After spending several years as an award-winning documentary filmmaker, David Wright recently took on the role of director of photography for Blind Pass, a new independent feature film. Shooting primarily in Ireland with additional scenes filmed on location in Florida, Wright faced unpredictable weather and a rigorous daily production schedule. To help him maintain power throughout each shoot, he chose a variety of portable power solutions from Anton/Bauer®, part of Vitec Videocom, a Vitec Group company and a premier global provider of batteries, chargers, lighting and other mobile power systems for the professional broadcast, video, film and healthcare technology industries, to help keep him powered up through the long 16 hour, tough days of shooting.
The dark thriller Blind Pass follows Carrie, a young woman facing the fact that she will soon go blind. She and her therapist travel through Ireland to fulfil her wish of experiencing the country while she still has sight. The story also explores Carries troubled relationship with her father, played by award-winning actor Armand Assante. In order to deliver high quality imagery on such a tight budget and without the funds for expensive grip and lighting packages to complement the RED MX camera selected for the project, economy of scale was needed. As a solution, Wright turned to the trusted, go-to gear he had employed for his documentaries, which included several Anton/Bauer DIONIC®
For U.S.-based Wright, a major challenge was powering all of the equipment while overseas in Ireland. The schedule was made up of 16-hour days, often taking place at three different locations a day. And while there are many advantages to shooting digitally, when compared to the film camera he used when first starting out years ago, he knows that power consumption was not one of them.
Digital technology can be power hungry, explains Wright. That meant turning to my Anton/Bauer battery kit to help me get through shooting incredibly long days and in every kind of inclement weather condition and location, from the back streets of Dublin to the rugged cliffs of Irelands west coast. Anton/Bauers reliable, high-capacity and compact batteries were essential.
Wrights battery of choice was the DIONIC 90, which he previously used for a wildlife shoot in the Arctic. He likes its ability to run just about every piece of equipment from the same group of batteries. The DIONIC 90s power everything from the camera to monitors and even lighting from Vitec Videocom sister brand Litepanels. That kit consisted of two 1x1 Daylight Floods and a camera-mounted Litepanels Mini. Wright powered the 1x1s through Anton/Bauers Gold Mount. He used the QRC-EPIC Gold Mount on the RED camera, which was mounted on the MATRIX Cheese Plate. An Anton/Bauer PowerTap Multi adapter was used to draw power from the Gold Mount to run his LP Mini.
The DIONIC 90 was designed by Anton/Bauer to deliver consistently reliable performance even in the most challenging shooting environments. It offers a RealTime® display that continually updates the operator on remaining run-time and the state of the current charge. Weighing only 1.8 pounds, the DIONIC 90 can be transported without restrictions under the IATA and DOT safety regulations (http://www.antonbauer.com/Support/TransportationInformation). The 95Wh battery can handle a maximum load of six amps, and offers run times ranging from six hours at 15 watts to 1.75 hours at 50 watts.
While there are larger-capacity batteries that I also like to use, such as the DIONIC® HD, the compact size and lighter-weight of the DIONIC 90s mean they fit snuggly into a camera bag for travel and are great for handheld camera work, he says.
Another issue Wright faced was keeping the batteries charged with limited access to power on location. As a solution, he always brings a simultaneous, four-battery charger such as the TWQ to shoots to ensure he always has fresh batteries available. This is a lesson learned from past shoots where he was often forced to use a rental kit consisting of less expensive or older sequential chargers meaning that each battery was charged one at a time, extending times when all of his batteries were up to full capacity for a days shooting.
With the DIONIC 90s in my standard kit, the last thing I want to do after a hard day in the field is get up in the middle of the night to swap out batteries on the charger, he says. So for me, my current go-to charger is the Anton/Bauer TWQ. I also take a backup Tandem 150. The TWQ has not failed me yet, but the Tandem 150 allows me to charge a battery and power the camera from mains, when available. So it is like an insurance policy. With a profile smaller than a battery, it attaches to the same Gold Mount on the back of the camera, offering reliability and ease of use.
A small, but crucial, part of Wrights kit is the PowerTap Multi adapter. From any of his Gold Mount adapters he can break out power to four other pieces of equipment. Typically this includes a monitor, camera light, external recorder or microphones. Having this adapter, according to Wright, saves him time on a busy set and just makes life simpler.
To view a trailer of Blind Pass, visit https://vimeo.com/channels/featuredp.
Anton/Bauer is recognized as the worlds innovator and a premier provider of batteries, chargers, lighting and other key mobile power systems for the professional broadcast, video and film and healthcare technology industries. Based in the United States in Shelton, CT with offices in Europe and Asia, Anton/Bauer was established in 1970 and has expanded its product offerings to include many signature lines such as its leading Gold Spectrum¢ Series, Gold Mount® system, InterActive® chargers and Logic Series® batteries such as the HyTRON® 50, 100 and 140, and DIONIC® 90, HD, HC and HCX. Their products are compatible with every camera brand on the market today. Other Anton/Bauer high performance products include the Ultralight® 2, ElipZ®, CINE VCLX and the Tandem 150 Modular Charging System. Their superior-quality products have become an industry standard. For more information on Anton/Bauer, visit www.antonbauer.com.