Dancing through Sicily:
first video shoot with the
Canon EOS R6

En ballerina dansar i ett ödelagt tempel nära Palermo, Sicilien.

Den spanska filmfotografen Javier Cortés var den första yrkesfotografen som tog med sig Canon EOS R6 på en filminspelning – två balettdansörer spelades in på en resa genom Sicilien, med början vid templet Segesta. ”För mig är det alltid mer än bara bilder – jag vill försöka att berätta en enkel historia”, säger han. Tagen med en Canon EOS R6 med ett Canon RF 24-70mm F2.8L IS USM-objektiv inställt på 24 mm, 1/5 000 sek, f/2,8 och ISO 400. © Javier Cortés

Weaving through the columns of an ancient temple, a ballerina is caught in the light of the breaking dawn, her flowing dress highlighted against the shadows thrown by the crumbling colonnade. The scene marks the start of a voyage through north-western Sicily, captured by Spanish cinematographer and Canon Ambassador Javier Cortés on the full-frame mirrorless Canon EOS R6.

"Filmmaking has the power to take you on a journey," says Javier, who shoots video and stills for high-end fashion brands and editorial publications, including Vogue and Harper's Bazaar. "My goal was to capture the fluidity of the dancers' bodies, the sensation of strength."

With extra-wide dynamic range thanks to Canon Log, up to 8-stops of Image Stabilization,1 4K video at up to 60p, and support for 10-bit YCbCr 4:2:2 internal recording, the Canon EOS R6, the latest addition to Canon's EOS R System family of cameras, is a formidable filming tool. From temple to theatre, pavement to palazzo, Javier put it through its paces, capturing cinematic footage from a full- frame mirrorless workhorse.

Faultless AF tracking and 8-stops of IS*

Javier's narrative began at the ancient Temple of Segesta near Palermo, the capital of Sicily. "I've always been interested in movement and how bodies look in front of the camera," he says. "I used slow motion at 50p to capture the dancer, her dress and how her skin looked in the morning light. I wanted to show how she tells a story with her body."

The Canon EOS R6's intelligent AF system enabled Javier to lock onto the ballerina's face and keep it in sharp focus while moving around her. "I wanted to shoot wide open shots that finish on her arms or face," he says. "She was pirouetting and jumping but the camera stayed focused. I couldn't believe it – I thought I'd lose the focus on her eyes."

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En ballerina dansar i ljuset från en öppen dörr. Resten av rummet är i skugga.

”AF-spårningen är verkligen imponerande på bilder, men i film är den helt otrolig – jag kunde inte tro att det var sant.” Tagen med en Canon EOS R6 med ett Canon RF 50mm F1.2L USM-objektiv inställt på 1/750 sek, f/2 och ISO 200. © Javier Cortés

En närbild på en kvinnas ansikte när hon tittar upp och bort från kameran.

”Med den här kameran kan man vara flexibel. Den vinklingsbara skärmen innebär att man enkelt kan ändra vilken vinkel man fotograferar från.” Tagen med en Canon EOS R6 med ett Canon RF 50mm F1.2L USM-objektiv inställt på 1/500 sek, f/1,4 och ISO 100. © Javier Cortés

In his commercial work Javier often operates with large crews but he relished the opportunity to return to his single-shooting roots. "I've got used to having big teams, but here I came back to working just with the camera," he says.

The Canon EOS R6's innovative in-body Image Stabilization (IS) – offering up to 8-stops of IS1 – meant that Javier could shoot handheld and capture perfectly smooth video footage.

He tested the IS by shooting with two cameras, one in each hand, each fitted with a stabilised lens but one with IS on and one with the IS off. "I was moving around with the cameras on my arms and it was amazing," he says. "The stabilisation is very effective."

En ballerina dansar på en månbelyst strand med upplysta byggnader bakom sig.

Dansar i sanden på Mondello Beach. ”Månljuset ska skapa hög kontrast, men det finns detaljer i skuggorna och kläderna, och jag kunde fånga rörelsen på bild. Jag är inte van vid att se den här typen av bilder [när jag fotograferar] på kvällen”, säger Javier. Tagen med en Canon EOS R6 med ett Canon RF 50mm F1.2L USM-objektiv inställt på 1/40 sek, f/1,4 och ISO 32000. © Javier Cortés

"At sunrise you don't have much light or contrast, so I started shooting with higher ISOs," Javier says. "I was really impressed with the camera's performance in low light – the colour rendition was amazing. Colour is important to me. I decide which camera and lenses I am going to use based on how they develop colour. When I was shooting at the temple, I imagined the colour of the sunrise, and everything I imagined, I got."

The other locations provided further lighting challenges, from a darkened theatre to a beach illuminated only by moonlight. Inspired by moonlit portraits he'd previously taken in the Sahara Desert, Javier hoped to translate his creative concept to video, shooting a ballerina dancing along the water's edge at Mondello Beach.

