In our latest blog, Commercial Photographers Network members Critical Tortoise talk about some of the challenges of filming and shooting stills on a very cold rooftop.
The architectural photography brief sounded simple enough: the client needed us to film and photograph the installation of the UK’s largest shopping centre solar panel system. With over 1300 panels being installed over the course of January and February, we knew it was going to be a tough challenge for not just our kit, but for us just to keep our fingers warm enough to actually be able to operate our cameras.
For the task we used 3 dedicated time-lapse cameras in waterproof housings, 2 DSLR cameras capable of filming 4K video, a drone and 2 Go-Pro cameras to get some really interesting angles where photographers just can’t go. The time lapse cameras can be left for weeks at a time to run and record what’s happening, which is great for filming time-lapse construction. The only real technical issue we had to deal with was a crow that pecked the rubber buttons off the back of one of the camera housings. Fortunately, we had a spare camera housing and noted that next time we need to pack a scarecrow in with our camera kit; not something that we usually carry around with us!
Much of the construction filming and photography took place in the very early hours and also at weekends. Or simply on days when the weather had not shut the site down, as there are restrictions on wind speeds for this sort of building work. Some of our time-lapse footage shows ice forming and melting again, as the different weather patterns ebbed and flowed during day and night.
A major consideration on any construction project is hitting the deadline and therefore we had to coordinate our filming and photography sessions so as not to “get in the way” of proceedings. We quickly formed a great working relationship with the crew – which is now awaiting a knock on the door from Hollywood – and we got the job done with no delays to deadlines.
All editing was done in-house, with several different lengths and edits of the final film being delivered for a variety of purposes.
Our client was delighted with the final outcome and we have taken on further similar shoots on the strength of this success.
If you are interested in how case study photography can help your business: large or small; well established or starting out, then email or call The Commercial Photographers Network.
Photographer: Critical Tortoise
Client: Galleries Shopping Centre
Assignment: Photography and filming of solar panel installation
Date and Time: Spring 2017
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