North East England can be one of the most beautiful places in the world.
Don't get me wrong - at this time of year I hear the siren song of the Mediterranean as much as the next person. I'm no fan of the short days and long, cold winters we get up here either. Late spring and early summer is probably my favourite time of year in County Durham - I love how lush green everything becomes, and the odd bit of warm sunshine doesn't hurt either.
But even during bleaker weather our local landscape reveals its beauty.
I shot this short film (a simple "mood piece" to test a new camera) last autumn, when a thick fog descended on West Durham. I posted it to Vimeo to discuss the camera (the revolutionary Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera) with fellow filmmakers. Before long though I was getting messages from people all over the world asking where this very beautiful landscape was. I even had a producer from the U.S. email me asking for specific coordinates! He was considering the "tree tunnel" (as my 3yr old son - who makes a cameo in the film - likes to call them) as a location for his next feature. Who knows how serious he was ... I patiently explained to him that it's not always that foggy here.
Suffice to say I was pleased with the images the camera was producing, and pleased to have shared our beautiful countryside with the global filmmaking community.
Recent advancements in low-cost, high-specification filmmaking technology are leading to the widespread democratisation of cinematic film production. The power of cinema and "real" filmmaking is now available to any person, group or business that wishes to harness it. I believe that's the way it should be and I wish there was more awareness of how accessible and affordable high quality video production can be now. All you have to do is find the right filmmaker/production company for your needs!