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Walk and talk on a beach. My first time in sand -any tips?


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#1 Alan G. Kelly

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Posted 26 May 2015 - 07:37 PM

Hey all,

 

I've go a walk and talk tomorrow morning on a beach. I already anticipate fighting the wind but its dialogue so I can't use gyros. Grips will have dbl nets but it's the sand I'm concerned about as I've never shot in it before. On top of that it might rain so either dry sand or compacted wet sand. I already asked for some ply and carpets to be on hand but any other tips/advice would help.

 

Thx!


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#2 Jerry Holway

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Posted 26 May 2015 - 07:43 PM

Screening under the sand makes it like walking on concrete. Pretty much any screening will do..


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#3 Victor Lazaro

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Posted 26 May 2015 - 09:48 PM

Yep. Chicken wire burried under a thin layer of sand does the trick


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#4 Janice Arthur

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Posted 26 May 2015 - 10:27 PM

Hi;

I put a furniture pad under the stand and it makes the stand more stable but more importantly keeps the stuff that falls much cleaner and much easier to find.

Keeping the arm out of the sand is my biggest worry.

I've tried the screen idea and I never end up with enough for whatever I want to spend. Fifty feet isn't much and then 100 feet becomes a pain to transport. Beach walk and talks seem to go on forever. Now I'm stuck with chicken wire for 5 yrs til I walk on a beach again.

Good luck but if you can walk close to the shoreline the sand is harder and easier to walk on maybe you won't need it?

Janice
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#5 Jess Haas SOC

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Posted 26 May 2015 - 11:07 PM

If you walk on wet sand its no problem. Soft sand sucks no matter what way you slice it.  For wind go with a fast drop time and some double nets for a wind block. Also try to keep sand out of bearings and at the end of the day put a little Corrosion-X on any metal that might rust.


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#6 Evrim KAYA

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Posted 27 May 2015 - 12:19 AM

chicken wire trick worked for me wonderfully. don't buy a very thin wire with big holes or it gets stuck between the threads on your shoe.


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#7 Jess Haas SOC

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Posted 27 May 2015 - 12:25 AM

I haven't tried it but the plastic mesh they often use at construction sites seems like it might work well and be inexpensive. Main downside I can think of is that it is usually orange. Lots of people end up barefoot on the beach so chicken wire seems a bit pokey to me.
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#8 Libor Cevelik

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Posted 27 May 2015 - 10:45 AM

I usually ends up barefoot .. because the jobs I do are very quick turn around and not much time to put any kind of support. In the sand is hard to balance your self and the sled because the send is constantly moving ..  when you step it will move .. be ware of that also with the rig your heavier so you go deeper into the sand .. 


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#9 Rick Woollard

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Posted 27 May 2015 - 11:16 AM

I'm with Libor, barefoot has always given me better balance on sand and you can walk anywhere. Use gyros, run them up to speed and unplug them just before you go which cuts the whine to manageable sound levels. They'll still spin enough to work. Obviously plug them back in as soon as you cut camera to run back up going back to number ones. If the wind is blowing directly into camera, ask the grips to join 2 windkillers into a V shape and stand in the open end, it mysteriously creates a pocket of stiller air to work in!


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#10 Alec Jarnagin SOC

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Posted 27 May 2015 - 11:17 AM

Sand sucks.  Try and pick a spot where its not as deep.  The mesh thing is great, but like Janice stays, you often don't have enough.  I have resorted to gyros even with dilaog on some occasions because the wind was so bad.  Most sound mixers are fine with this (I always tell them first).  One, it's a big open space.  Two, gyros put out a sound at a frequency that is fairly easy to minimize in the mixing.  Three) Joke with the sound guy "that its better than a sideways frame".

 

Of course fatigue is a real factor because your legs will get tired much faster fighting the sand so minimize the weight and extend the monitor and batteries (if your sled does this) out as much as possible to gain back some of that inertia (likewise build your camera accordingly - less weight but put the accessories where they increase pan inertia).  Keep the gimbal as high to the camera stage as possible to minimize roll.

 

Good luck. 

 

PS, while barefoot may feel awesome in the sand, be CARFUL!  As stated, you will sink deep… right into that hidden piece of glass, nail, etc. I'd avoid this temptation and wear good sneakers.


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#11 Brant S. Fagan SOC

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Posted 27 May 2015 - 11:18 AM

I use aluminum window screening both for walking paths but also for a stand base area.  For the stand patch, I use small 'handles' made of sash cord to allow the corners to be easily located for repositioning ourselves.  Works like a charm!


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#12 Alan G. Kelly

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Posted 30 May 2015 - 08:36 PM

So the day was a success but not without it's challenges. Sure enough the shot was right on the shoreline so the compacted sand helped a lot. Not much room for adjustment though as there was a sand ledge to left and the water to my right. The two-shot had a few stops and starts and the two young performers changed their pacing on every take. Wind was brutal, enough that the severity of it made the weather report. We started with two dbl nets and it wasn't enough so I called for solids. We nailed that one but it was the static coverage that was even tougher. Shooting with the water in the bg and trying to hold that perfect horizon with what felt like a small demon wrapping it's hand around the bottom of my post. Still, I got the shots and everyone was happy. As I jokingly told a friend of mine "I didn't fall into the water and I didn't fall into the sand so it was a victory in my book"
 
Thank you everyone for all the advice. This experience in combination with everyone's feedback makes me feel much more prepared for the next time.

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