January 19, 2012
By Kelvin Ong
During the making of Indian cinematographer Sabyasachi Patra’s newest film “A Call in the Rainforest”, he worked with the 1030HDs fluid head from OConnor, a Vitec Group brand, for the first time. Equipped with a Canon EOS 1D Mark IV, the OConnor 1030HDs fluid head, and large telephoto lenses, he set off for the Anamalai Tiger reservation in the Western Ghats to shoot his film. Deep in the rainforest where the endangered Macaca Silenus tigers live, Sabyasachi documents the reasons for their threatened existence: in particular the fast growth of the nearby city of Valparai. Tea plantations, increasing tourism, and street construction are destroying the rain forest and, consequently, the natural habitat of the tigers. Filming was done in intense sunlight as well as during heavy rainfall. “Despite the frequent fog and light drizzle in the rain forest, the fluid head worked flawlessly in every situation,” says Sabyasachi. “Filming in the wilderness also means struggling on difficult-to-access terrain. That’s why I prefer light DSLR cameras to save space. In contrast to many products the OConnor fluid head is perfectly suited for use with light camera set-ups. This makes it an ideal companion for me.” Featuring a counterbalance of 0 to 18.6 kg (0 to 41 lbs), the 1030 range of products offer maximum versatility for filming with a wide variety of lenses, cameras and accessories. The quality of the camera support is absolutely crucial for capturing clean shots. “At the beginning of my career I often worked with photo tripods. However, after filming more and more often with large and heavy telephoto lenses on DSLR cameras, I discovered the lenses were too heavy for conventional photo tripods and I couldn’t achieve the smooth movement I required. With the OConnor 1030HDs, I am now able to use larger lenses to follow a tiger walking stealthily through the rain forest. While doing so I can perform completely smooth pans horizontally and vertically with the OConnor,” says Sabyasachi. “The robust construction and the solid legs of the tripod complement the precision work of the head perfectly.” The investment has paid off for Sabyasachi: “OConnor allows for the best shots at an optimal price/performance ratio,” says the cinematographer when summing up his first project with OConnor.