Lookin’ So Cool

7Zowie Cover 59_edited-1

I have long eschewed looking cool. I aim to look respectable, or at least clean. I’ll settle for looking sane. Some days it seems to be an unachievable goal…

But that does not stop the clients of the shop from reaching for their own personal image success. And none more so that the video makers. There seem to be lot of them, and they run in packs – unlike most aspiring stills professionals, videographers tend to clump together. I can’t tell whether it is for mutual protection against predators or just to generate a mass of internal warmth to preserve them against the public’s judgement.

They dress pretty uniformly, too. Cargo pants, dull tee shirts, baseball caps worn inside the premises, and generally a pair of sunglasses stuck up above the crown of the cap. There is either no hair or a great deal of hair. The female of the species is intense…the eyes are the give-away.

Part of lookin’ so cool is the equipment. If they can afford a camera they get one, then a tripod, though most of their work is done in hand, and finally a shoulder rig. These are the racks that take larger video cameras on aluminium rails or bars and provide hand-holds either side to steady the camera. There is a skeleton shoulder stock with adjustable recoil pad, and possibly a geared wheel to set the focus on the DSLR lens. It looks like a very small Karl Gustav shoulder mount. Sometimes there are lens shades, stabilisers, and flapping flags incorporated.

I can’t say whether this bazooka will make the footage for the video better, but it does make the film maker look as though they are professional. And for $ 200* I think this is worth while – they may never be able to interest any sane person in seeing their student surf zombie political forest protest video, but at least they can get to talk to the cool girls at parties.

* or $ 3000 if you buy the Dutch version…

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