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Grip Electric vs Camera Dept: Becoming a DP


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#1 Jason Anderson

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Posted 21 May 2008 - 12:56 PM

My teacher here in Colorado Ric Waite ASC told our class that camera dept is the way to go if you are seeking to become a DP. How do you feel about this statement? I love doing both, though I tend to more often take the AC jobs over the Grip, Electric, Gaffer jobs.
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#2 John Sprung

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Posted 21 May 2008 - 03:23 PM

In your early non-union days, do both. In fact, work any department where you can get a reasonable job. The experience is good to have. Lean more towards camera, and when you go union, make it 600. From then on, of course, you're in the right department and union.




-- J.S.
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#3 Jason Anderson

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Posted 26 May 2008 - 07:52 AM

thanks for the info
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#4 Walter Graff

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Posted 26 May 2008 - 08:08 AM

At this point you need to do whatever you can. Don't worry about departments now. Worry about learning how the real world process works. Later you can concentrate on a depatment that works for you.
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#5 erickarl

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Posted 02 June 2008 - 09:17 AM

As a DP, I would agree with that statement. The only advantage to doing other depts (besides learning) is that you will meet more DPs on more sets and be able to talk your way into interviews for AC jobs. Once a DP has an AC, he sticks with them so it's often hard to break in.
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#6 Sam Kim

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Posted 02 June 2008 - 02:40 PM

different strokes for different folks.
i prefer the lighting side of things for my path but i know a lot of people who follow the camera side.
i've worked with and met some amazing dps who knew exactly what light they needed, how far and with what kind of dif to get the look he wanted because he was a great gaffer too.
i've also worked with dps who didn't know sqwat about lighting but made it sound like they did because they're the DP but wasn't able to tell you if a 500Amp Gene was considered big or small. This one in particular set up 5 floppies while i was going 10-1 and i reset them all because he tried setting up one once only to have it fall on somebody else. small shoot (sometimes you have to do your own damn work!)
Either way you're going to have to learn about camera and either way a smart person is not one who know EVERYTHING it's one who knows where to get the info. I don't plan on being the mr know it all but I plan on working with guys who know a lot and can fill in holes for me when I'm a full fledged DP.
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Paralinx LLC

Rig Wheels Passport

Technodolly

Metropolis Post

Glidecam

Visual Products

Broadcast Solutions Inc

FJS International, LLC

Opal

The Slider

CineTape

Abel Cine

CineLab

Wooden Camera

Tai Audio

Aerial Filmworks

Willys Widgets