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Commercials DSLR Production Blog

Precaucion! PSA for the LA County Bicycle Coalition

Laura Beth Mar 20

Earlier this year I shot this PSA for the LACBC’s “Precaucion” campaign with director Jordan Melograna.

Jordan wanted a contemporary, warm, stylized, “hot California day” feel.  We chose the Canon 7D and 5D DSLRs to accommodate our tight space in the car, and to make some of our rigging a bit easier.

We  primarily stayed on the 7D, switching to the 5D only when I needed a little wider field of view to achieve an overhead shot.  The max height on our jib with the 7D and our Canon L-Series 24mm was fine, but I had brought along the 5D in case we needed a little extra.  Jordan wanted three sizes of the bird’s eye view over the truck for the door opening, and on the day I was glad to have the 5D.

The jib wasn’t a tall as I would have liked, and it was important for me to make sure our depth of field was able to hold both the pavement and the top of the door in
focus.   Fortunately, this was a day exterior, which gave me the room to stop down  for that scene.  This also had the added benefit of camouflaging that tell-tale DOF difference between the 5D and 7D.

Jordan asked me to push the windows inside the car just shy of blown out, and he took it further in color correction.  This combination of blown out windows, shallow depth of field and loose handheld movement, highlights the father’s failure to acknowledge his surroundings while driving.  Sure, you can also just say “it looks cool,” but there was a reason for it. 🙂

Movement was also key to this story.  Every shot is moving, until the father almost cuts off his daughter in the bike lane.  It isn’t until she finally gets him to stop and think, that the camera finally stops and let’s him think.

This was a fun, two-day shoot.  Many thanks to our hard working crew!


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