Worldwide Tape stock shortage

I just tried to buy some HDCam Sr stock. What is usually expensive but easy just got nasty. Due to the Tsunami in Japan, Sony’s tape factory in Sendai was destroyed.
“We don’t know how long it will take to resume production,” said Sue Tanaka, a Sony spokeswoman in Tokyo. Sony is still cleaning out the mud that covered much of the ground floor of the factory and hasn’t begun to evaluate damage to machinery. It will be months rather than weeks until the factory is back to full strength, she said.
So no new tape for a while, possibly a long while. So tape stock prices have more than doubled, that is if you can find any. Prices on ebay are silly, but who would buy tapes on ebay? now there are not many options. Broadcasters may even be forced to accept hard drives and quicktimes or go back to D5, yeuch.

Shooting Dslr in Western Ethiopia


I just got back from a 3 week trip to Gambella in western Ethiopia. The aim of the trip was to film the White Eared Kob migration, from South Sudan into the Gambella National Park in Ethiopia. This is Africa’s second biggest migration after the Wilderbeest migration between Tanzania and Kenya.  We estimate 1.2 million Kob make the migration with some groups being permanently resident in the Gambella national park.

We flew in a helicopter at dawn and dusk looking for the diverse range of wildlife in Gambella, and were rewarded by seeing thousands of Kob, large herds of Buffalo, Lechwe, Tiang and Lelwell’s Hartebeest. With no money for a gyro mount we took the doors off the Bell Longranger and shot handheld, on a pair of Sony Z1s and my Canon 550d. The motion of the chopper and general vibration meant a good stabilised lens was essential so I fitted a Canon EF 70-300 IS USM. The IS is a bit noisy but compared to the chopper that was nothing. The pictures were fanastic, the Is took the edge off the motion and shooting at 50fps gave everything a fluidity that I just could not get with the Z1. The only downside with the DSLR was overheating. The mornings were fine and cool and the camera behaved beautifully, but from 11 onwards with temperatures of 37 degrees in the shade, even with turning the camera off between shots the chip would overheat after about 5 minutes.

ebay Ironman

Ian is fast approaching 50 and is training for the iron man triathlon competition on a budget. His bike came from Amazon and he shuns running in case he injures himself and until a few months ago had never swum more than 50 meters. Yet he will soon face a 2.4 mile open water swim, followed by a 112 mile cycle ride immediately followed by a marathon.

To warm up he will be entering the Abu Dhabi trithlon on March 2011, so I am filming his experience on my trusty Canon 550d. The film should be shown at the Abu Dhabi film festival in spring.

Julia Bradbury's Iceland Walk

JB gets unleashed in an hour long special. Walking up the volcano that caused all that trouble at the beginning of the year. It looks great and is a break from the normal presenter led vehicle, here Julia is coping with all that the climate can throw at her, in the most extreme walk yet.

Fairy Job Mother

Employment expert Hayley Taylor spends three weeks trying to help longterm unemployed back into work.

Ep1: Hayley spends time with young family Dean 23 and Maxine 20. Dean has been unemployed for 3 years and is struggling with a hard man image, no front teeth and a skinhead whilst Maxine has not worked since becoming pregnant with their 2 year old daughter. Hayley not only has to build their confidence but make them presentable and teach them the basics of how to perform in a job interview.

EP3: Hayley spends time with Shakil and his family. Shakil is 52 and has worked constantly until he was made redundant 3 years ago. Will Hayley be able to pull Shakil out of his misery and get him job ready and into work?

Series Aired  July 2010.

Gambella's hidden treasure

Ethiopia is not the first place one thinks of when it comes to wildlife or its conservation, but the huge national park of Gambella is finally having its wildlife audited.

With its; Hippo, Elephant, Giraffe, Colobus monkeys and giant herds of Kob Antelope Gambella surely is one of Ethiopia’s hidden treasures.

Diet or my husband dies, BBC1

Diet or my husband dies.

1 x 50  mins  BBC1


Producer: Martin Hicks

Executive Producer: Julian Mercer

In this Observational Documentary 19 stone  Sam Lamb wants to donate one of her kidneys to save her husband Andy’s life.  She has set herself a 3 month deadline but the surgeons will not operate until she has lost at least 4 stone.

Cut on FCP at DogHouse Post

Tx 10:35pm  BBC1 Monday 15th March 2010