This is a very good Q&A with a most experienced gaffer.
Q&A with Gaffer, John Higgins on thecallsheet.co.uk
Technology has transformed the film making process, what do you think has changed most in Lighting since the start of your career?
I think one of the biggest changes was the progress in electronics and the use of computers. The standard of control available now from computer controlled dimming, LED technology and moving lights is fantastic. It is an ever evolving and a very exciting aspect of what we do. Also the digital cameras available now running at 800 ASA which produce amazing images is another huge leap in technology. I think every studio film being made now has its stage lighting controlled by computer and also night exteriors rely on computerised dimming.
Is there one piece of advice you would give any young Gaffer or DoP who are the start of their career?
I would say to gain as much knowledge as possible as to what equipment is available and there are a few ways of getting this knowledge. Trade shows are fantastic in this respect as most of the equipment is under one roof it can be a day well spent. The internet is another great source of articles and the rental companies are very accommodating with demonstrations and technical advice. Another piece of advice is to avail yourself of the best crew around. The choice of crew is very important as a reflection of you. They should be encouraged to take on responsibility and feel part of the filmmaking process. Two pieces of advice!!