Tips For Filming Your Hunting Adventureson Sep 18, 2012
For those who are interested in working with a cameraman, the same gear you use for self filming will work just fine. I know plenty of folks using the smaller cameras and arms to produce some really great footage. However, if you're interested in going big, here's how we do it.
The current camera of choice for myself and several other Bowhunt or Die team members is the Sony AX2000. We like this camera a lot because it's fairly easy to use, records direct to SD cards, has a 20x zoom, and is pretty darn good in low light. Sure, there's a lot of other features we could talk about but those are the main ones we're worried about. It is vital that you learn the functions of your camera before you hit the woods with it, so try and read the owner's manual and familiarize yourself with the various controls and settings. One wrong audio setting or white balance setting can all but ruin your footage.
There's a lot of stuff you should try and learn about your camera before heading into the field to make sure you get the best quality footage. Gain, white balance, shutter speed and audio levels can all make or break the quality of your footage.
Now when I'm filming for someone else, the biggest difference is that I put the camera arm on the left side of my stand instead of the right. This is because of the fact that our camera stands are typically placed above and to the right of the hunter. Having the camera arm between the hunter and camera man allows us to get good interviews and capture that "over the shoulder" action.
When filming a hunt for another hunter I prefer to set the camera arm on my left side in order to capture the "over the shoulder" action. Just be sure not to setup too close to the hunter, as the camera gear may interfere with the shot. (You don't what to know how I know that)
In order to support a bigger camera, you'll need a bigger camera arm. My current arm choice is the Muddy Hunter. This arm is plenty big to support the weight of the camera and mics, and possibly the cameraman taking a nap on it from time to time. It's a bear to lug in and out of the woods, but provides the rock solid footage that we're looking for. Todd Graf is using the 3rd Arm Adventure series, and I know he likes it a lot. Either way you go, both are great options.
One great device that comes in handy while filming hunts off a camera arm is a remote LANC controller. This little device straps onto the handle of your pan/tilt head and allows you to control the focus, zoom and record functions of your camera without actually touching the camera itself. In my opinion this it the best accessory you can purchase for filming hunts, both for yourself or someone else. I would buy this before I bought a microphone or anything else.
This little gadget is extremely helpful when it comes to filming hunts, either self filming or with a cameraman.