Piling Equipment provides the sale of, and lease support for a wide variety of pile drivers used in the construction industry and are based on the outskirts of Warminster in Wiltshire. Blue Frontier is currently working on Piling Equipment’s brand new website for 2019: a faster more responsive site with information laid out in a logical and easy to navigate manner. For a website to rank well and perform for SEO, it must meet the needs of its users, so any content has to be informative and useful. Video content increases dwell time on a website and can also improve click-through rates, both important SEO factors.
How do you create winning photography and videos of pile drivers that stand out?
The answer is a relatively straightforward one: choose a great day to film and use a drone. With one eye on the weather and one on the diary, Piling Equipment liaised closely with Blue Frontier to decide the best possible day to film and capture the delivery of their brand new GEAX EK75.
The GEAX EK75 is one of the new breeds of pile drivers - powerful, compact and easily manoeuvrable in a small space. The ‘driver’ part of this particular model can go down underground to a staggering 118 feet!
Armed with a drone, a tripod, a monopod and two 4K ready cameras (always back up your equipment), our cameraman set off underneath beautiful clear blue skies, with a dust-free sensor and a variety of good quality glass – essential for capturing the movements of these huge rigs. This monstrous piece of equipment eats concrete for breakfast and up close, the dilemma is how to visually describe the enormity of this machine. It was decided to photograph the EK75 with a variety of different elements in the same frame in order to help give it some scale.
We sat down and talked about how this rig differentiates itself with others. A series of shots were agreed which highlighted these benefits with a strong level of continuity. We also agreed to photograph the rig from the sky and from a variety of other angles.
Paramount to any drone shoot is health and safety. Before the drone was flown, we did a thorough risk assessment of the area and asked to ensure that non-essential staff were moved more than 150 metres clear of the drone while it flew. Effectively, during the filming period, we were given free rein of the yard.
Despite its bulk, the EK75 stands out thanks to its manoeuvrability, something that we needed to highlight during filming. The 'Pile driver part' can be quickly positioned within an arc and within a few feet of the cab. Thanks to this characteristic, vital hours and even days can be shaved off a project. To capture this feature, we positioned the drone just above the cab area where the driver sits, and then accelerated up as the pile driver rotated.
We also flew the drone around to show the EK75 in relation to a typical site.
This was a relatively straight forward edit with an emphasis on simple frame-by-frame storytelling without any flash effects but with requested annotations to show and tell the EK75's features.
"Thanks to some quick liaison with the guys at the Blue Frontier office, we managed to switch the day of filming to one of the few sunny days in May. It meant that we were shooting in absolutely brilliant sunshine and the bright orange of the rig against a blue sky looked great in both photography and video. We are delighted with the video. Not only does it looks amazing, but it also fulfils the brief which is to show the features and benefits that a Piling rig like the EK75 can bring to a project. Having the drone fly up from the drivers cab while the rig rotated really bought home the manoeuvrability of the machine. We also love the flag intro and the swoop up and turn around on the rig! We really appreciate the work Blue Frontier did and the time spent on a very unusual subject. We are very pleased with the end result."
Tamsin Kingwell, Operations Director, Piling Equipment
"I’ve filmed a few different things with the drone, over lakes and large bodies of water, Cathedrals in Mexico, Cenotaphs in Portsmouth, but I had never filmed Piling rigs before, so I wasn’t sure what to expect to be honest. Clearing the yard of people took all the stress out and allowed me to concentrate on the job in hand. I also asked the stakeholders to stay well back during filming. Conditions were as close to perfect as you could wish for. There was so little wind that for the first shot I had to park the drone while we waited for a gust of wind to flutter the Piling Equipment flag! Wobbly drone moves are a pet hate of mine, and I think the moves on the drone are actually quite nice and smooth. We are, after all, trying to get across the features and benefits of this machine in a way that as a viewer, you can’t take your eyes off the screen. For one shot, I parked the drone almost exactly over the cab and accelerated up as the rig rotated, and as soon as I saw the shot in the viewfinder, I knew we were getting across a big plus point for the rig. Having a clear day with beautiful blue skies created a lovely canvas on which to work. Tamsin and Alexis were incredibly helpful, and because of their planning, I can’t think of a day in which a commercial shoot has gone as smoothly."
Nick Layton, Blue Frontier
At Blue Frontier, we believe in working closely with our clients to ensure their vision becomes a reality. Creating a website that not only looks fantastic but is laden with fantastic and high-quality media is the end goal of this particular project and this footage goes a long way in delivering watchable and interesting content for the client.
We thank Piling Equipment for choosing to work alongside us and look forward to future rigs and shoots.