Shooting transformers

On Friday September 4th a huge transport moved through my home town of Hazerswoude-Rijndijk. It took three days for the convoy of 3300000 kilo weighing power transformers to clear the town.

The transformers were built in Nijmegen, and were transported over water, until they reached Hazerswoude, where they were carried inland by Mammoet. Their final destination was Bleiswijk, where they were installed as part of the Randstad380kV project.

I made this video for the local media, to give an idea of the scale of the undertaking. I started shooting on Friday night. It was a nasty night with lots of high winds and rain. It really gave the feeling of shooting in a hurricane. I wrapped the camera in protective plastic, and we had an umbrella to shield it from the worst of the weather, but finally, at around 2 in the morning, I gave up and went home. The first transformer hadn't yet cleared its pontoon, but this would've taken hours.

The wind would have made most audio recordings completely useless. Good thing I finally thought of a way to attach my dead cat to my microphone, without it hanging in front of the camera lens. This amazingly simple accessory almost completely eliminates wind noise!

I returned the next morning. By then they were unloading the last transformer and started moving them. Which I proceeded to shoot during the rest of the day. Fortunately, the weather had changed quite a bit and it was nice and sunny.

Shooting was made a lot easier by wearing bright vests with "PRESS" written all over them. Police left me alone or came to chat a bit, whilst clearing away all other people. I could move around freely without my every step being questioned.

Finally, I edited the movie the same evening. I used pieces from the Equilibrium soundtrack to make the shots come more alive.