November 12, 2018

The Butter Slider and Other Ridiculous(ly) Cheap Camera Hacks

Did you know that you can replace all of your super expensive professional camera equipment with a dirt cheap warm stick o' butter?

We still have several months to go before April Fool's Day, but any time is a good time to poke fun at what's popular in the indie filmmaking community. The focus of today's delicious satire: camera hack videos.

We've all seen a couple (hundred) videos on YouTube that show you a handful of cool camera "hacks" and tricks, like using a T-shirt as a slider or a shower curtain as a diffuser. I know I've seen a ton of them and have even shared many here on the site, and while a lot of them are really helpful and offer plenty of useful tips, others can be rather ridiculous and deliberately random. 

If you've noticed this trend, then you should take a look at this camera hack video from I did a thing's Alex, which lampoons the shit out of camera hack videos while being a strangely (and perhaps unintentionally?) helpful camera hack video.

Look, I know this video is trying to be funny but to be real, these satirical ideas are actually kinda good. I'm not ashamed to say it! I don't give a damn if a hack, tip, or trick is super contrived and absurd. If it works, I'mma try it. I have half a mind to mount my GoPro on my kid's head right now and wheelbarrow her all over my house. No joke.

The point here is, yeah, some of these videos, especially the ones that take themselves too seriously, are bound to get some eye-rolls, but hey, if something works, then it works. I'm not saying throw out your sweet camera slider for a stick of half-melted butter, but what I am saying is that there is more than one way to skin a can...or shoot a film...or acquire camera equipment. (Editor's Note: Do not acquire camera equipment by stealing it while wearing a balaclava.)     

Your Comment


Yes, when the entire NFS community says "PLEASE! No more shitty hack articles!" let's continue to push these lazy, ill-informed tutorials.

You can't put up something that parodies all of the crappy hack vids you've posted, and then still stand by those posts.

No one who has spent any time in the industry would have a use for these "tricks," and no one starting out in the industry should be led to believe these are useful techniques. these faulty ideas, because they'll only have to unlearn these bad habits later. Potentially after they've already burned down their house by following the instructions in your "10 Shitty Tricks for Gaff Tape" article where you instructed people to apply gaff tape to hot tungsten lights.

You are doing no good with this crap, and probably doing some genuine harm. You're feeding these garbage content creators more views which only helps to legitimize these idiotic techniques. You can have a net-positive effect on the world by no longer posting these types of articles. Thank you.

November 15, 2018 at 11:32AM


Hi Cyrus,

I'm not referring specifically to this particular video, more so to V Renee's habit of posting tons of "hack vids." They are unhelpful to the extreme, and I hate that people keep linking to them because it takes away from the individuals creating useful content. The fact that this is a parody of her previous posts is what makes this especially annoying, because it's an admission that the other videos were essentially worthless.

One older video she posted pertaining to gaff tape tricks actually pushed a few ideas that could genuinely be dangerous, and represented bad practices that anyone in this industry probably shouldn't be learning early on in their career.

I find the whole thing very frustrating, and hate to see a site that used to be so prestigious devolve into click-bait articles. Just my opinion.


November 16, 2018 at 3:28PM


Totally fair, and just giving you a hard time ;)

November 19, 2018 at 3:25PM


'Preciate ya

November 20, 2018 at 10:43AM