Whether you’re simply stringing clips together to a soundtrack or trying to develop a more complex story, this three-part series will leave you with some ideas for taking your production to the next level.
One filming accessory that is highly overlooked in video work is an anchor trolley. I use the “Deluxe Anchor Trolley” by Yak Gear. An anchor trolley allows you to control your direction when using an anchor, stakeout pole, or drift sock. This is important for many reasons, the biggest one being lighting. Always pay attention to which direction the sun is coming from, because your shots will turn out much brighter and the colors will be more vibrant if the sun is behind the camera. When the sun is behind you or whatever you’re filming, it creates a silhouette effect that will wash out colors and darken the foreground, which is typically you and your fish. Whenever trying to capture a compelling hero shot with your catch, always change your direction so the sun is in your eyes, and your footage will really pop. Wear sunglasses to hide how hard you’re squinting.
I personally use the Railblaza Camera Boom 600s. What really set these apart for me (and the reason I went with them in particular” is how they rotate. They offer full rotation of the camera, like most do, but what's key is that they rotate 360° at the base where it connects to the kayak. So before I set out I can set it exactly how I want it (i.e. facing me from the front of the kayak), and then swivel the base so that the camera swings around and is sitting next to me. I’ll turn the camera on and leave it in that position. Then, once I set the hook, I can click record and swing it back out in an instant, and I know it's going to be in the perfect position.
Another cheap mounting solution that I use is the extending monopod by Targus, which you can get for around $15 at Walmart or Target. I wrap the base with pipe insulation and secure it with duct tape, allowing you to increase the thickness of the base so it fits snugly in your rod holder. Start thin and add layers of duct tape until it’s very snug and a pain to get in and out. The pipe insulation also makes it float! This long pole gives you some distance between your kayak and the camera so you can get the entire kayak in the shot. It also doubles as a great hand-held mount for capturing underwater footage.
In the next part of this how-to series, I will go over some filming and editing techniques that can help you take your videos to the next level.
In the meantime, check out my video where I demonstrate how I use the Railblaza Camera Boom 600 to capture some unique footage here: