Write, shoot, take pictures

A hundred years ago, a strange idea occurred to a certain Joshua Slokamu: to sail around the world for no reason other than the simple pleasure of doing it.

It was something completely new. Nobody had sailed before just for fun. The sea inspired fear, it was treacherous and dangerous. It was possible to resist him in the name of work, like fishermen or sailors of warships, from necessity, when moving from one place on earth to another, or because of an error, after a shipwreck, but not for entertainment.

Joshua Slokam sailed his whole life, first as a sailor, then as a captain of cargo sailboats. At fifty, he himself built a boat ten meters long and set off around the world. He always walked alone, overcame dangers and difficulties, met pirates off the coast of Africa, was attacked by the aborigines of Tierra del Fuego in the Strait of Magellan, passed through the exhausting storms of Cape Horn, experienced moments of turbulent delight and idyllic calm, saw distant countries, met interesting and strange people in all corners of the world.

Slokam was an inquisitive man, a good observer and storyteller. When he stayed in some city, he made acquaintances and was invited to meetings, where many people came, to listen to his incredible stories. Sometimes he received financial assistance in cash or in kind. The first round the world was also a good writer. He entered into a contract with the magazine and sent notes about his journey, which were periodically published. Then all his notes were ordered and published in a book: "Alone around the world." A new literary genre has appeared.

After him, there were other sailors - writers: Muatisie, Dumas, Fogar, Tabarli, Chichester. Almost all singles.

Traveling on a small sailboat is full of strong emotions. Fear, when the elements rage, fatigue, when you have to stand on the steering wheel for many hours and days, joy and delight, when the boat is surrounded by flocks of dolphins and whales and it seems that you are alone with untouched nature, which in the rest of the world no longer exists, a triumph when after many weeks a dark band appears on the horizon, representing the world of people, which, it seemed, no longer exists.

The sea, the inexhaustible source of emotions, and stories about them, always touch, captivate, evoke the envy and empathy of comfort, who remained on earth and lead a normal life. One our friend once told us:

- Thank you for the book "Under the Immense Heaven" I gave to read it to my father. He is sick and bedridden. With her, he for a few days forgot about the disease, he traveled with you.

It was the best compliment ever heard.

In subsequent decades, the literature on the sea has grown greatly. Hundreds of books have been published. Some of them are not bad, others are just great. Writing about the sea is not difficult. Everyone is capable of this, which confirms the fact that among those who have written about the sea and have become famous in recent years, there is not a single professional writer. Here the content is important, you need to have something to talk about. And up to this point, everything is simple, because the events gives you the sea. You also need to have a great desire to write, try and try, write and remake, until the prose is smooth. In the end, you need to find a publisher, and this is probably the most difficult.

But, attention, we will immediately dispel doubts. None of the other navigators who wrotePerhaps, Muatisie, could not live only on the income from their own books. Exactly. I know that by saying this, I dispel many dreams, but the real truth is that writing brings a small income, so small that it is not worth taking it into account (however, running an online blog can bring substantial income, about $ 1500- $ 2000 per month See Sailing UMA Blog - Editor's Note).

The author of the book relies from seven to ten percent of the sale price. If the book is worth ten euros, the author earns less than one euro per book. Since the estimated circulation of sales of an average book of this genre is only a few thousand copies, you can calculate it yourself.

But writing about your journey is still great. Writing on paper your own impressions as they are experienced is undoubtedly a worthwhile matter. A book can come out of it, only stories can turn out, or just a notebook, which can be re-read years later, but still, it will be a notebook full of beautiful memories.

Most of the travelers keep a diary. Entries in it can be done in the evening, in a calm atmosphere at the anchorage, or recorded in a hurry, as events unfold. And you can not worry about the form, everything can be put in order later. You will notice that emotions are recorded immediately, brighter and more alive, stronger than those recorded later, filtered through a sieve of memory. We always wrote by hand, in simple notebooks, which over the years have accumulated a whole mountain. A foot of paper containing a piece of our life. Others prefer to write on the computer. The result is less tangible in form, but the same full in content.

If you do this seriously, you can offer your articles to magazines. In the first place, of course, sailing, but also tourist about the rest. A man looking at the world from the deck of a sailing yacht, opens a lot of interesting things. But in the world of magazines the beginning is always difficult. You are not known to anyone. You need to be noticed and appreciated, try to be different in content, to be accurate and reliable, if you undertake obligations. A good method is to analyze the articles in magazines to which you are going to offer your materials. Find articles with similar content, call the editor and explain that you can write something similar or excellent. If you like the idea, the article is sent and this can be the beginning. We know many who started that way.

Video filming on the boat

Golden sunset, cruel storm, a herd of sleeping whales, dancing inhabitants of the lost islands. Traveling on a yacht you can see a lot of very interesting things and with the help of a video camera, even an amateur one, you can capture vivid memories of what was happening.

