It's here! The Nikon D4 has arrived and it is a freaking HOT camera! For the past months I have been working in silence with an amazingly talented crew and three of the best athletes on the planet producing my short D4 launch film "WHY". It was like Christmas morning when Nikon called and described the new camera and all of its incredible features. All I could think was that this is the camera we have been waiting for. Then the gift of all gifts... "Corey, dream up a film that you would like to shoot. You pick the topic. You pick the location. It's your film... only requirement is you show off the features of the new camera." My favorite quote from the call was "You have a blank white canvas and it's up to you to fill it". I had to pinch myself several times to confirm that the call was real. Everyone involved has been tight lipped about the project for months and today we can finally begin to share some of the assets and get fired up about the camera!!!
I have always been facinated by those people that are the best at what they do. Those that operate on the edge; scientists, artists, musicians, athletes, etc. Always the question that I find myself asking is "WHY"? What deep inside drives them? What does the world look like through their eyes? Those that live on the edge, push the envelope, redefine sports and industries operate in a space all to themselves. In my Nikon D4 launch film I wanted to visually portray the beauty and intensity of the athletes doing what they do best while also delving into their heads and answering the question "WHY"? There was a very simple list of criteria used when selecting the athletes for this film. 1. They needed to be the best in the world at what they do. 2. They needed to be true role modes / heros. (In short, no ego and just simply fantastic people). Dane, Rebecca and Alex fulfill the requirements in spades!
As it seems to be with many shoots, the schedule for WHY was INSANE! In just 13 days we went from Veracruz, Mexico to Moab, Utah to Joshua Tree, California. With a fantastic crew of eight amazingly talented people, three of the worlds best athletes, over 20 pieces of luggage, three D4 prototypes, an rc helicopter and enough RedBull and ClifBars to keep us awake and moving, the entire journey was epic! Huge days, little sleep, lost bags, crashed helicopter (the D4 lived), speeding tickets (talked our way out of both ;-), wicked mosquito bites, flu, and a trip to the urgent care - all the prerequisites for a great shoot. Just the way I like it!
Special thanks to everyone that helped on this production! Dane Henry, Shawn Corrigan, Rex Lint, Mike Hagadorn; you guys are studs! Blaine Deutsch and Marina Rich, thank you for keeping us all on track, organized, fed and looking good (and Marina, thanks for loving me and being the best wife in the world). Gen Umei, Soichi Hayashi, Jason Jenkins and Mike Corrado; thank you for the opportunity! Dane Jackson, Alex Honnold and Rebecca Rusch, you guys really made the film and answered the question WHY!!! Tommy Thompson and Chris McNamara; thanks for keeping us safe and getting me into the coolest camera positions possible! Amazing team and thank you everyone who helped!
If you are going to be at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Vegas or Imaging in New Orleans, come by the Nikon booth to learn more about the making of WHY and see some corresponding still photos in my talk "Paralleling Still and Motion". I'll be presenting each day on the main stage at the Nikon booth. I'll be joined on stage at CES by Rebecca Rusch, one of the stars of WHY. I can't tell you how excited I am to finally have the ability to talk openly about this game changer of a camera. One thing is for certain; the Nikon D4 has changed the way we will all shoot video and stills! Stay tuned to see an amazing Behind the Scenes video on the making of WHY.
When it is all said and done by far the most exciting part is the future. It's about the collective creativity and vision of the photo and video community and what we will all create when we get a D4 in our hands. One thing is for certain, WHY was just the tip of the iceberg!
I will be adding to this post in the days ahead so please check back for more technical info and stories from the field!