Wednesday, 18 January 2012

New OConnor 1030 fluid heads used in filming endangered tigers


Indian cinematographer Sabyasachi Patra films tigers and relies on the smooth panning of OConnor's 1030HDs fluid head during filming. © Sabyasachi Patra /




OConnor 1030 Helps Capture Rare Shots in the Rainforest

Burbank, January 2012 – Indian cinematographer Sabyasachi Patra is a passionate animal rights and environmental activist. He campaigns, in particular, for the rescue of tigers and the conservation of their habitat. For this reason he founded the website India Wilds ( where, as a nature and wilderness photographer, he contributes to the protection of this threatened species by providing spectacular pictures and information. A blog and a member forum supplement the website and offer a platform on which more than 1,800 people discuss environmental protection in India. In addition, Sabyasachi films adventurous documentaries. During the making of his newest film "A Call in the Rainforest", he worked with the 1030HDs fluid head from OConnor, a Vitec Group brand, for the first time.

Equipped with a Canon EOS 1D Mark IV, the OConnor 1030HDs fluid head, and large telephoto lenses, he set off for the Anamalai Tiger reservation in the Western Ghats to shoot his film. Deep in the rainforest where the endangered Macaca Silenus tigers live, Sabyasachi documents the reasons for their threatened existence: in particular the fast growth of the nearby city of Valparai. Tea plantations, increasing tourism, and street construction are destroying the rain forest and, consequently, the natural habitat of the tigers.

Reliable support in adverse conditions
Filming was done in intense sunlight as well as during heavy rainfall. "Despite the frequent fog and light drizzle in the rain forest, the fluid head worked flawlessly in every situation," says Sabyasachi. "Filming in the wilderness also means struggling on difficult-to-access terrain. That's why I prefer light DSLR cameras to save space. In contrast to many products the OConnor fluid head is perfectly suited for use with light camera set-ups. This makes it an ideal companion for me." Featuring a counterbalance of 0 to 18.6 kg (0 to 41 lbs), the 1030 range of products offer maximum versatility for filming with a wide variety of lenses, cameras and accessories.

Smooth movement thanks to professional camera support
The quality of the camera support is absolutely crucial for capturing clean shots. "At the beginning of my career I often worked with photo tripods. However, after filming more and more often with large and heavy telephoto lenses on DSLR cameras, I discovered the lenses were too heavy for conventional photo tripods and I couldn’t achieve the smooth movement I required. With the OConnor 1030HDs, I am now able to use larger lenses to follow a tiger walking stealthily through the rain forest. While doing so I can perform completely smooth pans horizontally and vertically with the OConnor," says Sabyasachi. "The robust construction and the solid legs of the tripod complement the precision work of the head perfectly."

The investment has paid off for Sabyasachi: "OConnor allows for the best shots at an optimal price/performance ratio," says the cinematographer when summing up his first project with OConnor.

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