A few months back I made a mention that as part of the documentation project I am working on I’d be presenting a series of short films that covers different topics primarily intended to be in the book. So we’ve (Chinmay and I) been thinking of different ways to develop the story-line that doesn’t stray too far from the coffee-table book, but at the same time encompasses all (well, almost all) of what we intend to cover for the book. So we broke the video stories into story-book chapters and we’ve now completed the first of the series -
Chapter 1 – Kaziranga: The land of the rhino and the tiger.
Initially it was only – Kaziranga: Land of the Rhino, but after spending nearly a month here and capturing not just the rhino but an amazing amount of Tiger behaviour in a habitat that’s not really conducive to proper tiger observation, I decided we had to change the title! Not only that, Kaziranga now has the uniquely distinct position of having the highest density of tigers in the World! Previous studies had put the density at about 17 tigers per 100 Sq. kms., but recent studies suggest that the tiger density is at a whopping 32 tigers per 100sq. Kms. Sighting one, of course, is a totally different story. Kaziranga’s tall grass and thick woodland, makes it one of the most difficult places to see a tiger, although signs of their presence – scats, scrapes and claw marks on trees, makes their presence very evident.
Another unique aspect of these short films, is that they were shot entirely, well almost entirely, on the new breed of HD-DSLR cameras that allow us not only to take a high-resolution 16+ mega-pixel image, but also allows the user to record HD video in full 1920x1080P resolution the quality of which is outstanding! Not only that, the high-ISO capabilities of cameras like the Canon 1Dmark4, allows for filming late into the evening, when previously sequenced would have to be canned before they were put in the can. So armed with these new tools in my toolkit I went out with a small team of people consisting mostly of my field assistant, Chinmay and Lahaan the forest gaurd, to shoot the first chapter in the series.
For now I’m just posting a short intro, as I’m still in the field with painfully slow internet connections and frequent power cuts. We are now getting ready to head out to Arunachal Pradesh to shoot some of the little creatures that make a living in the foothill forests of the Himalaya.
Please keep an eye on FelisTV on Youtube for more videos and shortly – the full version of what you see in the Intro piece.