November 3rd, 2008

Shooting Film
By James Castwell

You most likely have not noticed yet but we are going to have a lot more video's available on our web site. We have started with a couple of our sponsors and will also add footage in other places too. So, did you go fishing last week? Since we put a new issue on line on Sunday at midnight we sort of consider Monday and Tuesday are our weekend. So, when we have any time off to go fishing, what do we do? Usually not fish. Usually something related to the web site. Not this last Monday though. I had marked it on the calendar, 1pm, photo-shoot.

And so it was. I had the evening before, that would be Sunday, made up a list of the things I wanted to cover on film. Moving stuff. Not actual film-film, but digitally recorded modern day stuff. I have had a Sony camcorder for a couple of years but not really used it much. This was going to be easy though. A shooting sequence of various casting strokes by 'yours truly' with the camera firmly fastened to the top of a sturdy tripod. Not much could go wrong.

We are actually very fortunate to have a neighbor within about half a mile from here who has a huge spring fed pond, mowed lawn on three sides and trout planted. And they like us. So off we went, Don Quixote armed with a fly rod and camera. The weather forecast boasted that Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday would be clear and fair. No rain. We arrived at one and unloaded the trunk after making nice with the owners. There were a few wild ducks puddling about but no geese today.

I carefully selected the spot to do my casting and where my wife should be with the camera. To try to get some sound from me as I did some demonstrations, I put on a wide-angle lense which let the camera get closer which made me closer to the microphone. Brilliant idea which later would prove to be wrong. I did some fantastic casting and she recorded each segment with out hardly a hitch. A couple of hours later we were back home watching our 'daily's as the big boys call them. I dumped the camera into the computer and took a look at what we had shot.

To say "the best laid plans of mice etc…" would only be a start. Traffic noise from passing eighteen-wheelers, my fly line disappeared on the water because even though I could see it well from the casting position, she had the camera at a different angle. It was not a failure, it was a 'learning experience'. I get a lot of those. Tomorrow would be better. So we went back on Tuesday.

This time we would shoot the whole thing in one continuous run, well, maybe in two. It seemed to go well. Our friends were a bit surprised to see us two days in a row, but then again, so were we. Deanna even spent a few minutes helping one of the owners fine tune her fly casting. Great day, nice weather, fine time.

Until we got home and ran up the 'daily's. We had sun-spots, lots of sun spots. Big orange, red and yellow ones. The close up lense had a piece of glass right at the front, flush with the very front of the thing. Of course there would be sun spots. Duh. So, Tuesday evening we went to the mall where I bought the camera to get a lense hood, sun-shade, whatever. They didn't have one. "Hit the specialty camera shop, they might." So we did. They didn't have one either. Back home I went to make one. I did make a poor version but decided not to use the close-up lense at all but to use the one on the camera which was well recessed into the body. Might not add sun-spots.

Wednesday dawned with solid banks of fog but it started lifting by noon and we were ready to go. We knew just what we needed to do and exactly how to do it. Should be a fast in and out. My wife was familiar with the shooting script by now and I had my casting under control as much as ever. I was not looking forward to having to explain to the owners of the pond that we had screwed up on Tuesday too but, what the heck. All part of the job.

When we arrived the sun was busting out from the fog and a couple dozen Canada geese were lifting off from the dead-clam water. Wow, what a sight. An even better sight, no one was home. We popped the trunk lid, unloaded the camera and tripod and with 'practiced precision' assembled our gear and got into position. Deanna would call off the type of cast she wanted me to do and I would do it. All went smoothly. We were out of there in under half an hour. After all, there is just so much casting even I can do.

The daily's proved acceptable and you will soon be seeing some snippets of them throughout FAOL. It was a fun time and we are glad we did it. I think you will be too. ~ James Castwell

Till next week, remember . . .

Keepest Thynne Baakast Upeth

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