Looking for a high-end cinematic aesthetic, but wanting to take a documentary approach, the team at London-based production company Blue Tuna and freelance cinematographer Ben Millar chose AJA’s Cion camera to make a new brand video for luxury property developer Royalton.
They used the Cion, recently purchased by Blue Tuna’s Shoot Blue rental house, and an Angénieux 28mm-76mm zoom lens for Cion’s PL mount.
“As a DP, I’m constantly looking to achieve the highest quality image in the most efficient, affordable way possible,” said Millar. “[Cion’s] menu is intuitive, it has great features and you can shoot 4K ProRes 444 at a fraction of the traditional cost. Plus, a lot of other cameras, even in the same price range, don’t come close to matching Cion’s workflow speed with edit-ready ProRes files.”
Millar and Blue Tuna spent a week shooting in and around London for the project.
At each location, they shot an average of 40-50 minutes of footage, transitioning between 4K ProRes 444 and 4K ProRes 422. Depending upon the environment, Millar also used a combination of setups, from a slider to a tripod.
“The subtlety between the different colour tones was exceptional with Cion, especially in the midtones,” Millar said. “In the Expanded 1 gamma setting with soft lighting, I saw a really big graduation between tones, which was fantastic; our editor was also happy with the nature of the colour depth.
“Cion also held up well in a variety of environments; whether sun, rain or cloud, it performed flawlessly.”
Miller also praised the speed at which the camera could be assembled and used. “It’s so lightweight that you can move it around easily.
We were able to capture high-quality slow push ins and slow pull outs without any interruptions or issues; Cion simply captured beautiful footage.”