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Eric S. Filsonfilmmaker & cinematographer
The story behind SmallHD: "Big Winners: The SmallHD Story"
Thu, Feb 7 2013 07:55
| Creative, Film Industry, Gear
Shane Hurlbut recently directed a short documentary about one of the hurlblog's sponsor's SmallHD. I have worked with the now discontinued SmallHD DP6 on my last movie: "The Sound of the Spirit" and appreciated the quality and durability of the monitor. After watching the documentary short, I was thrilled to see how supportive and involved Wes' Dad is in his son's vision and projects. I am inspired by their story, innovation, and perseverance. Well done!
Here's what Julien Lasseur on the hurlblog says:
"While I was working at Hurlbut Visuals, Lydia came up with the idea of interviewing our sponsors for the blog and gave me the opportunity to direct those spots, as it was my dream to direct.
Our vision was to tell the story of the people who create the tools that we use to tell our own stories. So the quest began! I stumbled across the very unique story of two of our sponsors, Wes Phillips and Dale Backus from SmallHD. During our discussions of how we were going to conduct the interview, being that they were located all the way out in North Carolina, I heard the incredible story of how they succeeded in winning the legendary “Doritos: Crash The Superbowl Contest” not once… but twice and then how they used their earnings to fund the growth of SmallHD! Wow… as soon as Wes told me the whole story, I called Lydia and said, “We gotta make a documentary about this!” and she was all in.
A couple of months after my discussion with Wes, I found myself flying to North Carolina with a 5DMkII, a 24-70mm l series, a 70-200mm l series, some batteries, cards… and that was it! Managing the very small budget I had to work with, the funds that SmallHD provided went towards a motel, airfare, and a rental car.
Barrett, Wes’ brother and also the head of video marketing for SmallHD, along with Tim, another SmallHD employee, served as my entire crew. Only using one joker light with a chimera and a Lowell pro light, we scrounged up what gear SmallHD had and began interviewing everyone from the guys who worked in the shop to Wes and Barrett’s father, who is now working for the company.
If there is anything I took away from this experience, it was that everyone at SmallHD really loved working there. It was like being welcomed by this big family that is striving to constantly innovate and push their products to the next level. With indie filmmaking, your team and your support is absolutely crucial and SmallHD opened their doors and made the filmmaking process into something very enjoyable. Even the interview subjects had to be substitute gaffers. If anything can be said about indie filmmaking, it is that if you have the support of people like SmallHD and Hurlbut Visuals, you can tell great stories."