Filming Plan

After the first film workshop I learnt there was an awful lot more to do if I was going to film the journey properly. I decided I need some more of Phil’s time.

Since the first session I’ve been fortunate to welcome Joby Newsom onboard as part of the UK-based team. Joby is interested in adventure filming and has volunteered to help the expedition filming side.

Recently Joby and I headed for Cambridge for another day of Phil Coates training.

This time the day was tailored purely to my requirements. After an initial discussion we decided the topics for the day would be:

  • Equipment and Vehicle Set Up
  • Shooting sequences & self filming
  • Workflow and Storage
  • Narrative & case study

Finalise Kit

After reviewing the options a truck provides for different camera angles we decided on a multi-camera option to record the journey. A combination of a 2 action cameras. A GoPro and Sony Action cam – the Sony was selected as it has a microphone input that can be used with a lavalier mic cable around multiple locations in the cab. It is a safer option than using the JVC inside with a sucker mount which will likely risk the camera getting damaged on rough roads. The JVC for outside filming (interviews & tripod options) mostly. There are several mount options that can be used in conjunction with a manfrotto magic arm (143) and head (155) to use the vehicle as a camera man along the journey.

Phil Coates

Shooting Sequences

We discussed the range if options for shooting sequences. With the range of cameras and options there are many different ways I can film myself and the journey. Given that I’ll be travelling by myself, making it as easy as possible is critical. Developing a shooting plan in advance will help improve the quality of the output.

Shooting Sequences


Given the size of the task I’ve had to put a lot consideration into workflow planning. These are the logical steps from getting film from camera to safely stored with back ups stored in different places.  This involves transferring from SD cards to Hard drives to back up copies to transporting the footage back to the UK. I also need to allow time to review the footage each day.

We estimated the volume of data storage required. Current estimates are that I’ll require:

  • 12 x 32GB SanDisk Extreme cards,
  • between 6-8  x 1TB hard drives, and
  • storage cases for each device.

I also have the challenge of how to safely get the footage back to UK. I suspect certain points such as Singapore will be drop off points. If anybody knows somebody that travels between the Stans and UK regularly I could do with a courier to return the leg 2 footage. Anybody fancy flying our to Kyrgyzstan to meet me?


This has been a challenging process as the concept of Central Asia, the Great Game and my journey is so huge. How best do I capture the essence of the story without filming hundreds of hours of random holiday videos that don’t come together to produce a cohesive and interesting story? We spent time discussing the key aspects of the trip, asking what are the key questions we want the trip to answer.



In summary the filming challenge is massive. To be honest I really don’t know how it will unfold? or how will it affect the trip? As an amateur it will be interesting to see how will I cope with the challenge? and what problems will I have to overcome? All I can do continue to prepare with the time I have left. One thing is certain I will have plenty of time to practice…

4 Responses to “How to Film an Overland Journey”

  1. That’s a shit load of disk space. Are you turning the cameras off while you sleep?

  2. Mate that sounds like a boat load of work. I’m not putting doubts out there but you will have a shed load of stuff to worry about doing this trip by yourself without the extra load of filming etc. Do you have a plan B if you cant physically fit it all into 24 hours? Move this over to email if you like. Hope all is well!

Leave a Reply