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Old February 28th, 2004, 07:52 PM   #1
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Arri Seeks Adventure

I have a 300w Arri that I haven't been using that much, and I think I can probably enhance its use with a softbox. I know it's probably a familiar question, but has anyone used the Photoflex Cinedome in a versatile way? I usually do tight one-to-one interviews, but am interested in lighting maybe half a room too. I guess I've been getting too used to the Tota & umbrella approach and would like a bit more creative manipulation by emphasizing the Arri's light through a softbox and perhaps grids, etc. Any thoughts?
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Old February 28th, 2004, 10:58 PM   #2
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Barry,
I'm not exactly clear on what you're asking, but I think you're asking for "101 Things Tou Van Do with a 300w Fresnel"?

Well, for starters, putting any instrument inside a soft box is somewhat akin to dating <name a gorgeous female here> with her wearing a veil. That is, inside the box they all look the same, some brighter some dimmer. I'd be far more inclined to put that Tota in a softbox where, frankly, it's most effective.

That Arri fresnel is a very flexible instrument...like the Ginsu knives! For starters, you can
  • point-and-focus directly at a subject
  • bang it at backs for hairlight
  • scrim to taste
  • bang it off of a reflector for a soft light
  • blow it through a pattern (ex: a cookie or cukuloris) for interesting light/shadow effects
And there's more!

Anything goes with a good fresnel! Just let your inhibitions go. All that matters is what the frame looks like! (Can you tell that I've just spent 4 hours wrangling 3 Arri fresnels on a shoot?)

If you get a softbox, like a Photoflex, -do- spring for a grid for it. It makes a world of difference for controlling the spray.
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Old February 28th, 2004, 11:03 PM   #3
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Ah! That's what I was wondering--how about those egg crate things? Are they the most useful? I think it's patterned effects I'm rather thinking of, ultimately.

I'd have been fascinated seeing you corral those wild Arris. :)
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Old February 28th, 2004, 11:11 PM   #4
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My reference to "grid", above, is the same as "egg crate". They are an essential accesory for a soft box.

There are pre-made "window" patterns useful to background lighting. They're pretty pricey but well made. You can, with some time and skill, make your own.
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Old February 29th, 2004, 12:13 AM   #5
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Addendum

Barry,
Before you "free your inhibitions" too much, I must offer one warning. Keep the instrument in an upright position. Certainly, you can tilt it freely. But I do not recommend hanging it straight down or pointing it straight up or turning it upside-down for any length of time. The instrument's passive heat dissipation system is actually quite sophisticated and can be defeated by such positioning, potentially leading to a dangerous and/or costly failure.
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Old February 29th, 2004, 08:50 AM   #6
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Thanks for the advice--I am not yet one to put any lights into any position other than upright--my more uninhibited impulses are actually confined to the editing table. :)

I'm very interested in the egg crate/grid possibilities for a softbox; I imagine that medium-to large softboxes offer a more pleasing canvas, so to speak, to work on?
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Old February 29th, 2004, 12:29 PM   #7
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General Rule #235: The larger the light source, the softer the light.

Practical translation: The larger the soft box the softer the light. The face area of the box represents the effective size of the light source.
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Old March 1st, 2004, 08:57 PM   #8
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If you want....

Item 8000 Chimera

24x32 bank\
40 degree grids
500 watt light that goes 1k
Avenger 10 ft stand
Carry bag

for around $530

A great deal
Drop shipped from a dealer with no tax

peace
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Old March 1st, 2004, 09:15 PM   #9
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Barry,

These guys make an interesting assortment of cucolori.
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Old March 1st, 2004, 09:24 PM   #10
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Chimera 8000 kit

I recently bought the Chimera 8000 softbox kit from B&H, and am pleased with it. Setup is fairly easy and it casts a nice light on interviewees, and the resulting video looks great. You might want to consider this softbox (with a speedring) for you Arri.
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Old March 1st, 2004, 09:29 PM   #11
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Hey bro.. I grew up in Cherry Hill

I am glad you like the kit..

drop me an email if you get a chance..


Thanks for buying Chimera and I am glad you like the kit.
I can help you get a 1k bulb if you need one.

peace
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Old March 2nd, 2004, 03:39 PM   #12
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Thanks John.....interesting textures alright.
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