The process is divided into two parts. On-site filming that captures the event in all its aspects with an excess of footage from various angles, and subsequent processing, called editing, selecting scenes and building them into a chain that sets the rhythm, tone and balance of the narration. The end result may be a great movie ... or very boring.

Have you ever had a friend visit a video captured on vacation by those present? Or a movie from a wedding, filmed by a neighbor, and mounted by him? Then you understand what I am talking about: an endless hours of boring scenes and a quivering image.

The difference between interesting and boring films undoubtedly depends on the content, but not onlyabout. Here are the fundamental technique of shooting, scene selection and rhythm editing. Professionals shoot video footage, then spend days at the montage and as a result, less than ten percent of the footage is used in the finished film. Fans who do not always have a computer at their disposal for editing should take off thinking about what they end up with. If you intend to do the editing, then you can shoot very long scenes, without thinking about using the zoom, lose and catch the focus again, since all the bad frames can be deleted after. If it is supposed to show the film as it is, then it is necessary to direct it in the course of the shooting, which is rather difficult, but not impossible. Here are some rules tips and tricks.

The first rule: only short films.

An amateur film, to be interesting, must be short. This is a fundamental rule that knows no exceptions. This is a truth that is difficult to follow, especially at the beginning, but the truth is absolute. Fifteen minutes will be the ideal duration, which can be increased to twenty with a very interesting topic.

Each scene inside the film should not last more than three, four, maximum five seconds. If you, for example, want to photograph Pierrot standing on the steering wheel in a thunderstorm, do not take it off for a moment. Five seconds straight plan, Pierrot at the helm, then stop the camera, shift and remove five seconds from the side. Stop the camera again, move closer, sharpen and turn the steering wheel for three seconds with a close-up of your hand, followed by your face, your eyes fixed on the distance, and shooting from far away in the same direction. These five scenes, viewed sequentially, will be sufficient and interesting.

But the sea was very stormy, you say, and Piero so skillfully taxied on the waves, and the boat was great to meet these huge shafts. It’s impossible to show everything in twenty seconds! Then alternate the above scenes with five seconds of shooting a stem cutting a wave, five seconds a view of the sails from below, close-ups of vanes against the background of rushing water, and a white wake behind the stern. Just forty seconds, which will create an image of Pierrot navigator. Try, see, it will turn out well.

Rule two: in the scenes must be present movement.

Movement is necessary to give rhythm to the film. If the subject is in motion, for example, someone turns the winch, there is no need to add anything. It is enough to keep the camera motionless and shoot the object in action. If the object is stationary: the boat is anchored, someone reads sitting in the cockpit, then you yourself must give life to the frames by moving the camera. How? For example, shooting a panorama, starting from afar, finish on an object, or starting from it, move away. Or you can use the trick with shooting an object from different angles, making two or more short scenes, no more than two seconds each. Short passages, viewed in quick succession, will give life to the scene.

Rule three: do not use zoom and almost do not use a telephoto lens.

Zoom is an option that professionals almost never use. The amateur camera's zoom is also difficult to control, so it’s better not to use it at all. Its usefulness lies in the possibility of choosing the best approximation, but during the shooting the zoom itself should not be used. Do not believe camera manufacturers advertising cameras with a powerful zoom. No benefit from them, they only give a false impression of the ability to bring objects closer. In reality, they blur the image, make it trembling and of poor quality.

The telephoto lens must also be used with caution. The frames he has taken are jumping, and the focus is very delicate. The quality is improved if you use a tripod, but on a boat in swimming, in motion, even a tripod will not give stability to the image. A telephoto lens should only be used when you cannot do without it (FriIts on the branch, kitvdali). In other cases, instead of using the approximation, it is better to approach yourself with the camera. Frames shot near warmer, sharper and sharper.

Rule number four: constantly change the angle

If you start shooting from the front view, then go to the side view, if you start from a close-up view, go to the panorama, and so on. Look for the original angles, remove the top, bottom, side, inside. TV camera like your eyes. Arrange it in an unusual place and get an original and unpredictable angle.

Look at the tourists around you, how they use the camera. They always stand clinging to the eyepiece and look around. This situation is the most natural, but the most obvious, and therefore the shooting is always equally predictable. The camera can give much more. It is enough to change the shooting point. Example: if you want to take a close-up shot of a person, having captured him within a few seconds in front, try to get closer and make frames from the lowest point against the sky. Such a sequence of two plans will be unexpected and original.

Rule Five: Use a wide-angle converter.

When shooting on the boat has its own difficulties. There is little space, everything is constantly in motion, and the pitching worsens the situation even more. Since it is impossible to move away from the object at a sufficient distance, it is difficult to shoot broad plans, especially inside. Here you need a wide-angle converter mounted on the lens, which expands its field of view and allows you to take more space into the frame. Eni nozzles are not very expensive and allow you to make acceptable shots even in the cabin.

Rule Six: Do not forget to remove the boat from the side.

