Friday, October 20, 2006

tales of a 2nd a.c.

i think that if i know i'm only on a job where i have to get up at 5:something in the a. for a couple of days, i don't mind it as much.

today was day 4 of 4 on series of d.i. spots i've been working on with the Church. we're shooting up in salt lake and much of the crew lives in that general direction, leaving just me and our b-camera operator with the equipment van at the provo studio.
on some adoption commercials last year i got comfortable just driving this big 12-passenger van up, down, and around i-15. *i've never been much for big cars--i drive a sweet little honda; before that, my bronco II ['the max'] was rather stumpy and fit into just about anywhere. and in high school, i was rather tall and dating a rather short girl; she loved big station wagons, and my dream car has always been a vw bug. pickup trucks and my dad's lumina ['the executor'] are nightmares* now we are not only driving the big ol' van [with not a lot in it], but towing behind us an even bigger ol' camera trailer, which is heartily packed.

i let the other guy drive for the first day and a half, then realized that, a) i would never learn to tow a trailer if i didn't ever tow a trailer [makes sense] and i would like to be able to do that, and b) while it isn't in any way technically part of the job description, this is guy older and has driven this beast far too many times, and it would make me a better camera assistant if i would drive to and from everyday so he could get some rest. oh, and c) driving gives me more psychological control over the radio, and i like the 101.9 morning show.

on the way home that first day with me at the wheel, he gave me some pointers on how not cause major accidents, rode rage, and how to be polite, and i was quite grateful for that. i was even more grateful that the traffic seemed to thin out at crucial junctures, namely anywhere that i had to turn this elongated monstrosity.
and while i can now rule this beast like my own personal falcor, determining whether a car is far enough behind me that i can safely change lanes still gives me a headache.

we've been in a different place each day: an old elementary school in sugarhouse, a farm [that was really, really cold in the morning {and never, ever eat two mcgriddles- it's a horrible feeling}], the salt lake city library [very cool place], and a d.i. furniture factory [carrying two cameras through there: interesting].

the first day was really a lot of fun, as it seemed like just about everybody i knew was on the crew [we had two large 18K hmi lights on cranes to shine into the school gym, which necessitates more grips and electrics] and having a loader is a nice change i am still getting used to. slowly but surely, i am climbing the ladder.... she's pretty cool and turned out to be a lot more 'green' than i originally thought, and even flashed her first roll on day three at the library--loaders come in two ways: those who have flashed a roll, and those who will flash a roll.
our b-camera [the one i'm working with] came up with some lens and focus issues at the end of the day, and the closest camera we could get for the next morning was byu's.
it was interesting seeing that trusty camera that i had shot so many projects with once again; after two years of using professional equipment, the cougar sr-2 looks pretty beat up. i was kind of expecting that.

a fair amount of day 2 was spent freezing in the morning on that cold, cold farm, talking with one of the electric guys about how cool the wikipedia is.
b-camera broke off to go do some 'quick' 2nd unit shots and finish up the day. instead, we waited for about an hour, i got sick and had to toss aside any embarassment and ask the location lady for a ride to the closest gas station, and we finished our day running across the field to get a shot of the sunset.
a day in the life.....

the salt lake library is really cool and was a fun day, except for that time when we were shooting an interview and i was kneeling next to the 2nd director [there were two directors, which was kind of weird] and my phone [which was turned to 'silent'] suddenly took a picture of the inside of my pants and made the shutter-click sound. it did it again when i moved to take it out and turn it off. i highly doubt it caused any sound issues, but he glared at me and i felt like a lamer.
we got breakfast burritos this morning, which were much better than the mcgriddles.
the library is covered in banners delcaring 'library of the year', and i wondered if it was for the city, state, or union; it's a national award, i found out. as we were wrapping for the day, there was a nice book sale going on, and i picked up nice hardcover copies of 'the da vinci code' and 'dune' for $5. can't be that with a stick. i was also eyeing similar copies of 'Jesus the Christ' and president hinckley's biography, but they were both taken before i could get to them. blast.

friday was just another day, keeping the cameras free from the dust of a furniture factory, getting high off the fumes and wearing face masks. it got a little long near the end, but it's always nice to be working with good people.
it's getting fun driving that beast of a van and trailer.

and paychecks. it's really nice to not have to worry about that.


Em said...

It's got to be nice when your day at work is interesting enough to compose a blog post about it..... what does that fee like anyway?

-->jeff * said...

it's a reminder that there is an upside to the sporatic lifestyle of inconsistant paychecks and no company benefits.

and if you will remind that to whatever nice young lady i ask to join me on the road of life, i will be grateful. ; )