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Tips for going up/down the stairs?


Laurent Da
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Hi everybody! 

I recently had to do a shot going down the stairs for the first time, realizing how difficult it actually is! 
I was curious to know if anyone has tips for such shots? My main issue was actually maintaining the tilt while watching for the horizon and of course my steps...

The balance of my rig was actually pretty good. With an approx drop time of 3 secs. Would it be easier with a balance closer to neutral?

Thank you all for your advice!

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  • 10 months later...

3 secs sounds about right, but depending on the stairs (how steep they are, how long you have to hold the tilt, etc...) perhaps a longer drop time could help. If you are following/leading directly in front/behind, any horizon issue will be much more apparent and the wider the lens, the more you'll see of the world. If the stairs are wide enough, you could lead/follow at a 3/4 angle, or on a tighter lens (to mitigate seeing horizon indicators).

And I think when it comes to balancing for difficult shots; set your drop time for making the hardest part easier. Ex, setting a 3-4 sec drop time for the stairs to hold a tilt easier, even though the walk and talk before and after you'd prefer a faster drop time. Does that make sense?

Best of luck!

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Consider trimming your headroom for going down the stairs and whether you're leading or following down the stairs, trim accordingly. That way you don't have to hold the tilt, the rig will hold it for you and you can focus more on your framing and horizon. Even if your shot starts at the top of the stairs and ends past the bottom, holding headroom for a few seconds before heading down the stairs and then going into that preset trim, is going to be a lot easier than holding the tilt as you're walking down the stairs.

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On 8/21/2021 at 2:52 PM, Maxwel Fisher said:

Consider trimming your headroom for going down the stairs and whether you're leading or following down the stairs, trim accordingly. That way you don't have to hold the tilt, the rig will hold it for you and you can focus more on your framing and horizon. Even if your shot starts at the top of the stairs and ends past the bottom, holding headroom for a few seconds before heading down the stairs and then going into that preset trim, is going to be a lot easier than holding the tilt as you're walking down the stairs.

Hey Maxwel, I haven't thought about trying it that way. I'm going to give that a go next time!

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