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On the Road with the Kessler CineSlider

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Melanie Mclean is a freelance photographer specializing in portrait, travel and product photography. You can see her work on her site.

 

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On the Road with the Kessler CineSlider

How does this sturdy but hefty slider perform in the elements?

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Late last fall, a small Mac Group production crew loaded up a low-riding minivan with the bare essentials for polished-looking video. Among the strategically selected load, creative director Ab Sesay was sure to grab ARC’s Kessler CineSlider kit, complete with glide motor, tripod and portable battery.


This article originally appeared on the Adorama Rental Co. blog.


Receiving the call for a distant on-location shoot is a double whammy, a chance to build your skillset, but also, an escape from the day-to-day routine at home. The crew is amped about the upcoming adventure – new sights and smells, new folks come together to collaborate on a creative piece – and someone has to figure out what gear is absolutely needed to achieve this grand vision.

 

This device might seem a bit cumbersome for an on-location shoot, but we managed the nearly 50-pound beast on all terrains. We dragged it down hills, propped it on rocks, leveled it with sweatshirts and fine-tuned the camera's position with the handy levels on the track. The battery pack and motor easily tagged along with ease.


Here’s what Richard Patterson, director of photography, had to say about the device:


Pros:

  • This slider provided a very dependable, cinematic move on location and within the studio.
  • The dampening adjustments were very easy to adjust on the fly and helped eliminate the need for multiple takes based my timing.
  • Due to the motor, the speed and motion was consistent, allowing us to focus more on the shots and work with the talent.


Cons:

  • Although the rig provided accurate motion, it is heavy and cumbersome to deal with on location. The slider is definitely made to hold much larger cameras and the speed and maneuverability of the lightweight DSLR is bogged down by the rig.
  • The kit tripod could not lower more than about three feet, which was frustrating at times. In hindsight, I would have found a more adjustable tripod that could also hold the weight of the track as well as provide the stability we needed for camera to travel back and forth.



Check out the result below!


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