Colourclass Namibia: EIZO film production goes to the South-West of Africa with f-stop gear.

In 2018 the Japanese premium monitor manufacturer EIZO produced the first edition of their tutorial film series “Colourclass” on the Lofoten islands in Norway. In the second edition they traveled in the opposite direction of the globe, explored the beautiful country Namibia and shot eleven tutorial videos. Like 2018, they relied on f-stop gear transporting their extensive equipment.

While the Lofoten series focused on different landscape photography topics, the Namibia series picked out additional subjects: panorama, astro, time-lapse, and wildlife photography – furthermore filming with the mirrorless camera, video post-production and different color management topics like color settings in the camera and software, monitor calibration targets, and also the soft-proof view when printing pictures at an external service provider. And of course, the whole variety of stunning impressions of a wonderful country.

In Namibia Colourclass inventor and organizer Christian Ohlig, Product Marketing Manager Graphics at EIZO Europe, was joined by the Photographer and Trainer Alexander Heinrichs and Director of Photography Stephan Klein who shot the Colourclass Lofoten, too, but this time also acts in front of the camera.

Challenge: Transportation and protection

As one might expect, photographers accompanied by a professional film crew has quite a lot of gear to transport to the destination and on location. All the gear had to be taken along by plane together with the crew. Furthermore, the team wanted to be flexible and mobile to preserve the documentary-like character of the episodes. The crew as well as the entire gear had to fit into a single Land-Cruiser with an extended cabin, and the team never stayed longer than two nights at a single location. Hence, flexibility and compactness were crucial on the one hand, but as the team planned to travel more than 2,400 kilometers mainly on dusty gravel roads and working out of open safari vehicles in hot and dusty conditions, protection of the sensible gear was imperative as well.

Backpacks core components

The central carrying components where the Tilopa and Ajna backpacks, for in-cabin carrying as well as transport on location. Additional ICUs with extra gear where stowed in Zarges aluminum boxes and Peli Cases in the checked baggage. “As we made excellent experiences with our f-stop gear backpacks on our Lofoten production, f-stop gear of course was my first choice for the Colourclass Namibia once again”, elaborates Christian Ohlig from EIZO Europe. “As we knew that we would often have to work in narrow spaces like the seat of a safari car, a hot air balloon or a helicopter where we would not be able to work out of our Tilopa backpacks, we used Florentin shoulder bags for every crew member”, Christian explains his decision.

But the shoulder bags have not only proven their worth in narrow spaces, they were also very useful as additional storage room during the long-distance drives from one location to the other, while being mounted at the backrest of the front seats in the crew car. And, of course, as intended, primarily while shooting in a safari vehicle or just stowed on the floor while flying in the balloon or helicopter.

Versatility and flexibility through ICUs

“The ICU concept was ideal for us”, Stephan Klein, Director of Photography and founder of the film company hunderteins, sums up f-stop’s largest advantage in his eyes. “We had several dedicated ICUs readily packed for different topics like time-lapse, for instance. While not in use, they were stowed in Peli-hard-cases, and we were able to configure our gear quickly for the next shoot or topic without taking the risk of forgetting something by packing from scratch. Furthermore, we did not need to modify our ICU dividers every time – we could just easily and quickly switch the whole ICU while keeping our every-day accessories stowed in our backpacks and shoulder bags”, Stephan explains.

Rough conditions, great carrying comfort, and no equipment damages

Not only the crew has been challenged in this two-week shooting journey: High temperatures, often more than 40°C, a dust storm and rain while shooting in Etosha National Park, and the omnipresent endless hours on endless gravel roads also challenged the equipment. Not least thanks to the f-stop gear solutions, the EIZO crew’s equipment suffered no hardware damages and was returned safely back to Germany, where they shot the final three episodes of this series in the studio in Bonn and the professional photo lab of WhiteWall.

Finally: 11 episodes in five languages released globally

After months of editing, postproduction and language adaption EIZO has now released the “Colourclass Namibia” globally. Eleven episodes are available in English, German, Italian, Dutch, and Czech language for free here: www.eizo.academy

f-stop gear is proud of having supported this great project and is looking forward to what EIZO is planning in the future.

 

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