I have been asking to any DP that I meet what is for she or he the must to have tools for a cinematographer. The list that I put together is quite long and it would probably require more than a bag to contain all of them, and some of this items are specific for the project the cinematographer was working on. But here are the top 5 of that list:
- Light meter is the number one to have. I know that now a days you can check your exposure, but the monitor is not always reliable and the cause can be several, from the quality of the monitor to the calibration of it. The light meter is not affect from the environment.
- A good sun seeker app. It comes very handy during scout location for exterior shooting day or night. There are several out there both free and pay ones. i talk about one of them in one other post.
- Director view finder it simulates the different lens and help to decide the frame. It can be a real one or it can be an app, for app check the post about app for cinematographer.
- Color chart, use to tell post what are you want to be white. Usually the 1st AC has one but it is a good idea to have one with you too especially on small project and low budget one. very important to shoot a color chart at the every time you change card.
- Gaffer gloves, I know that normally gaffer and grip move equipment around and electricians maneuver the lights but it always a good idea to have a pair with you, you never know when you feel the need to adjust a light by yourself. And again small project, small budget equals small crew.
These are the top 5. There are many other tools that are going to be very helpful on set. I will maybe write an other post soon.
If you have any suggestion please write them in the comment.