We were commissioned by the German Corporation for International Cooperation (GIZ) to create a documentary film for Auditor General of Seychelles. The purpose of the film was to highlight findings from a Marine and Coastal Management Audit that was conducted on the islands with the assistance of Afrosai-e. Along with the findings and recommendations they wanted to create a film that would help educate and encourage change both locally and internationally.
It was a fascinating project to be involved in and trying to fit a 135 page report into a short(ish) documentary film was quite a task. We traveled to the islands with a detailed script and story structure along with an ambitious shooting with a need to cover a huge amount of interview, cut-aways, aerial and underwater shots across the 3 main islands over a period of 4 days. That said it is an incredible privilege to work in a country with such profound natural beauty as well as hospitable people.
Gear choices on short trips with light crews is always interesting. For this project we knew we wanted to be as mobile as possible but at the same time we had interviews to shoot with audio, drone shots to get as well as as much b-roll along the way. Based on this we opted for the following main equipment.
Canon C300II (rock solid, 10bit all rounder)
Canon 5DIV + OSMO (flexible, dynamic shots, dual pixel focus tracking)
Sony Lapel mics
Go Pro Hero 6 + Dome port (not widely used but glad we had it with us)
Phantom 4 Pro (great all round drone with solid picture)
Mavic Pro (more compact solution and backup but inferior picture)
Manfrotto tripod (a bit bulky but stability when most needed)
On trips like these you never know what might happen so with the above setup we at least knew that one camera or drone could cover the other ones place if it absolutely had to. We’ve never had a camera fail but there is always the possibility. Thankfully all equipment performed perfectly despite the heat, humidity and sand.
When shooting video or stills in humid locations it’s always a good idea to give your gear time to aclimatise, this is especially true when going to air-conditioned environments out into the heat. Typically for the first few minutes you will struggle with condensation on the lens until the gear has warmed up enough.
As for video production in the Seychelles, well all I can say is we would happily do it again, the raw beauty of the place is something to behold, and despite the fact that we actually didn’t have one day or even afternoon off to enjoy things it has definitely wet the appetite to go back.
As always when working in a new territory we leave having met amazing people and made great contacts for future projects and adventures.
Director/Producer: Crispian Abbott
Camera: William Hickman
Aerial: William Hickman
Writer: Aaron Harris
Voice Artist: Colin Woodcock