The project began when Kris James, the artist, approached Tom Martin, a DP he had previously worked with, to propose a new music video. Seizing this unique production opportunity, Tom decided to collaborate with Edward Heredia, an experienced music video director. Though they knew of each other, they had never worked together before. 

As discussions unfolded, the artist, DP, and director quickly found common ground in their desire to tell compelling stories. They conceived three interconnected narratives, each exploring the theme of overcoming uncertainty and adversity, ready to be brought to life. 


The narrative-driven nature of the project led the creative team to choose anamorphic lenses. Ed, the director of “Hold On,” was guided by the principle of rich textures and depth in the visuals, achievable through anamorphic glass.

Having previously tested Hawk lenses, both Tom and Ed easily agreed on a set of lenses. Tom Martin explains why he chose Class-X: “What interested me in Class-X was that they felt like a Goldilocks situation. They had the best qualities of the V-Lites but also enough of the Vintage 74’s for a vintage look.”

Tom emphasises the importance of testing all available lenses, especially with Hawk, which had not been easily accessible in the UK for a long time. He sought lenses that would add distinctive flares and distortion to the image, all the beloved characteristics of anamorphics.

“It was the perfect situation for me because I don’t particularly like the clean look of some anamorphics,” Tom adds.

Following his favourite characteristics, Tom further highlights the advantages of the Class-X lenses: “These lenses add so much to the image. Characterful yet production friendly, They don’t heavily distort at the edges, which allows for more creative framing. I’ve never really experienced that with anamorphics before.”


Trying to get all the shots while wrapping on time is always a challenge for the crew. If you can save a few minutes by not changing the diopters, why not do exactly that?

“We had taken a set of diopters and surprisingly did not open the case once because the lenses could handle the close-ups beautifully,” Tom said

The crew was very pleased with the close focus on all the lenses, especially the 65mm, which provided a smooth workflow for the Steadicam operator.

In addition to their “Goldilocks look,” Tom was impressed by how well the lenses resolved wide open, approvingly confirmed by Alex Rawson, Tom’s focus puller.

Although Tom does not have a favoured focal length, he ended up using the 28mm, 45mm, and 65mm lenses frequently. Both the bedroom scene and the church performance contained close-ups that conveyed a unique peculiarity, achieved by using the 65mm lens and its close focus ability.


 “Ed talks a lot about textures. He is a visual person with a background in lighting and lighting design, which made our collaboration more interesting since we were speaking the same language,” Tom said.

Tom and Ed avoided shooting in clean, sterile locations, preferring places with depth and texture. The message was passed on to the location manager, who understood the assignment perfectly. He scouted a few phenomenal locations, including one house where all three stories could be shot, providing the desired depth and texture.

“Seeing a location that was already stunning enough, through the glass of class-X added a whole other level,” Tom noted. “One of my favourite shots in the video required so little. It was basically just the lenses, combined with good production design and timing.”

Tom also shared his overall experience with Hawk London: “Overall, my experience with Hawk was incredibly positive. You’ve been incredibly supportive, happy to let people in to test the lenses, and your flexibility in rental terms is important for projects like these. Incredible personal touch, beautiful facilities, and an accommodating team.”