October 22, 2010

The Absolute Cheapest Way to Do a Dolly Move*

*Okay, so it's not actually a dolly move. But it looks like one, and all you need is a tripod. My co-panelist at next week's PhotoPlus Expo, Vincent Laforet, posted this neat tip for getting a smooth, short dolly-ish move from any camera. Check it out:

Another handy tip from Vincent:

If you have NOTHING in terms of support with you when shooting with an HDDSLR - put the camera strap around your neck and push forward against you neck to get resistance and you’ll get a steadier result. The tension will give you a bit more stability and in effect use your neck as a virtual “point of contact.” In general - the more points of contact you have with any camera (shoulder, one hand on a handle, the other on the Follow Focus wheel - is a good thing…

Of course, you can always build a dolly out of PVC pipes and rollerblade wheels, as we did on The West Side (pictured). This'll cost you less than $100, which might make it the "absolute cheapest way to do a dolly move" with an actual dolly. There are a lot of tutorials out there for building such a dolly; if I find the one we used I'll post it here. Actually, no, I take that back: if I find one that looks like it'll work better than our dolly, I'll post it here. Ours was always falling off the tracks!

Link: SOMTIMES LOW TECH IS GOOD ENOUGH

Your Comment

14 Comments

That is genius.
I didn't expect to see that.
I just bought an Opteka tripod dolly to do similar shots: http://goo.gl/d24x
But this is is awesome.

I wonder if I can use a Gorillapod type, holding 1 leg in rear and do a dip for say desktop type shots... hmm.

October 22, 2010

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xlerate

Sweet...thanks Koo! I've been experimenting with similar techniques, but none that work as well as this. I'm going to try it out on my shoot tomorrow...

October 22, 2010

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This is just amazing! Love this priceless DIY tip! thanks Koo and kudos to Vincent! A lot of independant filmmakers will be grateful for that!

October 23, 2010

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Wow. It's so obvious if you think about it, but yet so clever :). I instantly tried it out and with some practice there is really smooth footage possible. Thanks for sharing Vincent and Koo.

October 23, 2010

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Pierre

the first site I saw this os on Stu's ProLost, then Vincent posted it

in any case, I felt a deep need to bang my head against the wall when I saw this guy's amazing ingenuity; how the hell didn't I think of that? it is SO obvious...

October 25, 2010

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I have tried the trick like first video posted here many times ago and it has become my standard way of shooting, where I have no chance to use dolly or rail (I don't even have Rail!). Really, it helps me a lot.

October 26, 2010

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Setiawan Kartaw...

Just discovered your site, very helpful stuff!

October 27, 2010

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natalie_portman...

Awesome link, and awesome site. Any progress on the tutorial for building a dolly?

October 27, 2010

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Darius

Very clever. Thanks.

October 28, 2010

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Matt

Wow! That is clever and I have to give that a try!

October 28, 2010

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This is why I love this site. Just tried it and it works like magic, thank you!

October 29, 2010

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Klas

Very smart. Thanks for the DIY tip.

November 15, 2010

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Or use a new mini rolling dolly : http://goo.gl/yBHAe

January 19, 2013

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Scott Stensland

Absolutely outstanding tip. I'm definitely using this. Will start practicing tonight.

April 4, 2014

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