Sailing yacht is beautiful when sailing. To remove it, obviously, you will have to get off it. You can shoot from the pier, the camera on a tripod, if the situation allows, or give the camera to friends on another boat that goes with you. If there are no other possibilities, you can take off the tender, but there should not be much excitement, otherwise the image will be unstable.

Rule Seven: the theme of the film.

Finally, the most important thing: the story. The sequence in which the frames are mounted must tell some story and have content, otherwise it will be just a set of beautiful pictures.

Pierrot goes on a cruise to the Baleares. What comes to mind is to build a series of beautiful shots taken during the voyage and after that beautiful footage from the Balearic. Built so the film, despite the beautiful shots, will be very boring.

Let's try to tie a story to it: I, Pierrot and Maria, go to the Balears - shots, how we study the map, load provisions, give moorings. At first, the weather was good: swimming, sunrises, sunsets, a stem cutting water. Then a thunderstorm came: show the approach of the weather, we run, take refuge in the cabin, Piero looks at the sky with a worried look, the image of a furiously rotating anemometer, or the rising arrow of the device, take the reefs, waves, Piero listens to the weather forecast, Maria says:

- It may be better to go back.

Then Piero taxis, Maria closes the hatches, waves again, but already higher, a collapsing ridge, Pierrot putting on insurance, and so on. Then we see the Baleares. Five seconds of the island from afar, they say, mooring line cast on the shore. We go to the square, buy ice cream, go to the market and so on. Putting it all in fifteen minutes, get a nice movie and the audience compliments will be sincere.

So far, the film has been talking only about the boat, its carriage, and the journey. If you decide to shoot about the places you visit, about the people living there, then the number of potential topics is endless, but the rules are the same: a short film, short scenes, no zoom, and manystories.

Camera selection

There is a huge number of cameras, prices that start from five hundred and reach several thousand euros. For filming on a boat you need to focus on a small camera. It is easier to store, easier to use, easier to protect from splashes and moisture. Do not choose a camera with a powerful zoom, so that the camera seemed more powerful. In reality, the best thing is the classic optical tenfold zoom.

The most necessary option is steady shot, optical is better than electronic. It reduces image shake and is ideal for a boat where everything is always in motion. And finally, choose a model with the possibility of manual focusing, because the automatic is not always reliable.

On rainy days and when swimming in bad weather, it is better to protect the camera with a waterproof box, as they are very delicate and sensitive to humidity. Real underwater boxes are very expensive and bulky, they serve for shooting at depth and are needed only if you really decide to do underwater photography, and then you will need: scuba, wetsuit, illuminator and many other things. There are also soft boxes. They cost less and are ideal for a boat. They protect the camera from rain, splashes and allow you to take effective shots in bad weather, with rain and waves that overlap the deck and break on the glass of the camera.

And, finally, you need a hard, closing almost tightly container for storing the camera on the boat. Hard to protect from any impact possible in swimming and sealed to isolate as much as possible from the sea of the North Sea air that is aggressively acting on the delicate mechanisms of the camera.


Going to the first Around the World, we had no camera, no camera. But this is not because of forgetfulness.

- We will look at the world with our eyes. - we said to ourselves. And indeed, it is one thing to watch the sunset sitting on the beach, plunging only in pink, and quite another to get up, take a camera, wander around the beach in search of the right angle, something to put in the foreground. In the first case, you simply experience magical moments, in the second, you voluntarily or unwittingly concentrate on the camera and its buttons.

After a year of swimming, we changed the idea. The beauty of the pictures we saw made us look for a way to perpetuate them.

When choosing a camera, the same rules as when choosing a camera are valid. A small camera is easier to store and easier to use. For shooting inside the boat requires a wide-angle optics with a focal length of 22 millimeters. Medium telephoto lenses and a tripod are required for nature and outdoors.

As for the choice between film and figure, the latter on the boat has many advantages: you do not need to wait for months until you get to the place where you can show videos, you can watch photos with a digital camera that evening by downloading them to a computer. A digital camera allows you to take a huge number of pictures, try, make mistakes with the angle, focus and exposure as much as you like. Bad frames are deleted at the touch of a button and only successful ones remain. Digital photos can be stored on a hard disk or DVD,

they do not take up much space and hold thousands of frames. Of course, you need a computer for this, but now it is available on many boats. If the choice fell on a film camera, cassettes, both captured and not, should be stored in sealed containers, for the same reasons as the video camera. In addition, when swimming in a hot climate, it is better to keep them in the refrigerator.

Well, to make beautiful photos traveling around the world you will have many opportunities. Of course, if we are talking about photos for memory, there are no any problah. If you intend to offer your work to newspapers and magazines, this is a completely different story. Photographing is a very specialized work. It takes time, education, great work and, of course, professional photographic equipment. To learn how to take pictures, you can attend photography courses, read books and magazines and, most importantly, take lots of pictures, take thousands of pictures and evaluate the results.

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