Last weekend I took a whirlwind tour of Las Vegas for my mother-in-law’s 75th birthday. I didn’t have much time, but I was able to get footage for three composite video pieces.
The first was set up on the footbridge over Spring Mountain Rd connecting the Wynn/Encore complex with The Palazzio. I was interested in getting the large video displays in a composite, but I also got a young, visibly-pregnant beggar holding her sign for the crowd. The only thing besides the casinos that didn’t move much in the video is her begging cup. Things that make you go, “Hmmmm.”
The second one I tried to squeeze in between the Fashion Show and Cirque du Soleil, but I couldn’t get the perfect shot and only managed twenty minutes of footage. This one is next to Caesar’s Palace, with the video display for The Linq as the object of interest. It’s only a minute long.
Finally, after the Cirque du Soleil show, my wife and I went down the Strip seeing the sights. I set up near the Bellagio and got a final icosacomposite of the crowds. Hidden in the footage: a guy haranguing the crowds from the center island, a drunk individual hanging out of a stretched monster truck screaming “I love Las Vegas!”, various wedding parties of all description, numerous motorized signs touting “Live Nude Girls”, and my wife handing off a second set of batteries to me.
Two icosacomposites from LA, hot off the render queue. The first is not terribly recognizable, but it’s an interesting location for me, personally: the building at Hollywood and Cahuenga (the intersection is known as “Raymond Chandler Square”) is suspected to be the model Chandler had in mind for Phillip Marlowe’s office. I also liked the Pacific Radio masts on the opposite building.
And just a few blocks down, one of the crazier tourist areas known to man, right near the Hollywood Hard Rock Cafe and the Grauman’s/Mann’s/TLC Chinese Theatre (depending on the decade you’re in). It was pretty busy, even on the day after Christmas. I was also on the Walk of Fame; Cuba Gooding, Jr’s star was right in front of me (not visible in the shot), and Javier Bardem’s star was just out of sign to the right. Lots of people stooping down to pay their respects. Look carefully and you might catch a mediocre Darth Vader and a very ratty-looking Spider-Man in the crowd. All of the high-class mascots were across the street in front of the mall, but I wouldn’t have been able to get the cafe and the theatre in that shot. I’m very pleased with the sheer pass of humanity crossing the lens in this particular video, and the total mish-mash the composite has made of Hard Rock’s carefully animated video wall.
While in California for the holidays, I figured, if I’m gonna be thirty miles away from Los Angeles, I might as well head up there to shoot some composite video, right? I managed to shoot five different corners, and this is a preview of one of them: Hollywood and Vine, also known as “Bob Hope Square”. After I shot this scene I decided I wasn’t quite happy with the cropping, but I retained this footage because it had some interesting action within it. So I’ve rendered this as its own little icosacomposite, and a longer one of the same intersection will be following soon. Just in time for New Years! Enjoy.
Tromping through lower Manhattan finally brought me to the Brooklyn Bridge. It was an interesting experience. If I was a cyclist in NYC I’d probably avoid the Brooklyn Bridge completely. The thousands and thousands of tourists pouring through rarely notice the bike lane signs, and a good proportion of those don’t understand the English phrases, “Bike lane!” “Stay right!” “To your left!” or “Move you dumbfuck!” Bike bells only confuse them more.
At any rate, I avoided the hazards and set up the tripod pretty much in the center of the bridge facing Manhattan. Notice the continuous stream of people taking pictures in front of me, including a gentleman with a long boom monopod who wanted a picture above the car traffic below!
Here’s the first of the six icosacomposites from my trip to New York, at the corner of 34th Street and 8th Avenue, in front of the Tick Tock Diner. This particular establishment is of note because it is where the bus from Boston drops you off upon arrival. Although there are other corners and more notable landmarks, it was here I started shooting footage. Have a hotdog, listen to the sirens and the roar of traffic, and watch the mesmerizing flow of humanity.
Another urban icosacomposite, this time of Boston landmark Faneuil Hall. I set up so I’d have a good view of the square in front of Quincy Market, and I was hoping to get the school crowds, the tourists and the people on lunch break. I also got a sketch artist drawing tourists – the cluster of camp chairs left of center is his setup.