With versatility comes complexity. Not vice versa.
Film projects: feeling a bit renewed after watching the Grayson extras. Brings back that whole no-budget sensitivity, reminds me about the fun of doing short films, the whole magic of illusion. I need to finish the screenplays that I have sitting in my folder, two in particular.
Then I need to figure out how to shoot them.
REALLY strong on the short aspect. I love the idea of doing a feature, but it is so completely a different animal than doing a short, in much the same way that doing a sprint is different than running a marathon. Some of the things that I want to do are in the couple-of-minutes category, like probably three minutes tops. One of them is a little longer, maybe ten minutes. I'd like to have at least two of them done by this time next year.
Sounds simple, right?
Camera crane: Build vs. Buy. I built the camera dolly, and it works remarkably well, considering. The dolly track is the big issue, since the seams are the things that really screw up the dolly action. And I was surprised at how freaking precise everything needed to be: a hole drilled a millimeter off center would mean a wheel not touching the track properly.
My camera is pretty heavy, weighing in at 15lbs bare. Add a battery and some auxiliary stuff, and a 25-lb load isn't out of the question. Most of the DV-style cranes are designed for cameras under 5 lbs. There are a couple of cranes designed for heavier cameras, but they can get expensive; so far the Kessler is winning in the price/load category. At the same time, I know that I can design and build one for less, and probably be happier with its strengths.
What worries me is the precision with which some of the stuff needs to be drilled and machined. And the welding of the aluminum.