For the first job of the year we started with a cold one!
I already knew Ward and Parker; Cliff from the Willows and the various projects that JP’s involved with. I’d also filmed a Big Comfy Session with them last year, so going into this shoot we had the advantage of having worked together before which generally makes for a good outcome.
The task in hand was filming a video for a track called ‘Feels So Right’ from the duo’s forthcoming album. The guys wanted something that captured their live performance vibe.
Cliff arranged the location; an airfield in Cambridgeshire. Arriving there on a cold January morning, we were initially shown a nice warm barn conversion we could film in. ‘Sorted’ I thought, ‘a nice morning in the warmth’. Then our contact at the venue said ‘Alternatively you could also film in our hangar if you wanted to?’
My heart sank.
Minutes later we were led into the freezing cold hangar. From Cliff and Jon’s reaction I knew straightaway we were going to end up filming in there. JP in particular was super excited about the planes. We opened up the wide hangar doors and I had to admit the light did look nice. ‘Ok, let’s do it’ I agreed with a smile, all the time thinking about the warmth of the barn conversion…
Lighting wise, I just used all the light pouring in through the hangar doors; the top-shade offered by standing the guys in the door way provided nice broad lighting. I put a couple of LED panels behind the guys just to create some edge-light and separate them from the darkness of the hangar.
As much as we thought filming in the hangar was a good idea at the start of the day, what we didn’t appreciate was that the hangar and adjacent airfield were very active. We had to abandon the first few takes as half-way through the track when we were recording audio, a light plane would taxi right across the front of the doorway! There were planes taking off all day, so in the end we had to wait until one had taken off, then quickly try to get a take in before the next one took off. The aeroplane you can hear at the start of the video isn’t a sound effect added afterwards; it had literally just taken off!
The other factor we’d slightly miscalculated was that the hangar we were filming in contained planes that people wanted to take out for a fly during the day. We ended up having to stop a few times to let people get their planes out. Their initial ‘who the hell are these idiots in our hangar?’ reactions soon softened when we got chatting to them about their planes, although given I know nothing about planes I was seriously winging the conversation (see what I did there? Genius writing…)
Despite the challenges we persevered and got the video in the can. Cliff and JP are relaxed and super fun to work with so it didn’t really feel like working, it just felt like hanging out in a hangar all day…
(See? I did it again. I’m wasted in this job….)
Go and see Ward and Parker when you get the chance and check out their album when it drops on May 10th…