To me the 'excitement' over large chip cameras that are 'affordable' light and take stills lenses is that this 'cinematic' look becomes available to the solo operator on a smaller budget...snip
To keep-up with this quote,
2 days ago, I asked a sound guy I work with to come to my flat in the Madrid's downtown to do some sound testings with a 100 euros Zoom H1. The guy in question is very experienced and has a portable studio in wich he connects Neuman mics. Each mic costs about 2000euros, they are tiny and have their own alim. Anyway, we took audio takes of live instruimental gypsy guitars because they are considered as a real chalenge. Were there differences? Yes! but...then the guy took the Zoom takes and with a quite fast post-prod in his studio, he could easyly match the audio of the recorded Neumans to the point that it would have been virtually impossible to guess who's who. The guy turned blue and impressed. (he also know what he does with the audio, so maybe that's why he could match easily the takes)
About your story on the 7D. I've been working with an old fox broadcast guy who owns his little prod house after decades working for teevee. He has a couple of high-end broadcast cameras but each time I saw him on set, he'd shoot a 5D2 coupled with Schneider lenses via an adapter. Why? Why not using the big artillery instead? Because the guy told me that with the 5D2 he feels like when he started, he feels like a child with his toy instead that with the broadcast cams he feels he is working; It ain't fun.
The other reason he would shoot a 5D2 is that he ends to record footage in circles in wich the use of a proper structure would have been problematic. So the guy film celebs without them to have the sensation to be filmed and records things in their intimacy.
Then, there is a point I'm forced to admit. I've been on sets now for about more than a year and experienced the workflows with mixed bags. Very expensive devices mixed with GH2 and 5D2. The fact is that in the reviewing and when we started to storyboarding, the takes we want to use are 80% the ones taken with the lighter and consummer gear. There are more alive, more dynamics, more interesting and more creatives.
This, happened over and over again.
And not only that. The less we storyboarded, the best. That's not a golden rule of course. But I know a famous cineast in L.A, big prod and big budgets who never story-board nor plan the takes but only live on set.
I'm talking about big big fish with impressive background. He improvises a lot and built his story step by step according to what is happening live. In other words, he has huge mediums but acts and think like the dslrs wanabees: we shoot first, we discuss later.
Of course every fish has its style and end to build a workflow that works for each person, but I'm closer to this L.A guy. The more I do, the more I see the necesity to not doing things we are supposed to, even if it may look more amateurish.
I've seen recently footage of young guys with no budget shooting on 7Ds and still tripods, no dollies, no cranes, no cine lenses but vintage Nikkors and cheap reduced rigs bought in China...doing fantastic work in advert, and building D.I.Y solutions to avoid to use After-effect. So their footage and look is indeed created for the most part on set and very little post involved further. Well, they are doing excellent adv campaigns, up to the level of much more costly productions. They are highly creative and manage to get superb looks regardless of the possible limitation and artefacts of their gear.
They couldn't care less about the LOGs curves and all the soup, they just set their custom WB on set, point.
But they have fun. The roles, DP, Director etc...aren't defined.
They don't give a damn about established rules and procedures. And you know what? I'm also tired of all the heavy broadcast circus and give it less and less credit, highly technical, specialized and costly and more importantly, unflexible and slow. All my respect from a tech point of view, but my respects end where they started. I'm stepping-away from this because quite frankly, it's aint fun (at least for me and the way I see the things), extremely demnanding and not necessarly you end having good or better content. On the contrary.
Last time I was doing some unformal takes in the street with a GH2 handheld with no bloody rig, no mattebox, no EVF, no monitor but yes cine prime. Man, it was so refreshing ! So fun ! Then, I was sure that my footage was shaking like crazy and that I wasn't focussed. Big was my surprise when I reviewd the takes in the studio. It really made me think about all that.
I'm more and more convinced about very reduced team-crew (even what can do one man-woman today is amazing), undefined roles (everyone multitask), and manouverable light gear.
To conclude, what you just been doing with the corporate, a few years ago it would have required a video team and mediums to acheive something similar. And not necessarly better. I've seen enough footage shooted by official corporate and arrogant video prods, to see that what you did is more above than below. And you alone.