Saturday, January 28, 2012


  Once again I find myself in a hotel room somewhere midway across the country. My Dad and I are driving my two cars to Atlanta where we will meet my family and all our crap. Then, I start a show the following Monday (B camera again, but it pays and this move is cleaning me out). I turned down a ginormous show because I just couldn't swing it with the move so I'm taking whatever comes and grateful to have it. In other news, a tornado has once again struck my hometown and they are once again digging out. See my thoughts on that here.
   Our friend Sanjay is in LA at Chapman this week and once again I missed him by a day. Every time he shows up I leave. Sorry Sanjay, tell Shafi hi for me. The way Sanjay works, I'm sure he'll end up taking a Hydrascope back to India with him.
   I did some fun TV second unit and fill -in work over the last two weeks on three different shows, including a Hydrascope on a Titan. I truly believe I could make a decent living working four days a week doing second units for television. I just wouldn'y enjoy it much and my heart wouldn't be in it.  That's all I have for this disjointed excuse for a post. I drove for ten hours today and I'm wiped.

Friday, January 20, 2012

dollygrippery.???? and the SOC Awards

  As most of you know, my procrastination caused me to lose my precious domain name to some woman who writes fairly unintelligible articles. I plan to re- register under a .net or maybe a .tv. As it is now, I'm in the middle of a logistical nightmare with moving etc. Until then, please direct anyone you know to be a reader to this address. Posts may be slim for a while unless Azurgrip finds time under his own busy schedule to put up something. I am taking any guest posts you may send me to keep the thing interesting. If you are an experienced dolly grip, or a newcomer with a fresh perspective, please don't be shy about emailing me something. I may punch it up a bit but the credit will be all yours if you wish.  We're not going anywhere, and have big plans for the future. We're just on a little hiatus after almost five years of continuous activity. I've met some great people and colleagues in the creation of our community and I'm grateful to all of you for your support. I can't tell you how great it has been to meet all of you and share our common experiences.

I would like to congratulate a couple of good friends. Two camera operators I work with are up for the SOC Operator of the Year Awards: Simon Jayes, my good friend and co-worker on True Blood, and Will Arnot, whom I did a feature with a couple of years ago.. Simon is a truly gifted camera operator and it has been my pleasure to be his Dolly Grip for many years now on three tv series and more shots than I can count (both kinds). With Simon, it's more fun than work.Will Arnot,  is up in the feature category for The Help. Will is a fantastic operator and a truly great person. I look forward to working with him again. Will makes it look easy. Andy Crawford was his Dolly Grip on the picture and Will would be the first one to give him credit where it's due. Congratulations gentlemen. It has been an honor to work with both of you and call you both friend. Good luck!

Until next time, stay safe and keep it on the track.

Sunday, January 01, 2012

This and That

  I'm actually low on ideas for technical posts right now. Over the last four years we've covered just about every imaginable topic you could think of in the field of dollygrippery. The well is dry. Please email me or comment with any ideas you may have or topics you would like to see covered.
   One thing about this business that I've always appreciated is the universality of it. By this I mean that yuou bring a crew of hundreds of people together, many of whom have never met, and because of the traditions, training, and work ethic among most of them the whole thing can function like a machine with very few hiccups. Making a movie is an unbelievable logistical nightmare. That a group of strangers can meet, pull it off, and part as mostly friends amazes me every time it happens. This is true now more than ever as the film business finds itself breaking out of the traditional "shot in LA or New York" mold and is cranking  up in places like Shreveport and Detroit.  As I was loading out dollies for the last show in Atlanta, I attempted to strike up a conversation with an out of town dolly grip who was checking in a dolly behind mine. I could tell immediately that he thought of me as "just another local with a Southern accent who thinks he's a dolly grip."  He shrugged me off and went his way and I'm sure did a great job, but the attitude gave me the idea to just say this: there are good techs everywhere, as well as subpar ones. It's a new business and if you're fortunate enough to be a guest in someone else's town, at least be gracious. That's all I'm going to say about that. Jackass.
   I've got a new blogsite up at It's  mainly just a place to practice and polish up my writing a little. It was inspired by a blog called 365 Jobs, as well as Michael Taylor's blog. Both are so well thought out and beautifully written that they made me want to have a place to work on my skills a little and see what else I could write about. Check it out.
   Like I said before, give me some ideas. I haven't been behind an A camera dolly in five months, so I need a little shove to know which way to go. Maybe I'll get in touch with Larry the Boom Guy. He's always got great ideas for posts. I got nothing but time so help me out.