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Dancing into the light: first stills shoot with the EOS R6

Canon Ambassador and fashion photographer Wanda Martin on the first-ever shoot with the full-frame mirrorless Canon EOS R6.

"I didn't have the supermoon I wanted, but I had three quarters of the moon and the lights of the city. I was using high ISOs – ISO64000 and ISO32000 – and it worked well, giving impressive colour and high dynamic range.”

En balettdansör i ett angränsande rum fångad på bild i dörröppningen.

Javier uppskattade chansen att gå tillbaka till sina rötter att fotografera själv med bara en kamera. ”Jag är van vid att arbeta med filmkameror och med ett team, men jag älskar att fotografera på egen hand – den här kameran ger massor av kreativitet och man kan improvisera mycket.” Tagen med en Canon EOS R6 med ett Canon RF 24-70mm F2.8L IS USM-objektiv inställt på 24 mm, 1/350 sek, f/2,8 och ISO 800. © Javier Cortés

Flexible, creative hybrid shooting

Originally a stills-only fashion photographer, Javier has become known for working across stills and video and is regularly tasked with delivering both on editorial and commercial jobs. Having a flexible hybrid camera that can switch between the two at the touch of a button was particularly welcome. "On every shoot I have my photo camera and my cinema camera, but in this case I could continue shooting with the same camera," he says. "It's really magical."

The Canon EOS R6's high-resolution Vari-Angle touchscreen allowed him to capture the action from all angles. "I am always on the floor shooting or leaning on walls," explains Javier. "With this camera, without needing a big ladder, I can put the camera above my head, tilt the screen and see the image."

En ballerina tar ett språng genom ett sirligt dekorerat rum.

Javier var särskilt imponerad av kamerans dynamiska omfång och färgernas kvalitet i högdagrar och skuggor. Tagen med en Canon EOS R6 med ett Canon RF 85mm F1.2L USM-objektiv inställt på 1/500 sek, f/1,8 och ISO 1600. © Javier Cortés

En ballerina poserar i ljuset från en öppen dörr. Resten av rummet är i skugga.

EOS R6 är särskilt effektiv i svagt ljus, särskilt när den paras ihop med ett RF-objektiv med stor bländare. Tagen med en Canon EOS R6 med ett Canon RF 50mm F1.2L USM-objektiv inställt på 1/500 sek, f/2 och ISO 200. © Javier Cortés

Javier primarily shot in 4K 50p, his preferred frame rate for fashion. "At first I shot at 25p because I was worried about the speed and the available light, but after seeing there wasn't much grain, I started shooting in slo-mo," he says. "When I had movement and the dancers' clothes were flying, I wanted to capture it in slo-mo so I could work with that in the edit."

Shooting in Canon Log is a must for Javier, who was particularly impressed with the Canon EOS R6's expansive dynamic range. "The Canon Log is really good – you have a lot of information and colour in the highlights and the shadows," he says. "The style of video is closer to the EOS C300 cinema series than a stills camera that shoots video. This Canon Log feels similar to the Canon EOS C300 Mark II."

Filmfotografen Javier Cortés filmar två balettdansörer på scenen på Teatro Massimo i Palermo, Sicilien.

De sista scenerna filmades i Palermos Teatro Massimo – Italiens största operahus. ”Jag blir alltid inspirerad av hur jag känner på en plats, och i Palermo var jag som ett barn som hela tiden försökte hitta den perfekta platsen,” säger Javier.

For the final scene of Javier's film, he shot under the iconic lights of Palermo's Teatro Massimo, Italy's largest opera house. It was the backdrop for the final scene in The Godfather: Part III and it was a place where Javier had long wanted to film. "This is the climax of the video – the place where the two dancers meet," he says. "I wanted to show how they move, how they feel and the contrast of the space.

"One of my main aims on any production – personal projects or fashion films – is to shoot with freedom and try something different, something I'm not used to. Palermo was beautiful – the locations and the light. It was an amazing journey and I think you feel that in the video."

Skrivet av Lucy Fulford


Javier Cortés's kitbag

The key kit pros use to take their photographs

Två Canon EOS R6-kameror och Canon-objektiv placerade på ett kakelgolv.

Camera

Canon EOS R6

Canon's full-frame mirrorless camera is the ultimate hybrid for video as well as stills, with intelligent Dual Pixel CMOS AF, support for a range of video formats including 4K 60p, in-body IS and outstanding low-light performance. "This camera gives you a lot of creativity and you can improvise a lot," says Javier.

Lenses

Canon RF 50mm F1.2L USM

A lens that sets new standards in photographic performance, delivering supreme sharpness, extra creative control and a low-light performance that's simply remarkable.

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    1. 8-stops based on the CIPA standard with RF 24-105mm F4 L IS USM at a focal length of 105mm