Production Tips: What You Should Bring Your First Day on Set

first_imgKnee, ankle, elbow pads, and bracesJoint pads and braces are invaluable in many situations, both palliative and preventative. Bring some for yourself, and keep an eye out for any member of the crew that could use them. Power banks and rechargeable batteriesHaving backup power options is a must on set. I recommend multiple high-capacity battery banks (10,000 mAh or greater) as well as a set of rechargeable AAs and AAAs. Folding table and chairsHaving your own will keep you from monopolizing others’. This is especially important if you have a role that will require you to be relatively stationary.Image via Mike_shots.Permanent markersBring an assortment of colors and weights to mark your equipment, water bottles, and so on. Pocket knifeone of the most essential tools for any member of the crew, pocket knives come in handy nearly every day. Safety GearSets are tricky. People can get hurt, and things can go wrong at any moment. Having a basic safety kit will help you manage these uncontrollable factors. Here are some essentials:Image via Arshad.Atar.Extreme weather protectionDisposable rain ponchos, heavy coats or waterproof jackets, space blankets, and heating or chilling pads are all a great place to start. Water is essential no matter where you are shooting — have a reliable, insulated water bottle. Know the extreme weather possibilities of the region you’re shooting in and be prepared.Image via PRESSLAB.First aid kitIt is my opinion that every member of the crew should always show up with a first aid kit. Even with a set medic, always knowing where a first aid kit is saves critical time when someone gets injured. Rope and stringIf you can, pack a good length of medium-weight rope and a spool of heavy-duty thread in your kit.Image via ponsulak.Clips and clampsA-Clamps, clothespins (C47s), and C-Clamps (among other forms of clamps) are always in short supply on set. Bring some for yourself and extra to share. Multi-toolA multi-tool, such as a Leatherman, can be a replacement for your entire tool bag in a pinch. While not as good as other dedicated tools, multi-tools offer sufficient performance in a convenient package. When deciding on the elements of your kit, consider everything you know about the production as well as the role you will be performing.Are you going to be working in the audio department? Make sure to bring a good selection of cables, adapters, and headphones with you. Camera department? A lens-cleaning kit, microfiber cloth, and card/media holders will all be welcome additions to your kit. Wardrobe? Bring a steamer, clothes hangers, and a foldable clothes rack.Each department has its own needs, and each role within each department its own more-specific ones. Think through what you will be doing in your role, examine this list for some ideas, and get packing!Cover image via ponsulak.Looking for more information on film and video production? Check out these articles. Fire extinguisherFire is a worst-case scenario on every set. Bring an extinguisher if you can. At the very least, know where one is at all times. Cable tiesWhether fabric or plastic, cable ties have many uses on set.Image via Alex Brylov.RadiosRadio communication is the backbone of competent film production. Bring a set or two of walkie talkies with you. Security earpieces are a huge upgrade (many productions actually require them) that you can purchase for about $10-$30. Interview: Julie Benz on Work Ethic, Challenging Roles, and Paying it Forward 5 Reasons Why You Should Apply to Filmmaker Workshops and LabsUnderstanding Tax Incentives in the Filmmaking IndustryThe Lowdown on the Short Form from Three Nominated SeriesIndustry Insights: Careers in Commercial, Indie, or Corporate Filmmaking Surge protectors, power strips, stingersDo yourself and the Grip and Electric Departments a favor: bring some basic power connectivity options with you. Laser pointerThese are useful for quickly signaling objects, places, or people without causing too much distraction to others. The rules are the same as when you were a kid: keep it away from eyes.Image via Garsya.TapeGaffer’s tape is best, but bring whatever you have. Electrical and masking tape find common uses on set, as do the humble Duct and scotch tapes. Tape measureTape measures have dozens of practical uses every day on set. Have one for yourself and one to lend out. Comfortable boots or shoesWhile not technically tools, a bad pair of shoes will ruin your day and increase fatigue each day on set. I usually wear my hiking boots on days when I will be standing and walking a lot. A good pair of supportive running shoes is also great. As with any labor job, no open-toed shoes. You know the lingo, you landed a gig, and you’re ready to work. So what do you need to bring with you for your first of film or video production?In a recent article, we talked about some of the basic things to know about film and video production before your first day on set. In this article, we’re going take a look at some of the basic components of a good multi-purpose kit.In film and video production, the “kit” is the set of tools, gadgets, and other necessities each member of the crew brings with them to execute their particular job. Every member of the crew has their own particular set of tools. No two kits are the same, and they will vary from production to production.Here is a list to get you started thinking about the basics of a good general-use kit of your own.ToolsImage via olmarmar.A basic set of tools will come in handy every day on set. Some of the most useful include the following:ScrewdriversBring small, medium, and large phillips and flat-heads with you. WrenchesAdjustable wrenches like crescent wrenches offer a high degree of flexibility without taking up a ton of space in your bag. Useful Additions to Your KitBeyond tools, here are some more considerations for your kit.Image via Burakova.Notebooks and pensBring a full-size notebook, one or two pocket-sized notebooks, and a nice selection of pens and pencils. Take notes, always. Allen wrench (hex key) setBring a folding, multi-key set. Flashlights, headlamps, USB lightsSets are usually dark. Have a small, high-output flashlight on your keychain for easy access. Headlamps are a direct upgrade to flashlights. USB lights are cheap, relatively low-output, and incredibly useful in about 5-dozen situations. Bring what you can and a couple extra to lend out. Leather or other insulated work glovesHeavy duty work gloves are essential if there is any possibility that you will be handling electricity or lighting equipment. Bring a pair just in case.Image via In Green.Tool beltYou’ll notice that most of the seasoned crew carry their most-used tools on a tool belt. Tool belts cut down on how much you need to carry around with you, while also reducing the running back-and-forth to fetch tools.last_img

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