Kitplus - The TV-Bay Magazine

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The list of practical skills is long, too long to list fully in this article, but to highlight some we must start with Ohms Law. Everyone dealing with electrical equipment whether it is run on DC batteries, AC mains etc. must be aware of the relationship between voltage, current and power, (that’s Volts, Amps & Watts) and be able to make calculations on consumption, fuse ratings, cable sizes, plug types, not to mention consideration for Health & Safety. TV Studios tend to be fairly safe environments as far as electrical safety is concerned, with Qualified Electrician on hand, but those working on Docs & Reality shoots often find themselves in business premises and private homes, which have potentially mtf relatively unsafe electrical installations, and are more likely to be compromised with overloading. Time was when a PSC crew (and News Crews) had an electrician allocated to the shoot to take care of these matters, particularly cross- phase safety in larger premises. Now the Cameraman has to supply, maintain, rig and operate his own lighting equipment, requiring the skills and qualifications of a lighting electrician. Time management (turning up on time), Public Liability Insurance Cable husbandry (how to coil a cable) is rarely taught, Standard Shot sizes (WS, MS, MCU, BCU etc.) Talkback/Walkie-Talkie discipline. How to keep focus; pick the right pivot points when moving the camera etc. etc. Hand held camerawork vs tripod consideration is often influenced by budget and time restrictions. Some handheld camerawork is good in so far as the shot is steady and appropriately framed, but being handheld in itself can be inappropriate to the subject matter being filmed; more of that in Part 2. Much handheld work is not steady, sometimes simply because the camera operator has not been taught how to do it. But more worryingly the cameraman (possibly encouraged by the director – if there is one) seems to think they are being clever or even artistic by wobbling the camera or constantly moving around with the camera in a fidgety way, even some studio directors seem to need to keep the wide-shot moving on a studio interview without due regard on the effect it may be having on the viewers experience and ability to concentrate on the subject matter, it is at best an attempt to make the programme more visually interesting, but more often it is done in the context of following fashion. Sadly they have often failed to appreciate that for the viewer the ‘interest’, which needs preserving or highlighting, is not the pictures, but the content. The constantly moving shot, be it handheld or on tracks serves to divert the interest from the content to the pictures. This failure is largely down to lack of training or awareness of the need to consider the viewer’s experience. More on that in Part 2 MTF Services Ltd. Come and see us on Stand N30 KITPLUS - THE TV-BAY MAGAZINE: ISSUE 110 FEBRUARY 2016 | 53