Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Photon Effect - Premiering in Baltimore

It has been a long time in the making for filmmaker Dan Poole, as his movie "The Photon Effect" is slated for its Baltimore premiere at the Charles Theater, October 28th at 7pm. The movie surrounds two cousins, who gain super-human powers through a series of unexpected events, and their stories, as they decide how to use them. This full length feature, shot in and around Baltimore, was adopted by Brumar Films as a passion project when Martin Whittier took over as VFX Supervisor to assist in completing a large number of remaining effects. This was no small task, and many freelance and student artists were brought in to help meet our goal.

As of the date of this post, "The Photon Effect" has already shown in the Michigan "Waterfront Film Festival" and is being entered into numerous others, while seeking a distributor. Even the great Stan Lee has been presented a copy for his review of the movie. It is sure to be an exciting few months as word of mouth spreads and more people get to experience this great film's "effect."

Be sure to visit the official web site of the move or find it on Facebook and become a fan. Tickets are now on sale for the October 28th premiere, so be sure to reserve your seat now.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

High-speed New York Fashion

Still somewhat new to the cinema world is the realm of ultra fast imaging camera systems, most notably the Phantom HD. Before these cameras started to become popular within the last 3 years, 120 frames per second was kind of a big deal. But now Phantom brand camera systems are rewriting the rules delivering 2K resolution and higher, at speeds in excess of 1,000 frames per second.

I myself have been privileged enough to have used these types of cameras and others for more than 6 years. While most of my work has been restricted to laboratory environments, as of late I have ventured out into the production world providing shots for major news networks like CNN and the History channel. This past week, working as a Phantom Tech, I found myself on the set of something a little different, the world of high fashion. Along side several talented artists including director Jonathan Vitagliano, we proceeded to capture the movements of a beautiful model in exquisite textures and designs in super slow motion. Shooting full tilt at 1,000 fps, the model took on the appearance of a still life with only the simplest motions still intact. Our camera of choice for this shoot was the Phantom HD Gold, lensed with Cooke S4 primes, and the matching cine magazine for fast downloads of copious amounts of data. This shoot was a nice change of pace from the norm and should surely result in a beautiful promotional piece for the client.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Video Production Rentals - Baltimore, DC, Philadelphia

Brumar Films is constantly expanding its capabilities from specialized imaging, such as high-speed and Steadicam, to equipment rentals. Currently Brumar offers rentals on 3 different models of HD cameras including the Canon 5DMKII, 7D, and JVC ProHD100. Additionally, you can choose from various support accessories, lighting, sound, and wireless focus and video transmission devices. Certified SOA members are also eligible for Steadicam rentals.

Currently the Brumar Films web site does not list the full inventory, but will be updated in the near future with rates and descriptions of available items. Keep your eyes on the site for new additions as we expect to be increasing our selection of lenses and accessories in the near future.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Conte's in Bel Air Commercial

Earlier in the year I mentioned my involvement with a great local bike shop called Conte's. Well after an exciting summer shooting various events and social outings, the video is complete. Take a few minutes to check out the fruits of our labor and let me know what you think. For anyone curious in the tech side of things, the video was shot using Canon DSLR 5D and 7D systems with L series glass. Enjoy.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Location! Location!

For the past two weeks I have been busy working on a short film titled "Location! Location!" produced by the Greater Reading Film Commission and Get-Kinetic out of Philadelphia. It has been an action packed shoot filled with helicopters, trolleys, and even a baseball stadium. My role on the film has has been Steadicam operator and B camera op, and I have really enjoyed having the opportunity to fly my rig on a number of varying setups. What has made this film interesting to me is that we are shooting dual platforms, the Red One monster HD camera and Canon DSLR 7D and 5D MKII. The final film is scheduled for projection on an IMAX screen which will be a true test for Canon systems. Be sure to keep an eye out for this film when it premieres in Reading showing off some fantastic locations for filming.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

After several months of various shoots, I have finally been able to post my Steadicam show reel. For those of you who might wonder, every scene was shot on either the Canon 5D MKII or 7D using the Steadicam Archer2. Music is credited to the band Rad Omen and the song is titled "Rad Anthem." Keep your eyes peeled in the future updates to reel as I continue to collect new footage. Enjoy.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Alexandria VH1 Commercial

