Having to prep for a shoot coming up in San Diego. So … I though that you all might appreciate how I go about my mental check list and layout for putting my gear together. What I can’t show you is all the thinking time that was put in to the assignment. I first started with the fact we will be shooting by the ocean and that means sand. Second, I wanted to ship all the gear ahead to my good friend Dave Friend, ya that’s right, his last name is Friend. A great guy and a terrific photographer. We met back when he and I were both on the national board of ASMP. We have remained friends ever since. Wow, lots of “friends” floating around.

I knew I was going to use some new products from “http://michaelbass.blogspot.com” and reduce the traveling load. Michael and I have been working on a couple of projects together but this one is specific to eight speedlights and the Radio Poppers. Two receivers trigger eight speedlights in one cluster. We are calling it the “Detonator”. So the preproduction is really the key. I try and think ahead and figure out the ins and outs of the particular assignment. I make a list, gather the gear and lay it out on my studio sweep. It is also a great way of keeping track of the gear that will be shipped ahead if I was to file a insurance claim. Having just returned from NAB in Las Vegas, I really don’t want to try and check my gear on my flight. By my calculations, shipping ahead is going to be easier, I can track the shipment on line, plus if I get really freeky I can insure the whole thing. Airlines are getting tough enough just with trying to get your body there much less your gear. The critical items in this are the clip mounts made for the RadioPoppers by Michael and the fiber optic tips that are at the bottom of the photo next to the wrench and allen keys. I couldn’t easily replace on location and they are the key to making the whole thing work.

FourSquare Detonator

The only items that are not is this image is the battery box and the FourSquare package, but those will be easily seen in the next photo. There are extra items like the little spring clips that are not necessary to the images but nice if I want to wrap color gel around the heads. The little Manfrotto ball heads along with LightwareDirect’s speedlight stand adapter (FSA 100) make for wonderful accessories that are easy to travel with because I can screw them on to any stand with a 1/4 20 thread top. Should the assignment change, (boy that never happens) I now have the ability to do a portrait set up or a group pic of the crew.Yes, I know what your saying … you can’t get that all in there. Well yes I can. A little shuffling with the handles (on top of each other) and the battery box will fit on its side. The only thing I didn’t have a chance to do was to weigh the little guy. It’s legal carry on size but I would guess TSA would say the handle assembled would/could be used as a cocktail mixer, so I have shipped this one ahead. The battery box is from Pelican and all I have done is cut dividers to separate the AA’s. You could certainly go with the recharge way, like Eneloop (sp), some of my friends say they are great but I am going to use up my stash until they are all gone before I upgrade. Seems I always buy a handful when I am at the Big Blue Box store, so slap my hands for next time. I will be sure to take some pics when the sand is blowing and pics are flying, til next time…