Hired my first assistant this week

Discussion in '35mm Cameras' started by Lisa Horton, Jul 12, 2003.

  1. Lisa Horton

    Lisa Horton Guest

    Ah, lighting gear. You've got to love what it can do, but who doesn't
    hate lugging it, setting it up, and packing it up when you're done. I
    had an interior shoot this week, a big one. The (large) condo unit
    was fully staged, and the client wanted the view through the windows
    clearly visible, not all washed out. Of course, that means lighting,
    and lots of it.

    I'd always felt that an assistant was something that I didn't need,
    and couldn't justify the expense of. But as soon as all the equipment
    was carried up the stairs, unpacked, and set up, all while I planned
    shots, I knew that I'd made a good decision.

    It was really suprising to me how much having an assistant leveraged
    my productivity. Of course there's the time saved by not having to
    move the lights from setup to setup, but also having someone to adjust
    lights while you look through the camera, to take light readings, to
    hold a reflector or flag, or just fetch a new battery for the camera.
    I did learn though, that I must differentiate between a reflector
    (large, disc shaped) and a reflector (conical, chrome, fits on light)

    In the end, I was actually quite happy to pay her at the end of the
    day, considering it money WELL spent. And next time she'll be even
    more worth the money, as she now knows the difference between a
    reflector and a reflector, as well as how to set up everything.


    PS: We settled on "reflector" for the large disc shaped things, and
    "standard reflector" for the one that goes on the lights :)
    Lisa Horton, Jul 12, 2003
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  2. Lisa Horton

    Rudy Garcia Guest

    So what is the going rate in Silicon Valley for an assistant that knows
    what a relfector is? :)
    Rudy Garcia, Jul 12, 2003
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  3. Lisa Horton

    Bandicoot Guest


    At a recent Kodak conference one of the trade stands was doing the usual
    special offers and there was a big sign saying "Slaves - today £30"

    At last, someone to carry my tripod, I thought. But alas it turned out to
    be a different sort of slave they meant...


    Bandicoot, Jul 12, 2003
  4. Lisa Horton

    NickC Guest

    May good fortunes continue to smile upon you Lisa.

    NickC, Jul 12, 2003
  5. Lisa Horton

    Bill Hilton Guest

    From: Rudy Garcia
    Stop by Calypso Labs in Santa Clara, they have a list of assistants advertising
    their credentials, many quite impressive.

    Bill Hilton, Jul 12, 2003
  6. Lisa Horton

    Alan Browne Guest

    On a paying job, it sure is, and is part of the price.

    Whenever I've hired photogs for a company product shoot they always
    bring an assistant (who is usually a budding photographer).

    Alan Browne, Jul 12, 2003
  7. Lisa Horton

    Lisa Horton Guest

    Thank you Nick! This does seem to be the year when photography takes
    off for me.

    Lisa Horton, Jul 12, 2003
  8. Lisa Horton

    Lisa Horton Guest

    30 pounds? Isn't that awfully skinny for a slave?

    I have friends in the leather community, so when you said "a different
    sort of slave", it of course generated salacious thoughts :)

    Lisa Horton, Jul 12, 2003
  9. Lisa Horton

    Steve Kramer Guest

    I hire kids in the graduate Media department of a local university. I
    have a working relationship with the Prof. of the photography classes
    and he picks out likely candidates for me. I prefer 22-25 year old
    girls, about 5'4" and very, very beautiful, with some camera knowledge.
    My wife tells him to pick 56 year old ugly but very very strong women
    with a marked propensity towards domination... He usually sends me boys.
    I wonder if he's trying to tell me something? But they do carry all the
    equipment very well, and set it up without my having to tell them the
    generalities as he is a very fine instructor and his students all have a
    working knowledge of what is needed, want the experience of working an
    actual paying shoot, and are willing to go the extra mile to make sure
    that everyone involved gets the photography help needed. The best part
    is that in this part of Thailand, a 'good day's pay' is about $3 US. I'm
    a big spender... I give 'em $5 for the day.

    I'm opening up a larger studio in my condo/hotel next month and he will
    be sending over a crew of college kids to help with the painting,
    light-sealing the darkroom, running large electrical extension lines
    around the studio walls, hanging backdrops and paper rolls, decorating
    the conference/class room, etc., and all that is expected of me is to
    provide the pizza and beer!

    Steve Kramer
    Chiang Mai, Thailand
    Steve Kramer, Jul 13, 2003
  10. Lisa Horton

    T P Guest

    No doubt many of them are far more impressive, in terms of
    aptitude and ability, than many of the "pros" who hire them.
    T P, Jul 13, 2003
  11. Lisa Horton

    Lisa Horton Guest

    Or more likely, they believe they are more impressive, falling prey to
    the hubris of inexperience. Not the type I'd want to hire, being more
    interested in getting shots than arguing with a self-proclamed expert,
    or explaining that we're going to do it MY way or worse, having to
    explain why.

    Lisa Horton, Jul 13, 2003
  12. Lisa Horton

    Lisa Horton Guest

    I hate you Steve! The cost of the Red Bull I serve halfway through is
    almost as much as what you pay yours for the DAY.

    Lisa Horton, Jul 13, 2003
  13. Lisa Horton

    Lisa Horton Guest

    Do budding photographers need to be pruned regularly, like budding
    rose bushes? :)

    Lisa Horton, Jul 13, 2003
  14. Lisa Horton

    T P Guest

    Hey, Lisa, don't be so serious ... I didn't mean *you*!
    T P, Jul 13, 2003

  15. No, but you do have to give them a bit of, uh, 'fertilizer' every
    once in a while.

    - Al.
    Al Denelsbeck, Jul 13, 2003
  16. Lisa Horton

    Peter Chant Guest

    A girl as best boy, it sounds more like panto.
    Peter Chant, Jul 13, 2003
  17. Lisa Horton

    Alan Browne Guest

    Nurturing, Lisa, nurturing.


    Alan Browne, Jul 13, 2003
  18. Lisa Horton

    Lisa Horton Guest

    Being female, I don't think I'm properly equipped for that task, Al :)

    Lisa Horton, Jul 13, 2003

  19. Wow! Did we ever go off at cross purposes with that one! Fertilizer,
    Lisa, not seed! The word I was dancing around was 'shit'.

    And don't try telling me women aren't capable of THAT... ;-)

    - Al.
    Al Denelsbeck, Jul 13, 2003
  20. Lisa Horton

    Lisa Horton Guest

    And the straight lines just keep coming! How am I to be expected to

    Lisa :)
    Lisa Horton, Jul 13, 2003
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