A few weeks ago I had a chance to work with a great crew up in Philadelphia shooting a television spot as part of a national marketing campaign created by 3PPG. The video is for an up and coming artist "Alexandria," who's album will be released April 14, 2010. You can learn more about her at Below is the finished commercial from that days shoot, enjoy.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Canon 5D MKII Vs. 7D

Well the Canon 5D firmware update is out finally giving all of us the 24p brilliance we have been waiting for. However this post is actually not about that but instead is to show you just how much of a difference is really viewable between the two cameras when talking about NOISE. I decide to setup my two bodies in a side by comparison using the exact same settings for aperture, shutter, ISO, and white balance with both running 1920X10180 24p. This video is the result of this test. The workflow I used is the typical conversion to Apple ProRess 422 with delivery back to H.264. One interesting note I learned from this comparison is that the 5D running the newest firmware runs at a slightly higher bit rate than the 7D (5.5MB for the 7D and 5.8MB for the 5D). Enjoy and be sure let me know if you want to see any specific test or comparisons.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

In post, VFX a plenty

So this post is a bit off topic for a Steadicam blog but I just couldn't resist. Alpha Dog Production, LLC is in the final stages of post-production with their first feature length movie "The Photon Effect," and Brumar Films is pitching in to wrap the movie for a summer premiere. This super-hero movie is packed with loads of action and it has been an exciting process developing the many looks for this film. Director Dan Poole first became well known for his early 90's fan flick "The Green Goblin's Last Stand," and The Photon Effect continues on his love for the genre with brand new original characters. It has been a long time coming but with the soundtrack finally in place and visual FX shots coming to an end it is starting look as if 2010 will be the year for Photon. You can keep up with the movie as well by visiting the website or becoming a fan on Facebook.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Flying Canon's DSLR Systems

Over the past 2 years DSLR video systems have certainly boomed throughout the film, television, and hobbyist sectors. These cameras that produce such astounding images have certainly opened all new creative possibilities to filmmakers of all levels. But the big question well does it FLY?

Well over the last 4 months I have really come to enjoy proping either my Canon 5D or 7D atop of my Steadicam Archer2 whenever possible. Out of the box these cameras are not ideal, mainly due to their small lightweight bodies. But when joined with the Redrock Micro DSLR cinema bundle these cameras operate and feel like real film and video cameras. As configured in the picture to the right, the camera, sled, and accessories weigh in at a hefty 30lbs which is just about perfect.

At this weight I find that I don't fatigue to quickly but there is enough mass that I don't feel like I am going send the rig out of control from a subtle bump. The only major down side I have run into is the lack of decent monitoring from the cameras. While both bodies support HDMI and composite out, most rigs aren't cable of taking the HDMI and the composite is of questionable quality at best. Regardless it is still loads of fun to fly and the final results continue to impress me.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Promo Shoot for Contes' Bike Shop

Today was a fun shoot! I got to fly my DSLR rig for a couple hours and hang out with some fellow cyclists. This was also the first time out with my new Bartech Focus Device. It worked perfect and we pulled out some great shots.

This shoot was the first of several to come for Contes' as I help the shop develop their new marketing campaign. I am looking forward to getting out on the open road and trying my hand at some high-speed action with triathlon team. Keep your eyes peeled for the finished video on and

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Ready to Fly

After an intense couple of months of training and purchasing new equipment, I am physically and mentally ready to fly. My name is Martin Whittier, and Steadicam has become a way of life for me. After getting bit by the bug several years ago, I have always thought about how amazing it would be to operate for a living.

In October 2009 I made the decision to attend a workshop hosted by the Steadicam Operator's Association (SOA) in Chester Springs, Pa. Over the course of 6 /14Hr days I became infatuated with everything that is Steadicam. It wasn't long before I was online researching the gear and taking the plunge.

This blog is a forum where I can share my experiences with others as I set out on this new chapter in my life. The next couple years will be a true test of my will to succeed and skills as I go forth. So check back often as I post stories of my adventures as well as photographs, videos, and anything else of interest. Please also take the time to visit my web site to view samples of my prior work. Thank you for visiting.