Dancing through Sicily:
first video shoot with the
Canon EOS R6

Uma bailarina dança no interior de um templo em ruínas perto de Palermo, na Sicília.

O cineasta espanhol Javier Cortés foi o primeiro profissional a utilizar a Canon EOS R6 numa sessão de vídeo, filmando dois bailarinos num percurso pela Sicília, a começar no Templo de Segesta. "Para mim, é sempre mais do que apenas disparos. Quero tentar contar uma história simples", afirma. Tirada com uma Canon EOS R6 com uma objetiva Canon RF 24-70mm F2.8L IS USM a 24 mm, 1/5000 seg., f/2,8 e ISO400. © Javier Cortés

Weaving through the columns of an ancient temple, a ballerina is caught in the light of the breaking dawn, her flowing dress highlighted against the shadows thrown by the crumbling colonnade. The scene marks the start of a voyage through north-western Sicily, captured by Spanish cinematographer and Canon Ambassador Javier Cortés on the full-frame mirrorless Canon EOS R6.

"Filmmaking has the power to take you on a journey," says Javier, who shoots video and stills for high-end fashion brands and editorial publications, including Vogue and Harper's Bazaar. "My goal was to capture the fluidity of the dancers' bodies, the sensation of strength."

With extra-wide dynamic range thanks to Canon Log, up to 8-stops of Image Stabilization,1 4K video at up to 60p, and support for 10-bit YCbCr 4:2:2 internal recording, the Canon EOS R6, the latest addition to Canon's EOS R System family of cameras, is a formidable filming tool. From temple to theatre, pavement to palazzo, Javier put it through its paces, capturing cinematic footage from a full- frame mirrorless workhorse.

Faultless AF tracking and 8-stops of IS*

Javier's narrative began at the ancient Temple of Segesta near Palermo, the capital of Sicily. "I've always been interested in movement and how bodies look in front of the camera," he says. "I used slow motion at 50p to capture the dancer, her dress and how her skin looked in the morning light. I wanted to show how she tells a story with her body."

The Canon EOS R6's intelligent AF system enabled Javier to lock onto the ballerina's face and keep it in sharp focus while moving around her. "I wanted to shoot wide open shots that finish on her arms or face," he says. "She was pirouetting and jumping but the camera stayed focused. I couldn't believe it – I thought I'd lose the focus on her eyes."

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Uma bailarina dança sob a luz de uma porta aberta. O resto da divisão permanece com sombra.

"O acompanhamento AF é verdadeiramente impressionante nas fotografias, mas nos vídeos é uma loucura. Mal podia acreditar." Tirada com uma Canon EOS R6 com uma objetiva Canon RF 50mm F1.2L USM a 1/750 seg., f/2 e ISO200. © Javier Cortés

Um grande plano do rosto de uma mulher com esta a olhar para cima e sem olhar para a câmara.

"Com esta câmara consegues ser flexível. O ecrã de ângulo variável permite mudar facilmente o ângulo do qual se está a fotografar." Tirada com uma Canon EOS R6 com uma objetiva Canon RF 50mm F1.2L USM a 1/500 seg., f/1,4 e ISO100. © Javier Cortés

In his commercial work Javier often operates with large crews but he relished the opportunity to return to his single-shooting roots. "I've got used to having big teams, but here I came back to working just with the camera," he says.

The Canon EOS R6's innovative in-body Image Stabilization (IS) – offering up to 8-stops of IS1 – meant that Javier could shoot handheld and capture perfectly smooth video footage.

He tested the IS by shooting with two cameras, one in each hand, each fitted with a stabilised lens but one with IS on and one with the IS off. "I was moving around with the cameras on my arms and it was amazing," he says. "The stabilisation is very effective."

Uma bailarina dança numa praia iluminada pelo luar com edifícios iluminados atrás dela.

A dançar na areia na praia de Mondello. "A luz da lua deveria criar um elevado contraste, mas existem detalhes nas sombras e nas roupas e consegui captar o movimento. Não estou habituado a ver este tipo de imagens [ao fotografar] à noite", afirma Javier. Tirada com uma Canon EOS R6 com uma objetiva Canon RF 50mm F1.2L USM a 1/40 seg., f/1,4 e ISO32000. © Javier Cortés

Rich colours in low light with high ISO

Arriving at Segesta in the dark meant pushing the camera's low-light capabilities. Javier paired the Canon EOS R6 with fast aperture RF lenses, a Canon RF 50mm F1.2L USM, a Canon RF 85mm F1.2L USM and a Canon RF 24-70mm F2.8L IS USM, in order to get the most light to the 20MP full-frame sensor.

"At sunrise you don't have much light or contrast, so I started shooting with higher ISOs," Javier says. "I was really impressed with the camera's performance in low light – the colour rendition was amazing. Colour is important to me. I decide which camera and lenses I am going to use based on how they develop colour. When I was shooting at the temple, I imagined the colour of the sunrise, and everything I imagined, I got."

