Friday, April 21, 2017

That's A Wrap on the Marvel Picture that I'm Not Sure I can Name!

   As Azurgrip said, the NDA is a mighty frightening thing. Therefore I will just say this. It was a movie about a cat with big claws in an African country. We shot for for months and used a variety of camera support devices including: The Chapman Hustler 4 dolly, my favorite. This machine never fails to deliver. It's just a well made dolly. The arm is superior and it tracks well. The Super Peewee 3; I don't even worry about this one. It does what it should. From my friends at Cinemoves, the Supertechno 50', the and the Moviebird 35'/45'. As well as their new detachable Movee. All of these devices performed well under the most trying of conditions. We shot in the water, the heat, and the cold and they all came through. Of course there were some glitches as there always are, but the guys worked them out. Thanks to my old friend and pickle guy Mike Howell, his tech, Henry, and, as always, head tech Kenny Rivenbark. The Oculus performed spectacularly and we achieved some fantastic shots. Thanks everyone from Chapman and Cinemoves! I could not do my job without you.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

You, me and the N.D.A..

Just a quick update. It's great to hear, through the grapevine and to see the daily people joining the Facebook page that people are reading and still finding the site worthwhile. Please don't hesitate to contact us with questions or possible topics of discussion.

I know in my case, the last bunch of shows have had me under Non Disclosure Agreements which forbid me from taking photos and talking about the shows which puts a real downer on any topics which may come up on set.

We're still here and want to hear from you.

Can't wait to see / hear what comes out of the J.L. Fisher and Chapman open houses in the coming months.

Friday, March 03, 2017

JL Fisher Open House 2017

  It's that time of year again. I push this event every year because I am such a big fan. It's the Dolly Grip's day to be center stage and we don't get many. Frank at Fisher sent me a flyer to post but I can't seem to open it so I'll just give you the details:


JL Fisher Open House
Saturday May 20, 2017
9am to 4pm
1000 West Isabel St
Burbank, Ca 91506

There will be reps and discussions from the SOC, IA, and ASC and you don't want to miss it.

Hope to see you there!

Thursday, February 09, 2017

Reposts

  After ten years of operating this font of information on an obscure craft that half the world sees but few understand, and the fact that I have a child who refuses to take up less than every minute of time my beautiful wife or  I have to give, I have decided to offer some reposts of past columns. Don't be upset. I generally say the same thing over and over anyway. And I'm ususally under the influence anyway.I will accompany these reposts with pithy drunken comments and asides. They will be hilarious or unintellegiable, depending on what is going on. My spell check is telling me that I have misspelled "Unintelligeable." I honestly don't care. Actually it's driving me crazy but I refuse to give in to the ...... screw it. You know what I mean. Unintelligeable. Uninteligeable. Unknowable.

Shut it.

  A recent commenter mentioned how he is an up and coming dolly grip who often loses out to guys who say they are an "awesome dolly grip." Heh. I told him I've always fallen back on the old axiom that if you have to tell everyone how good you are, you probably aren't that good. Guys, if you ask me, I'll tell you, I'm not that good. And most dolly grips I know will tell you the same thing. What keeps us going is our desire to be better. I've spent years studying camera movement. I watch the work of dolly grips I admire. As a matter of fact, I told my camera operator (one of the most respected in the world) today that I try to model myself after another Dolly Grip I know whom I consider to be one of the best.. Anyone who has to tell you that they are the best, or awesome probably isn't  very good. Let your work and your resume speak for itself. The best Dolly Grips I know (and I literally know some of the best in the world) tell me how insecure they are. And that insecurity drives them to go the extra mile. They work that much harder because they honestly don't think they're that great, I'm talking about world-class, A-listers here. If I was a Key Grip or an operator and someone told me they were an "awesome dolly grip" I would move on. If you're good, you don't have to tell anyone. They know. So shut it.

I raise one for all the awesome Dolly Grips,
D

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Look out! Here comes 2017!


Thankfully we’re just days away from putting 2016 behind us. I think we’re all ready to move on, however, thanks to Facebook and  Google, a lot of people have gone back and re-read a lot of our posts here. I know that the posting has come to a stand still thanks to being too tired from work, NDAs and general unoriginality on our part but we’d be thrilled to revisit any topic. If you’re new here, please don’t hesitate to broach any topic new or old. Things change. Either new technology or thanks to conversations started we may have changed our minds or other’s minds. This is a constantly evolving job - hence why you can’t replace us with robots yet. We would like to stay in the forefront of our jobs and that requires discussion, either with other dolly grips or even camera operators.

Let us help you help us. If there’s a topic that you’d like to know more about please let us know either through the comments here, or on the Facebook page.

Wishing everyone a Happy New Year and a knowledge prosperous 2017!

Friday, December 23, 2016

Twas the night before wrap and all the through the set...


Now Fisher, now Libra, now Scorpio and Techno!
On Hybrid, on Hustler, on PeeWee and Slider!


Okay, I know… a lame attempt. That’s why there are writers and I’m not one of them.

From the team here at Dollygrippery, we wish all our new friends and old, the very best for the holidays. May you and yours be happy and healthy! (get better D!) and enjoy a prosperous 2017!

Friday, December 09, 2016

Update!

  Hi guys! I'm still here. The demands of a six-year-old and the endless hampster wheel of work and family have unfortunately cut into my posting time. However, I was sitting here drinking a whiskey and watching King of Queens and somehow found the will to check in. I'm presently doing "B" camera on a huge studio extravaganza. After that, I get two weeks off and start as "A" camera on another huge studio extravaganza. I fully expect weeks of life on a green or blue stage, punctuated by days or nights of freezing cold in some godforsaken forest. Til then, I'll have another drink and listen to some 80's music.
  I've been getting a lot of questions about the Stabileye. For the uninitiated, the Stabileye is a remote stabilized head, much like the Moviee. I did a big Marvel picture on it earlier this year. The big difference is that the Stabileye, designed by David Freeth, is specifically intended for dolly grips to move. We shot probably 85% of the movie on it (the rest being Technocrane). I actually enjoyed it. You, as a dolly grip, are actually closer to being an operator. You manually are more free to move the camera to where it needs to be to make the shot. Decisions can be made more quickly and creatively than when chained to a dolly or crane. The danger is the length of takes, especially in digital. After about ten minutes, you just can't effectively hold it any more. I wouldn't do it again without a significant bump in the rate. Anyway, this is the way the business is going. Please email me with any detailed questions. I'm out.
d


PS: By the way, I am really good on it. My rate is now 60.00 an hour. Hit me up! (I won't hold my breath)