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Deception Pass Dash 2014

Deception Pass Dash 2014 from Baby Seal Films on Vimeo.

I registered for the Deception Pass Dash as a racer, but just before the race I decided that I would rather not participate but instead watch from shore and record it on video. It is such a stunningly beautiful location that, as a racer, I have always envied the spectators and especially photographers who got to watch it from the top of one of the surrounding cliffs or the bridge.

There is so much going on during the race that it’s easy to loose focus trying to cover everything, so I just picked one spot along the shore to sit with my camera on a tripod. I hiked to a grassy clearing along the west entrance to the Pass with a view to the south. I was able to see the paddlers as they rounded Deception Island, went through the Pass and returned through Canoe Pass along shore. It turned out to be a perfectly clear but breezy day. In the meantime, Katya was shooting at Bowman Bay, capturing the spectacular start of the race and the paddlers as they crossed the finish line.

Just before the race, we did brief interviews with a few of the racers. I’ve been shooting with a Canon 7D II and I really love the ruggedness and slow motion capabilities of this camera. Slow motion gives you time as a viewer to really appreciate the image and motion. It just makes everything look cool! I predict that everyone will be using it for everything from now on, so try it while you can before people get tired of it and it becomes another passing fad, like time-lapse.

The idea behind this video was simplicity. Finishing it in black and white is part of that. Katya has extensive experience with black and white photography from the film era, so I relied on her for “color grading”. I like the monochrome effect for the on-the-water shots because it cancels out the overpowering bright blue of the water.

Special thanks go out to the paddlers who agreed to be interviewed: Michelle Sheffer, Jed Hawks, Barb and George Gronseth, David Price, Warren Williamson, David Cocker, and Minnie Fontenelle.