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Thread: A Tripod Setup for Tight Spaces

  1. #11

    Re: A Tripod Setup for Tight Spaces

    Quote Originally Posted by r.e. View Post
    This is an Induro video for its Baby Grand Tripod
    Excellent, I've experimented with the Induro and my Pentax 67 streamside here in the Smokies--the idea being that a boulder-top will get you higher than any tripod you could set up in the streambed. With a chimney finder especially it worked quite well, especially since the Induro has articulating rubber feet that give a pretty good grip, even on Thunderhead Sandstone.

    I've been wanting to try my Horseman HF in the same manner, though ideally on a substrate that would let me set a couple of tent spikes through the tripod feet to keep everything indexed while I'm faffing about with RFB's etc.

  2. #12

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    Re: A Tripod Setup for Tight Spaces

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Jones View Post
    A string tripod is better than nothing and is quite affordable: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hjqPuHFoqhE.
    Technology marches on!

    I plan to try your string tripod idea with my 4x5, only in reverse

    I have an Easyrig, which is a vest with an overhead pole. A length of thin rope hangs down from the pole. You attach the end of the rope to the top of your camera. This holds the camera up in the air in front of you. The vest distributes the weight of the camera to your hips. The camera feels weightless. Sounds like a crazy idea, but it's real and it works.

    Swedish inventor Johan Hellsten, who is quite a character, originally designed the Easyrig for cinematographers. Many of them regard it as indispensable, and credit it with lengthening their careers. Some still photographers, especially in situations where the photographer wants both hands free, also use an Easyrig. They generally use the lightweight Minimax version, which I use myself. The Minimax will support a camera weighing up to 7kg (15.5 lbs).

    One of the rails for my Arca-Swiss is only 30cm long. I'm thinking that I can attach the rope to the 3/8" receiver on the rail's bottom. The camera would be a bit shorter than the video camera shown in a couple of the photos above. It should be easy to balance. I haven't tried it yet, but I'm reasonably optimistic that I can get the camera's ground glass in a decent position for viewing. I already use my Easyrig with manual focus lenses, and I'm reasonably good at zone focusing. The perceived weightlessness of the camera will help me keep it still.

    It will be pretty cool if holding the camera upside down means that I get a right-side up image on the ground glass. I'll have to check that tomorrow

    I've attached three photos of people using an Easyrig Minimax. One of them was contributed by a man who was using his jacket as a dark cloth to shield his camera's monitor from sunlight.

    Published to YouTube earlier this month, this is a behind the scenes for a video for music supplier ArtList. It shows how an Easyrig Minimax works in the real world. The cinematographer puts his Minimax on at 1:13 and uses it constantly through to the end of the video. Note that an Easyrig is not a gimbal. If you walk with one, the footage will actually be inferior to handheld footage. This cinematographer is aware of that, and his movements are quite controlled.

    Filming a Documentary on BMPCC6K and Leica R - Behind the Scenes




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    Last edited by r.e.; 31-Jul-2021 at 13:02.

  3. #13
    Drew Bedo's Avatar
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    Re: A Tripod Setup for Tight Spaces

    Quote Originally Posted by r.e. View Post
    I've looked at that Novoflex system before. It's very interesting, although expensive. However, for the circumstances that I'm talking about it would only be useful in ground tripod configuration.

    I noticed that the Novoflex brochure shows that the system includes a riser, which can be very handy. For people who aren't familiar with risers, the first photo below shows a 150mm (6") riser on the right, and the second shows the riser in use.

    The tripod in both photos is the RRS Versa Ground Tripod discussed in the first post. The second photo shows the legs fully extended.

    Attachment 218096



    Attachment 218097

    Thanks for the cautionary heads up. The gear does indeed look to be "hayll-fer-stout" as I have heard it said here in Houston. As I said, I'll give it a gentle try out at home and hope to never need it.

    Re: The Walk Stool. I have something like that, one heavier and another much lighter from REI. I am seriously thinking of getting a "Ta-DAS Chair" as I am already walking with a cane for stability when outside.

    https://www.amazon.com/Aron-Kasei-Ch...7755385&sr=8-4
    Drew Bedo
    www.quietlightphoto.com
    http://www.artsyhome.com/author/drew-bedo




    There are only three types of mounting flanges; too big, too small and wrong thread!

  4. #14

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    Re: A Tripod Setup for Tight Spaces

    I've been meaning to try using my Easyrig with my 4x5. Inspired by Jim Jones's post above, I'm going to give it a go this week It should work, provided that I can position the ground glass for my eyes.

    Some people might understandably wonder whether an Easyrig does what it says on the tin. There's good information on the Easyrig website (link above). DP Jayme Roy made this brief introduction four years ago. Roy has worked with some demanding, well-known clients. He's shot several of Michael Moore's films.

    I should note that there are a number of Easyrig knockoffs, made by companies in Asia that are using the Easyrig name on social media without authorisation. This is worth keeping in mind when checking for info or videos about Easyrig.


  5. #15

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    Re: A Tripod Setup for Tight Spaces

    Quote Originally Posted by CreationBear View Post
    Excellent, I've experimented with the Induro and my Pentax 67 streamside here in the Smokies--the idea being that a boulder-top will get you higher than any tripod you could set up in the streambed. With a chimney finder especially it worked quite well, especially since the Induro has articulating rubber feet that give a pretty good grip, even on Thunderhead Sandstone.

