A few improvements to an already great system

When I am working as a digitech my go to small kit and on location kit is my macbook pro with the Inovativ Digiplate/Digicase system. This kit lets me work in tight locations with a neatly put together system. After working and traveling with the kit for a few years I have really honed in on some workflow related drawbacks. I have recently made a few small upgrades to address these issues.

The first small issue I had was with the Digishade; it is an awesome accessory that makes viewing the monitor while on location a lot better, but the drawback is that when folded up there is not a great place to store it inside of the Digicase. I have been storing it underneath the Digiplate but having to lift up the computer and finagle everything else is a bit cumbersome. The solution was to add two ripties to the lid of the case so that the Digishade can be held in an easily accessible area. With two ripties, four nuts and bolts, a few washers, and gorilla glue I was able to drill the holes for the mounting points in the case and mount the ripties accordingly. using the gorilla glue I am able to maintain a waterproof seal on the case for worst case scenarios.  

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The next issue I would run into while out on location is when I would run through the hyperjuice battery that is attached to my kit and would have to pull out the laptop charger and run a cable out of the case. Having to do this would make a mess of the inside of my case taking up valuable space where hard drives, grey cards, and other small things could be stored as well as making it impossible to close and shut the case. 

The solution to this was to take an ac port plug with short extension cord built in and drill a hole into the side of the case. This would allow me plug in the surge protector that I keep in my kit and plug in my laptop charger, the charger for the omnicharge battery (I switched from hyperjuice to omnicharge for a few reasons), and other things that could need power while on location. With everything I have plugged into power distribution I can the plug in an extension cord to the port on the side of the case allowing everything to start charging and being able to close and lock the lid of the case. It really helps keep my cable management nice and neat while also being able to quickly and easily charge all of my devices.  

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With a 2" hole drill bit I was able to make a hole in the case big enough for the ac port to thread through. The port came with three small screws to attach it to the case, after securing its fit I again used the gorilla glue to make a waterproof seal and well as further securing the port in place. I have tested extensively the waterproofing (without laptop kit inside, don't worry I'm not stupid) and am very confident in my handy work. With both the laptop and Omnicharged plugged in and having the lid closed, charging both from empty does produce a very small amount of heat inside the case, nothing I would be worried about in most situations.

The reason I switched from a Hyyperjuice 2 battery to an Omnicharge 20 is size and where the ports are located. The Omnicharge is almost half as short length wise than the hyperjuice but contains about the same amount of power (20k mah). With the smaller battery I am now able to mount my laptop charger to the Digicase so I can leave it plugged in and just need to remove the extension cable for going out of the case. the dc input for charging and the ac port on the Omnicharge are located on the sides, the dc ports on the hyperjuice (does not have an ac port) face outwards which causes problems with cable management; the cords would not fit between the ports and the inside wall of the Digicase. Being able to use both DC out and AC out on the omnicharge gives me two ways of providing the laptop power if one were to fail. 

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When I need to go even lighter with the kit I can pull the Digiplate out of the case and mount directly to a stand. With the DC to magsafe 2 cable I can still provide power to my laptop. I also have a Gtech EV rugged thunderbolt case with a 1tb ssd drive inside. allowing my to keep backups, hotswap drives, and use the ev case for their cfast or redmag reader inserts. I do also have a usb cf and sd card reader attached as well.

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I love all of my Inovativ pieces of equipment, they are rugged and make for a nice neat work station. I believe these personal updates work really well for my kit and will make my workflow even more streamlined. I am planning on doing a follow up blog to further explain my kit including my digitech accessories case, my mac pro tower enclosure, and my full digitech cart set up so stayed tuned and follow along with me on instagram to see these kits working in real shooting situations @waphoto.

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Fynn

Back for more, this time behind a boat. Lake gaston provided a beautiful morning, glassy conditions, and free reign over the lake. An early start with Rob Russell while he was getting video clips for Fynns new video edit. Its always fun to see a great athlete just get up and start doing their thing and with a work ethic and drive that Fynn has, he surely gets a lot done.

 

Check Fynn out on instagram @fynn_tastic

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Inside (this soul)

In May 2017 I had the opportunity to go to Utah to grip on a production by Mark Evans and Loren Picciarelli for Divinity Dance titled Inside (This Soul)While on set I was able to work with some of the dancers and capture some images. We set out into the Bonneville Salt Flats to capture Mark and Lorens vision. With record snow fall in the past winter the salt flats were flooded with almost a foot of water for miles. It was a beautiful sight to see and having the dancers moving through the water was breathtaking. Im very grateful for the chance to see how beautiful the salt flats can be and can not wait until I get back out there.

