why wouldn’t I just buy and own the equipment myself, and shoot the films with no need for further fees – and we’ll most likely be using this equipment for the coming five years at least. So below is a list of the equipment Quandary Productions will be getting for ‘Phase Two’:
5k Retina Display iMac (bought and delivered)
This beauty is the best looking thing I’ve ever seen, making it clearer than ever before what has worked, and what hasn’t in our past work on the visual side. The power of the machine makes our workflow quicker and therefore turnaround of projects from start to finish faster too.
Adobe Creative Cloud (also bought and delivered)
I’ve always preferred Final Cut, but once I got started with Premiere, saw the potential, and realised how much easier it was to transfer between key softwares, I was sold. The colour correction offers pages and pages of options, making it easier, and more precise than ever to turn even less well lit or desaturated images into works of art. The speed of the software (with a little help from the hardware) allowed me to export our last feature film ‘TIME AND PLACE’, after I restored/retouched minute elements, in under two hours (it took me a week before). The fact you don’t have to wait around for rendering to be complete anymore also means I’ll be able to edit faster, and again, have a quicker turnaround of projects.
Panasonic GH4 (bought, soon to be delivered)
Shooting in 4k, but keeping the familiarity of a DSLR, the GH4 is not only more affordable than most cinema cameras, it also allows for more variability of add-ons. The footage quality is exceptional – definitely the bridge of the gap between DSLRs and higher-end cameras like the RED we were looking for. Along with my obsessive desire to learn more and more about cinematography this will prove to be a key purchase, and result in our best looking work to date.
This one I’m most looking forward to. The Ronin serves as a sort of electronic steadicam, with remote control functions and intelligent stabilisation processes. This will be the priciest purchase of them all, but no doubt one of the most rewarding. In the past we’ve used glidecams, and though they serve a purpose, they rarely achieve the level of precision we want. The Ronin allows for more dynamic movement. Although we will be keeping with dolly tracks, there will be many more opportunities with the Ronin for longer tracking shots, an ability to move up, down, forwards and back with more ease, and with some of the shot ideas I already have for the next feature film ‘SPECTRUM’ that’ll definitely come in handy!
10-20mm, 40-150mm and 85mm lenses
Having a powerful camera and stabilisation setup is one thing, but lens choice is always as important. In the past we’ve used 50mm lenses, as well as standard 18-55 mm for wider or movement based shots, but by adding a wider angle lens and a more cinematic 85mm, we have a greater range to our tools, and therefore better looking films for you guys.
In addition to all our future plans, we have some more good news for you guys. This we week we have taken 20% off ‘TIME AND PLACE’ DVDs! There are only a handful left, which we are looking to sell off before we close the limited DVD release and head to film festivals. And, speaking of festivals, we’ve already sent ‘TIME AND PLACE’ to several worldwide. Again, 2015 is going be a big one. It’s been a wild one this year, but next year will be even more exceptional for us. We hope you can join us! I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank the countless people that have showered us with praise over our last feature film ‘TIME AND PLACE’. It’s the kind of thing that keeps me going, and I really appreciate it!