A good filmmaking tool is a versatile filmmaking tool.
Filmmaking gear can be crazy expensive. Oftentimes finding something that is a.) cheap, and b.) able to solve a lot of production problems is like finding a friggin’ unicorn, but the team over at The Film Look have made a video showcasing a piece of gear that fills both of those requirements and much more: clamps. Yeah, clamps aren’t the sexiest thing on a film set—that would be the craft services table—but they’re easily one of the most useful items that you’re ever going to have in your gear bag. Check out the video to learn the many ways you can put clamps to work.
The clamps used in the video are $10 crab clamps from SmallHD, which come with a ballhead magic arm. This combo allows you to mount your gear, whether it’s a light, microphone, or camera, pretty much wherever a clamp can clamp—which is pretty much anywhere. The max load for these things is a little over 2 lbs., which doesn’t sound like much, but if you’ve got a small LED panel, a monitor, or shotgun mic, their weight is well within its means.
There are many other kinds of affordable and versatile clamps out there that you can use if these particular ones don’t strike your fancy. They vary in load capacity, durability, and features, like different socket types/sizes and handles, so if you’re thinking about getting some, consider first what you’ll want to use it for. (And be more specific than “everything.”)
So, if you need to capture a shot from a unique angle or mount some lights without having to lug around a C-stand, you might want to consider starting your beautiful collection of clamps, and these small, inexpensive, mighty ones are a great place to start.