The GTC Awards, sponsored by the Vitec Group, and in association with Zerb, were presented on 11 May 2012 in Birmingham as part of the Guild of Television Cameramen's 40th anniversary celebrations.
The event was held at IET Austin Court which proved to be a great venue with spacious rooms, a lovely canalside setting and excellent catering. The Guild was honoured that the Lord Mayor of Birmingham, Councillor Anita Ward, attended the evening ceremony in person to welcome the GTC back to the city in which its inaugural meeting took place 40 years ago.
During the day Alan Roberts led two very interesting workshops for GTC members - one on camera settings and the other on the latest LED lights which featured a good array of current luminaires kindly provided by sponsor members. Meanwhile GTC sponsor companies were on hand to demonstrate on a one-to-one basis a good selection of new products, some fresh from NAB.
At the 40th AGM of the Guild the new Council for 2012–14 was sworn in (see GTC Council), and there was an exciting announcement about a new initiative to help sponsor students, the result of a collaboration between the GTC and the generous support of Bill Vinten.
Throughout the day the winning entries in the GTC Wildlife Photography Competition were on display and we were delighted that Doug Allan was able to attend the event and present the winners with their copies of his book Freeze Frame. See more about Freeze Frame: A Wildlife Cameraman's Adventures on Ice at http://dougallan.com.
Jules retired last year after a long and successful career at BBC, Anglia TV and as a freelance, working on many of the classic pioneering programmes including Z Cars, Juke Box Jury and Dr Who, eventually becoming a well-respected supervisor. He started at the BBC in 1963 and retired in 2011 after 14 years supervising Channel 4 Racing. He will not only be remembered for his ability as a cameraman but also his fairness and support as a crew leader. One of the 'old school' who will be greatly missed by all who worked with him.
Notwithstanding the beautiful locations, the judging panel still thought the aerial camerawork enhanced the viewer’s experience and did not use the safe wide-shot style of coverage. Instead, by using a range of zoom angles and varying heights, it brought beautiful, precise frames to the already extremely exciting ground level coverage.
The Steadicam work on this production added to the overall atmosphere and urgency of some scenes. The moves, which were executed excellently, show how unobtrusive and delightful good Steadicam work can and should be.
The camerawork on this atmospheric and exciting production was always very good and occasionally excellent, contributing to the high production standards of this hugely successful show.
Strong, well lit frames and very precise external sequences brought a fascinating subject to the viewer with high production values and excellent camerawork.
Great story-telling through well thought-out framing, exceptional close-up photography and focusing, using a range of camera positions including handheld walks and a wide variety of lens angles.
Very well planned positioning of cameras to offer varied angles and dramatic framing while still telling the whole story of the wedding, thus ensuring the viewer missed nothing. The crew worked well together, co-ordinating cranes, zooms and pans to a uniform speed that gelled into a remarkable transmission.
The single (around 7 minutes) opening shot showed precision and planning and at times brilliant execution through the set, including stairs up and down, and travelling the length of the Great Hall. Some exceptional level and iris adjustments that were almost undetectable.
Exciting, dramatic, extreme. The judging panel thought that the shots added to the experience showing the viewer angles and detail they could not experience themselves. Amazing coverage in more-than-difficult conditions. This is pushing the capabilites and the crew to the extreme.
The X-Mo was used to great effect with a long lens to produce stunning and excellent replays and sequences, along with excellent composition and an understanding of what was required for analysis. Because of the requirements of high-speed photography, Stephen's focusing had to be absolutely spot on. This is a new style of camerawork that has had to be adapted because of the known technology and how it is delivered and should be recognised.
Exceptional footage that incorporated beautiful framing, well planned camera positioning and excellently executed automated moves. This all gelled together to offer the viewer a beautiful experience.
Nikon to Sony F3 Adaptor
This adaptor makes the use of a very wide range of high quality Nikon-mount still lenses possible with the Sony F3 camera. It has an ingenious design feature which allows manual control of the iris on lenses which do not have a manual iris ring (common on many modern lenses). It makes the F3 a much more flexible camera as the only alternative would be to use PL mount lenses which are great but expensive.
Easyrig 2.5 & Easyrig Cinema 3
Easyrig is becoming more and more popular as large cameras such as ARRI and RED are being used handheld on dramas. It is also regularly used on live music, studio, OBs and PSC to great effect. The inventor, Johan Hellsten, deserves recognition for the constant development he puts into the idea, having most recently developed a variable unit on which the end user can vary the tension.
ARRI Alexa Camera System
This system has been the subject of continual praise from cameramen users on the GTC Forum.
HMS Ocean's crew have become an internet sensation after they made a music video of themselves getting into the festive spirit on board following news they would be coming home for Christmas. The video which has been viewed on YouTube more than 3 million times, shows the crew on the Royal Navy ship against the tune of hit Mariah Carey Christmas Song 'All I Want for Christmas Is You'.
Lt Kelly has rendered valuable service to the Guild by highlighting the cameraman'sability to raise the quality of their craft in social network broadcasting. She has brought much kudos to the role played by service cameramen and women within our industry.
Neil Thompson has been a dedicated ally of the GTC for many years both while on the staff at Sony and more recently as a consultant and freelance tutor on the company's cameras and ancillary equipment.
His willingness to impart his knowledge of Sony broadcast cameras has helped many amember - even out of hours. He has often answered technical queries placed on the GTC's online Forum and participated in many GTC workshops and exhibitions.
Highly regarded by cameramen for being able to look at cameras from their standpoint rather than just from an engineering, or worse, sales standpoint, Neil Thompson richly deserves the Honorary Membership being bestowed on him by the Guild of Television Cameramen.
With the serious business of the day over, GTC members, Award winners and sponsors alike were free to let their hair down to the fantastic Anglo-Cuban rhythms provided by Alma Latina fronted by the designer of this website, Paul Dunn of Diablo Design and Multimedia. In a truly marathon day for Paul, at 2.30 the morning before the event, he and colleague Dave Field were launching this great new-look website for the GTC - by the evening Paul had morphed into the charismatic front man of Alma Latina!
The next day, members and guests recovered by enjoying a relaxing trip round the canals of Birmingham before lunch and goodbye until next year.