This gear story comes from Ambassador Nicolas Rakotopare who got in touch to tell us a story with simple message: it's always good to talk to new people. Recovering from every photographer's nightmare situation of having all his gear stolen, a chance connection has lead to a creative avenue for conservation photographer Nico. Read on to see what Nico has been up to with fellow f-stop Ambassador Matthew Vandeputte, the gear they use, and some real hands-on tips for creating beautiful timelapses in the behind-the-scenes videos from their recent projects...

Words: Nico Rakotopare

About a year ago I moved back to Australia after a few years overseas. I had just finished a trip to Madagascar and had most of my camera gear stolen by airport staff on my way out. Gloomy days. The first point of call was Adelaide where I stayed for a few months before moving back to the Gold Coast where I am currently based.

I got a message from Filip, from f-stop's Commity Team who looks after the Australian Ambassadors, telling me that this Matt guy, another Ambassador, was coming to Adelaide from Sydney and we should meet up. He put us in touch and a few days later I was on my way to meet Matt at an Adelaide CBD pub. I am not sure if it's the beers or the fact that we are both proud ESL (English Second Language) guys but we ended up getting along rather well.

All angles covered: this is all of the gear that Matt and Nico typically carry for use on their projects. Check the videos below to see how they put this to use to make beautiful timelapse videos for commercial clients...


I launched myself as a freelancer about 10 months ago and mainly shoot science and conservation stories but I like to get involved in new and different projects as well. You can see my work here: www.instagram.com/lerako and 

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYriycOL2IOuFPf3hRJfGDA .

Matt is a professional time-lapse and hyperlapse photographer based in Sydney. On top of some of his works he shares a lot of his personal projects and makes tutorial and vlogs: www.instagram.com/matjoez https://www.youtube.com/user/MatthewVandeputte .

As you can see in the image above, we aren't short on gear! To carry all that on location, Matt uses and the Ajna pack and the Urban Series Dalston bag. As for me, I use a Tilopa and a Suhka for my more remote trips or when I need a lot of gear.


Matt has hired me as an assistant on two recent projects for Tourism Queensland. The first one was a gruelling-yet-fun 25-hour non-stop project for the Bleach Festival on the Gold Coast. Check out Matt's video here, for gear tips on how to create timelapse videos like this:

The second porject we worked together on spanned over a few days for the Noosa Food and Wine Festival. This video has more tips and a feel for the real-time workflow:

The moral of the story?

Always take every opportunity you get to meet new people, networking is crucial in the world of photography and filmmaking and you never know what it can all lead to. I am off to Sydney soon and no doubt I'll be having a beer with Matt and if time allows we'll go shoot together!






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