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Dolly shot lighting - revisited

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Steve Kownacki
Dolly shot lighting - revisited
on Feb 17, 2011 at 11:59:35 am

A shout of Thanks to all the comments in this prior thread (and every thread for that matter)
http://forums.creativecow.net/thread/47/858117#858119
I have a shoot in 2 weeks and I'm pretty sure we're going to mimic Todd Terry's rig to simplify a shot that will wander through 4 long hallways. I wonder if I could fit a generator on the dolly? ;o)

Steve






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Todd Terry
Re: Dolly shot lighting - revisited
on Feb 17, 2011 at 2:41:36 pm

Hey Steve...

Well, you probably technically could... if it were a small enough generator and you could simply fit it.

We used a smallish dolly for that shot... a Cameleon. We had wanted a Fisher10 but it wasn't available on shoot day (and not really much bigger either). Our dolly carried the camera (of course), me, the lighting rig, mic boom pole, an HD monitor, and a strut sticking out front so the talent would have a frame of reference as to how far to stay from the camera. It did not carry my focus puller, as he walked alongside the dolly shot (we were trying to keep the rig as narrow as possible since extras had to walk past it in the fairly narrow). Track would have been visible in the shot so we did not use it... we used studio wheels on the bare floor.

I'm assuming this is an MOS shoot... we, on the other hand, were recording sound, so anything like a generator would have been impossible.

I'd suggest though, that putting a generator on the dolly could be problematic. Firstly, you said hallways so obviously these are interiors. You're going to get exhaust from the generator which might at minimum be visible in the shot... and at maximum might kill people. You might also get vibration from it which could translate to the camera. You'll probably also be shouting over it all day.

For us, running cable was not a big deal at all. We had a very long cable supplying AC to the dolly which powered both the lighting instrument and the HD monitor. It was bundled (just tape and tie-wraps) with a component video cable that ran back alone with the AC cable to the video village so the client could watch. The run was about 100' but there's no reason it couldn't be much longer. We had a crew member that was dedicated to the job of cable-puller, and he was following the dolly all day, constantly letting out and looping up cable. It wasn't a big deal at all.

If you have to go "wireless," I'd suggest LED instruments might be a better choice in this case, since you could power them with on-board batteries. I'm guessing you don't need a lot of "firepower" since any generator small enough to ride on your dolly is not going to be enough to spark, say, a 4K HMI... so I imagine you are talking about less-powerful instruments (we used a single 200w flo tube in a China ball... equivalent to about 1K worth of tungsten). Therefore I think LED instruments might be a better solution.

Let us know how it goes and what you do.

T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com



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Scott Sheriff
Re: Dolly shot lighting - revisited
on Feb 17, 2011 at 6:22:59 pm

Todd is on the money about not using a gen indoors. Not only CO fumes, but the posablity of a fuel spill, make this extremely risky. If you were to do this, and there was an incident, it's likely your insurance would refuse to pay claims because of gross negligence.
And yes, the impulse vibration from the engine would be hard, if not impossible to eliminate if it were riding on the same dolly. You could use a second doorway dolly as a trailer for the gen, but that would be much more cumbersome than draging an AC cord.
I would rather use a nice large gauge AC cord. Much easier to deal with.

Scott Sheriff
Director
http://www.sstdigitalmedia.com

I have a system, it has stuff in it, and stuff hooked to it. I have a camera, it can record stuff. I read the manuals, and know how to use this stuff and lots of other stuff too.
You should be suitably impressed...


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Steve Kownacki
Re: Dolly shot lighting - revisited
on Feb 18, 2011 at 12:46:13 am

Thanks for the comments... the generator was a joke. This'll be a 3-day shoot in a hospital. Funny you mention the LEDs, I was wondering about them. I'll have a decent size crew with 2 PAs so cable pulling won't be an issue. Will post pix after 3/8/11. To reduce our shoot time on lengthy dialog I'm using 2 cameras and hopefully the actors can get through long reads and all the cutaways & reverse angles will be in one shot. Blocking may be an issue on some takes though - tight hallways.

Steve






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Scott Sheriff
Re: Dolly shot lighting - revisited
on Feb 18, 2011 at 6:56:37 am

"Thanks for the comments... the generator was a joke"

Didn't see the smiley. Duh!
People have occasionally suggested some silly things on the forums...

Scott Sheriff
Director
http://www.sstdigitalmedia.com

I have a system, it has stuff in it, and stuff hooked to it. I have a camera, it can record stuff. I read the manuals, and know how to use this stuff and lots of other stuff too.
You should be suitably impressed...


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Tom Nelson
Re: Dolly shot lighting - revisited
on Mar 14, 2011 at 5:12:17 pm

Although your location would have been the most convenient place to use a generator indoors...

Tom Nelson
Videographer/Editor
Essex Television Group


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