Category Archives: Video Artisan

Welcome

Video Artisan pride themselves on producing cost-effective video communication tools for business clients.  They understand their clients’ needs – and how to achieve their video production goals. This is why more and more businesses are using them for their video production needs.

These articles will keep you up to date with what’s been happening at Video Artisan.  Short stories, news updates and comments are published by the company’s founder, Kevin Cook.  Kevin has been in the professional video industry since 1985 and always aims to provide his clients with exceptional levels of customer satisfaction.  The company motto is, “Under promise and over deliver”.   At Video Artisan they always go that extra mile to provide an excellent product at a competitive price.

For further details

In conclusion, the areas of expertise include corporate video, company films and all professional video services.  Please contact Kevin Cook for further advice on this website – kevin@video-artisan.com or call 020 83602 3356

 

Shooting as a freelance cameraman

I had the pleasure of working for Stuart Boreham last week as a freelance cameraman on a film he is producing about the groundworks taking place on the impressive Lots Road Power Station development in Chelsea.

Working as a Freelance Cameraman
Working as a Freelance Cameraman – photo by Stuart Boreham

This was a massive privilege for me as I’ve been a great admirer of Stuart’s video and photographic creations for many years.  As well as being a winner of a number of IOV Awards I think his body of work speaks for itself (take a look at his Vimeo channel).

This one-day shoot was just part of year-long project Stuart is working on for Careys who are carrying out the groundwork on this £500M development.  The entire site is being developed by Hutchison Whampoa and will consist of 13 separate buildings including two multi-story luxury tower developments.  With part of the development in Kensington & Chelsea and part lying within Hammersmith & Fulham, the site has not been without its planning challenges.  Now finally under way it will eventually become one of the most impressive Thames waterside features.

 

My freelance cameraman services were required to capture part of the action as a steel bridge was lifted over a creek separating the two sides to site. In addition to me filming on a Sony EX3, Stuart also had another freelance cameraman shooting on a DSLR doing the funky slider shots as well as filming from a cherry picker once the bridge lift was taking place.  Stuart had also located a couple of GoPro cameras, plus a Sony EX1, to capture a range of timelapse sequences of the movement. Whilst all this was going on Stuart was taking stills of the proceedings.

Even though there was a lot of hanging around waiting for the action, once things did get started it was all hands on deck and meant dashing from one side of the creek to the other in order to get the bridge being lifted into its final position.  I don’t mind admitting it was exhausting work.

I hope this is the beginning of more calls from Stuart for my freelance cameraman offerings.

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Filming customer references

Filming Customer References

Why you really need to start filming customer references

One of my most exciting and promising contacts came in towards the end of 2012 with an approach from a local agency on filming customer references for a number of blue-chip clients.  One of their largest and more prolific clients that use their services is British Telecom.

The agency specialise in producing a mixture of marketing collateral based on interviews and interactions with their client’s customers.  These marketing tools can be brochures, website content, fact sheets and/or videos – which are ultimately used to help their clients sell more of their products or services.

Filming customer references for BT

My work for them started with a edit-only job on a short film about ABM Rexel in Spain outsourcing their world-wide telecommunications infrastructure to BT Global. Filmed in Spain by a separate film company, the first task was to transcribe and then translate the customer interviews from which the agency produced a paper edit for me to follow.  Two versions of this film were eventually produced – one with and one without English subtitles.

The second commission was a short film about the John Taylor Hospice who had adopted BT’s N3 Mobile Health Worker technology into their practice in Erdington, Birmingham.  This was partly finished project which required additional and more up to date footage by way of filming customer references and BT representative interviews at the hospice. In a nutshell, N3 Mobile Health Worker is a system which enables health workers to instantly access patient records in the field – and also to enable collaboration with other health workers involved in their care.

The original footage supplied by BT was taken roughly a year before my involvement and consisted of interviews with various health workers who use the technology in their work.  These were all filmed in standard definition so I had to be a little creative in using them against the new high definition interview material.  Insetting these shots into pictures I took of the the mobile device overcame this problem quite well.  I also think the benefits of the N3 Mobile Health Worker technology to the hospice and their patients is very clear from the final film…

The task of filming customer references

Filming customer references and case studies are relatively straight forward filming challenges.  However, the work that goes on prior to filming is key to their success.  The agency are incredibly skilful word-smiths who understand their client’s needs and know how to capture the messages that will result in their clients achieving their goals.  They also fully understand the video production process and the best ways to get the message over using video.  Every shoot is therefore tightly storyboarded and planned – but at the same time they realise the benefits of using creative professionals such as Video Artisan to help direct and craft the content into something with purpose.

