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Establishing Shot Challenge

Marketing Concept for Establishing Shot: The establishing shot would be used for an entertainer's demo reel. The rental room of a public library is generally very inexpensive to rent out. Clients who rent a library room for an event will rarely (if ever) spend over $1,000 to hire entertainment. On the other hand, events that occur in a large ballroom in a 4-Star hotel require a higher price to rent. Clients who spend that money to rent an expensive hotel ballroom tend to have a considerably higher budget for entertainment (assuming they decide to allocate a budget).

To establish an entertainer's image as someone experienced (and a good fit) in the settings where high budget events occur, it is advantageous to show video footage of the entertainer at a high budget venue. A nice establishing shot that shows the entertainment will take place in a high-cost venue helps brand the video (for prospective buyers who pay well).

Tools Available for Establishing Shot: I've seen some really cool establishing shots made with, drones, helicopters, and gimbals. I don't have any of those and do not want to spend more money. Here is what I have to work with.
  • Sony Alpha a6400 camera (no in-camera stabilization)
  • Sigma 16mm f/1.4 lens (no optical stabilization)
  • Kit lens for a6400 (16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 with very minimal stabilization)
  • A few fluid-head tripods
  • Google Pixel 3a mobile phone (good digital image stabilization and optical stabilization, 120fps for slow motion)
  • Small cell phone tripod
  • Plenty of light (will be shot outdoors during cloudy day)
Video Sequence Directly After Establishing Shot: Directly after the establishing shot, the entertainer will be outdoors and walking toward the hotel's entrance door. The walk will be shot from 3 different angles at 120fps to do slow motion for each angle. You can see what I mean from Position 0:08 to Position 0:32 in this video:

The Challenge: The challenge is figuring out how to get a good establishing shot that accomplishes everything described above. Also, the technique should work for any hotel and not depend on the luck of the scenery. The establishing shot would cut right to the walk-in sequence in slow motion. Can you think of any possibilities using the tools listed above?
If the hotel is big enough to have a nice room, it probably has a one-man cherry picker for changing light bulbs. Get into it with the widest lens you can borrow. Now crane down while tilting up to get a vertical arc of the fully lit and fogged stage.


Staff Member
Okay so we've got a tripod and handheld camera with no optical stabilization
I think you're putting the cart before the horse

people who are renting out huge expensive venues expect to hire someone that has a little bit of gear....
no tripod shot at a nice location is going to make someone think that a slow motion camera shot of a kid walking down the side walk is right for their huge event.
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