For the third consecutive year, Procam has suppported Dreamflight, a UK charity that changes young lives by taking children with a serious illness or disability, without their parents, on the holiday of a lifetime to Orlando, Florida.
Along with Procam’s kit, crew included Jazz Anderson, Inventory Assistant, and Avon Keene, Crew Pool, who joined medical staff and 192 deserving children for 10 days in Orlando. Eager to know more about their trip, we had a one-on-one with Jazz to learn more about her experience.
How did you find the experience of Dreamflight 2015?
Dreamflight 2015 was amazing. It’s possibly the hardest and longest 10 days of the year but it’s equally rewarding, you go to sleep with a smile on your face each night.
What kit was chosen for the trip and how did it suit shooting needs?
Our day-to-day set up is XF105 (sometime XF305 and XF100s) and GoPros in the parks, with the addition of top lights and wide angles, if needed for the evening entertainment. The XF105s has a small profile and is lightweight, which is great for 10 days handheld work, but most importantly, it doesn’t intimidate the kids. The infrared (which isn’t a feature on the XF305) means you can capture dimly lit queue footage and on some of the rides, it’s quite funny watching the kids go through a range of emotions in a space of a minute and then getting to play it back to them after. The GoPro can go where bigger cameras can’t, like wet rides and rollercoasters.
What was your day-to-day role throughout the trip? Were there any other duties you had to take on outside your camera op role?
My main role was to capture a rounded overview of the trip and to edit a 90-minute film and 3-minute glimpse post trip. You create friendships with these little people and they just keep giving, sometimes they just need a little chat or a helping hand. As a video team member you’re not expected to take on any extra roles, but you do, as you turn into a little family unit.
What was the itinerary during the trip? What were your main highlights?
There were a lot of exciting events over the 10 days, but there were several highlights. Magic Kingdom was especially exciting, as it was the first roller coaster ride for a lot f the kids. At SeaWorld, the kids got drenched by Shamu and were screaming their heads off stroking the stingrays. At Hollywood Studios, the kids got to meet Mickey, Minnie, Donald Duck and Goofy. Islands of Adventure and Universal were big hits as well, as was the flight on the private hanger, which included sweets, face painting and temporary tattoos.
This wasn’t the first time you’ve volunteered for Dreamflight. What made you want to do it again?
I got involved in 2014 through Procam donating my work hours. This year the charity asked if I’d like to get involved again. I’ve followed some of the kids’ stories post trip. One young man has a petition with over 140,000 signatures for the NHS to reconsider a potential lifesaving treatment called Eculizumab. He fears going back on dialysis due to the nausea and crippling headaches, preventing him from going to school in the run up to his GCSEs and potentially ruin his dream to become a Doctor. It’s why I decided to get involved for a second year, it really does change your outlook on life.
Were there any particular challenges you faced whilst shooting for Dreamflight?
You naturally end up with more footage of the confident and louder kids, so it’s challenging when the group splits and have to pick between those heading to rides that have the ‘wow’ factor that makes for great pace lifting edit, or following the quieter/shy portion of the group that gives you less to edit with, but a better coverage of all the kids.
Are there any particular stand-out shots you were proud of capturing?
The Dolphin kiss and swim at Discovery Cove will always be my favourite, as you’re guaranteed to capture every child – even the one that has attempted to avoid you for the entire holiday.
What is done with all the footage?
A final DVD is created and sent to all the kids. It’s a special keepsake for the kids and their families.
And finally, would you volunteer again next year?
Next year is the 30th anniversary, so it would be particularly special.
For more information on Dreamflight, visit dreamflight.org
The volunteer video team is made up of professional cameramen, editors, directors, anyone willing to give their time and have fun! If you’ve been inspired and want to be part of the Dreamflight video team in the future or are interested in becoming a sponsor, email Freelance cameraman and Dreamflight Video Team Co-ordinator, Jon Boast at email@example.com.