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half know where to start

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#1 Ian Coad

Ian Coad

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 06:56 PM

i'm roughly half way through my graduate degree in cinematography. i'm poised in the direction of steadicam and regular operating. i should mention that i will ideally and eventually find work as a dp. i need a realistic path to get there and i think my capabilities are best directed to composition and motion as opposed to AC'ing (which i'm no good at). i have a tremendous respect for operating and steadicam in particular, i don't want to suggest that its something i'm carelessly using to piggyback towards what i really want.

i'd like to take a steadicam course this spring and have some equipment leased so that i can apply myself my last year of school - hundreds of student films get shot, its an opportunity to grant my services and learn throughout the year.

that being said. i'd like to have the capability to fly 35mm cameras.

the problem is other than tiffen's stuff, i don't have a clue as to what the good equipment is.

i just dp'd a grad film where we used a great steadicam operator. he seemed to have used equipment from all over the place. i believe his monitors and possibly batteries were from an australian fabricator.

i'm wondering is there a list of manufacturers i can start looking into?

i'd love suggestions.

thank you.

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#2 Janice Arthur

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 07:05 PM


Your questions have been asked a lot on this forum.

I have several suggestions.

1) Click on all these ads associated with the forum and learn what you can from these manufactures.

2) Read lots of this forum going back about 6 months and keep reading the current stuff and get back to us all in about 3 months. (Not being a smart alec but you've got to immerse yourself in this stuff no one can spoon feed it off the top.)

3) Take a workshop.

4) Google Steadicam manufacturers. Read and learn.

I'm really trying to be helpful but you've asked lots of really broad questions.

Maybe someone else has vital information for Ian.

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#3 Robert Starling SOC

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 07:18 PM

Hi Ian, you're covering a lot of ground in one posting and most of the answers can be found through a few solid weeks of research in the Forum archives. If you're serious about Steadicam you need to start there as well as a good Steadicam course as you mention.

You'll also find the manufacturers names and products discussed throughout the various threads; Tiffen, PRO, XCS, MK-V and others I'm probably forgetting at the moment. As important as "what to buy" you'll find a lot of "who supports their product with world class service and who doesn't". The "who doesn't" is more important than just about anything. If you read enough you'll figure out who to stay away from on your own.

Some people are all Tiffen, all PRO etc. and some have picked the best of each brand or product as it suits their needs / specialty and have built hybrid rigs. Currently I'm all Tiffen / Steadicam for rig, arm and vest and they treat me very well and are very responsive in every way. On the other hand, I've had a chance to try other products from other brands recently and some have been extremely good performers, in some cases better than what I have now.

Read the archives and enjoy the process.
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