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Steadicam is easy right? My first attempt

Glidecam short film AF100

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#1 Nathaniel C. T. Jackson

Nathaniel C. T. Jackson


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Posted 18 February 2015 - 09:02 PM

Hi everyone,


I have been lurking on these forums for a while and thought it was time to write my first post. I love a contentious title so, there ya go :)


I picked up a glidecam 4000 and steadicam merlin arm combo/shamozzel a fair while ago and thought using a steadicam would be quite easy. I looks easy when you see some one doing it well. I should have known better, oh well, never underestimate the arrogance of ignorance.


So I used it a few times and struggled, eventually I bought the steadicam hand book and got a bit better. Then about a year ago I was asked by a friend to shoot a one shot short film. I thought it would be easy. I was wrong :)


Its been tied up with the director since then so thats why its taken me so long to show you guys. So here you go:

Password is: Steadicam


Feel free to be as critical or give as much or as little feedback as you like :)


Wow, it was difficult. I shot on the wee AF100 and prior to this had really shot random stuff moving around with out any purpose. As soon as I needed to think about proper framing and camera operating with a purpose it all became amazingly harder to do.


I was really happy with the result in the end but it took a lot of takes to get it to work. We hired a wireless follow focus and shot the film with 4 shots. You can see where the edits are hidden.


Since then, I have bought a steadicam Flyer and put a bunch of practice in and finnaly about a year later I feel like I can do alright. I also watched Birdman and thought gad damn! That looked like it was a lot of incredible but hard work.


Funny thing is that ages ago I watched the Art of Steadicam video on vimeo and though, "gee whats so amazing about that shot, it looks simple enough" I now see the same shots and I'm in awe at how still and how little notice the move brings to itself because its perfectly timed and exicuted to draw you into the movie.


Anyway, the more you know, the more you are aware of how much you don't know.


Nat J


P.S. Hi every one, I'm Nat, nice to meet you :)

Edited by Nathaniel C. T. Jackson, 18 February 2015 - 09:05 PM.

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#2 Kent Wiley

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Posted 18 February 2015 - 09:54 PM

Nice work, Nat. A fun movie, and a bold decision to do it in four shots. I like it that you and the director decided to make that work.


As for the operating, what can I say but practice practice practice. I'm a newb too, and try to practice as often as possible.



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#3 Nathaniel C. T. Jackson

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Posted 19 February 2015 - 05:31 AM

Thanks Kent,

Yeah, it really is about putting in the hours :)
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