I’m now in the middle of the third film for this agency and BT Global which is in the final approval stages.  We’ve also started planning another film which is due to go into the filming stage mid-April – so it looks like this is going to be a regular stream of work for Video Artisan.

I’ll be adding these films to my showreel as each one gets signed off – so keep an eye out for them.

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Eiger Safety promo video goes live

After a year in the making I was really pleased to get the Eiger Safety promo video signed off last Friday.

The making of this musical-short promo video

The brief for this promo video was very simple…. Create a 3-minute video, cut to music, that visually represents the range of services and products offered by Eiger Safety – which will be used as the opening audience-settler within sales presentations.  That sounds easy enough on paper – as does most other promo video briefs – but there were a couple of unusual challenges with this job.

Firstly, the very nature of Eiger Safety’s work would mean that I’d have to film pretty much wherever they work.  Whilst I’ve never knowingly suffered from vertigo I wasn’t absolutely sure how I would handle filming under these conditions.  I knew it would be safe, but it was clear I’d have to film over the edge of some pretty impressive buildings and structures.

Working on the edge for a promo video
Working on the edge for a promo video – walking the chains at Clifton

The second challenge was picking the right locations and activities that would accurately convey what Eiger Safety do.  Whilst some of their work involves regular testing and certification of height-safety systems (such as window cleaning eye bolts, latchways, roof hand & guard rails and abseiling points), the really impressive stuff is usually one-off installations and annual inspections.  This meant we were never going to be able to shoot this in one hit but rather spread the filming out to capture a typical year of Eiger Safety’s work.

Costing the Promo Video

Whilst we had a plan of around six sites and projects that Eiger Safety MD, Paul Jaffe, wanted to include he also knew there would be other projects that would come up over the year that he would just have to have captured on film.  However, by the time we had it in the can we’d covered fourteen different locations, some of which were visited more than once.

Corporate and business-based films are never easy to cost but this one was almost impossible to give an accurate total cost from day one.  To overcome this we agreed a daily filming rate along with an understanding that each filming day would increase post production time too.  We also agreed a significant initial payment with interim invoices to be issued when needed. This worked for both of us – giving him control over the budget and keeping me in pocket whilst the project progressed.

Filming at locations all over the UK
Filming at locations all over the UK – The Eden Project

Location, location, location
One thing I have learnt over the past year is that Eiger Safety get to see things from a very different point of view – literally. There are very few people who have access to the parts on buildings that they have to access in order to do the things they do. Sometimes they are working in places that have not been accessed for many years – sometimes since the building or structure was first constructed.

Whilst we are all at the mercy of the weather, when it came to filming this project we was more reliant on good conditions than others. There were some locations where we were prohibited to work if there was strong winds or icy conditions atop the structure.  The wind conditions are especially important and as we all know these can change quite rapidly and are almost impossible to predict.  This did result in a couple of abandoned filming days – in particular the footage shot on the Clifton Suspension Bridge.  When we did actually get to film there we had a brilliant couple of days but still had to constantly check wind speeds to make sure we were operating within the bridge authority’s regulations.

Whilst Clifton Suspension Bridge was certainly the most dramatic location, some of the most spectacular views for me were those that the guys at Eiger Safety get to see almost every day.  As the regular rope access company for many of London’s top hotels, office developments and structures, they get a view of our capital city like nobody else. There were some locations where I could have spent a whole lot more time just taking it all in.

Filming over the edge at the Dorchester Hotel
Filming over the edge at the Dorchester Hotel

Feet back on solid ground

With the short musical promo video now complete I’ll be turning my attention to a longer-form documentary version based around a studio interview I’ve filmed with Paul that will give the viewer a much better understanding of what they do and the requirements of those working on rope access.  This wasn’t part of the original brief but I think it’s a story that needs to be told and maybe of interest to a much wider audience.  I hope to get this out there in the next month.

But this is definitely not the end of my video work with Paul and the guys at Eiger Safety.  There will be other must-have projects they’ll need filming in the coming years – and I’m also certain they’ll want alternate-edit versions of the video to match the needs of prospective clients.   I’m also helping them to set up a new website with a blog and vlog to capture and share the more unusual views they experience.  I’m sure this will be something that will get a good social network following from those interested in views from height.

