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Wedding / Event Videography Techniques
Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old July 7th, 2011, 02:32 PM   #1
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Share your favourite accessory

Do you have an accessory (or two) that most of us have probably overlooked and that you wouldn't want to shoot without?

I have two. First, the Tascam DR-2D digital recorder. I mentioned it recently in another post, but it really is a helpful device. Unlike most recorders, it records two tracks simultaneously. The first track records at whatever volume you set it for. The second track can record at -6 or -12 db lower, which is incredibly useful for recording fluctuating volumes. If the first track clips, you can bring in the quieter track.

Second, for DSLRs the LCDVF viewfinder is almost essential when shooting outdoors. This device clips onto your LCD screen, magnifies it by 2x, and blocks out stray sunlight (making it possible to set proper exposures and check focus).
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Old July 7th, 2011, 03:32 PM   #2
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Re: Share your favourite accessory

Not camera or audio related but I can't work comfortably without my Dr. Scholls shoes! Man my feet still hurt after a 10 hour day but not as much as they used to.
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Old July 7th, 2011, 06:44 PM   #3
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Re: Share your favourite accessory

I'll second Don's footwear though in my case it's a pair of very well made shoes.

But even more important than my shoes is my wife. Sorry if it sound's cheesy etc and I know you really wanted a list of kit, but having someone who knows you as well as you know yourself, knows the business as well as you do and who shares the same objectives is invaluable. And FWIW she doesn't read this forum.
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Old July 7th, 2011, 08:12 PM   #4
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Re: Share your favourite accessory

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Originally Posted by Don Bloom View Post
Not camera or audio related but I can't work comfortably without my Dr. Scholls shoes! Man my feet still hurt after a 10 hour day but not as much as they used to.
I should really try those out. Last week, I had 4 weddings back to back on Saturday and Sunday. When I tried to sleep Sunday night, my feet felt like they were burning on a grill!
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Old July 7th, 2011, 08:26 PM   #5
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Re: Share your favourite accessory

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Originally Posted by Don Bloom View Post
Not camera or audio related but I can't work comfortably without my Dr. Scholls shoes! Man my feet still hurt after a 10 hour day but not as much as they used to.
Foot support is something I'd completely forgotten about. (Though the feet always remind me after a long day...) Thanks, I'll have to try those too!
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Old July 7th, 2011, 10:13 PM   #6
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Re: Share your favourite accessory

I also second Philip regarding his wife as an accessory!!!

It gets quite lonely doing weddings solo especially towards the end of the reception and by then the photog has left and the DJ is pretty busy. Shooting as a couple must be great and if it's your partner at least you know they are not doing a dirty deal with the bridesmaid shooting her wedding without you!!

Besides...what better than to take your second shooter home with you!!!

On the hardware side I think my new custom built aluminium trolley is going to be a lifesaver...I'll be able to take all the gear to the venue in one easy trip instead of three!!!

Chris
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Old July 7th, 2011, 10:28 PM   #7
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Re: Share your favourite accessory

Yep, the feet let you know when it's time to go home. I've tried all kinds of shoes includeing and still wear nice comfy gym shoes. Currently have a pair of New Balance or something like that and they are quite comfy but these Dr. Scholls are fantastic. My 2nd pair of them the last pair went for a seanon and a half. Sometimes, like this Saturday I'll start with the gymmies for the ceremony and park then switch before the reception to the Dr. Scholls. this keeps the shoes fresh and my feet as well. Good footwear is imparative. I've had Rockports which are also great but frankly not quite as comfy as the Scholls, might have something to do with bunions. Anyway shoes to me are almost as important as haivng a camera!

As for the wife thing, my wife doesn't participat in weddings or any other type of vid work I have ever done BUT she is a great listener and watchs a lot of my edits and certainly isn't afraid to tell me truthfully if she doesn't like something. Nice to have that other set of eyes and ears.

Besides after all the years we've been together it just goes to show her that when she talks I DO listen (at least about my work) heh!
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Old July 8th, 2011, 07:25 AM   #8
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Re: Share your favourite accessory

Don't forget that comfortable shoes help your back too. Along with the good shoes, my Pelican case is a close second. It doubles as a seat to get me off my feet for a while.
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Old July 8th, 2011, 09:04 AM   #9
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Re: Share your favourite accessory

My monopod. Easily my favorite accessory. I wouldn't shoot a thing without it.
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Old July 8th, 2011, 05:14 PM   #10
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Re: Share your favourite accessory

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Originally Posted by Chris Harding View Post
On the hardware side I think my new custom built aluminium trolley is going to be a lifesaver...I'll be able to take all the gear to the venue in one easy trip instead of three!!
Chris, I'd love to see a picture of that. Sounds like a great idea!
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Old July 8th, 2011, 08:02 PM   #11
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Re: Share your favourite accessory

Hi Michael

Here you go!! My problem was that I have shoulder mount cams so that is usually an automatic trip on it's own. On the trolley the cameras slot into the top section foam cutouts and then I have used garage storage racks to make brackets for the tripods and lighting stands. The lighting case, mic case and accessory case on on the bottom section neatly.

I made this from a local system called "connect-it" which are plastic fittings in various configurations that enable you to join together aluminium 1" square tube (sorta make your own coffee table etc etc) It's quite a clever (and cheap way) of joining aluminium!!! I have fixed wheels at the back and steerable wheels on the front....!!

Works pretty good so far!!!

Chris
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Old July 12th, 2011, 11:41 AM   #12
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Re: Share your favourite accessory

I want to add another accessory: UV filters.
A member of our team dropped a $1500 lens last weekend... The UV filter was absolutely destroyed. The glass was broken; the ring was bent. The front element of the lens, however, was fine. :)
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Old July 13th, 2011, 01:13 PM   #13
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Re: Share your favourite accessory

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Originally Posted by Kevin Hill View Post
I want to add another accessory: UV filters.
A member of our team dropped a $1500 lens last weekend... The UV filter was absolutely destroyed. The glass was broken; the ring was bent. The front element of the lens, however, was fine. :)
Kevin - would you put lens hoods in the same boat? I wondered if you thought they provided similar protection, or not at good.

Chris - Love the cart. Brilliant. How long does it take to assemble on site?
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Old July 13th, 2011, 08:00 PM   #14
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Re: Share your favourite accessory

Hi Michael

Regarding the lens hood comment...I'm all for them and the cheaper the better...rather let a cheap plastic hood take the impact and crack or crumble to pieces than the lens get damaged.

The tolley doesn't need to be assembled at all..it's ready to go..all I do is toss the 3 cases on the bottom shelf, tripods and stands in the hanger rack and dump the cameras in there foam cutouts and I'm ready to roll. The trolley fits in the car easily. It's 20" square and 25" high

Chris
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Old July 13th, 2011, 09:06 PM   #15
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Re: Share your favourite accessory

Michael,

I agree with Chris re: lens hoods. You might look crazy using them indoors in a dimly lit church or reception hall, but they're an extra line of defence. We usually keep them on all our lenses, but the 24-70 wouldn't fit in our shootsac with the hood on, so we left it at home. Not doing that again!
(I've also noticed far fewer fingerprints on the lenses since I've started using them.)
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