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Old January 21st, 2011, 06:45 PM   #1
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Flying, suspended mid air via harness

I need to employ a technique this week that will lend a realistic view of a person (a child) flying / hovering mid-air. I'm thinking I will need a harness with a rope thrown over something else to secure. Then the harness and rope can be composited out in post (using a 2nd empty shot of the same scene for reference).

Has anyone got any tips on how to do this safetly? How is this procedure best performed? Besides the harness, what rig is used to hoist the actor in the air? I can't seem to find any solutions online.

He doesn't need to be very high off the ground, perhaps 6 feet. He wouldn't be quite upside-down as such, rather semi-horizontal.

Thanks for any help on this...
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Old January 21st, 2011, 07:24 PM   #2
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This is not the sort of thing you want to cobble together from hardware store items. A flying harness has to be built properly so that it doesn't put pressure on the wrong places, as common sense would indicate. In particular, a child might not be attuned to sensing an issue until it is too late.

Many theatrical productions have employed flying rigs (think Peter Pan etc) so I would start with them in your area.

Please proceed with caution and make sure you have experts involved.
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Old January 22nd, 2011, 02:24 AM   #3
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Cheers, Charles - That's a good idea starting with the theatres. I was thinking of talking to rock climbers / mountaineers already.

I do plan to have experts involved in this part, it's one area that shouldn't be scrimped on, I agree.
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Old January 23rd, 2011, 01:07 AM   #4
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How about green screen?

Kris,

I think I would try green screen before attempting to lift someone with a crane.
Lay out a green cloth on the floor, have the actor lie in the middle of the cloth, and shoot from on top of a ladder or balcony. If the actor is lying on his back, he will be able to move both arms and legs, as if weightless.

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Old January 23rd, 2011, 04:54 AM   #5
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Kris,

As mentioned, be very careful with this. There is a condition known as 'Toxic shock' that can develop if blood flow is cut off to either the arms or legs, the legs being more of an issue than the arms. It can kill and works thus, If the blood is allowed to stagnate in the e.g. legs, because of pressure applied to the groin area, when the "talent" is lowered and stands, the pooled blood, now devoid of oxygen and full of toxins, is pumped through the system and up to the brain, the consequences are dire....read death....there is a special technique carried out over a period of time that allows control of this. This is a common occurrence in industrial fall from height but caught in a harness victims. Once again, be careful, get people in who know what they're doing.

Al
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Old January 25th, 2011, 05:16 PM   #6
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Google 'zip line' and you should find plenty of videos and equipment providers.

Edit: missed the hover part, but maybe some of the hardware might be useful.

Last edited by Jim Michael; January 25th, 2011 at 05:33 PM. Reason: can't read
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