    I've been wanting to try my Horseman HF in the same manner, though ideally on a substrate that would let me set a couple of tent spikes through the tripod feet to keep everything indexed while I'm faffing about with RFB's etc.
    Yes, I agree that a ground tripod is a useful bit of kit. I've also found that a 6" riser really adds to a ground tripod's versatility. That extra 6" of height can come in handy. The riser in post #5 has a bowl receiver for a fluid head or levelling base, but I would think that there are risers with a flat top and 3/8" stud.

  6. #16

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    Re: A Tripod Setup for Tight Spaces

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter De Smidt View Post
    A lot of professional movie/video equipment can be very useful for still photographers, and browsing through grip catalogues can give one a lot of ideas.
    Since starting to shoot video, I've seen some good crossover opportunities for still photography. The following thread is about using a Matthews stand and 8" wheel set to create a compact, heavy duty roller stand to support a camera outdoors. Post #12 explains how a practical problem led to use of this stand with both a ciné camera and 8x10: Interesting Alternative to a Tripod, Especially for Rough Ground

    This week, I intend to find out if my Easyrig (see posts #12 and #14) will work with my 4x5. If it does, I'll have a weightless 4x5 that can be used handheld, no tripod.

  7. #17
    Drew Bedo's Avatar
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    Re: A Tripod Setup for Tight Spaces

    So what I am seeing in these posts is that this support gear is primarily designed for high end videography rather than large format film cameras.
    Drew Bedo
    www.quietlightphoto.com
    http://www.artsyhome.com/author/drew-bedo




    There are only three types of mounting flanges; too big, too small and wrong thread!

  8. #18

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    Re: A Tripod Setup for Tight Spaces

    Quote Originally Posted by r.e. View Post
    This week, I intend to find out if my Easyrig (see posts #12 and #14) will work with my 4x5. If it does, I'll have a weightless 4x5 that can be used handheld, no tripod.
    The attached phone snap shows what I want to try with my Arca-Swiss 4x5. It shows an Easyrig line holding my Blackmagic setup (camera, lens, follow focus, external monitor) in the air. The blue cable connects to a battery on my belt that runs the camera.

    All of the weight is on my hips, making the rig weightless. Although it isn't essential, it would be nice to get the Arca-Swiss as well balanced as this horizontally. I think I may be able to accomplish that by attaching the Easyrig line to the camera's rail, mounting the camera upside down. It'll be a hoot if that means that I see a right-side up image. The Easyrig line is under tension and the rig in the photo will stay put at wherever height I place it vertically.

    I know that some still photographers, especially ones who need their hands free, are using this version of the Easyrig. The only limitation is that the camera must weigh at least 1kg (2.2 lbs). The question is whether I can get my Arca-Swiss into a position that enables me to see the ground glass. I'll find out when I try this in the next few days.

    If this works, it means that I can shoot my Arca-Swiss handheld, not normally possible with a monorail, and the camera will feel like it weighs nothing. I can move the entire rig in the photo with a finger.

    P.S: In case anyone is wondering, the reason for the orientation of the external monitor is that the rig is set up to hold the camera sideways to my body when filming. I find that this gives me good control of the camera, which is about 355mm (14") long, not including the monitor's overhang, and a good view of what's happening around me. I compose and track focus with the monitor. The camera's display is off.


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  9. #19

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    Re: A Tripod Setup for Tight Spaces

    Quote Originally Posted by r.e. View Post
    The question is whether I can get my Arca-Swiss into a position that enables me to see the ground glass... If this works, it means that I can shoot my Arca-Swiss handheld, not normally possible with a monorail, and the camera will feel like it weighs nothing.
    Now I'm excited. Just checked my Easyrig. There's a very good chance that I'll be able to position the camera for ground glass viewing. There's room from my current Easyrig configuration to raise the support pole higher above my head, and to move the support line further in front of my body. Next step, pick up the camera, which is in another building at the moment. I'll do an update when I find out whether this works.

  10. #20

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    Re: A Tripod Setup for Tight Spaces

    Quote Originally Posted by Drew Bedo View Post
    So what I am seeing in these posts is that this support gear is primarily designed for high end videography rather than large format film cameras.
    All I did was put a monopod and a ground tripod together. Monopods have been used forever with both still and motion picture cameras. Same for ground tripods. A lot of nature photographers will tell you that a ground tripod is essential kit.

    As I said myself in post #12, Johan Hellsten originally designed the Easyrig for filmmaking. It has since been adopted by still photographers. I'm pursuing the idea that an Easyrig could be used to turn an Arca-Swiss 4x5 into a handheld camera that feels as light as a feather. From my perspective, that's a lot more attractive than buying, fixing and outfitting a 60 year old Graflex. Who cares what the Easyrig was originally designed for?

    It's not like this is the first ever example of crossover. The grip equipment and continuous lights used by still photographers were invented for motion picture production.

    LED lights, which are at this point ubiquitous in filmmaking, are now making headway, despite flash, in still photography. Give it five years, and they may well be everywhere in still photography. A light that lets you dial in whatever colour temperature you want, as the latest LEDs do, and comes complete with Rosco's gel library inside, is pretty attractive.

    When was the last time that somebody designed a significant piece of gear for large format film photography
    Last edited by r.e.; 2-Aug-2021 at 02:34.

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