Daniel’s First Film- A New Face in Town

Posted Apr. 30th, 2009 by Daniel J. Cox

For the past five years I’ve been predicting that the day was not far off where we would see the convergence of still and video images. About 3 or 4 years ago a new video camera was introduced called Red One. It shoots such high quality video that you can actually pull still images from the files it creates and use those individual images in printed materials.  Take a look at the current upcoming cover of Esquire magazine. I’m often asked by my workshop students, university students I work with here in Bozeman and others from across the web, how to get in to the business of wildlife and nature photography? My standard response in the past several years has been, “don’t even think about becoming a still shooter. You need to learn how to shoot moving images. Movies are the future. It won’t be long before the still shooter is nothing different than the guy who used to shovel coal in to steam trains and eventually lost his job due to trains moving to diesel power.” Still shooters could very well go the way of the dinosaur.

I wasn’t exactly excited about this move I knew I would have to eventually make, but…… I’ve done it. I recently took a course from a gentleman named Bill Gentile of American University in Silver Spring, Maryland. It was sponsored by PBS. Bill was originally a still photographer working in South America documenting wars, poverty etc. That was back in the 70’s and 80’s and he saw the train coming then. He moved in to video production in the early 90’s and has been shooting for some of the top news organizations evert since. Clients such as PBS, ABC TV and many others. Bill’s course was called Backpack Journalism and it was a great way for me to jump in head first. So without further ado I would like to present my first semi-serious film. It was shot with a Canon XH G1 HD video camera and was produced using Final Cut Pro. It’s not wildlife or nature but it’s about one of my other favorite subjects–Art

If I recall correctly we had 15 students in our class. We were instructed to come up with an idea, shoot it, edit and produce the final piece all in four days. As a group we voted on what we thought were the best films with the winners  honored by being featured on the PBS web site. You can see the winning entries for yourself at Backpack Journalism & PBS. I won’t be winning any Academy Awards with it but it’s a start.

Take a look at A New Face in Town

A New Face in Town from Daniel J. Cox on Vimeo.

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There are 3 comments on this post…
  1. Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

    danieljcoxOn Apr. 30th, 2009

    Sean, Our goal is to be a complete production, multi-media house. Part of the reason I’ve moved to video production is the incredibly low prices in stock photography. It’s no longer worth the time or effort to shoot stock exclusively. We’ll keep producing stock but with other projects to make it possible to pay the bills. I predict the same will happen to stock video footage and I’m not interested in going down that road twice so currently we’re doing mostly assignments. It’s sad but true. Most people don’t know the difference between quality and garbage so it’s difficult to compete on quality when most buyers think junk is good enough. That’s life, just have to keep moving ahead. One thing is for sure, I learn more than one thing new every day

  2. Sean AustinOn Apr. 30th, 2009

    Great advice – I rented a D90 for my last trip specifically so I could shoot video through the long glass. Do you envision becoming a complete production studio to be successful or is stock video enough?

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