As one of Starstruck's main DoPs or 'Directors of Photography', Sam Morter has travelled the world to capture our content. From scaling mountain peaks to trekking through arid deserts, this man loves to travel... and makes sure there's always a camera to hand wherever he goes. Here he shares his life on the road... with a lens.
Where have you been on your travels for Starstruck?
I’ve been lucky enough to travel around the world with Starstruck, from filming with WWE at the famous Madison Square Garden in New York – to trekking through the Andes in Peru. Last year I spent 2 months in Kenya filming the great work of The GravityLight Foundation, an organisation bringing a clean energy lighting solution to people living off-grid. My work with Starstruck has also seen me climb mountains in Ecuador and film glamour models in India, racing cars in Singapore, chefs in the Philippines as well as capturing the magnificent lost city of Petra.
What's been your favourite place to visit and why?
Kenya for me has to be one of the most incredible places I’ve been to. There’s so much to see from the breathtaking wildlife where we filmed everything from elephants to lions in their natural habitats, to the beautiful beaches in Mombasa. It was really eye-opening to see some of the conditions that people were living in, but everyone was so friendly and welcoming, allowing me to interview them, giving their stories of what life is like living in Africa.
What are the challenges you face when filming away from a comfortable studio?
There are so many challenges facing you when filming in extreme environments, whether it’s carrying kit in temperatures reaching 40 degrees celsius, to acclimatising to altitudes thousands of feet high. Not only do you have to worry about yourself when trekking, making sure you’ve got all your own personal supplies and keeping well, but you also need to look after the camera gear and get used to doing edits from the comfort of a small tent!
What kind of gear do you typically take with you on your travels?
When it comes to taking kit abroad, the lighter the better! Much of the time I’m self-shooting, so anything I take with me, I have to carry – so I have to be ruthless when it comes to packing. I shoot on the Sony FS7 with a range of Canon EF lenses. It's a perfect camera for me to capture cinematic images as well as the ability to shoot super-slow-motion.
Seeing the world must have left its mark on you, why do you love it so much?
When I was younger my parents would take me abroad for family holidays so I guess I’ve been exploring the world from a young age and it’s just something that I’ve continued to love doing. There’s so much of the world to see and each country I visit is so varied from the last – so I would say I thrive from not knowing what to expect when I arrive somewhere for the first time. I feel very fortunate that I can combine two of my hobbies, travelling and filming, in my career.
Where else is left on the list to visit?
Where do I start?! There’s so much more I want to see but Canada is definitely high up on my list of places to visit next. I think the scenery would be amazing with the mountains and vibrant colours of the lakes. The northern lights is something that fascinates me so it would be pretty cool to have the opportunity to film that. Australia and New Zealand are also on my bucket list – I love scuba diving and I’ve always wanted to dive the Great Barrier Reef!
If you're a fellow wanderer, or are just wondering about Starstruck, why not drop Sam an email at firstname.lastname@example.org