Video Lighting Tips from Grips and Gaffers

God said (reportedly) “Let there be light” and there was. Sounds simple enough, but absent omnipotence, getting proper lighting on set or in the field isn’t always so straightforward.

Arri Lampheads-WhiteBkgnd-deStudio18-04-2008_14-12-42The responsibility of lighting a film varies, depending on the production budget, but it usually falls to a director of photography who works in tandem with gaffers and grips to secure and position any artificial illumination required. “A lot of the terminology has changed with the confluence of photography and digital cinema,” explains Peter Trilling, a director of photography. “Traditionally, in the motion picture world, grips are assigned the task of setting, securing and rigging lights, along with cameras. They don’t really design the lighting of film sets or interview situations … The real responsibility of lighting falls to the gaffers. They are responsible for lighting the set, in most cases at the behest of the director of photography.”

“When you move from the photo world into the film world, it’s a different world in terms of crew size,” adds Robb Epifano, a lighting engineer who’s worked on both still and motion projects for

Tools Do You Need to be a Film Grip

As a grip, it’s your job to handle the lighting and rigging on the set. You’ll set up, take down, move and adjust dollies and cranes and will also be responsible for the non-electrical side of modifying the lighting. A grip’s work is vital to the flow of a production, which is why it’s so important for you to have a full set of tools that can keep you working smoothly, efficiently and safely.

truckThe following are the basic tools you must have as a grip, and recommendations for additional items you might want to add to your tool set as you work toward becoming a professional grip.

What sort of gloves do I need to work as a grip?

Generally speaking, you’re going to want to have a pair of durable work gloves to protect your hands while adjusting hot lights, building a rig for the camera, or any number of duties that could come your way. Leather work gloves are best, though in some circumstances, like shooting outside in the winter, you might also want to have a pair of fleece gloves or ones

Notes for new grippers

Reddit user Darth Nader posted this letter in Reddit’s Filmmaking forum which covers great basic tips for how to work a film set.


A Best Boy forwarded me this from a past Key he worked for.

I just want to make sure that everybody has the right tools on them. Blade, 3/16 allen wrench , tape measure, multi tool of some kind, adjustable wrench that goes to at least 7/8 for chez boros, small flashlight, trick line, black wrap,tape, etc.
Some general notes. Sorry if you already know these things. Read anyway please.

Grip 101:


“Tune in” to my voice and the DP’s voice. When ever you hear it pay attention.

Always have our gear as close to set as possible in an orderly workable fashion without getting in the way.

We should always have apple boxes next to set. They are our most used tool sometimes. For props, although they should have there own on a big show, and for adjusting actors’ heights and seats.

Some one should always “man the carts”. Always. There will be flag “getters” and flag “setters”. When I call for things they should show

Benefits Of Overnight Money Loans As Your Solution Anytime You Needs Fast Money

The truth is you can’t control many things that come into your life, including that moment when you desperately needs extra expense for some emergency issues. What the solution you have? Among others, you have banks and overnight money loans. However, which one is your best option? Those who never heard about overnight money lender, you may consider the first option, but one thing you may never know that, it is not easy nowadays to get your loan approved by bank unless you can fulfill all of the requirements that they scheme.


On another words, you need first to have good history for credit score, request amount of money that is acceptable, able to provide any documents that are requested, prepare collateral if necessary and some other complicated procedures. Not to mention, if you can afford all of those previously mentioned, you have huge chance to be approved. Even so, you will deal with some problem if you need overnight cash since, your bank will never give it to you. Rather than bank, overnight cash loan gives you more benefits compared to conventional bank.


Prior, you need to decide which way to request fast money to cover the emergency expense of

The splendor of newborn photography

The newborn is greeted with technology almost as soon as it is ushered into this world – may be just a few days old but already being coaxed and cajoled to face the camera of a top Los Angeles newborn photographer. The craze for newborn photography is on a high and thank god that the cute little newbie does not have the ability to score with a selfie that would have given the professional photographers a run for their money. The moment the small bundle of joy is cuddled in the coziness of motherly comfort for the first time, the professional newborn photographer makes an appearance. The parents of the newborn are just too eager to capture the splendor of the newborn in its birthday suit exuding odes of love and warmth that can kindle even the coldest heart. It is really a sight to behold and cherish that is as wonderful as the morning sun peeping from behind the picturesque horizon.

A small window

How do we really define the age of a newborn – one day, two days, one week, two weeks or could it even be stretched up to a month?  There is really no set rule to specify

Working as a Key Grip

This is an in-depth blog breaking down Working as a Key Grip in film and television. Please comment below. As a reader it is your responsibility to help us make this post better! What is it missing? Have any questions?

The Key Grip works with the Cinematographer and Gaffer to help shape and control the light as well as dealing with the movement and rigging of cameras. With the aid of the best boy and the other grips the grip department supports camera, lighting and often times art department.

Being a key grip is a tough job that requires a lot of technical knowledge, creativity and a sharp eye.

In England grips are exclusively part of the camera department and are not responsible for shaping light or supporting the electric department.

Working as a Key Grip:


  • The key grip executes the Cinematographer’s wishes in order to shape and control the light.
  • Execute and/or facilitate any camera movement or rigging. This includes dollies, cranes or camera placement and rigging on any stationary, moving or floating object
  • Run the grip crew. This can includes grips with specific specialties, like dolly grips, crane operators, rigging grips etc.
  • Work with the gaffer and translate requested lighting positions and needs into rigging options

Lighting and Grip Equipment

Lights are important to help set the mood in every scene
Lighting is something that is often an issue on an independent film. I have seen many films that mixed lighting colors because they did not either have a real DP or a real Gaffer. You need to have your Gaffer and DP speak with your director about lighting prior to shooting to make sure you are getting the correct lighting instruments for the job.

Tungsten lights are orange in color and are used for interior lighting situations.

HMI (Hydragyrum Medium-Arc Iode)
These lights are blue in color and are used in daylight situations. They put off a great amount of light too.


If you walk into a room with a DP and the lights in the ceiling are fluorescent, most of them will cringe because of the light color put out by this type of bulb. There are fluorescent fixtures used in the film industry that are properly balanced to the light color you will need. The most well-known company which makes and invented these is called Kino Flo.


LED (light-emiting diode)
These use the least amount of power and are the coolest to the touch of all of the lights