Last week we introduced you to the new site that Video Blocks is sponsoring, Epic Slow Mo. Hopefully by now you’ve had a chance to see some of their stuff and even vote on an episode or two! We sat down with the masterminds behind this project, Zach and Brittney, and asked them all about how Epic Slow Mo came to be and what it’s like to shoot everything in slow motion.
How did Epic Slow Mo get started?
Video Blocks recently bought its own high speed Phantom camera in order to start producing its own slow motion content. We get so excited every time we shoot something, because slow motion is something that can obviously only be seen through the camera and it’s so much fun to look at things through this perspective. Because we’ve been having so much fun, and because the camera is ours to use as we please, the possibilities seemed pretty much endless for us. So we immediately thought it would be fun to film the craziest, coolest stuff we could think of and share it!
What are some of the coolest things you’ve shot?
As far as Epic Slow Mo goes, we blew some gigantic bubbles one day and watching them pop was insane. In general, some of our nature shots have been the coolest. We’ve been lucky enough to get shots of both hummingbirds and bald eagles, among other animals. To see those normally is pretty awesome as it is, but to get them in slow motion is so breathtaking and amazing to see.
Have you had any ideas that turned out to be lame?
One day we tried to do the classic Mentos and Diet Coke explosion, but we thought we’d be fancy and put other things in the soda so they’d explode too. It did not go anywhere near according to plan. Two trips to the store and eight coke bottles later, we had still accomplished absolutely nothing, so we gave up and trudged home.
Do you have an Epic Slow Mo most embarrassing moment?
We were making soda bottle rockets in a parking lot when a mother and daughter pulled up in their car to watch. After some small talk and a lot of hype, I let it launch. Instead of blasting into the air, the bottle flipped sideways and went nowhere, and the soda sprayed all over me. I was drenched. It was a funny scene, but we had to convince the onlookers that we were cooler than that.
What type of equipment do you use to shoot with the Phantom?
We use a camera called the Phantom, which is a pretty slick name. A normal camera shoots at 30 frames per second, but at full HD the Phantom can shoot up to 1500 frames per second, which is 50 times slower! We don’t need much else when we’re outside, but when shooting indoors we use three massive 2000w studio lights that sometimes I swear are hotter and brighter than the sun. But they’re necessary!
What is the hardest part of working with the Phantom camera?
The camera needs a ton of light, which isn’t a problem in daylight but can sometimes be tricky to get right indoors. There are only certain kinds of lights that are strong enough and don’t flicker. (Yes, most lights flicker all the time – who knew?) The Phantom also has a disproportionally strong green light sensor, so color balancing before shooting is probably the most tedious and difficult part of working with the camera.
Do you have any advice for people looking to shoot in slow motion?
It’s not a camcorder – working with a high speed camera takes a lot of time a patience. But it’s totally worth it!
Do you have any more questions for Zach and Brittney? Leave your questions in the comments below or on our Facebook page
and we’ll have them give you an answer!
And don’t forget to grab your own slow motion clip right here on the Video Blocks blog! Just click the button below to download your free slow motion stock footage clip.
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