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Jake+Necia Promo Video

a short promo/bio video for Jake and Necia Odening — SLO based wedding photographers

This is a promo/bio video I recently completed for Jake and Necia Odening. From the beginning I was Incredibly excited to work with them on this. We had a ton of fun filming it and I’m really happy with the final product! I shot all the footage, edited it, and did all the color grading/composting.

Watch the video embedded above, or here on vimeo.

Jake and Necia Odening are a wedding photography and design duo in San Luis Obispo on California’s Central Coast. You can see more of their work at Necia also owns Umbrella Tree Design ( and creates wedding invites, save the dates, and other awesome design goodies.

Music is “Ready to Wear” by Felix da Housecat and is Available on iTunes

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3-axis Timelapse Slider

a custom dynamic perception stage zero combined with the emotimo tb3 pan tilt head


Lately, I’ve been putting a lot of time into building a custom timelapse slider. In the past I had been shooting with a Dynamic PerceptionStage Zero dolly. It’s a great system, but it was missing some of the things I really wanted. There’s no easy way to do more than a single axis move with it. I purchased an Emotimo TB3 and for a while was using that in conjunction with my DP Stage Zero. It worked, but again, it wasn’t exactly what I wanted. The TB3 is capable of controlling pan, tilt, and slide, but only with stepper motors. The DP Stage Zero uses DC motors, so I knew I would need to do some modification to get one single set of controls that would drive all three axes. There were some other things about the Stage Zero that bothered me, so I began to build my own instead of just mounting a stepper motor to the stage zero.


For anyone familiar with the stage zero, my slider looks very similar — it is. I’ve basically just modified the Dynamic Perception design to fit my own needs. A lot of the parts I’ve used were purchased from Dynamic Perception. The Stage Zero cart is about 10″x7″ and is 2″ tall. It’s big, too big and too bulky to be trekking around with. I took the basic design of the Stage Zero cart, but reduced it down to about 7″x3.5″. Instead of placing my belt under the cart, mine is offset to the side of the track, allowing me to reduce the vertical height of the cart. I knew I could fit all of my components in a smaller space than 7″x10″, so I tried to create a cart that was as small as possible, which would allow for the greatest amount of travel along the rail (maximizing the usable length of the rail), while also making the whole slider easier to pack. My cart gives me an extra 3″ of travel over the DP Stage Zero and fits easily into any of my camera bags with my other gear. Because it’s so small, I can also just leave it on the rail and not worry about it being knocked around since it doesn’t stick out as far as the DP Stage Zero.


I’m a huge fan of Really Right Stuff gear, and already use their quick release system with all my gear. I decided to use their QR clamps on my slider so I could quickly and easily mount and unmount ballheads, the TB3, and my motor — making setup and breakdown times much faster. It also lets me easily change how I have my gear mounted. I can mount a ballhead on the cart, and then mount the TB3 and camera on top of that,  I can mount the TB3 directly to the cart, or really any other combination I like since all my gear has RRS plates and clamps.


All three axes are now driven by stepper motors, so the TB3 can control everything. All I have to do is set start and end points for the pan and tilt, tell it how far I want it to travel along the rail, and then dial in my interval and total number of frames. The TB3 will control all the motors and even allow them to ramp up and down while staying perfectly in sync with each other. This was possible with the Dynamic Perception system with the TB3 talking to their MX2 controller, but it took a lot longer to set up and wasn’t always that reliable (especially since you never knew with 100% certainty how far the cart would actually travel along the rail).


The only real complaint I have about the TB3 is that sometimes the tilt mechanism will give way to a little bit of camera shake under windy conditions (or fast slider moves with short intervals). To combat that, I was able to get a small aluminum part machined that would allow me to mount a RRS clamp directly to the pan shaft of the TB3 — allowing me to mount the camera without the tilt motors to lower it’s center of gravity and help stabilize those shots. I lose an axis with this, but under certain conditions I find it necessary to make sure the footage is stable.

Now that I’ve finally finished putting it all together and testing it all out, it’s time to go shoot some real footage.

Personal Trip: Italy 2011

A few highlights from my trip to Italy in September 2011.