Tag Archives: Video

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):

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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

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The 500 LED workhorse location light

Let me introduce you to one of my favorite lights: The 500 LED non-dimmable video light, sold in various places by ePhotoInc, CowboyStudio, and Fancier Photography.

I have been using a number of these lights alongside the 1000 LED dimmable lights, some tungsten DP lights, tota lamps, and others. These 500 LED lights (with four banks of switches) are some of my favorite workhorse lights. They’re built like tanks, they work every time, they don’t flicker, they don’t short out, they don’t have bulbs burn out, they don’t have weird proprietary power adapters that get lost and break easily (it’s powered by the same type of cable as a computer monitor), and they don’t have knobs that wear out and break off. Everything is controlled through on-off switches that feel like they will last longer than civilization itself.

There’s a handy handle on the top that’s overbuilt and gives room to carry them easily when wearing gloves. They can swap between portrait and landscape orientation by unscrewing the little mount and moving it to another part of the frame. The light mounts using a standard light stand mount.

Compared to the square-arranged 1000 LED light, this gives off about as much light (unexpectedly), and the quality of light is softer and more flattering for portraits (also unexpectedly). The color fidelity is higher in this light than the dimmable 1000 LED, and I’ve had to use fewer gels (if any) to get this light to look great for people.

The 5600K color fidelity isn’t 100% pefect daylight, so if you mix them with daylight and you need fidelity, throw a 1/4 magenta (minus green) gel on the front, tape it well, and just leave it on there.

These 500 LED lights draw relatively little power, so I plug them into a Black & Decker VEC026BD Electromate 400 (about $100) and I can power one of these lights on that battery pack for about 90 minutes to two hours, depending on outdoor temperature (which affects the Elecromate 400’s battery output, as with all batteries). Throw on a grounded plug and you can power a two or three of these on location, out in the middle of nowhere, for 30-60 minutes without using gas, emitting fumes, bothering neighbors, or warranting city permits. That utility is worth more than gold to me.

I used one of these 500 LED lights (powered by a Black & Decker Electromate 400) to light the Moverz web trailer a few months ago:

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Demo Reel 2012 – Garrett Wesley Gibbons

Looking for a filmmaker, music video director, dance photographer or visual storyteller? I’m based in Seattle, Washington but I travel the world. Hit me up!

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Theoretics take over Seattle

Theoretics is an Emerald City gem like only Seattle seems to produce. Seven musicians trained in classical, jazz, funk, rock and hip-hop have combined to make an amazing sound.

“Higher” by Theoretics (directed by Garrett Gibbons)

Thematically, my main goal was to convey a feeling of ascension: visually, energetically and emotionally. During  the band sequences I move the camera upward, slowly from the start of the song (where the camera was on the ground) through the end where the camera was often soaring above the band members’ heads. The color palette starts cool and gradually gets warmer throughout the song. The dancers’ stories follow a similar theme, and their solos combine into an ideological improv session as the song reaches its climax climaxing with Brian Ung’s airborne power moves during the song’s final hits.


We filmed this music video quickly and the dancers (Jessica Hu, Mikeskee Huang and Brian Ung) were all wonderful to work with. One of their main challenges was dancing without music. I knew that they would be dancing mostly during the chorus and final outtro but the exact pacing wasn’t set enough to give them musical cues to use for choreography.

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Flamenco by window light

I was in Málaga, Spain last week and filmed this music video for singerAlma Sanjo, also featuring Flamenco dancer (bailaora) Sarai Lacaci Claros.

This being a side-project while filming a documentary I’m producing in Gibraltar, I had very little music video-related equipment with me: no Glidetrack, no Glidecam, no crazy 10mm lenses or fancy lighting kits, just a tripod, a Spiderbrace PVC shoulder-mount rig, my Canon 7D and 2 lenses (17-40L and 70-200L).
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Victor Shade: “Soothsayer” (Music Video)

From the Forthcoming album, “Victor Shade.”  Produced by MTK.

Starring RA Scion of Common Market and Madison Abeo as the Queen.  Dancing by the Flying Sneakers Crew. Mixed and mastered by Rick LeDoux at London Bridge Studio.

Video produced, directed, filmed and edited by Garrett Wesley Gibbons.

Make-up, wardrobe & production assistant: Mariangela Abeo.

Lighting & production assistant: Jill Andrus Gibbons.

Filmed on Canon 7D. Lenses used:

  • 100mm 2.8L Macro
  • 70-200mm 4L
  • 28-135mm 3.5-5.6
  • 10-22mm 3.5-5.6

Gear used:

  • Kessler Pocket Dolly
  • Bogen/Manfrotto sticks
  • Bogen/Manfrotto 501 head
  • Some old monopod I’ve had for a while

Edited in Final Cut Pro & Color. Titles and compositing in Adobe Photoshop & After Effects.

Special thanks to Seattle Stage Lighting & Equipment and Glazer’s Camera. Special thanks to Jackie Cleveland (and her dog Gracy) for use of their home.

Filmed near Ballard in Seattle, WA.


Just for fun, I made a color version too:

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