Category Archives: Video

Video

How to film and edit dance

How to film and edit dance to convey spatial continuity

Why do dance-centric films and television vary so widely in their ability to engage viewers? What principles can we follow to better convey the energy, beauty and athleticism of live dance, even though audiences will view the film in conditions that are highly detached from the live experience?

This topic merits a long book, rather than a blog post, and I’m purposefully ignoring many aspects of dance on screen, including the arts of choreographing for the screen, creating or choosing a set that works well for filming dance, staging dancers within that set, costuming dance for film, and varying techniques of lighting dance for film. For today, my emphasis will stay on two aspects: the camera and editing.

I will add to this post over time, so if you have any questions or suggestions, please leave a comment below.

Filming Dance

1. Lens Choice

I have read a lot of discussion in the academic community about the supposed difficulty of translating a three-dimensional art form (dance) into a two-dimensional space (the screen). While those challenges would in theory apply to any performance art displayed on the screen, I suspect that this discussion stems from a generally-perceived flattening of 3D space and loss of location reckoning when audiences see dance on screen.

“Matched” (presented by The LXD, directed by Charles Oliver, DP Alice Brooks), was originally filmed and presented in 3D. Is its impact lessened in 2D?

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Walking through Machu Picchu

I was fortunate enough to visit Machu Picchu with my wife last September, where we took photos and filmed video footage for Destination Peru a travel agency and tour service based in nearby Cusco, Peru. You can view some of the photos from Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu in this gallery.
Guard Tower Machu Picchu

I filmed a ton of steadicam footage while I was there, walking through the ruins and trails, and I thought that the nearly-raw footage might be useful to future travelers who are trying to get an idea of what the terrain is like and what they can expect. Here is a piece I put together with composer Richard Williams:

Also, here’s the walkthrough of Machu Picchu:

Here’s a walkthrough of the hike from Machu Picchu to the top of Huayna Picchu (the peak that we see so prominently behind the ruins):

Theoretics – “Lights On” (Official Music Video)

The latest from Theoretics: “Lights On”!

This is Casey Sjogren‘s music video debut as a director, though he’s been making quality content for a few years now. He directed, edited and co-produced this video. Domenic Barbero was our DP and RED Epic camera operator for the indoor footage. I co-produced with Casey, was I the gaffer for the indoor footage, and was the 2nd unit DP for the car footage (both Mark rapping in the car as well as the drivelapse footage of the city at night), which we shot on a 5D mark iii.

This track comes from their second release, “Plenty of Anything,” the same EP that gave us “Go.” Theoretics is a blast to work with, and I hope to continue collaborating with them in years to come.

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Zipline TV Ad

I recently shot a series of 30-second and 15-second television ads for Canopy Tours Northwest, a zipline adventure company on Camano Island, WA. The ads were produced by Bigger Picture, directed by Mike Johnston, and I was the DP and editor. Sound design was also an integral aspect of this campaign, and Mike Johnston’s work with the audio engineers at Clatter & Din turned out great. This was easily the most fun I’ve had on a shoot in a long time.

Canopy Tours Northwest – 30 second spot – TV ad campaign from Garrett Wesley Gibbons on Vimeo.

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Commercial Time-Lapse Photography in Gibraltar

During November and December of 2012, I had the pleasure to film several weeks of construction time-lapse in Gibraltar for SoEnergy International (formerly Energy International). The time-lapse footage was included in the following piece, produced by Roar Media in Miami, FL.

Here’s a version with an added voiceover and project overview:

When a casual viewer sees something like this, they may assume that there was a large crew involved with the production, and that they were able to operate in sterile, controlled environments. In reality, the story behind the time-lapse is far more interesting.
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Garrett Gibbons – Director, Editor, Photographer – Demo Reel 2013

I’ve updated my demo reel! It has a bunch of projects I’ve done since my last reel (plus a few old clips that never made it into any previous reel). Enjoy it and let me know what you think!

Young Adult fiction book trailer: Stelladaur

Shari Whyte hired me to make media to promote her new young adult fantasy novel, “Stelladaur: Finding Tir Na Nog.”

One of the awesome things about today’s cameras is that I was able to shoot both the video footage for the trailer and still photos for the website and book promotion without having many problems.


I was able to work with my friend Richard Williams on this book trailer (he scored “Time Withers” and this Settlers of Catan spoof), and Paul Cardall provided the music for the video we made that introduces the Stelladaur Academy (an online forum and learning area for young adult students).

Check out the book on Amazon and poke around the book’s website!

RA Scion – Guttersnipe Bridge (Official Music Video)

Ryan Abeo, AKA RA Scion (of Common Market), and his wife Mariangela are two of my favorite people to work with. My first real music video was for “Soothsayer,” part of RA Scion’s Victor Shade project. I’m still not sure how or why they trusted me to make that video since I was new to the Seattle hip-hop scene. It’s still one of my favorite projects, mostly because of the people I was able to work with, and it was a pleasure to get together again and make something totally different.
RA Scion photo by Garrett Gibbons
“Soothsayer” was very cinematic at times, very theatrical at others, very dramatic, very austere, and filled with insanely specific symbolism. “Guttersnipe Bridge” lies somewhere on the opposite side of that spectrum: it’s stripped-down, candid, friendly, and simple. We see Ryan driving his car through traffic in Seattle, picking up his daughter from ballet practice, and heading to a show at The Crocodile. (Madison gave us a few great casual and beautiful dance moments, fulfilling my secret goal to work dancing into every music video I possibly can.)

In an age of rap videos filled with strippers and cocaine, we really wanted to make something honest, with integrity about the life that the artist leads. I hope you enjoy  it!

“Guttersnipe Bridge” by RA Scion, produced by Todd Sykes. From RA Scion’s new LP, “Adding to the Extra.”

Directed by Garrett Gibbons.
Camera: Canon 5D Mark 3.
Lenses: Canon 24-70 2.8L, Canon 85 1.8, Tokina 11-16 2.8
Camera support: JAG35 Field Runner, RigWheels RigMount X car mount, Glidecam HD-2000
RA Scion photo by Garrett Gibbons

2012: A year in photography

Garrett’s favorite photos from 2012, taken by either Garrett or Jill Gibbons for Aderyn Productions.

Aderyn Productions Commercial Portrait and Wedding Photography in Seattle
Aderyn Productions Commercial Portrait and Wedding Photography in SeattleAderyn Productions Commercial Portrait and Wedding Photography in Seattle
Aderyn Productions Commercial Portrait and Wedding Photography in Seattle
Aderyn Productions Commercial Portrait and Wedding Photography in Seattle
Aderyn Productions Commercial Portrait and Wedding Photography in Seattle Continue reading »

“Go” by Theoretics

I love collaborating with Theoretics. We filmed this in about 6 hours at West of Lenin in Fremont (Seattle). Spencer Abrom is our featured dancer. Don Gunn recorded and mixed this track. Ramzey Staples was a Production Assistant and I directed, filmed, edited and colored the piece.