Dean Leslie has been producing many Salomon TV’s trail running films for a number of years with his production company Wandering Fever. He’s shot all over the world—from Papua New Guinea to the highest peaks of Europe’s biggest trail races. We asked him for some simple advice to help you create your own edits. Watch the video below to hear Dean’s advice and read his notes below.
There’s no need for tons of gear or the most advanced cameras. The best camera for the job is the one you’ve got in hand. Indeed, GoPros or iPhones have reinvented the way of making adventure movies, and whatever you have nowadays is probably good enough.
TIPS AND TRICKS
There are lots of little cheats to make the most out of your gear. When shooting in cold weather, make sure you close your bag before going inside where it’s warmer to avoid damaging your camera. Instead of on-camera lights, use a headlamp attached to Velcro, which works just as well (especially if the lamp has a dimming function). Overall, it’s best to try and minimize your gear, as you’ll end up capturing more and not always fiddling with your stuff.
STORYTELLING IS KEY
Know what you want to capture, and don’t be scared to change it when life happens! The nature of adventure and outdoor sports makes it so that things never really go according to plan, and the magic often happens on the fly. It’s best to stay alert to try to capture those moments and then run with it. This is how I try to capture the essence of someone’s character.
SHOOT WITH PURPOSE
Shooting is the fun part of things. Editing is when most of the work happens. Your shooting must be structured, so that you don’t end up with 10 hours of footage. Being strict with your shooting means that when you go into editing, it’s not overwhelming.
EDIT WITHOUT EMOTION
When editing, you should get rid of your emotional attachment linked to the experience to sort out your footage. Then put it in folders, lay out the narration and get the timings right. This way, when it’s time to be creative, there is no need to deal with administrative stuff.