Monday, 19 February 2007

Crane Testing

Most of our previous work has been shot either from a tripod or handheld (usually while hanging off the end of a rope). We got some feedback from Canadian filmmaker Bill Noble, one of the jury members at Banff this year. One of the things he suggested was that we should invest in a crane to give our work more ‘dynamicism’.
A decent professional crane cost around £10,000 which puts it a little out of reach of the budget for a climbing film. So we commissioned a couple of local engineers to build one.

Steve Gourlay and Grant Nicoll at the Cut By Design Workshop.

Steven and Grant used a design taken from the excellent book : ‘Killer Camera Rigs That You Can Build’. Although they did make several modification to the design themselves.
The crane is 16 feet in length and is designed to break down into small seactions for ‘ease’ of carrying.

I’m not sure well be taking it up the Ben.
We took the crane for it’s first day out to Rothley Crag in Northumberland or ‘The County’ as the kids call it.
Dave MacLeod ‘nipped’ up the excellent line of Master Blaster ArĂȘte (E7 6c) so we could give the crane it’s first real test.

I think it will really come in to it’s own when filming bouldering; using it we’ll be able to follow the climber closely all the way through the problem. Although the major focus for our next climbing film, Committed, is Trad we’re planning to capture a few classic hard boulder problems for the film or at least to include as extras on the DVD.