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#1 montaser shakeeb

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 07:03 AM

(sorry for my bad english )
hi all , am montaser abo saada 1st AC , working in the commercial and music clip bussins , i work in egypt and am orginally from syria and so someone offerd me a job shooting a TV series being a steadicam op , but am not have being training on steadicam and i have no money to do a workshop , someone tried to help me (he is a good cinematographer and steadicam op ) bye giving me all the tools ( the steadicam and the camera ) and i just have to pay for the grip 300$ , and and he is going to learn me just for on day .
so i studied alot of books about the steadicam , and i wached most of beauty shots mad by the steadicam ( movies and music clips ) and to be honest i feel like i have a basic and good understanding about the steadicam .
i want's everybody to give me advice ..
(if i made this ill be the first steadicam op in syria and the 6th in egypt ) can u bulieve this ???
cheers
montaser
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#2 Dan Coplan

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 08:13 AM

Experience, experience, experience. From what you're saying, this would be similar to saying you've read a lot of books on how to play the piano, watched a bunch of videos, and listened to scores of music and now you expect to get on a stage and put on a performance. Sure, you can plunk the keys with your fingers, but what's it gonna sound like?

It's all about time in the rig and there's absolutely no substitution for that.

Good luck.

Dan
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#3 montaser shakeeb

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 08:38 AM

thank u dan ....
i want ur advice about what i should do this time b4 the stage ? i mean how can i practice at home without a steadicam ?
and how about buying a steadicam that i can shoot HD and film (especialy arri 435 and 535 ) ?
how much i have to pay for all tools ?
thank u sooo much dan ...
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#4 Peter Hoare

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Posted 20 March 2008 - 06:09 PM

The same thing happened to me, I had my rig and I practice whenever I can. I cant keep my rig set up and ready to go, so practicing meant putting it together and putting it away again, so I cant do it as much as I like.

About a month after I started, I got a phone call from a fairly low budget film (bout half mil) that said they were interested in getting me to do some stuff for them. They were particularly keen to use me, as I owned the same 35mm adapter they were using, so I was useful in more than one way. The first time I spoke to the director, producer and DOPs I stressed, time and time again, that I was new to this, and it was straight lines only, no stairs, only very gentle corners, no funny stuff just simple lines. They said OK.

I got there on the first day and having mentioned this a few more times, the director asked me what he wanted. I was slightly out of my comfort zone, but I gave it a go. We were shooting on location in a fairly small flat. The camera was big and clumsy, big matte-box, weighed a fair amount, there were 30 people in the flat, and we were using two 2k Blondes and there was a massive soft box behind me that was slowly setting fire to my head. The shot was basically moving around the actors (a couple talking) It was just some wallpaper to cut to as a segway between shots, and as an acceptable way of crossing the line. I told them I wasnt really up to this but i did it anyway and the director loved it, to my surprise. I saw the rushes and I was quite pleased with myself.

The next day, we were on a massive wasteland in coventry, doing a bit of walkie-talkie. This was much more my kind of thing, and the director was ecstatic, after watching the rushes, the horizon and framing was consistent and my starts and stops were actualy not bad. I had to do a switch from missionary to reverse missionary, and that was pretty transparent.

By this time the director loved me, he was working in more and more shots for me to do, and since the first two days, I have done rotating round the talent in a big circle, down corridors and round corners, some studio stuff, and I even did some running down an alley way. Im half way through the film, got another two weeks to do.


The whole point of saying all that is basically to say make sure the producers or whoever you are dealing with knows full well that you are new to it and you can only do basic stuff. Do it for free, this way theres no pressure, if you arn't ready and it looks shite, you haven't ripped them off.

Im a beginner, I have still only had the rig afew months, my skills are basic, ive done no official training, I have just taken words of advice, watched the SK video and had a few minuets of expert tips from Robin at Tiffen and Mike Scott. Despite that, I have through a combination of luck and practice landed this film gig which is fantastic experience, and I can see the improvements already with my shots.

