Sights of Seattle

Sights of Seattle from fuglee on Vimeo.

A montage highlighting the sights of seattle. Here’s a bit of insight on locations and how I got the shots:

0:00 View from the Airplane
I always take my camera as a carry on and ready to shot a quick aerial when the moment arrives. I avoid sitting in the middle of the plane so I can get a wide view unobstructed by the wing. I avoid stopping the lens down beyond f/8 to prevent getting dirt from the window. I usually press the camera up against the glass or the rim and use my body to shield any reflections from the cabin. Even though you’re not supposed to use your electronics below the altitude to 10k feet due to interference (which was debunked by the mythbusters), I find that’s when you get the best footage, beyond 10k feet everything is too far away. Just be courteous to the fly attendants if they ask you to shut it off so you don’t get thrown off the plane. Footage was stabilized with smoothcam filter in Final Cut Pro.

0:12 Shilshole Bay
I shot this on my Samsung Galaxy SII mobile phone while having dinner at Ray’s Boathouse. I don’t always carry my camera but I make the most of whatever I have. I leaned my phone against the window sill and aim it away from the reflections of the restaurant’s interior lights. Footage was sped up in post and meticulously removed some autofocus shifts.

0:16 Gasworks Park
Someone suggested going here to get the skyline against the reflections in the water. I came here twice. One night I got little to no reflections and the next night I go plenty. Lenses were the same and weather condition were similar. One thing about photography is sometimes revisiting a site yields different results.

0:34 Century Link Stadium and Downtown Seattle
This was shot from Beacon Hill. I shot this while on vacation so I kept gear to a minimum. Many of the timelapses including this shot was done with the camera on a tabletop tripod placed on ground level or atop a trashcan or whatever I can find. I used the intervalometer feature in the Magic Lantern Firmware for the Canon 5D Mark II. I shot at 1/4 – 1/8 shutter speed with lenses 1-2 stop down from wide open. I stitched together still photos which allow for 4k+ resolution and subtle movements were keyframed in post.

0:55 Space Needle with Angry Bird
This was shot from Kerry Park. Sometimes you have to think outside of the box to get a simple shot. I didn’t have a fluid head with me on this trip so when I wanted a smooth pan I found two tricks. In a shot with little movements like this, I took two shots and stitched together and pan in post. I also found that while the ball head on my table top tripod doesn’t allow for the smoothest pans, I found that slowly loosening the camera off the 1/4″ tripod screw gave me a relatively smooth pan when you’re in a pinch.

1:02 Mount Rainier
My friend would not stop screaming her head off about how you can see Mount Rainier because the weather is usually so shitty that you can’t see it so I shot some video of it when we were on Alki Beach. The only thing I would say about this shot is I had to be patient and wait for the right subject to bring interest to what would otherwise be an ordinary scene.

1:12 Crane outside of Laura’s Apartment
In addition to my table top tripod, I also attach a clamp to it. These two items make up my mobile grip kit in place of my full size tripod. For this shot, I needed more height to get over the balcony rail so I attached the clamp to the back of a chair then mounted a ball head and camera on that.

1:17 Airplane again

The footage you see here and more are available for purchase at pond5, shutterstock, and fotolia.

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