So…. not the end – not even the beginning of the end – but perhaps the end of the beginning of my work for Eiger Safety.  A big thanks to Paul and his main men, Illya (L) and Nasco (R), for putting up with me and my numerous retakes!  Thanks chaps – it’s been a privilege working with you.

Eiger Safety
Eiger Safety – Height safety systems & services that protect lives
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Essex and East London Corporate Video and Business Film Showreel

Showreel

Video Production Showreel & Samples

This is a showreel of recent works by Video Artisan. Films will be added to as and when they are signed off by clients.  Please contact us for additional showreel samples which are not in the public domain.  All works are copyright of Video Artisan unless otherwise stated.

M&IT Awards 2017

Video Artisan were, once again, commissioned to produce a short film on this amazing awards ceremony.  This event celebrates the very best in the UK’s business meetings and events industry.

Cimar Referral Marketing Film

This short film was produced for Cimar as a marketing tool to help new customers understand the benefits of their medical image transfer technology.  Read the full story and benefits of producing a referral marketing film here.

The rapid casualty extraction system

This short film was produced for Chris Fletcher to tell the story of how his life-saving invention was developed to aid the speedy extraction of casualties from conflict situations.  (see full story here)

 

Air Products – Bump Testing of portable gas detectors

A teaching tool produced for gas fitters on how to properly and safely carry out bump testing. This video was subtitled in French, German, Spanish and Portuguese and is used throughout Air Products as part of their client support programme.  (see full story here)

 

M&IT Agency Challenge 2016

This short documentary tells the story of the M&IT Agency Challenge – an annual event which brings together buyers and suppliers within the corporate travel industry who participate in a range of activities and presentations to create an atmosphere of learning whilst having fun.

 

Siemens – The Culture Difference

This short investigative documentary was produced for Siemens Financial Services (Region North) to demonstrate the positive effects of cultural change within the business.  Used as a recruitment tool, this film prepares delegates on the company’s expectations of everyone working within the business.  (see full story here)

 

Handheld Vs Shoulder-Mount Video Cameras

This is a short documentary about the benefits of using a shoulder-mount camcorder over one of handheld design.  Sponsored by JVC Professional, this film concentrates on the features and benefits of their GY-HM850 camera.  (see full story here)

Introducing SliceStoppa

This short film will give you an introduction to SliceStoppa, the revolutionary new training aid which helps golfers rid their game of the frustration of slicing and hooking the golf ball.  (see full story here)

M&IT Agency Challenge – Landmark Hotel London

This short documentary tells the story of the M&IT Agency Challenge – an event which brings together buyers and suppliers within the corporate travel industry who participate in a range of activities and presentations to create an atmosphere of learning whilst having fun. (see full story here)

25-years of the Supadance National League

This short event documentary tells the story behind the success of this amazing ballroom dance league and it’s finals that took place this year at the Norbreck Castle, Blackpool. (See full story here)

Nipper Clipper at the Baby Show 2013

This short video diary covers the first exhibition showing of the revolutionary Stylfile baby and toddler nail clippers – The Nipper Clipper and its accompanying Timmy Tickle Baby distraction app.

Same-Sex Dance Festival Documentary

So you think you know all there is to know about same-sex ballroom and Latin dance?  This short documentary will certainly give you the bigger picture and supports the view of same-sex dance being incorporated into mainstream dance.

Robertson Sumner – IT Sales Recruitment Specialists

This is a good example of how simple and effective a website promotional film can be.  Running for just 1-minute 44-seconds, Robertson Sumner’s managing director, Marc Sumner, gives an introduction to their specialist IT sales recruitment business based in Gerrards Cross.

BT Workstyle Managed Service – Short Version

A short film produced for BT on the adoption of their Workstyle Managed Service by South Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (SEPT). Called WorkSmart internally by SEPT, BT provided a comprehensive planning, integration, support and hardware solution which enables the Trust to adopt mobile working practices.

CAT Publications – iScream Norway Challenge

This short film was produced for CAT Publications to promote their Corporate Away Day event services.  Video Artisan also supported the event with filming kits for delegates to create their own film as part of the activities.  A more detailed blog on this job can be found by clicking here.

Stylfile Nipper Clipper Promo

2-minute (or so) website promo film introducing the innovative Nipper Clipper nail clippers and the Timmy Tickle distraction Ap.  Shot in a day – edited in another.

BT – High Street TV and Avaya IP Office

This short film reveals the benefits that BT has brought to High Street TV by way of increased productivity, greater reliability and flexibility through using their Avaya IP Office solution.

