I’ve actually done several of these over the years. It’s not as strange as it seems. In this particular case most of the friends and family were out of state. Even something like this can present challenges and opportunities. I found both.
The exterior architecture was striking and I decided to use it to my advantage. I placed my little Canon Vixia HFS21 outside pointed at the building to catch a time lapse of the clouds scudding across the skyline with the steeple pointing at an angle. This provided a nice backdrop for the introductory verbiage.
The church was very restrictive about placement of cameras and operator. I had a bird’s eye view from the choir loft. It was however a beautiful church (St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, San Antonio, TX) and the organ was a work of art in metals and fine woods. The keyboard was done in selections of contrasting wood instead of traditional black keys and ivory colored keys. Father Badders was accommodating and allowed me to add my wireless to his person and I also placed a second wireless at the lectern for the eulogy readings.
At the graveside service Fr. Badders was kind enough to wear my Lectrosonics wireless once more. The Fort Sam Houston National cemetery has been around for a long time as evidenced by the population of grave markers. The military provides generic markers which produces an awesome panorama of headstones. I believer there are over 375,000 on the property. I used a 5D MKII to shoot footage of the stones and of the Marine color guard preparing for the traditional 21 gun salute. The uniforms and weapons added solemnity and I captured some on film to use for the introduction. I placed my main camera high and to the rear of the shelter and thought to add my Vixia at the front facing the other direction. As you may see in the video(embedded below) this turned out working great. I kept my 5D with me and was able to use it to capture the salute. I was able to close the video with a shot of the wall placement and the flag flying half mast over the cemetery. I used the choir and organ music from the ceremony for both videos so the family would have no problems with copyright concerns, etc. This turned out so well and made it so personal using the voices of friends and family in Herbert’s honor.
Part 1 – Church Service