Panasonic VariCam Cameras Help Richard Sweeney Capture Wimbledon

Emmy award winner Richard Sweeney used Panasonic’s set of cameras for coverage of Wimbledon. The local cinematographer tells his story an the thought process of shooting a major event.

“Growing up in Southwest London meant that Wimbledon was part of our lives every summer,” he says. “In my teenage years, I got an opportunity to work at Wimbledon with one of the outside broadcasting companies. One standout memory that captured my imagination was watching the now infamous Nadal vs Federer 2008 final. I was sitting courtside; my job was to run tapes from the camera back to the edit. I ran fast, I didn’t want to miss a moment.

“Year after year I would run tapes, errands and pack and unpack boxes of gear. I gained a wealth of experience in production assisting, camera assisting and eventually camera operating.”

I worked my way up to shooting interviews and special features for ESPN under the guidance of the top two DP’s on the tennis circuit.”

“Camera technology has come a long way since the old tape-based VariCam systems we once relied upon. These days, for interviews we use the VariCam 35 as our A cam, and the VariCam LT for capturing behind the scenes imagery and special features. We recently added the AU-EVA1 to our arsenal as a C cam for use on the MoviPro, or as a 3rd cam on interviews. “

“The 14 stops of latitude the sensors gives us, helps with the contrast we get on the courts with the strong early morning and afternoon light. “

“When the light gets low during the evening matches, we use the dual ISO capability of the sensors to help us maintain the high frame rate and shutter speeds we require for match action. The change from 800 to 5000 ISO is quick and efficient, and the noise holds up extremely well. “

“For multi-cam features, we have the ability to shoot V-Log on all of the cameras, which allows us to add 3D LUT’s to achieve the looks we desire in post, and makes matching the cameras very easy.”

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