Dealing with reflectors, no assistant, and wind

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by rufus5150, Mar 12, 2009.

  1. rufus5150

    rufus5150 TPF Noob!

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    I did a search and came up with only tangent references to dealing with this situation.

    I will be doing an outdoor shoot soon and I anticipate wind to be a problem where we're shooting. I won't have an assistant and I can likely do without umbrellas, but the reflector (42" zipdisc) will be a must. These will be full torso if not full body shots so having the subject hold them will not be an option for at least some of the shots. I'm going to have to put it on a stand and boom arm.

    Does anyone have any thoughts of dealing with this? I could go the sandbag route, but that seems like a lot of work to drag 3 bags of sand out to the shoot to hold it down. Might be the only way, though.
     
  2. bjorkfiend

    bjorkfiend TPF Noob!

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    ...
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2009
  3. DRoberts

    DRoberts TPF Noob!

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    Sandbags was going to be my suggestion, set the reflector as low as possible as well. Either that or put an add out at the local schools or colleges photo classes for a free assistant, someone might help for just the experience.
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Can you not get/find someone to assist you? It's not a skilled trade, they just have to hold a reflector. I'd do it, but you'd have to fly me down there ;)
     
  5. KvnO

    KvnO TPF Noob!

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    Agreed, just find a buddy to come out with you. Someone with a passing interest in photography would probably be helpful, but whatev. Maybe the model could bring someone to help too.
     
  6. rufus5150

    rufus5150 TPF Noob!

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    A stranger's not going to work and finding someone amongst our collective friends to get up that early will be rough.
     
  7. kundalini

    kundalini Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Buy 'em breakfast and give 'em a score for the help. If you don't ask, you don't know who might be willing.

    Contact the coordinator of your local photography meetup group. Meetup.com
     
  8. bjorkfiend

    bjorkfiend TPF Noob!

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    ...
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2009
  9. schumionbike

    schumionbike TPF Noob!

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    I would just go bribe some kid that you know, it's probably the easiest way out.
     
  10. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Suggestions in order of preference

    1 - Home made sandbags (baggies filled with sand wrapped in canvas and home-sewn)
    2 - gallon sized milk jugs filled with water
    3 - bungee cords with tent pegs shoved into the ground
    4 - your camera bag tied to the stand
    5 - The kid next door and a 5 dollar bill for him, with his mom's permission to use the kid for 3-4 hours... she will love you.

    Where there is a will, there *is* a way.
     
  11. Ron_Uriel

    Ron_Uriel TPF Noob!

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    Whatever approach you decide to take, make sure you are not endangering your model. I'd go for the sandbags option and make sure they are heavy enough to hold the reflector stand against a strong wind.
    One more thing to consider is that the wind can flutter your reflector, turning it ineffective. To avoide this you will need to fix it agains a wooden frame or something else that can maintain its shape. not an easy task to do.
    If you know the exact location you'll be shooting at, perhaps you can set some things in advance instead of having to carry them on the day you are shooting (cheap sandbags or any other heavyweight objects).
     
  12. rufus5150

    rufus5150 TPF Noob!

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    My reflector has an extremely rigid frame.

    And not endangering the model? Where's the fun in that? ;)
     

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