Aboard the Orient Silk Road Express from Ashgabat to Almaty through Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan along the legendary Silk Road trade route in Central Asia. An amazing train journey back in time, across three countries and several Unesco World Heritage sites.
I'm still fascinated from the beauty of Bukhara, Khiva or Samarkand. These cities are like a fairy tale of 1001 night. Islam plays an important role, but is lived here in its original and peaceful way. The people are very friendly, obliging and always give you a smile. I have rarely felt so welcome and taken in as I do here. I hope you can feel this spirit in my new short film - Salam Aleikum (سلام عليكم)!
Walden - FX3 Cinematic Short Film
I'm very glad to be one of the first filmmakers worldwide who got the chance to film a short film with the new Sony FX3 Cinema Line camera before the official product launch. With my background in travel, advertising and music videos, the Sony FX 3 inspired me to create a low-light and cinematic short film in the snowy deep forest of my homeland Thuringia in the middle of Germany. I wanted to take advantage of the camera’s new features and make a story that only it could help me tell.
Walden is a short film inspired from Henry David Thoreau’s book, about a man retreating from modern society to live a simple life in the midst of nature, in a nostalgic cabin in the middle of the woods. Longing to find relaxation and peace, the man enjoys the quiet and pure life around his cabin. He suddenly falls back into his old habit and turns into a tech nerd - uploading his pictures in social media and reconnecting with the world. Happily exhausted after this flashback into old habits, he finds balance again in nature and silence. He disconnected to find himself reconnected to inner peace, discovering balance between his modern world way of thinking and nature.
Thanks to Sony, DJI, Smoke Factory, Skisportverein Erfurt, Thüringer Bergsteigerbund, Neue Gehlberger Hütte & Pension Oberhof 810M for the support. And of course also to the best crew out there:
Director of Photography & Editor: Dennis Schmelz Co-Director/Editor, Lighting & Audio: Christian Fleischer BTS, Photos & B-Roll: Pascal Blaurock Main Actor: Klemens Niklaus Trenkle Music & Sound Design: Friedhelm Mund Drivers: Marco Willnauer & Stefan Klügling
Prejudice - One Lens Short Film
I'm very glad to be the first filmmaker worldwide who got the chance to test the brand new Sony 35mm f/1.4 G Master lens before the official product launch. Enjoy my short film "Prejudice" shot completely with this cinematic prime lens - I totally got in love with it. Everything is filmed on a Sony A7S III.
With my background in travel, advertising and music videos, the FE 35mm f/1.4 GM inspired me to create a low-light and cinematic short film with strong tones of Americana. I wanted to take advantage of the lens’s new features and make a story that only it could help me tell. 35mm is a perfect movie focal length for me. It’s so adaptable for different subjects and I love the cinematic feel. It’s not too wide, but still gives a sense of place, and it’s great for capturing shots of people. Maybe best of all, the 1.4 aperture produced beautiful bokeh and let us work with atmospheric lighting.
The FE 35mm f/1.4 GM uses a physical aperture ring that can be de-clicked via a button on the barrel for movie applications, so it’s ready for either stills or video. This means you can get almost invisible transitions in aperture, tightening focus or extending it, depending on the narrative you’re creating, and changing the exposure in the same way. It helps me as a videographer because there’s no hard jump that can take the viewer out of the moment. It’s just beautifully natural and smooth.
Working with his α7S III’s Face Detection AF, I was also impressed by the FE 35mm f/1.4 GM’s focusing speed, precision and lack of motor noise. It uses a frictionless XD Linear Motor, so AF was stunningly quick and accurate. We only did six shots in manual focus. All the others were made with face detection at f/1.4 and it never skipped a beat.
Creating this short film in dramatic rainy night-time streets of my hometown Erfurt in Germany, the FE 35mm f/1.4 GM’s weather sealing stood up to the conditions and its lightweight design meant I could move it on a gimbal with complete freedom. No-one wants a lens that holds them back, but the FE 35mm f/1.4 GM does the opposite. It was raining heavily when we were shooting, and the lens got quite wet, but it just wasn’t a problem at all! The lightness is a huge factor, too. Compared to previous fast aperture 35mm lenses I’ve used, at only 524g, it’s so much more portable.
Camera, Editor & Director: Dennis Schmelz BTS & Lighting: Christian Fleischer Assistant: Nils Riedl Stills: Stefan Liebermann & Christopher Schmid Actor: Daniel Mey Band: Desert Machine + Crowd Venue: From Hell Erfurt Show Lighting: MM-Veranstaltungstechnik Car: 1977 Lincoln Continental Town Car Thanks to Sony, DJI & Smoke Factory for the support.
Als Outdoor- und Sportbegeisterter war es mir eine große Ehre diese Kampagnen in meiner Heimat Thüringen umsetzen zu dürfen. Zum Einsatz kam auch erstmals eine FPV-Race-Drohne, welche spekatuläre neue Perspektiven und Drohnenflüge ermöglichte. Vielen Dank an Adrian Seeber für die Organisation sowie Jan Köster & Wieland Wenzel für die Unterstüzung in der Luft.