What You Need to Know When You’re Starting Off As a Follow Focus Puller

I have been working as a follow focus puller for quite some time now. I don’t deny that being a professional one is the hardest job on the crew. There’s a lot that this exceptionally talented person takes care of during a film shoot.

Also called First Assistant Camera, 1st AC, and Camera Assistant, a follow focus puller is responsible for the taking good care as well as maintenance of all cameras. They move heaven and earth when it comes to keeping the camera in focus.

Want to be a follow focus puller? Here I’ll share with you some important tips to help you get started:

1. Do Your Homework – Before making that final call about becoming a follow focus puller, it’s important for you to find out what all these skilled people do.

2. Get Some Work – If you’re thinking that you’d be able to get started as a Camera Assistant right away, you’re mistaken. A majority of people wanting to become one need to make their mark. It’s important for them to prove themselves that they can perform all tasks associated with being a follow focus puller diligently and with ease.

It’ll be good if you start off as a 3rd AC. It all depends on the shot size. Of course, you’ll never want to start out very high and disappoint others in the camera department around you showing your inability to portray the role effectively.

You need to be the right fit for the requirements of the role you’re likely to play sooner or later. And always be true to yourself and others. Don’t you pretend otherwise, if you’re just starting out?

3. Get a Suitable Kit – It’s true that getting started as a follow focus puller is not a child’s play. This is because you must have the right kit you can use for a film shoot. Having your own gear rather than borrowing someone else’s will be the smartest move you can make.

There will be other 1st and 2nd ACs present on a film set and they understand that as a beginner in this profession, you’ll develop your kit and have crucial things you’re likely to use being on set. You’re likely to create a positive impression on your superiors if you make it to the film set with your own kit.

There are several new follow focus pullers who waste their valuable time asking others for borrowing kit and other vital tools. While it may not take many years of practice for compiling a proper kit, when you start with the basics it makes you look not only trustworthy and committed.

Here’s a list of must-have gear for your camera that’s worth the investment:

1-inch Brush

Camera Tape

LED Torch

Lens Cleaning Fluid

Adjustable Cable Ties


Marker Pens (Permanent and Non-Permanent)

Measuring Tape

4. Create a Network – One of the most crucial parts of working in the film industry is creating a strong network with people on set. It’s very important for you to know the people of the Camera Department. The Camera crew, follow focus puller, 2nd AC, and DOP (Director of Photography). If you’re looking to build a good reputation for yourself, establish a good connection with all of them. Doing so will increase your chances for future work.

5. Know Your Kit – Make sure you acquire as much information as you can about the camera equipment as well as lighting. You need to know what kit you’re going to use and have enough knowledge of them so that you can work on set with ease.

Besides, you need to keep abreast of the up-to-the-minute gear and other technical updates. There’s not even a single follow focus puller who would ever want to get caught talking about something which is no longer in trend. You don’t want to lose the confidence of camera departments in you.

Truth be told, there’s a lot more to deal with than just pulling focus. This experienced personnel is great camera technicians. When they’re on a film set, not only do they prepare bodies of the camera, they also prepare lenses and all of the accessories which are required on a set.

Wrapping up…

Follow focus pullers lend their support to the camera department. They are adept at performing various tasks. They assemble cameras and other related equipment from a hire company. Not only that, they send messages to the production office.

Using Royalty Free Music For YouTube Videos

Music is an essential component in any video. It engages your target audience by emphasizing the mood and energy of your video project. But even though a hit song might be perfect for your video it does not mean you are free to use it. It most cases you don’t have the right.

So what type of music can you use in your YouTube or Vimeo video? Most commercial music is protected under copyright and in the past decade, YouTube has created a system to analyze and flag users that have infringed upon these rights. YouTube’s system references the music used in your project against their database of copyright protected music. Through this Content ID system, YouTube can then report the views on your video and send it back to the copyright holder. YouTube can also mute the audio in your video, run ads over your video, or completely remove your video.

It is possible to find the composers, producers, and songwriters for the original commercial music and obtain a license from them but this method is certainly not an easy or an inexpensive process. For instance, this copyright can fall under a number of different parties. First off, the composer owns the compositional copyright to the music, the performer or the artist owns the performance rights to the song, and finally, the record company can also have a hand in the sound recording copyright to the track. Overall, in order to obtain a license from the following parties, you could end up paying a large fee (in the tens of thousands) for the music used in your video. Fortunately, there is an affordable alternative to this time-consuming and expensive process.

Take a look at the YouTube Copyright Center this site thoroughly explains the restrictions to using copyrighted music in online video content.

Royalty free music or otherwise known as stock music for YouTube is the ideal quick, cost-effective, and of course completely legal alternative to expensive custom music or commercial license options. Once a royalty free music license is acquired the licensee does not have to pay any additional fees for use of this track and is also able to use this track on as many projects as they would like in perpetuity. Furthermore, many music libraries allow YouTube video content creators to monetize videos that contain their music content. This is extremely important for well-known YouTube and Vimeo creators that depend on the ad income that their channels produce. Many professional YouTube, Vimeo, and social media video content creators rely on stock music as an easy way to get high-quality music behind their creative projects.