Hyper Recruitment Solutions

A simple green-screen talking-head introduction to Hyper Recruitment Solutions – a specialist recruitment company in the science and technology sectors.  This is an example of what can be achieved within a week of initial enquiry through to being launched on the HRS YouTube channel.

Robertson & Co Promo Film

This short film was produced to demonstrate the business core values and showcase the various commercial surveillance and investigation services offered by this award-winning company. It also had to demonstrate the commitment required to be one of their agents.

BT – N3 Mobile Health Worker

This is the second of many (hopefully) videos produced for BT Global and tells the story of John Taylor Hospice adopting BT’s Mobile Health Worker technology into their practice.  The first video that I worked on was for ABM Rexel, Spain which was an editing-only job.

Eiger Safety – Musical Short

This short video was commissioned by Eiger Safety to act as a introduction to their sales PowerPoint presentations to give the audience a quick overview of the range of height safety systems and services they provide. A longer form documentary is also in production that gives a much more in-depth view of the company and their work.

Supadance – Shoes for Dance

(winner of Best Open Category at the 2012 IOV Awards)
Website short which had a simple objective of showcasing Supadance as a UK/London based dance shoe manufacturer.  The video is used as part of the video SEO activities and screened on their stand at various ballroom/latin dance competitions and events throughout the year.


N2 Visual Communications

Overview of the three main departments within this visual design and communications company – www.n2vis.com. Used on their website and also screened at exhibitions and presentations.

Bees & Wasps

(2nd place in Best Documentary Category at the 2012 IOV Awards)
Short website documentary about the relationship and differences between the honeybee and the wasp.  Used as part of SEO activity for www.beemovies.net

Supadance Same Sex Open

(short-listed in the IOV’s Video of the Month for January 2013)
Another one of five videos produced for Supadance in 2012 as part of their video SEO activities.  This short film gives an insight into this pioneering event and explains why Supadance were one of the main sponsors.


Supadance National League

An insight into this major Ballroom and Latin Dance competition finals held each year in Blackpool.  The purpose of the video was to give a brief explanation of the competition and how to enter.  It is used by the organisers to attract dance schools to the competition and also by Supadance as part of their video SEO activities.

Kev’s Shed Series

A series of short sponsored films covering aspects of videography and the equipment used by videographers.  These videos are also supported by written reviews published in trade magazine.

Kev’s Shed – Genus ND Fader

Kev’s Shed – Magic Arm & Nano Clamp

Kev’s Shed – Pico Flex Dolly Mod

Filming in London – a rooftop view from Corinthia Hotel

We couldn’t have picked a nicer day for the final day’s filming in London for Eiger Safe atop one of the city’s most prestigious hotels –  the Corinthia. With sleet coming down sideways and almost freezing temperatures, I guess this illustrates that Eiger Safety work in all conditions to ensure safety of their clients – not to mention that Video Artisan work in all extremes to get the shoots that tell the whole story.

Corinthia Hotel
Filming in London atop the Corinthia Hotel

The job at hand was capturing the installation of a handrail systems which are installed on rooftops and high-level walkways.  This forms a major part of Eiger Safety’s work these days as well as their periodic testing and re-certification.

High-level filming always has its dangers – but even more so in wet, windy and cold condition. When you’re filming in London you are never too sure what the weather is going to throw at you so you’ve pretty much got to be prepared for anything – at any time of the year. Thankfully when you work alongside a company that’s made its name through reducing the risk of injury (or more serious consequence) you feel pretty confident that every measure has been taken to ensure you don’t get blown off a roof.

Rooftop view over London
A cold, wet and windy day rooftop filming in London

Eiger Safety are also no strangers to the demands of film crews having worked in all the major UK film studios and provided height safety services on many of the big blockbusting movies that get shot in the UK each year.  Over the years they’ve got up close and personal with the biggest stars of the screen when rigging them up with harnesses and flight-wire systems.  And yes they do have some stories to tell. : )

Filming in London is always a privilege and somehow the weather today made it even more special.  The only downside to the shoot was that it was the last location day for the Eiger Safety’s film.  I’m sure there will be other “special” projects they’ll need to record in the future but I’m now going to be concentrating on cutting a short piece set to music for them to use in sales presentations in order to illustrate the wide range of services they provide.  A little later on I’ll be filming an interview with MD, Paul Jaffe, that will reveal more about the company and the rarely seen world of the abseiling and height safety professional.

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