We filmed the Edinburgh Festival Fireworks

although it is technically now called the Virgin Money Fireworks I like to think of it as the Edinburgh Festival Fireworks.

So we had a go at filming the Fireworks show and I have managed to do the first part with the Walk of the Valkeries and there was a few things we didn’t do properly. First of all we scoped the camera shots during daylight instead of darkness as it was going to be filmed. We actually chose the view so that we could get as good a view onto the castle wall where the water fall fireworks happen and had imagined that the clock would be silhouetted against the background and would all but disappear. 

We had imagined the fireworks would be high in the sky and that the music would carry across to Carlton Hill. Well none of that was true so it may not be the best shot to choose so another learning lesson in that one. The other shot was taken from my window with a zoom lens and with all the good intentions of the world didn’t get it into focus as we would have liked. And lastly we had to use music that was not arranged and performed by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra conducted by Gary Walker so my apologies them and their great efforts. We did film the whole thing but as time is restricted I’ve only done the first part but it’s good enough I think

Here’s the Video

So for next year we will be learning by practising filming fireworks in November and any other occasions it’s possible, get in touch if you want to be involved in that and next year we will raise the bar on our efforts this year. And as bad as I may think this is, it’s better than what we did last year which was stick a camcorder in the window. This year we have two angles on the fireworks and were able to synchronise them and create a live cut as it happened.

Mother of the Priest

Threw myself in the deep end again when I got chatting to Valentina Sulas on the Royal Mile where she enthusiastically told me of a tale of a mother torn by her promiscuous priest of a son and his secret lover. She regaled the story of her show at 2B Picardy Place with such enthusiasm and beauty it crossed my mind that her show should be good. So I managed to go along and film The Mother of the Priest and as it was a one woman show I figured one camera would be enough and I wished I had two as my battery ran out half way through. So in future plan your film timing and if you are using DSLR’s like me you’ll know they like to turn off right at the all important time as it did with me. I really didn’t know what it was or how it would turn out so here’s my video of Valentina’s story where her presence and beautiful Italian accent take you to a Sardinia’n village where everybody goes to church and the least a woman can expect from her son, a priest, is a life above the lusts of the flesh in a secret love affair with a young woman in the village.

Here’s the video

Never stop learning

One of the best things that I have learned is not to worry about where everything is going to come from. As you know we are inspired to use the resources to hand and the only thing that our efforts have cost is time. That we learn by doing, learn from mistakes and learning by seeking to improve in our efforts. It’s the vision and motto that keeps us going everyday. And as we finished filming the Showhawk Duo at the Tron last night the reality of the fact that I have run out of digital space to store all the material we have hit the wall of reality. I have no space left and no space means that I can’t post edit on my machine because it’s a memory hungry process and memory is something I just don’t have. I was contemplating removing the partition on my machine that has Ubunto and expanding it back to it’s normal size. It would give me another two hundred gigabytes to work with until I could sort out a better solution when I visited my son on the way home last night and he gave me his five hundred gigabyte external drive that he never used. Perfect timing and I know that it is not a remarkable story but it did make me think of how often this happened for us.

Who knows what next year will hold! Why not get involved?

We started out his year filming bands at the Peartree when it became clear that we knew nothing about sound recording when we ended up going for a meal with new friends that know about sound recording and set us on the right track. We needed people to video with us when new friends turned up to get involved and give it a go, we needed more cameras and our new friends were more than willing to lend one to us and so it goes on. At every stage of our endeavours everything and all the people we needed to accomplish our goals turned up. It all has only gone to prove that all the resources you need are already there within the community and that community is richer than you could ever think. As individuals we don’t have everything, though some make that their mission, but as a collective we have everything we need. I think it’s best illustrated by the story of Jesus feeding the five and the seven thousand which was so remarkable they were passed as a miracle. One individual sharing what he had with everyone inspired everyone to do the same and food appeared out of nowhere. If you and I were going to go on a trip that would take days to go, into the dessert, for a gig by someone famous we would pack some lunch, snacks and meals but what we wouldn’t want to do is share it with strangers and we would most certainly hide it from everyone in case it got stolen. Then, when this man you came to see suggested and started doing, he shared the little he had and so everyone shared their food with each other and there was so much leftover they didn’t know what to do with it all. It was if food appeared from nowhere as everyone started to contribute by sharing the little they had and so the miracles were born. And as we have gone out and shared the little we had we found that others were also willing to share and we had more at our disposal.

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It’s not about competition, it’s about co-operation

Last night we were filming the Showhawk Duo at the Tron, we’d set it as our piece d’resistance, our crowning event, and we ended up making new friends with another video company who were also there to film and we decided to share our footage with each other to give everyone the best possible chance of producing an engaging film. It works for everyone and we all benefit. Which is much better than keeping what we had as individuals to ourselves. Now because we had high hopes of producing the best video for one of the best shows in Edinburgh we could have been protective of our material, like Gollum holding onto his precious even unto death, believing we had the real precious. But we never, we shared and so both of our precious footage increased and multiplied before our very eyes.

Yes we are working on that video and all I can say is it promises to be a cracker and it is all down to the fantastic show and the crowd, packed into the Tron where they had to close the doors to a massive queue outside. It was a privilege to film such a good event because the atmosphere was indescribable, utterly fantastic doesn’t even cover it.

And so sharing has made it possible for us both to add something to our footage that we wouldn’t have caught on our own. I’ll keep you updated with the video as we have been requested to hold back till the guys are ready as they think it will go viral

A lesson that I want everyone to take something from

Look to the people around you, go find others who also do what you want to do and doors will open to resources and opportunities you never dreamed off in your wildest imagination.

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