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Boom operator question


christt
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If none of the first three are applicable (I haven't had a proper blocking or rehearsal in years, and lighting changes in takes!), just keep your eyes on what the camera is doing and practice imagining the frame by learning the width of the lenses. I can, after years of training, somewhat know where to be just out of frame if I take a glance at the lens just before action is called, and then throw additional glances during takes to see shifts. A monitor helps..

Also, have a calm approach! You are on the front lines, and probably the only non actor person right there with the actors. You need to not make them nervous...

Let them know you're on their team

...as well

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On August 18, 2016 at 8:40 AM, christt said:

I would like to know what equipment are essential for a boom operator to have on set.

Mininmally, you will want good headphones, quite shoes and clothes, set gloves, and for outdoors , a hat that you can fit your phones around. The Sound Mixer should have the rest of the gear. Of course, you can add your own accessories and comfort items that are appropriate. 

But that's just gear. You also need good health, fit conditioning , physical strength , stamina , grace, and good eyesight and hearing. You don't want to work injured.

There's a few other things you need too: like calm, the ability to focus and pay attention to details, an excellent work ethic, honesty, good social skills and good manners, clean fingernails, a good attitude at all times, and a willingness to be a team player. 

That's good to start with...

 

 

 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...
I'd say a good knowledge of the script (ask it to production people) so as to anticipate boom movements and catch all dialog perfectly

In my world, the script - at most - survives the first take. Then everything will be different, and they won't tell you.

That's where the ability to stay calm comes in handy

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The essential things a boom op needs are definitely more intangible than just "here's what you need to buy or rent". A zen attitude is definitely paramount. Not only to just do the job but to make sure your stress levels stay at a healthy amount. If you're there grinding your teeth and pulling your hair out for 12 hours a day, you'll burn out pretty fast. 

Even though it's a quite a few years old at this point, I still think The Art of Zen-Boom is a great read for new boom ops.

As far as physical items to have goes, comfortable shoes are a must. Wear black. If you start showing up in reflections or distracting the actors with your cool new day-glo orange band tee people are gonna start making your job hard or impossible pretty quickly. 

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42 minutes ago, Pete D said:

Wear black. If you start showing up in reflections or distracting the actors with your cool new day-glo orange band tee people are gonna start making your job hard or impossible pretty quickly. 

But keep a pair of tight pink shorts nearby.

STARWARS.png

 

(PS- There's some great advice in this thread.)

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20 hours ago, Pete D said:

Wear black. If you start showing up in reflections or distracting the actors with your cool new day-glo orange band tee people are gonna start making your job hard or impossible pretty quickly. 

 

19 hours ago, Jim Feeley said:

But keep a pair of tight pink shorts nearby.

 

So I am confused, do I wear tight pink shorts or tight black shorts??

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