In November 2017 Stéphane headed to Bora Bora in French Polynesia to document the Pacific island’s stunning natural beauty. Prime choice for the ten-day shoot was our FS5 Super 35mm camera, loved for its potent blend of image quality and portability. While Stéphane is a fan of Sony’s 18105mm F4 image-stabilised 6x power zoom G Lens, he broadened options for the trip with a selection of Zeiss E-mount optics.
Covering all angles, Stéphane also took the tiny RX0 camera that squeezes cutting-edge imaging into a shockproof, waterproof body. Sharing space in his Bora Bora kit bag, the Sony a7S II offers full-frame 4K recording plus incredible low light sensitivity – an asset on any shoot.
Right now it's simply the world's best camera for run-and-gun style documentary shooting.
Dynamic range was a prime consideration in the clip’s dreamlike fire-eating scenes, shot at the water’s edge as dusk turns into night. “Shooting slo-mo in HLG with the FS5 gave me great skin tones and colour science. It gives the footage an almost HDR feel” confirms Stéphane, who opted for a fast shutter speed to capture the flames’ rapid flicker. The same sequence features the a7S II, handheld by assistant Karim Yatrib to film Stéphane at work.
So what’s the secret of making videos that appeal to fickle online viewers? “Of course my creativity is influenced by the needs of my audience”, notes Stéphane. “I have to keep right on top of latest trends in stuff like music and transitions. Before I even started shooting this project, I already had in mind the soundtrack I’ll be editing the footage to.”
And his last word on the FS5? “It’s beautifully small and light, with great ergonomics and a fantastic workflow. You can get what you want with a minimum of menu diving” says Stéphane. “Right now it’s simply the world’s best camera for run-and-gun style documentary shooting.”