Incredible India

This was my first time in India and it did not disappoint, Ive been all over the world filming and the sights, sounds and smells of india are going to stay with me for a long time.  Its probably the most colourful and sense assaulting place ive experienced, and ive got to say I loved it.  I got slightly overexcited about eating curry for a month as well, so much so that i made it every day at home the week before we left, (my poor family), I hadn't quite thought it through, i was to be eating curry 3 meals a day for the next month. Turns out you definitely can have too much of a good thing !!!

My new favourite monkey, The Langur

I was here for a BBC landmark series currently called ‘One Planet’, and we wanted to film two sequences on Urban Monkeys across india, Macaques and Langurs, and experience Holi festival.  This filming took us from rooftops to ground level, suing long lens, MoVi and Cable Dolly, trying to follow our characters from Jaipur to Jodhpur. there is nothing like seeing your gear on a long rope suspended above a city to concentrate the mind.

Cable dolly

Holi came at the end of the shoot, which in many ways was lucky as having now experienced it, it definitely posed the greatest risk to the equipiment, I was falsely under the impression that Holi was all about paint powder, but it appears water has just as much of a part to play and its one of the main things that cameras and MoVI’s don’t like so myself and Louis Labroom came up with our slightly heath robinson Paint and waterproofing. Also we hadn't thought about the fact that the local children had also been planning for a long time their own plans for Holi, mainly focussing on water balloons filled with paint solution, fiendish !!! But we bobbed and weaved, duck and dived and took the occasional hit for the team and the kit survived, although has looked better.


We were lucky that we had the chance to have 2 attempts at filming Holi in different locations and after the first run we quickly revised our paint proofing as within the first 10mins its inadequacies were shown up. So it was back to the drawing board, to prepare for the next onslaught which would be far less tame. Resulting in a full on street party, paint everywhere and was a complete blast !!!!! And is one of the few time I've been expected to dance while operating the MoVI :-)

The trees are full of penguins

This is a first Blog for me, and im currently in an airport on my way home from New Zealand where i've been filming for a new 3 part series for the BBC Natural History Unit, New Zealand: Earth's Mythical Islands.

It’s a country i've always wanted to work in, with some truly stunning scenery.

Its been an interesting trip so far, Island hopping between the North and South Islands. Filming on Rangitoto Island (a volcanic island in the Hauraki Gulf) opposite Auckland and Tiri Tiri.

Its true what the Crowded House song says about new Zealand, Four seasons in a day, I've never been anywere where the weather is so changeable, it can go from very cold and torrential rain to bright sunshine in the course of an hour.

But the main part of the filming adventure, was a trip to Snare’s Island on the TiriTiri Yaught skippered and crewed by Henk Haazen and Steve Parsons, a fantastic ship.  Snares is a small island lying about 200 km south of New Zealand's South Island and home to the Snares penguin, the star of our sequence.

Snares is down in the Sub Antartic and I had prepared myself for weather reflecting its location but we got lucky, the sun came out and turned it into a magical place. 

The Snares penguin is one of the only to nest in a woodland and it was our job to capture it journey from sea through forest to its nesting colonies. 

There were two main landing sites on the island, station cove and penguin slope. Station cove was truly the easier of the two and those penguins that were nesting near there had the easier time. Penguin slope however was a 200m slippery near verticle slope, which provided one of the more spectacular journeys ive seen.  Ill miss the little guys as they were full of character and it’s a trip and place ill never forget.