Friday, January 12, 2018

Ultimate Camera Rig

I wanted to share with you guys some steps I've taken to simplify my camera rig in order to travel lighter and still capture some incredible shots.

The first issue was to lose the big tripod. Tripods are essential to getting a nice stable shot but I find them to be a real drag when toting them around during an event. Tripods can also stymie creativity as you'll wind up with a ton of static shots. That's where the Sirui Tabletop Tripod comes in...

I've used a number of mini tripods in the past but none seemed as sturdy or as flexible as Sirui's. I can still grab a nice stable shot if needed but the kicker for me was that the tripod legs fold up to create a firm yet comfortable grip. Not a bad piece of kit for a reasonable $65. The product is serviceable as is but since I'll be shooting video handheld I wanted to add a bit of stabilization. I went ahead swapped the ball head out for the Vanguard Pistol Grip Ball Head...

Both of these products are great on their own but combined they are a thing of beauty. The variety of different configurations I can get from these guys is like a dream come true. Allow me to demonstrate...

Perfect for when you need a close stable overhead shot of something on a table or on the ground. (Spidey headshot by Ethan Castillo)

When you need steady on the move shots. The tripod legs go up against your shoulder for a nice tight grip.

Here's another on the go setup where you can grip the rig with two hands but also film creative movements.

The best part about all of this is that the rig is light enough to carry in hand or clip onto a belt and small enough to fit into a backpack. The rig can tote up to 8 pounds which is perfect for any size DSLR and prime lens. I went with the GoPro just to make things even lighter and to allow for some slow motion action shots.

I'll be sharing some of my shots shortly on my YouTube channel so you can check it out. Let me know if you have any questions.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Original Comic Art Wish List

Just starting to get into collecting original comic art. I have some pretty cool pieces that I love and cherish but the pages below are the cream of the crop for me. No, I don't want all of them... that's just greedy and plus there's no way I could display them all. I just want one or two to be able to hang up in my office for inspiration and as a reminder of my childhood.

If you happen to know where I can go to purchase any of these please let me know. Thanks!

Uncanny X-Men #258 Page 18
This page is my favorite from Jim Lee's run on the Uncanny X-Men. It features my two favorite characters going toe to toe but it also captures more about Psylocke in a single page than other writers are able to capture in an entire run. It has everything... Psylocke's own description of her power. Her ability to defeat you with her mind but actually preferring to go hand to hand. In the first panel you've got Wolverine standing over Psylocke with his claws out ready to go to work and the page finishes with Psylocke victorious using her psy-blade to finish him off with the words "I make you forever mine." Simply marvelous!

X-Men #1 Cover B

This cover means the world to me. The gatefold is cool but it was this particular cover that opened the door for me to comic books and reading. I've written a mockumentary all about my young self and this issue right here.

X-Men #2 Page 8
So, I've already gone over my favorite Uncanny X-Men page from Jim Lee's run but this would have to be my favorite from his adjectiveless X-Men run. This page has the best looking shot of Psylocke using her psy-blade ever. If you can think of a better instance then I'd love for you to share it with me. It doesn't stop there though... she's using the blade on the greatest X-Men villain of all time. The page also features a nice shot of Rogue as well as another awesome shot of Psylocke priming her power for use. Just spectacular all around!

X-Men #7 Page 12
It's no secret by now that I am a huge Psylocke and Jim Lee fan and the first panel of this page is one of the best drawn images of Psylocke by any artist to date. The panels below are just absurd to me though. Here she is primed and ready to take on the big bad Omega Red and then a mere two panels later she's chopped in the back of the head and knocked unconscious by some regular dude. **Insert "C'MON MAN" meme here***

X-Men Annual #1 Cover

The other X-Men cover on this list holds a lot of sentimental value to me but this one is superior in every single way. If I had to choose between one or the other then it would be this one. Favorite artist and favorite team. Every character in a dynamic pose. #Grail!!

Amazing Spider-Man #1 Hip-Hop Variant

I don't know if I love art, comics, or Hip-Hop more but with this cover I don't even have to decide. An homage to A Tribe Called Quest's Midnight Marauders album which is one of the best albums of all time. Plus there's a ton of Spidey's best friends right there in the shot... Silk, Shocker, Black Cat, and James Jonah James just to name a few. Gotta love it.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Top 10 Overwatch Memes

The game of this generation is quickly approaching its one year anniversary so what better way to celebrate than to gather the very best memes all in one place. Right? Let's go!

[10] I'm a sucker for Deez Nuts jokes so let me just get this one out of the way.

[9] Welp, time to move...

[8] We've all been guilty of this from time to time.

[7] Let's see you get past this. *TRIGGERED*

[6] This! Especially when you're on one of those bad teams.

[5] Another one of those moments when it's time to go...

[4] When you get hit with "HAMMER DOWN!"

[3] LOL! So accurate.

[2] Never give up hope...

[1] And of course...

But wait... there's more. Don't think I forgot about all you Hanzo Mains out there...