I am not exactly sure from where my idea to record the adventure through video originally grew. It might have been from watching other peoples’ cycling videos and thinking I could do that. Whatever the case, I had absolutely no previous filming experience on which to build, so it seemed quite out-of-the-blue that I found myself looking up reviews of video cameras. Having settled on a Panasonic V700 with a Rode Videomic, I first used the camera on a work trip in the Great Victoria Desert, where I recorded a story about what it is like to conduct a biological survey in a remote location. I absolutely loved the process of capturing my work activities on film and immediately knew that filming would become an integral part of the way I recorded my cycle journey. Looking back, it is perhaps not surprising that I would develop an interest in making videos. As a kid growing up obsessed with David Attenborough documentaries, I originally thought I wanted to become a wildlife filmmaker when I got older. While this goal was eventually replaced with a desire to get more involved in the science of wildlife conservation by becoming a zoologist, I guess my early career ideas never truly disappeared.
Maybe it is because my desire to film has been in my subconscious for so long, but I feel I have slipped easily into the role of a videographer. I think it helps that I never have a pre-written script for which I need to find the right shots. Instead, I simply record what I am doing as part of my normal day and the story naturally evolves according to what experiences come along. Rather than shoot anything and everything, I remain conscious about ensuring each shot has a constructive place in the developing story. To this end, I am constantly replaying my recordings in my head so I can pre-empt the kind of shot that will follow on smoothly from the last. The hardest thing I find about filming the journey is getting out the camera when I am physically exhausted or when I don’t want to interrupt a really smooth riding day.
After shooting the work video mentioned above, I didn’t have any further practice at filming prior to commencing my adventure. I had every intention to learn as much as I could before I started, but life was simply too busy in the lead up to my departure. I think being forced to learn in situ has been the perfect way for me to develop my skill set. There will always be much room for improvement in my filming; however, I think I am getting incrementally better with each new video I make and, no matter what comes of my efforts, I am having a lot of fun along the way. I hope that you enjoy watching my videos as much as I enjoy making them. You can watch them on my Video page or by visiting my YouTube channel.
So what’s this about sketching? Read more.