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newbie on the block requires advice

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#1 freedisc

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Posted 15 May 2004 - 01:04 PM

i am considering getting a camera stabilisation unit and getting into this part of the industry.
i been eyeing the steadicam sk2 unit, the reason being that i can carry a light weight camera if i add wieghts to it.. and i can also use a middle wieght camera with it.

Now here is the question... remember i m a newbie:)
1. can i make a decent living by using a light wieght camera such as the pd150/xl1s/dvx100 and a pana dvcpro with the sk2 or should i forget the whole idea.

2 is the unit a choice that will enable me to use a wider range of cameras on it (just to start off)

3. is there a demand for steadicam operators that fly dv/mini dv??

4. what is the best bang for the buck? should i invest in the steadicam course first? or buy then practice then go for the course??

5. there is another stabiliser unit called the glidecam. Is it just as easy to get a job with a glidecam?? does the industry look at the "BRAND" of equipment?

many thanks in advance.
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#2 Charles Papert

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Posted 15 May 2004 - 02:07 PM

I think that even though various of us have been called to fly DV cameras in recent times, in general most of these class of rigs are going to folks who generally call themselves cameramen or DP's or videographers, i.e. not so much Steadicam specialists., where they have just added that capacity to their skillset and equipment package, much like a small jib.

The advantage of taking the course is that you will likely emerge having made the decisions you are pondering now. However, you will probably get more out of it if you have had the opportunity to spend some time in the rig. There's an amazing amount of information thrown at you, and it might "stick" easier if you can connect it to your experiences.

For the range of cameras you are talking about, I would recommend waiting until the Tiffen Flyer becomes available (it was just rolled out at NAB). It has the best arm of any stabilizer in its class.

Good luck!
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#3 freedisc

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Posted 16 May 2004 - 07:27 AM

thanks for your reply...

about this steadicam specialist... how do you start to be one.. i mean what is the path way?? kinda stupid question to some... butt.... i really want to know...
do we start with a light rig and upgrade or do we decide to rent one pro rig to gain the experience??

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#4 RobVanGelder


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Posted 16 May 2004 - 11:44 AM

Freedisc, I don´t know how much experience you have in this "Film or Video-business", you don´t state that in your question.

First of all, read the forum, there are many similar question like this being asked about every month, the answers are there, take some time and search on topic, like "Glidecam" or "newby", etc. Also the 2000, 2001, 2002 and 2003 forems give you a wealth of info!

Second, most of us prefer real names instead of aliasses. Makes things more clear......
(We don´t see this forum as an anonimous chatbox)

Rob van Gelder, Bangkok, Thailand
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#5 freedisc

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Posted 16 May 2004 - 04:16 PM

hi RobVanGelder..
thanks for your reply....
i have beena cameraman for a short period of time 3 years doing documentry... i have been shooting with dv/dvcpro and beta... no experiences in film as yet.
so u can say that experience as far is limited.
To put things simply... i dont want a short cut cos there is no such thing in this line... experience means alot... that is why i want to head in the right direction and not get stuck in the same routine but i need advice to head iin the right direction...

Any advice is much appreciated....

I cant seem to find a link that will enable me to change my handle to my name...
I will most probably create a new a/c
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#6 IanMcMillan


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Posted 16 May 2004 - 06:21 PM

Dear Feedisc
As Rob has suggested, have a look at the past forums. I draw your attention to one post about 4 down from yours on this page, "how to become a steadicam op?"
Lots of good advice there. Do a workshop, look at your requirements and your market and then expect a couple of years of hard work and practice to get up there. Steadicam ops are the freindliest and open people when it comes to sharing information. One of the reasons for this is, a bad operator can put a director or producer off steadicam for a long time, and thats bad for all of us.
Keep at it but don't rush,
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