The other locations provided further lighting challenges, from a darkened theatre to a beach illuminated only by moonlight. Inspired by moonlit portraits he'd previously taken in the Sahara Desert, Javier hoped to translate his creative concept to video, shooting a ballerina dancing along the water's edge at Mondello Beach.

O bailarino Lee Jay Hoy posa em frente a edifícios clássicos em Palermo, na Sicília.

Dancing into the light: first stills shoot with the EOS R6

Canon Ambassador and fashion photographer Wanda Martin on the first-ever shoot with the full-frame mirrorless Canon EOS R6.

"I didn't have the supermoon I wanted, but I had three quarters of the moon and the lights of the city. I was using high ISOs – ISO64000 and ISO32000 – and it worked well, giving impressive colour and high dynamic range.”

Um bailarino numa divisão adjacente é captado enquadrado pela porta.

Javier aproveitou a oportunidade para regressar às suas raízes e fotografar sozinho. "Estou habituado a trabalhar com câmaras cinematográficas e com uma equipa, mas adoro fotografar sozinho. Esta câmara garante-te muita criatividade e permite-te improvisar bastante." Tirada com uma Canon EOS R6 com uma objetiva Canon RF 24-70mm F2.8L IS USM a 24 mm, 1/350 seg., f/2,8 e ISO800. © Javier Cortés

Flexible, creative hybrid shooting

Originally a stills-only fashion photographer, Javier has become known for working across stills and video and is regularly tasked with delivering both on editorial and commercial jobs. Having a flexible hybrid camera that can switch between the two at the touch of a button was particularly welcome. "On every shoot I have my photo camera and my cinema camera, but in this case I could continue shooting with the same camera," he says. "It's really magical."

The Canon EOS R6's high-resolution Vari-Angle touchscreen allowed him to capture the action from all angles. "I am always on the floor shooting or leaning on walls," explains Javier. "With this camera, without needing a big ladder, I can put the camera above my head, tilt the screen and see the image."

Uma bailarina salta numa divisão com uma bela decoração.

Javier ficou particularmente impressionado com a gama dinâmica da câmara e a qualidade das cores em zonas de luz e de sombra. Tirada com uma Canon EOS R6 com uma objetiva Canon RF 85mm F1.2L USM a 1/500 seg., f/1,8 e ISO1600. © Javier Cortés

Uma bailarina posa sob a luz de uma porta aberta. O resto da divisão permanece com sombra.

A EOS R6 é particularmente eficaz em condições de pouca luz, principalmente quando combinada com uma objetiva RF de abertura luminosa. Tirada com uma Canon EOS R6 com uma objetiva Canon RF 50mm F1.2L USM a 1/500 seg., f/2 e ISO200. © Javier Cortés

Javier primarily shot in 4K 50p, his preferred frame rate for fashion. "At first I shot at 25p because I was worried about the speed and the available light, but after seeing there wasn't much grain, I started shooting in slo-mo," he says. "When I had movement and the dancers' clothes were flying, I wanted to capture it in slo-mo so I could work with that in the edit."

Shooting in Canon Log is a must for Javier, who was particularly impressed with the Canon EOS R6's expansive dynamic range. "The Canon Log is really good – you have a lot of information and colour in the highlights and the shadows," he says. "The style of video is closer to the EOS C300 cinema series than a stills camera that shoots video. This Canon Log feels similar to the Canon EOS C300 Mark II."

O cineasta Javier Cortés filma dois bailarinos em palco no Teatro Massimo em Palermo, Sicília.

As cenas finais foram filmadas no Teatro Massimo em Palermo, a maior sala de ópera de Itália. "Sinto-me sempre inspirado pela forma como me sinto num lugar e em Palermo sentia-me sempre como uma criança a tentar encontrar o local perfeito", afirma Javier.

For the final scene of Javier's film, he shot under the iconic lights of Palermo's Teatro Massimo, Italy's largest opera house. It was the backdrop for the final scene in The Godfather: Part III and it was a place where Javier had long wanted to film. "This is the climax of the video – the place where the two dancers meet," he says. "I wanted to show how they move, how they feel and the contrast of the space.

"One of my main aims on any production – personal projects or fashion films – is to shoot with freedom and try something different, something I'm not used to. Palermo was beautiful – the locations and the light. It was an amazing journey and I think you feel that in the video."

Lucy Fulford

Javier Cortés's kitbag

The key kit pros use to take their photographs

Duas câmaras Canon EOS R6 e objetivas Canon pousadas num pavimento em mosaico.


Canon EOS R6

Canon's full-frame mirrorless camera is the ultimate hybrid for video as well as stills, with intelligent Dual Pixel CMOS AF, support for a range of video formats including 4K 60p, in-body IS and outstanding low-light performance. "This camera gives you a lot of creativity and you can improvise a lot," says Javier.


Canon RF 50mm F1.2L USM

A lens that sets new standards in photographic performance, delivering supreme sharpness, extra creative control and a low-light performance that's simply remarkable.

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    1. 8-stops based on the CIPA standard with RF 24-105mm F4 L IS USM at a focal length of 105mm