John Deere Financial: A Journey Through Time
Recently, the Spanish arm of John Deere Financial, the leading manufacturer of agricultural machinery and heavy equipment, celebrated its 20th anniversary.
To mark the occasion, the manufacturer approached Evercom, a communications and marketing agency based in Madrid and Barcelona, with the brief of producing a video chronicling the brand’s success in Spain.
“The theme was inspired by the idea of generations, a concept that served as the driving force behind the story. Father and son, symbols of tradition and continuity between past and future, are the protagonists of the story,” reveals Jonathan Bellés, audiovisual producer at Evercom.
Viewers are invited on a journey through three beautiful locations in Spain. From a field of garlic in Valladolid, through the landscapes of Lleida, to the John Deere offices in Parla, the brand’s legacy over more than two decades is told through images of the sun drenched land, the brand’s machinery, and the smiles of its dealers and farmers.
“It was important that we produce something candid, expressing the values associated with the land, including hard work, trust, passion, and community, all while being impactful so that the images struck a chord with audiences,” reveals Bellés.
Performance and Versatility
The campaign was shot on a Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6K Pro digital film camera, with Bellés acquiring in 6K at 24 fps and framing for a 2:4:1 aspect ratio.
“I preferred the panoramic format as it gave the finished piece a more cinematic look that complements and enhances the story. To add an epic touch to the video, some footage was shot in 2.8K 17:9 at 120 fps for slow motion,” notes Bellés.
“In addition to that, we wanted to wrap the video with a sense of elegance, given the occasion,” he continues. “Therefore, we favored a voiceover that accompanies the viewer through the journey and punctuated that narration with unique personal stories.
“For this production we used a Canon 24-105mm. While not the brightest of lenses, it did remove the need for carrying multiple primes and allowed for more creative freedom when in the field. For interiors, where lack of light was an issue, we used a Sigma 18-35mm F1.8, which has a faster aperture than the 24-105mm.”
In the Field
Although the finished product was delivered to the client recently, much of the content for the piece was captured in the Spanish countryside last summer.
“The internal NDs proved to be a blessing, helping to keep our rig light and simple,” says Bellés. “In combination with the camera’s 13 stops of dynamic range, I was able to bring out the sky’s deep blues or the wheat field’s golden color and the warm tones of a sunset.”
Bellés equipped his camera with a SmallRig cage and the Blackmagic Pocket Camera Battery Pro Grip. “The cage came in handy when mounting accessories, like the Samsung Portable SSD 1TB external USB-C drive on which we recorded our rushes. Once back in the office, it was a simple case of plugging the drive into my computer to edit from,” he adds.
“Spending extended periods of time on location, the battery grip ensured we had sufficient power to shoot for an entire day, without having to worry about recharging the batteries or connecting the camera to a power source,” notes Bellés.
A Modern RAW Workflow
Blackmagic RAW 5:1 constant bitrate was used throughout filming. “It strikes a really good balance between quality and predictable file sizes,” says Bellés, adding, “The beauty of Blackmagic RAW is that parameters, like white balance or ISO, are not baked in at the time of capture. Instead, the information is saved as embedded metadata, which afforded us far greater control once in post.”
“We shot the whole thing in just three days and another couple of days to complete post production,” he explains. “It’s a powerful toolset for image capture that can always be relied upon and never fails to meet our expectations.”
“I’ve been working with the Pocket Camera 6K Pro for a little over a year now, and, to this day, it’s still my preference for any projects we tackle. I’ve shot commercials, events, podcasts, and the results are always excellent. It gives a cinematic tone, and to me, it is this unique look that sets it apart from any other cameras on the market,” Bellés concludes.
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