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Fynn

I had the opportunity to tag along with my friend Rob Russell to a wakeboard cable park called Jibtopia. We met up with young wakeboarder Fynn Bullock to shoot some video and photos. The day started out pretty overcast which had us dragging our feet a bit to get set up but after Fynn had a very quick warm up on one of the features the clouds opened up and we were ready to work. After a pretty productive morning and an awesome blt we wound down with a few portraits in the middle of one of the parks main features. Getting to shoot with Fynn is always a great time, a true athlete and a real fun spirit.

Check out his Instagram, @fynn_tastic 

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Sam Mazany

I had the chance to shoot a few portraits of Raleigh comedian Sam Mazany. Sam has made himself a staple in the comedic community in the Raleigh area; hosting events for his group No Poetry Comedy, opening for traveling comedians at Charlie Goodnights, and headlining stand up events all around the triangle area. While giving him a few updated headshots I was able to convince him to let me take a few photos of him with a pie being thrown at his face. I'm happy with how they turned out and we had a great time catching up. A big thanks to Ethan Messina (ethanmessina.com)  for giving me a hand setting up and throwing pie at Sam. 

If you are in the Raleigh/Durham area give No Poetry Comedy (nopoetrycomedy) a look to see when the next show is.

Moogfest 2016

Moogfest is a festival that celebrates individuality and the limitless possibilities and emotions that are made through music. This year Durham, NC was the host of this event. I was lucky to have a friend lend me a media pass to see a few artists performances. One of my favorite artists, Odesza, performed on the Motorco mainstage. I photographed a few acts before they came on; Professor Toon and Well$ are two rap artists that are local to North Carolina, each giving high energy performances. After Well$ finished I dumped that data and made my way to the front for Odesza. They are a Seattle grown group that uses electronics, percussion, and brass in their set. Summers Gone is their premier album which they played almost its entirety, throwing a few remixes in to keep the crowd on their toes. Rain was threatening to steal the show but only made a small appearance. I had an amazing time seeing them perform again and to see all of the love that the festival goers were showing to each other. Thank you to Ryan Timms and Will Hardison for giving me the chance to experience this magic once more.

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Gotta get back up

Friend and fellow photographer Ethan Messina (ethanmessina.com) recently took a dive off of his bicycle, requiring a few stitches and a good weekend of pain medication. After the stitches were removed I asked him if I could take his picture just to have something to remind us of the importance of helmets. I had an idea of what I wanted to do but did not have space available to shoot. I pulled the equipment that I have and we found an open parking lot, we set up outside and pulled power from my generator. There were a few strange looks from people getting in their cars after work as we set up but we kept our heads down and just went to work. We had a nice laugh at the situation while I photographed him, took a look at what we got and were satisfied. It was a quick takedown so we went to a bar a few blocks over to have a drink and I started working on the images.  I was very happy with the results from the makeshift location studio and am always happy to hang out with Ethan.

Skateboarding in the new year

On January 2nd I had the opportunity to go out and shoot with skateboarders John Evans, Pete Simpson, Chris Roque, Clint Beswick, and Justin Ackers. We met up in Durham, NC to warm up at the skatepark and discuss what spots to go to during the day. That saturday was the first clear sunny day in the past few weeks so we knew we would be getting some good shots. We went to NC central campus to look at a handrail but were immediately asked to leave, which is a normal thing to happen at schools. From there we went to a ledge spot where Justin Ackers did a boardslide pop boardslide and a gap to boardslide. After that we came to a large handrail for Chris Roque to backside 5050 with little effort. After celebrating a successful spot we headed to another handrail that had a small curb at the bottom of it. Clint Beswick quickly landed a backside crooked grind. Chris Roque attempted a backside lipslide but after a few tries fell back and hit his head on the ground, he stayed cautious to get up and walked away fine. Pete Simpson followed up Chris with a frontside feeble. After everyone getting some good shots on that rail we headed to NC state campus to session some benches and a stairset in the brickyard. It was a very productive day and I had a great time getting out with some new people to shoot, looking forward to getting back out there with these talented guys.

Justin Ackers | gap to boardslide

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Cris Roque | backside 5050

Clint Beswick | backside Crooked grind

Chris Roque | bailed back lip

Pete Simpson | Frontside Feeble 

I almost always use a flash when I am shooting so I can have control over the lighting situation and to help draw attention to the skater. This is the setup I used for the handrail spot. I had a beauty dish on a boom so i could quickly make adjustments for each skaters trick. I put the flash off to the side to act as a fill light since the sun was coming in to light the front of the spot.

BMX with Chris Andrijiw

I got the chance to link up with my friend Chris Adrijiw while he was visiting home for the holidays. He brought his bmx bike with him and we were fortunate enough to get a few dry days between this mostly wet christmas season.