Hope this helps you,

Pete.
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Posted Image

Edited by Peter Hoare, 20 March 2008 - 06:11 PM.

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#5 Afton Grant

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Posted 20 March 2008 - 07:22 PM

The whole point of saying all that is basically to say make sure the producers or whoever you are dealing with knows full well that you are new to it and you can only do basic stuff. Do it for free, this way theres no pressure, if you arn't ready and it looks shite, you haven't ripped them off.


While most of us have done freebies at one point in our careers, a free day should never, ever be volunteered. Let the production give their spiel, at the end of which may or may not result in them saying they can't pay. Then you can decide whether or not it's something you want to do. Chances are decent that even the smallest of productions has at least some money to pay, but you'll never know if you volunteer to do it for free. Peter, a .5 million picture, whether it be dollars or pounds, should certainly be able to pay everyone on set.

Also, be careful about being forthcoming with your inabilities. Accentuate the positive, as they say. Just don't lie in your interview, resume or your demo reel, and let the producer/director/dp will determine whether or not you can do what they want. If you're truly not confident you can deliver reasonable work, it might be good to practice a bit more before putting yourself out there.

Regarding pressure - there will ALWAYS be pressure. I'd say it only increases as you progress to bigger projects. Your confidence will grow so you'll be able to deal with it better with each project you do.
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#6 montaser shakeeb

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Posted 22 March 2008 - 11:15 AM

The same thing happened to me, I had my rig and I practice whenever I can. I cant keep my rig set up and ready to go, so practicing meant putting it together and putting it away again, so I cant do it as much as I like.

About a month after I started, I got a phone call from a fairly low budget film (bout half mil) that said they were interested in getting me to do some stuff for them. They were particularly keen to use me, as I owned the same 35mm adapter they were using, so I was useful in more than one way. The first time I spoke to the director, producer and DOPs I stressed, time and time again, that I was new to this, and it was straight lines only, no stairs, only very gentle corners, no funny stuff just simple lines. They said OK.

I got there on the first day and having mentioned this a few more times, the director asked me what he wanted. I was slightly out of my comfort zone, but I gave it a go. We were shooting on location in a fairly small flat. The camera was big and clumsy, big matte-box, weighed a fair amount, there were 30 people in the flat, and we were using two 2k Blondes and there was a massive soft box behind me that was slowly setting fire to my head. The shot was basically moving around the actors (a couple talking) It was just some wallpaper to cut to as a segway between shots, and as an acceptable way of crossing the line. I told them I wasnt really up to this but i did it anyway and the director loved it, to my surprise. I saw the rushes and I was quite pleased with myself.

The next day, we were on a massive wasteland in coventry, doing a bit of walkie-talkie. This was much more my kind of thing, and the director was ecstatic, after watching the rushes, the horizon and framing was consistent and my starts and stops were actualy not bad. I had to do a switch from missionary to reverse missionary, and that was pretty transparent.

By this time the director loved me, he was working in more and more shots for me to do, and since the first two days, I have done rotating round the talent in a big circle, down corridors and round corners, some studio stuff, and I even did some running down an alley way. Im half way through the film, got another two weeks to do.


The whole point of saying all that is basically to say make sure the producers or whoever you are dealing with knows full well that you are new to it and you can only do basic stuff. Do it for free, this way theres no pressure, if you arn't ready and it looks shite, you haven't ripped them off.

Im a beginner, I have still only had the rig afew months, my skills are basic, ive done no official training, I have just taken words of advice, watched the SK video and had a few minuets of expert tips from Robin at Tiffen and Mike Scott. Despite that, I have through a combination of luck and practice landed this film gig which is fantastic experience, and I can see the improvements already with my shots.

Hope this helps you,

Pete.
Posted Image
Posted Image



THX peter , i wish luck for u and afton and me . and thanks for advice
and am inviting u and afton to syria to my farm we can hunt and enjoy the nature , its all on me
am looking forward to make friendships with ppl nice like u r ,
tell me boys how the work right now ? i wish its good to everybody ..
cheers
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