Tag Archives: Long Lens

Long Lens Shot Contest Winners

The first-ever Push It A Stop video contest was judged by Mike Mastroni, Charlie Crumlish, Ryan Navazio and myself.

Thanks to everyone who entered- all of your shots were damn good. In the end we chose the shots with the smoothest tracking and zoom, the more striking light, use of unconventional angles and all-around cleanliness. The gear used was not taken into consideration, nor was the trick being executed. Remember that cameras don’t film people, people film people. You can make a beautiful shot with cameras of any price range and a little bit of work.

Honorable mention #1: Anthony Loconte – A very smooth tracking glidecam shot with a gorgeous blue sky, a pleasing depth-of-field and bonus points for the use of a graduated ND filter.

Honorable mention #2: Eddie Olschansky – Even though there’s another filmer in the shot, that shadow cast on the wall is super powerful and the overall lighting is very dramatic. I guess I never said there was no slow-motion or editing allowed, so I’ll allow it. Bonus points for hand-zooming with the 24-70mm f/2.8L.

Honorable mention #3: Jacob Hope – I find it hard to believe but Jacob says this was filmed on his first day using the GL2. I’m usually not a fan of foreground objects but it works for this skatepark shot of Morgan Wade. Bonus points for Oasis playing in the background.

Third place: Dylan Thompson – Despite the not-quiet skateboard wheels, this shot uses zoom nicely- going from wide to open and give context, zooming slowly on the rising action and isolating the trick and the rider towards the end. The rolling dynamics are beautiful- the way the rider is moving opposite the camera in the beginning adds an illusion of high speed. Then as soon as the rider’s direction switches, the shot becomes super fluid with the action moving in sync with the camera, making the nose manual look so much more majestic. The lighting throughout the shot is also on point.

Second place: Justin Browne – Nazaz said it best- “I hate that trick but the way it was filmed made me like it.” Personally my favorite part of the clip is how the rider emerges from shadow into golden light as soon as he hops up those stairs, about to hit the rail. The color of the rails complement the warm ambiance as well. The angle is choice (except for how it understates the height of the rail- although it doesn’t look to be too tall in the first place). The zoom is super smooth throughout and the rider’s exit is very graceful while the camera slowly comes to a still shot of the warm ground.

First place: Jeremie Infelise – This was the only shot that was on everyone’s top three list. I am partial to any tailwhip shot from above because of the way the bike looks spinning around under the rider- almost a point-of-view angle. Jeremie chose the most difficult way to film this trick- by climbing a tree- and it definitely paid off. Much like in the second place clip, the vantage point might make the rail look a bit shorter, but let’s be real for a minute- Jared Swafford is like 7 foot-a-million so any rail is baby to him. The shot opens with just a still shot, tree limbs in view, with no rider in sight. You can’t even see the rail yet. Much drama. Then here comes Jared, with a smooth track, hopping onto the rail. As soon as he’s on the rail there are no longer any obstructing tree limbs in the shot- just rider and obstacle (the angle further isolates this relationship- there is nothing else in frame to be distracted by. He launches off the rail and kicks a near-flawless tailwhip (the dynamics of which I previously explained)- all the while the camera zooms ever-so-slightly, keeping rider almost perfectly framed in a clearing of branches. He lands, obviously not directly to pedals (we aren’t judging the trick, remember that) but here’s the kicker- you can’t see him fix his footing because of the branches in our line-of-sight. Either Jeremie ingeniously foresaw this situation or it happened serendipitously… It doesn’t matter. It worked perfectly. Jared rolls out of frame and the camera swiftly tilts and zooms to the ground, the sure sign of a successful clip.

Look out for the next contest in the coming weeks.

Long Lens Video Shot Contest Reminder

Just a friendly reminder that you have a couple more weeks to get your entries in for the Long Lens Shot Contest. This entry comes from our own Nick Jones with a smooth panning zoom out and a nice Dutch tilt zoom-to-the-sky ending. It doesn’t hurt that it’s a ridiculous trick as well.

Long Lens Shot Video Contest

If you’re like me, you got your first video camera but had no fisheye lens for a while. Not that fun, right? Then you finally got the fisheye and you might as well had glued it on, because from there on out, every shot was filmed fish. It’s just easier that way. It made stuff look big, it made slow seem fast. Plus it never took a steady hand- just hit record and aim.

But, there is essentially only one way to use a fisheye- gettingĀ in the action. Filming long, you have so much more freedom of angles, vantage points, dramatic zoom, dynamic elements, foreground framing… The list goes on.

For this contest, we’re ditching the fisheye. A long lens shot can be so much more powerful than a fisheye shot if done properly. What really inspired this whole contest was this shot of Trey Jones by Ryan Navazio @ 2:14 (check it out to see what it takes to win this contest.)

Why that shot would win:

  • The pan into Trey using his shadow is so dynamic. It leads your eye seamlessly into the actual rider. It also shows character in the spot.
  • The timing at which Trey enters the frame (exactly at flat bottom, about to hit the bank).
  • The slow and steady zoom in, while panning and tilting.
  • No portion of the rider is cut out of frame during the trick.
  • It’s crisp, in focus and has good colors.

Let’s see your greatest long lens shots. The winning filmer will receive a Push It A Stop prize package and the rider will get gear from TCU/OSS.

HD or SD – Any video camera can be used (although traditional video cameras have an advantage over DSLR’s- mostly the ability to zoom smoothly).
Clip can have been filmed whenever (doesn’t have to be new).
You can enter three clips (put them all in one file or upload separately- without music).
Handheld / tripod / zoom / rolling shots are all good (although there will be tripod shot and rolling long shot contests in the future).
Include an appropriate amount of heads and tails (time before the trick and after the trick).
The difficulty of the riding will NOT be judged, only the filming.

How to enter:
Join the Vimeo group and upload your clips, titled “Long Lens Shots” into the “Long Lens Shot Contest” album.
For help with exporting/compression (for SD) go here.

Deadline is March 10th. Any questions or comments can be heard here.