Joe and I were talking at Fenway Park a few days ago and he told me about a place in Rhode Island that was like no other place around. It was a desert, or at least it looked like a desert.
Joe and Chris had scouted out this location because they were shooting a movie and needed a “western” like desert environment. This place is a lazy-man’s Sahara and this "no budget" friendly spot was just off route 95.
The weather was hot and when I arrived around 4pm, I jumped on my mountain bike and checked out the entire sand pit. There were signs of dirt bikes and atvs all over the place and there was a little pond (crystal clear) with a sweet rope swing. I also noticed a small school of large mouth bass swimming around some sunken beer cans.
I locked my bike to my bike rack at my car and geared up. I brought my Sony PMW-EX1 with the Letus Extreme, a 18mm Sigma f3.5 wide angle lens, a Nikon 24mm f2.8, a Nikon 50mm f1.4 and a Nikon 200mm f2.8 telephoto lens. I used my Vinten Vector 3 tripod. I also had rain gear for everything because I knew that thunder and lighting was on the way.
I shot for only about three hours and travelled most of the desert’s acreage. I found many broken bottles and other garbage all over the place. I saw and heard a lot of song birds and even deer tracks in the soft sand.
Heavy rain fell and I saw a few lightning strikes. Two young kids were having a blast with the rope swing.
I met two local teenage mountain bikers and we chatted bikes for a few minutes. After they left, the temperature became very comfortable and the sky was shaping up for a sweet sunset.
I added some foley sound to the mix during editing and also inserted a few digital zooms (slow pushes and pulls) on a few shots for effect. It was much easier to do this subtle move in post.
I dialed the EX1 camera picture profile to “Cine2” and set the HiSAT to +99 for a lot of in camera saturation. I messed with the saturation and black levels in Final Cut and used Magic Bullet Looks to color grade and add a filmic look to the short.
I will post a blog about this short with bike mounted HD footage from my mini site survey. Go to: tomguilmette.com for more info.