Today we’re talking about seven stupid things that’ll save your life when doing a photo shoot. Oh yes, and it’s the truth, believe me. So let’s get going.
All right. Item number one Duck Clamps. Boy, these suckers have got some kick.
They are super sturdy, excellent clamps. I use them to pin back backdrops, drapes clothing, and similar anything so that. I also use them to hold my acoustic blanket over a massive window that I have, in my studio and you can pretty much use these regularly when you’re on set or shooting something, they will always come in handy. Secondly, you got a little hole in the top which is perfect for mounting different types of gear so you can throw a thread in there and put a friction arm or a magic arm on that and clamp it to the visor of your car. For some audio fixes, you can put it on your desk to hold a little aperture LCD light or anything like that. But these things are invaluable. They’re super small so toss a few in your bag and off to the races you go.
That’s number, one item number two.
No, this is not a fashion statement. This is item number two these are little red cable ties. Now Think Tank makes these and these are amazing for so many different reasons. If you have stuff hanging off your camera bag which you want to attach to the camera bag you can use one of these. If you’ve got a bunch of cables like this that you need to organise in your backpack whatever the pack is that you’re using. You wrap that around. You pull in the black adaptor, and there you go. You now have a perfectly organised re-useable little cable tie. These things are so handy I have dozens, and dozens of these, mostly because I lose them all the time and end up giving them away to people who are like can I have one.
But you can buy these and bags of like 12 or something like that. But they always come in handy to organise things, and that keeps me out there shooting we’re trying to get our stuff together. You don’t want to be digging through cables, you only dig in there like that like a dog in the dirt trying to find what you need. And that’s the beauty of these things super versatile so versatile. They’re amazing. That’s what they are. That’s what you need to know.
That’s item number two.
Item number three is my all time favourite Gaff Tape. You can not go wrong with this. I know some of you might think like Gaff Tape? Well, Gaff Tape can be used in so many different ways primarily taping cables down to the floor if you’re on a shoot. You’ve got boom mikes, and you’ve got big strobes, and you’ve got video lights and stuff like that. You don’t want people tripping. If you’re the one who’s in charge on set and you got people falling and hurting themselves, that’s lousy news. So tape the cables down super easy to do.
Gaff Tape doesn’t leave a residue, you can pull it right off the wire, and you’re not going to have a sticky, disgusting mess. And beyond taping cables down to the floor, you can use this stuff in several situations. I tape GoPros to the wall, I tape it to the ground, I tape them to my shoes. I use this tape to tape GoPros to railings. I pretty much use it for whatever I can possibly use it for. It’s an invaluable accessory that just always comes in handy. It’s like one of those moments where you’re like oh well just use gaff tape. Not only does it come in black but it comes in a whole host of colours so that you can use it to organise stuff. I put it on my luggage. I put it on my camera accessories; that way, I know what is what. When I’m trying to grab something out of my camera bag super fast.
So so good.
All right. Here’s a little camera hack I wrote about a while back but this these Body Caps I actually bought extra ones for this very reason I use a Body Caps nestled with a lens cap to hold all my little micro SD cards and all those funny little bits that I always lose. So these things here nestled together perfectly inside his great keyboard the micro SD cards and all the adapters and the cap goes on, and it locks in there, and I throw this into my camera bag into my closet in my car. Wherever it is, I know that that’s not going to get lost. It makes a lot of noise because it rattles. I’m never going to lose it I can always find where it is when I’m dumping stuff around, but that’s such a great way to keep those loose bits nice and tight together she never gonna misplace.
All right. Next up is a Grip Head. Now not many people may know what a Grip Head is.
Just getting into this. If you’re in the industry and you’ve done shoots before you know precisely what a Grip Head is. They are incredible little pieces of technology, so what is a Grip Head? Well, this is a Grip Head. It’s this big obnoxious weird looking piece of technology that you might think yourself that doesn’t look like fun.
However, this slides on top of your light stand, and then you lock it down make sure it’s nice and tight and then it’s got all these different mounting options on the side so you can stick a boom mike in it. You can hold flags in it so you can block off the light. You can actually keep on screwing these and then just use that open area as like teeth or a clamp in and of itself and stick foam core in there or stick other things in there to bounce light. Give yourself some fill that kind of thing instead of having someone pulled it or just trying to balance it or leave it against something you know that you’re always going to have a mounting option for audio for flags for bounce cards for foam core whatever it is. Grip Heads the not the most exciting thing, but oh man are they handy.
All right. Next up is an Acoustic Blanket. Now I use this so much I didn’t think that I would, but I do. If you’ve got a really loud light that’s making a lot of noise on set maybe it’s humming, You can throw an Acoustic Blanket over, and it’s going to dampen that sound immediately if you’re shooting and there’s an exit sign. Maybe there’s some light pouring through a door somewhere you can clip this blanket up and block out all of that light you can use the clamps to do that, or you can tape down the extra size so that no light bleeds through. Now on top of that, it’s an Acoustic Blanket, so it’s meant to dampen sounds of you need to record some audio using a recorder. You can literally throw this over your head like your dressing up for Halloween like you’re a ghost.
And now that you’re under the Acoustic Blanket you can start recording your audio and it’s going to sound super crisp before warned that if someone finds you doing this and you’re hiding under an Acoustic Blanket recording audio by yourself in your bedroom. It’s a little weird, but it does the trick so well.
Lastly, I actually use these sometimes to cover all of my equipment in the back of a truck in the back of a car in your trunk. If you’ve got stuff that you don’t want to be seen through the back window is just throw the blanket over everything, and it’s completely black. It keeps everything safe keeps the sun off of it. So an acoustic blanket has so many uses that I think you guys are going to really love and find that well how do they live with that.
And the last thing, Friction Arms. I love these things and I’ve talked about them before. With Friction Arms you can do so much. Friction arms they have these adjustable clamps you clamp it onto pretty much anything and it gives you a mounting option you can mount monitors, you can mountain recorders, you can install cameras, you can attach a GoPro you can literally mount anything with a friction arm and pretty much clamp that friction arm anywhere.
So I have so many of these, and a host of different sizes have been saying that a lot today a host I’ve got these and a mix of different sizes just because different sizes hold various weight equipment. So one will keep the camera, one might only contain a monitor. It’s great to have a whole bunch of these because you can just configure them like Lego. The more equipment, the more grip equipment you start acquiring your start actually being able to come up with these new MacGyver ways to jerry-rig stuff on to different things, and you just make things work for you when you have all of these tools that are stupid things that you would typically overlook. They end up helping you, and you end up loving them, and then you end up being like I can’t live without them. So those are my Seven stupid things that you can’t live without that will save your life on a shoot.
I hope you guys enjoyed the article, till next time.