For this shoot there was a great deal to cover and not much time to do it in. We only had a single day, as that’s what had been booked by the guests and when we would have the best weather. We started by catching the beautiful early morning sunlight to carry out some CAA-approved overflights of the site with our DJI Phantom 4 drone to show the venue in its beautiful surroundings – as after all, this is a day in the country. We also quickly got key ground-level beauty shots of the signage and venue using or motorised gimbals. Once the guests arrived they were given a briefing and were sent out to their first activities. We filmed these with a total of four cameras, all of which we had prepped and ready to go. For wide and stabilised shots we used our Sony A7S on our Glidecam gimbal. We designed almost every shot in the film to be moving in some way to really build the adrenaline and excitement that the activities were delivering. For close-ups and extreme slow-motion we used our Sony FS7 on a shoulder rig. For aerials to showcase the hovercrafts and rage buggies we again used our DJI drone, and for vehicle-mounted action shots we used our DJI Osmo Action, a small sports camera similar to a Go-Pro which we could attached using grip bars or a suction cup.
With this lightweight selection of kit we sped between each activity on a golf buggy and managed to cover everything in a day, even grabbing some shots of the guests enjoying a tasty lunch at half time and prizegiving afterwards. For much of the action shots we utilised slow motion and high shutter speeds to give us the option later of what to use slowed down, so we could really put the audience in the driving seat.
For the 4×4 driving, guests have to negotiate a specially designed Jungle track in the woods with deep water splashes and steep hills. This is an exhilarating activity and tests skill and driving knowledge to the maximum. The Rage Buggies are large grass go-carts at the heart of which is a robust Honda V-Twin petrol engine, giving strong performance from its 620cc capacity. Guests do timed laps around the obstacle course and the team with the best time wins! At the Clay Shooting (the original country pursuit!) experienced shooting instructors provide special guns at six different stands at different locations around the estate. This activity is great for client entertainment, team building or staff activity days. Finally the hovercraft provides an unusual test of coordination skills and an element of competition. Each hovercraft is managed by an experienced instructor who ensures the programme runs smoothly and the clients get the most out of the machines. These safe air cushion machines are easy to drive and promise an exciting and rewarding day out for everyone.
Back in the edit bay, we had particular fun editing the activities to the beats of the music track, and added some dramatic sound design where needed to bring the sequence to life. Our particular favourite shots were an epic drone move up and away from the hovercrafts, and a super-slow motion shot of the shotgun cartridges ejecting from a clay pigeon gun!
The venue was delighted with the finished films, and are currently using them to advertise the activities on their website and social channels.