Filming a big blade competition like Winterclash is always a challenge and not much fun – from the videographers point of view. Don't get me wrong, Winterclash is one of the funnest events to go to. It's just not the most rewarding job to document it. So instead of trying to run around the park with a fisheye-DSLR all day to miss most of the tricks and fight for medium-to-ok positions with all the other guys, I decided to try out the Lomokino. Somewhere in this article you might find the outcome of this first attempt.
Write-up and edit by Mark Heuss
The LomoKino is a small lightweight plastic wonder and shoots about 5 frames per second on a basic roll of 35mm film. The outcome of one roll is 144 small frames in a pretty cinemascope-style picture format. 144 frames at 3-5 frames per second are about 30 seconds of footage per roll. That means that if you want to cover a whole 2 day event, you either have to use a shitload of films or think about what to shoot before you start shooting. I decided for a mix of both, using about 20 rolls of film and always reminding myself not to shoot as much as I was used to with a digital camera. 20 rolls equal about 10 minutes of raw footage, so if I calculate shooting 25 % crap – which is pretty optimistic – I would still have 7 to 8 minutes of footage to edit.
There are two problems when using 20 rolls of film. First, the price: Costs for buying and developing film are on the rise as the camera market is 95 % digital. On the other hand, the camera itself can be yours for only a few bucks. Problem two; the time: In this case time doesn't equal money. Screw you economics. The first Winterclash edits were online the next day. This is simply not possible using the Lomokino system. Getting the films developed is only a small part of it. The biggest share of the time goes to scanning. If you want to edit then you need the pictures digitalized. Therefore you have to cut the rolls of negatives and scan the strips of film. You can either try scanning in frame for frame or just scan in the whole strip and cut out each frame afterwards in Photoshop. Depending on your skills, wrestling with the strips and the scanner/scan software being used, it takes about 45 minutes to scan one roll of film. After this you can start color correcting each strip and cutting out each frame. 20 rolls of film with 144 frames each, you do the math. The most important advice I can give you here is while saving each frame use an easy and logical naming system, otherwise you will get into trouble editing with 3000 images called IMG-0087... Oh, and crop the images to 1920 pixels in width, makes it easier for the editing work.
So when you are done creating all your pictures, next step would be importing them to your editing program and start the picture schubbsing. I decided to import the individual frames, so I would have all the freedom to leave, skip or add some pictures while editing. If you are using a 25p timeline, you might want to use a frame length of 5 to 7 frames. If you are using a frame length below this, the footage looks fast forwarded. The best way is to try out and find out what works best for you. After you adjusted all the images and aligned the sweet foot manoeuvres to the music of your choice, you are ready to export. The best way is to choose a custom resolution, being the one with the height and width of your cropped images, so you get rid of the black bars. And that's about it! Not the easiest workflow and I'm sure there are way more, but it was the one that worked best for me.
This consisted of about a month of work. But it was worth it. In times of hi tech time-lapse 4k 100fps HDR 3D edits, it feels nice and refreshing to strive in the opposite direction by going analogue again. The Lomokino gives you exactly this experience, so give it a try. Rollerblading videography is an art form strongly connected to the development of rollerblading in general. So as well as our tricks develop, our media does, too. A wide vocabulary of tricks in your pocket is never a disadvantage in both worlds.
Who is Mark Heuss?
Mark Heuss, now 29 years old, has been blading since 16 years. Mark produced several Blading DVDs in the past and dozens of edits. Three years ago he rolled out 'Party', a German Rolling video that not only features good blading, but also shows the viewer what else comes with it: music, travelling, friends, tits etc. Mark is married with Blading. He not only graduated in geography by writing a thesis about the spatial perception of rollerbladers, he also works for The Conference, managing the video production division of the company at their headquarters in Bindlach, Germany.
Why so grainy? No long list of features? Where are all the buttons? No display? Can I use my old CF cards? How many megapixels does this thing even have...? Say hello to Lomokino.
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