Beidge 21 in Port Colborne at sunrise

A Video From A Bridge

The weather was horrible all week during my staycation. But one morning, bright and early, I looked out to see a relatively clear sky. And jumped on the chance. One of my concept projects involved sunrise at the Clarence Street Bridge in Port Colborne, a few blocks from where we live. Today, I decided, would be the perfect day to make it happen. And it was.

The sun rises at predictable times and places. Having done my research I knew it would be exactly in the right place, at exactly 7:27am. That, I knew with certainty. Variables that could cause issues included traffic flow and cloud cover. As I have no way to control those, I would worry about them later if I needed to. Plans B through E. I simply gathered my gear, got in position, and waited.

The Plan

As a symbol of engineering magnificence and human ingenuity, I love the Clarence Street Bridge. At this time of year the sun passes directly behind it not long after sunrise, illuminating the road and backlighting the uprights. My plan was to get photos and video of the sun shining through the bridge infrastructure. I alread posted a photo of the shoot. This is the video. Sun behind bridge achieves two things. First, blocking the sun with something big like this bridge is very effective at controlling the exposure, so the whole scene doesn’t become glaring white. Second, the bridge silhouette looks simply stunning with the sun behind it. The high contrast combination is exactly what I wanted to capture. At 7:27am the sun would be where I wanted it, and early enough in the day to wrap the project before significant traffic put a halt to proceedings. Perfect.


At 7:20am I was parked and unloaded and waiting. Cameras set up. Equipment checked and ready. I was about to begin, when a street cleaning truck came around the corner and lumbered slowly toward me. I could neither hear myself over the noise, nor send up the drone until it passed. Bugger. Tick. Tock. I had hoped to have the bird in the air a few minutes ahead to give me time to fine tune position, and take photos up and down the length of the bridge. This was not going to happen. Plan B, then.

At 7:27am the street cleaning truck turned the next corner and I shot the bird into the air. Ascending quickly into position, the drone and bridge and sun were all exactly where they should be. I took the shots I needed, and on the way down I shot this video. I timed my descent so the approaching car passed safely below with good clearance. Planned. Nailed it. To emphasize the contrast I dropped the shadows and lifted the highlights. I wanted to really bring out the silhouette. My tastes might not match viewers. Editors choice.

30 Years

I have spent the last thirty years learning various skill sets. Photography. Video production. Print. Web. Graphic design. Any one of those skills is a career in itself. Being able to single-handedly plan, execute, film, edit, and upload a finished video within an hour is unique. That’s what GYST stands for. The ability, skills, and drive to take a project of any size from concept to completion.

We Get Your S*$@ Together. That’s literally where we got the name. From video to photo, print to products. It took thirty years to learn how to do this in an hour. And that’s what clients pay for. Not the time. The experience. This simple video could have taken a team a week. I do not exaggerate, I’ve been on those teams. Storyboarding, font choices, music, pacing, colour grading, endless iterations and presentations to stakeholders… being the sole stakeholder in your own production helps. Even so, I did this in an hour. Imagine what I could do for you, dear potential client, in a week.

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