By Grant Simonds
Back in June, we were hired by nation-wide marketing company Alphagraphics to produce a video that would be shown at their annual conference in Salt Lake City. When we looked at the early draft of the script, as well as the tight timeline, the project seemed like it was going to be tough to pull off—-but a blast nonetheless.
The concept of the video was to show out-of-towners some of the cool things they could do in Utah while they were here for conference. The setup for showing the video was the important part. The actor/conference host Jason would be walking off the stage and out of the door as the video started. The idea was that it would appear as though he was walking off stage, and continuing to move between each location until finally being back on stage at the end of the video. With this in mind, we knew right away that we’d need the camera to move with the talent in a way that wouldn’t be distracting to viewers. We brought on Tyson Call as our director of photography who (for most shots) used a Movi gimbal with the hot new 4k Panasonic GH4.
The plan for the first day of the shoot was to tackle all of the locations located in Salt Lake City and Park City. We started early at the site of the conference, the downtown Marriott. After shooting two scenes there, we moved to the City Creek Trax station. The shots we captured with Trax were some of the most dynamic in the video. People moving about waiting for their train, Jason walking towards the camera while Trax flys in the other direction. Having so many elements in a frame is an easy way to make an interesting image.
From there we headed to the Olympic Cauldron park, and then to “This Is The Place” heritage park, and finally up to Park City to the Utah Olympic Park. Our three person crew (Tim Jones directing, Tyson Call DP, Grant Simonds PA) was fast and efficient and Jason was nailing his lines. Moving quickly between locations, day one was busy and fun.
We reconvened a few days later to tackle the last two locations which were both located about an hour and a half north of Salt Lake City. The first location of the day was the Golden Spike national park. Located way out in the middle of nowhere, this attraction is where the east and west railroads met, completing America’s coast to coast rail system. After shooting two quick scenes there, we headed to our final location: the iconic Maddox Family Diner in Brigham City, Utah. Here, we filmed the final scene of the video with Jason munching on one of Maddox’s famous cheeseburgers. After wrapping, we all sat and enjoyed some burgers together.
With the client’s vision and our execution, we were able to produce a video that Alphagraphics was extremely excited about. We love nothing more than making our customers happy. Here is the final version of the video that was played at their conference:
Grant Simonds shot and edited this behind-the-scenes video of the shoot to give a better insight into what its like on set with the Grit Visual team. Take a look here: