In Studio With the 2012 Acura TL

Shooting with the Canon 5DMk2

Recently I was called on by Acura and their interactive Genex to shoot the new 2012 Acura TL. We were charged with shooting both video and stills for their website. For this shoot we primarily use the Canon 5DMk2 with Zeiss glass. In 2010 I switched to using Zeiss glass whenever possible. The quality is just superior to the Canon L glass. Don’t get me wrong some L lenses are fantastic, but the L zooms (and I know that’s not a fair comparison) we usually use just stand up to the German glass. They are superior in sharpness and color fidelity in my opinion.

For the headlight shot above the crew mounted up  the camera with a Zeiss 85mm lens on a Zacuto baseplate. The kit consists of a Chrosziel matte box, Petroff follow focus, Manfrotto head, Marshall 7″ HD monitor. We split our video signal using a JAG35 splitter and sent one to monitor the creatives could watch.  This was all mounted on a Kessler Crane Cineslider. The funny part is is it’s all mounted on a heavy-duty old-school Gitzo tripod. Hey ! Whatever works right? I’ve certainly seen ALOT crazier rigs than that!

Sometimes I had my AC pull focus and then other times he’d run the Oracle controller while I pulled focus. In the lower right corner of the picture above you can see the controller.

Joel assisting me on set.

In-car set-up using Kessler Crane Cineslider and Oracle Controller

In-car setup close-up

It ain’t pretty but it worked. Here we are mounted up using two Gitzos with custom aluminum L-brackets to mount the slider. Here the camera set-up is super-minimalist due to space restrictions.

We found that leaving a camera mounted up on the slider gave us great flexibility and speed in setting up shots. The Cineslider is such a beatifully designed piece of equipment. It’s a joy to use especially with the Oracle controller. Now if on those motors were silent! Dear Eric: on my wish list would be (1) quieter motors and (2) a case that would hold the slider with motor mounted. I know I could go make a custom case, but I think Kessler should offer one. I highly recommend the Kessler Crane Cineslider and cranes.

Here’s a short video clip of me and the crew setting up a couple slider shots in the interior of the TL.

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