Canon cameras might not get a whole lot of love these days (especially in the comments on our site), but the truth is that the C300 (which is now cheaper than ever) might just be one of the best documentary-style cameras around because of its tremendous versatility and low-light ability. Nowhere is this versatility more apparent than in the hands of the cinematographers of VICE News, one of the more engaging journalistic outfits around today. Their travels, and dare I say adventures, have taken them twice the world over as they've captured footage from every major international conflict in recent memory. In a recent collaboration with Canon, VICE DPs Jake Burghart and Jerry Ricciotti shared the standard VICE camera package, as well as their unique camera rigs that allow them to be ready to shoot at a moment's notice.
First, here's a quick and recent example of VICE video-journalism from the ongoing quagmire that is the Israel/Palestine conflict.
In this video, Burghart and Ricciotti share the standard camera package used by VICE DPs, as well as their customized C300 rigs that they regularly take into protests, war zones, and international conflicts of every shape and size.
It's interesting to note just how different these two rigs are in terms of their base components, yet the similarity they have in function. The fact that one is a traditional shoulder rig with some quick-release functionality for sizing down, while the other is essentially a baseplate with a versatile rosette arm, speaks to just how important it is to customize your camera rigs for your specific needs as a filmmaker (or journalist).
The pair of DPs also spent some time talking about their varying philosophies on gear storage. While Burghart prefers a traditional approach, with a well-organized Pelican case, Ricciotti uses a custom camera backpack that allows him to carry all or most of his gear comfortably, with important pieces of equipment available quickly from the top of the bag. Again both philosophies show the importance of finding a transportation and organization system that works for you and your specific shooting situations.
Be sure to check out the VICE News YouTube channel, as there is some absolutely top-notch documentary news content there.