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Responsibilities of a grip


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#1 Joe Riggs

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Posted 07 July 2009 - 09:50 AM

It will be my first time working as a grip on an upcoming shoot, what are the responsibilities of a grip?

Thank you
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#2 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 07 July 2009 - 10:25 AM

It's in your last name ;)

also pick up:

http://www.amazon.co...a/dp/0240803159

and give it a read it'll outline a lot of useful stuff. Others can answer far better than I can but that's my 2 cents on it. Good luck!
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#3 Tom Jensen

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Posted 07 July 2009 - 12:45 PM

It's in your last name ;)

also pick up:

http://www.amazon.co...a/dp/0240803159

and give it a read it'll outline a lot of useful stuff. Others can answer far better than I can but that's my 2 cents on it. Good luck!


Riggs? What does that have to do with keeping the beer cold?
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#4 Brian Dzyak

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Posted 07 July 2009 - 01:17 PM

It will be my first time working as a grip on an upcoming shoot, what are the responsibilities of a grip?

Thank you



[Excerpt from "What I Really Want to Do: On Set in Hollywood"]

What the heck is a Grip?
The entire Grip Department works in coordination with the Electric and Camera departments to create each setup. While the Dolly Grip works closely with the Camera Operator, the other Grips work with the Electricians to light and prepare the set according the to instructions of the Director of Photography. Electricians are in charge of setting and powering the lighting units themselves, and Grips have the equipment to control the light.


That, and what else?
Production Grips set C-stands, flags, and provide safe rigging for set dressing, lighting, and camera equipment. In the meantime, Rigging Grips prepare sets for shooting ahead of the main unit.


What do I really need to know?

Your job requires both the technical skills required to create a safe working environment and the creative sensibilities to help shape the light according to the DP’s wishes. Using standard hand tools, like hammers, wrenches, screwdrivers, and rope, as well as specialized production equipment like C-stands, Mafer Clamps, and “flags,” Grips safely set and rig lighting and camera equipment as well as help to move and secure set WILD WALLS. A solid knowledge of knot tying, heavy equipment rigging, and rock-climbing safety gear is invaluable.



What do I really need to have?

You mentioned normal hand tools. Is that all I need? Do I have to bring those things?
Yes, your own tool belt will hold your personal set of hand tools, like a hammer, crescent wrench, screwdrivers, Allen wrenches, razor blade, knife, and gloves. Specialized tools like C-stands and Mafer clamps come as part of the rental package.


LOTS more about the entire Grip Department and how it works in conjunction with Camera and Electric AND what your typical day will likely be like from the time you wake in the morning until you get in your car and leave at night .... see http://www.whatireallywanttodo.com and[url="http://"%20<a%20href="http://www.realfilmcareer.com""%20target="_blank">http://www.realfilmcareer.com"</a>"] http://www.realfilmcareer.com[/url] for more info.

Good luck!
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#5 Joe Riggs

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Posted 07 July 2009 - 11:38 PM

Thanks, on the student productions I have worked on, even though I was a grip, I found myself doing more electric work. I assume this is not usually the case, and grips don't normally touch lights? They are more about setting up/rigging C-stands, flags, silks to control the light I better learn some knots, as my rigging experience is limited despite my last name:)
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#6 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 08 July 2009 - 12:58 AM

Thanks, on the student productions I have worked on, even though I was a grip, I found myself doing more electric work. I assume this is not usually the case, and grips don't normally touch lights?

Depends on where you are located. In LA, there is a very sharp division of labor between grip and electric departments. Up where I am in the San Francisco Bay Area, grips will generally do both grip and electric work on non-union shows, working under the gaffer and are sometimes referred to as "swing."
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#7 Tom Jensen

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Posted 08 July 2009 - 07:04 AM

On Facebook there is a great video about Dicky Deats floating around. Can't find it on Youtube.
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#8 Matthew Parnell

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Posted 08 July 2009 - 08:04 AM

It largely depends on where you are.

Grips and Electrics have different duties depending on whether you work under the European(including Australia and New Zealand) or American System.
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#9 Darryl Richard Humber

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Posted 08 July 2009 - 01:15 PM

It will be my first time working as a grip on an upcoming shoot, what are the responsibilities of a grip?

Thank you

Number one: Be on time
You can find any number of descriptions of "Grip" on the web. About half of them are wrong. Grips are responsible (in the American system) for: Bounced and diffused light, shaping of light, specialized rigging, camera movement, safety esp. of the camera dept. The first day just watch and listen to your key. There is no way you will be able to pick up all of the (or even a few of the) skills a professional grip has on the first day, so spend it by paying attention. That is the first thing a grip learns. You must be able to hear your key grip's name when called by the DP as you are stacking sandbags and talking to a pa while also surrounded by conversation, and immediately see what is needed. Always know where your Key is and what he/she is doing. If he sets a stand, have a sandbag ready. If he is waving his hands, or a flag, have a stand ready. It's all about paying attention and anticipation and the first day you will feel totally lost but we all did. Just watch and learn. Most experienced grips will tell you that they would rather have an eager inexperienced grip working with them, than a lazy experienced grip who knows everything but has a bad attitude. Good Luck and don't forget that board stretchers come in two sizes.
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#10 Sanjay Sami

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Posted 09 July 2009 - 03:46 AM

Most experienced grips will tell you that they would rather have an eager inexperienced grip working with them, than a lazy experienced grip who knows everything but has a bad attitude.
[/quote]

I think Darryl sums it up really well. No Key Grip expects a trainee to know everything. These things will unfold as you spend more time on set. The best thing you can do is keep your ears open and your mouth shut. Impress people with your focus on set . Your key grip will very quickly be able to assess exactly how much you know. If you are focussed on set it will be your best tool for picking up knowledge,

All the best

Sanjay Sami
Key Grip
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Visual Products

Ritter Battery

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Abel Cine

Paralinx LLC

CineLab

Willys Widgets

FJS International, LLC

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Rig Wheels Passport

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Technodolly

Wooden Camera

Opal

The Slider

Metropolis Post

Aerial Filmworks

CineTape

rebotnix Technologies

Glidecam