This is my first blog post and the intention is to make a post every few weeks in order to give out a bit of information around recent shoots, techniques, challenges and solutions that I have come across as a cameraman.
As a welcome post I just want to throw out there a bit more info about me so you can get to know me a bit better.
So, I am originally from Athens, Greece. Born and bred in the land of philosophy and tourism from a Greek dad and a mum that was raised in a farm close to Te Kuiti. If you wonder how she ended up in Greece, that’s another story, probably a post on it’s own. So, having 2 nationalities was quite tempting and my family and I decided to give Aotearoa a go by migrating to New Zealand in 2010.
During my time in Greece, I ran a small video production company with my brother and we specialized more in the wedding and low budget corporate video area. Business was good, but one day we both decided to drop everything and f off to the other side of the planet. When we arrived in NZ and having no idea whatsoever about either trade or food, we decided to start up a food importing company. Talking about a massive leap and learning curve! We had to figure out how business works in this part of the world, the relationships, the jargon, legislation, accounting, etc. Everything was totally different and very hard to adapt to, leading to a few tough years to start with.
My restless creativity though didn’t let me focus only on the importing business, so I started seeking work in the area I loved most, which is being behind a lens. So after getting to meet some people I gradually started to shoot some weddings for Creative Video (thanks Craig, you’re a legend) in New Zealand. Then, through some networking and cold calling I was fortunate to connect with TVNZ in 2011. I will not forget the day John, the TVNZ Production Services manager, took me down into the camera store, handed me a camera and said:
“Here are our production cameras… You have an hour to familiarize yourself with them and in a few days we’ll send you out on a shoot”
At the time, although very confident around cameras, I had absolutely no experience in shooting content for broadcast, hence my stress levels were running quite high. So after exploring the camera for an hour or so I left the camera store and waited for the call. Sure enough a couple of days later I got my first broadcast job for TVNZ, for a program called Tagata Pasifika. At the time I had no idea that until this day and after 8 years of a constantly evolving broadcast environment, I would still be working with the Tagata Pasifika team helping them produce some very inspiring Pacific stories.
TheTVNZ logo used back in those days!
One of the first gigs I did for TVNZ. Phone cameras were pretty crap back in those days.
So TVNZ aside, I kept on building more local experience and in 2014 I decided to go full freelance and get out of the food importing business. I bought my first large sensor camera, a second hand Canon C300 and gradually started building a shooting package. As everyone knows this is a never ending process, which has lead me to today own a Sony FS7 with a full range of lenses, sound gear, a full lighting package, a small b cam (a6300) on a gimbal, on set monitors, accessories, and it goes on and on.
And that’s where we are today. Where I start a blog and put myself out there with no real idea how this is going to pan out. But hey, winging it has kind of worked so far, so why not keep on with it?
See you in the next one.
All the best.