Easily moving from associate producer and production manager for TV specials, to production/location coordinator for commercials, Holly doesn’t let the ice melt under her tripod, and also produced the 10-segment series “Extreme Measures” which aired on Headline Sports in the winter of 2000.
Buzzing from BC to Alberta, Canadian Holly recently shot promo footage for Whistler Air, in and around the ice face of the Clen Denning glacial lake near Elaho Valley. Owner/pilot Mike Quinn flies remote tourism charters by float plane for adventurous visitors to British Columbia. Her Miller DS10 and lightweight Miller tripods came along on the promo shoot for support.
“We parked the plane on the beach at one end of the lake, and then taxied to the other side to get close to the glacier,” explains Holly, who had to keep an eye out for icebergs. “As soon as the propeller stopped, Mike was out of the plane and on the wings. I had to gather my camera and tripod and get on the roof, making sure I stood on the spars and didn’t damage the wing.
Holly sets the scene. “So, the pilot’s on the roof, I'm on one of the rungs above the float with my tripod, hoping not to hear the thud of hitting an iceberg, which would have been followed by a splash with my equipment.”
Stop and smell the glaciers
When you’ve shot kayakers, snowboarders, motocrossers and skiers in the heights of Blackcomb and Whistler mountains, glaciers are a walk in the park. So, typically, Holly brushed aside the risk and took in the view. “It was so unbelievably beautiful there. On the beach there were some bear paw prints, and that’s about all. The ice face was scored with the deepest blue crevasses and natural ice sculpture.”
The incredible variety of her work is her constant motivator. “I am very fortunate to be shooting in such a beautiful part of the world,” she enthuses. “When I'm getting sports footage, it's usually top athletes that love what they do and have excelled in their sport. I love getting tight shots of sports that pickup detail. It's up to my framing and my point of view to capture the athletes doing what they do and get the best shot I can.”
“Capturing wilderness offers such a contrast. With wilderness I can work in telephoto, creating steady establishing shots and smooth, flowing pans with the Miller fluid head and legs. ”
Holly looks to her DS10 for the best of both - portability and lightweight for the action close-ups and stability on uneven surfaces for scenic shooting.
From nowhere to news
Holly and her gear have to also stand up to the time rigours of prime time news. “It's high speed, with a tight deadline, and one minute makes a huge difference. There's a huge comfort in having a reliable tripod. My Miller's been great. It opens easily with one hand, I can kick it open with my foot and click the camera onto the plate in one smooth step.
This is a huge feature because the terrain varies. You could be on rock, ice, a steep slope and you don't want to put the camera down and use two hands. A quick level and you can start rolling. I find that the legs telescope and collapse without any resistance, which is great for a repo or for packing up.”