Grip Workshop

A staff grip from ITV came in to talk to us about the work of a grip: Laying track, tracking with the correct pace, health and safety as well as the relationship between the camera department and grips.

The Pee Wee Dolly

He showed us how to use the Pee Wee Dolly which can be programmed so it can raise the camera without assistance. Some features of the Pee Wee Dolly are:

  • Hydraulic lifting arm
  • Compact and lightweight for travel and storage
  • Built-In riser adjusts without removing the camera
  • Silent operation on track.
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The Peewee Dolly

Laurence, Bradly, Hannah and I set up a small scene using the Pee Wee dolly to shoot with, here are the results:

 

The Grip Factory Munich Quad Dolly 

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Getting used to tracking on the quad dolly
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Setting up the quad dolly
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Operating and getting the pace right on the quad dolly
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Mounting the Camera on the quad dolly

We set up a simply track in shot on the subject using the Quad Dolly, I found it much more difficult keeping good composition on the Quad dolly compared to with the Pee Wee Dolly. The wheels are quite old so it did jerk quite a lot.

Although we don’t have a Pee Wee Dolly at the film school, these two tasks did show me the importance of having a nice smooth tracking motion. It’s interesting experiencing, first hand, the different flaws and benefits of using different types of kit. I was really able to appreciate that different types of kit is be beneficial for telling different types of stories. So, where a Steadicam may be less appropriate the quad dolly may be more so, or even the Steadicam mounted on to the quad dolly.

Here is a quick timelaps of Myself, Hannah and Harry setting up the Quad Dolly:

 

The GF Mini Jib Arm

We also set up the Munich Grip Factory mini Jib arm which provides very smooth, vibration free movement, in small spaces. The counterweights at the end of the arm allows for this movement and can be locked off at carious lengths. This is how to set up and balance the mini jib arm:

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