What Does a Stunt Coordinator Do?

Posted by Maja Aro on Jul 15, 2020 7:14:49 AM

What Does a Stunt Coordinator Do?

Guest blog post by Maja Aro | Sea To Sky Stunts

What Does a Stunt Coordinator Do?Source: Royalty-free stock vector ID: 1421148581, Shutterstock

We have all heard about the high profile stunt-related accidents that have occurred recently (Joi Harris on Deadpool 2, John Bernecker on The Walking Dead) but what about the more common and often overlooked incidences? What about all the close calls? And most importantly, how do we reduce the potential of these accidents happening again?

As a stunt performer, I have personally witnessed and have been involved in a number of on-set accidents. Until recently, it has been our industry culture to just “tough it out” and many of the details are often “swept under the rug”.

The long-term effects of this methodology have left a number of ex-stunt performers with chronic injuries, long-term cognitive dysfunction and in financial hardship with insufficient support as the causes of the injuries were not documented thoroughly.

As a Stunt Coordinator, I have worked to change this culture by increasing transparency in the planning process and making it a priority to share information between departments and amongst my peers.

A written Safe-Work Plan and Risk Assessment (contact Sea To Sky Stunts to request these documents) help make this process open and collaborative. Incidences and close calls are documented, and corrective actions are implemented to prevent similar incidences from occurring in the future.

By their very nature, of course, stunt sequences have elevated risks.

The question is, how should production properly engage in elevated risk activities?

The simple answer: you hire a qualified Stunt Coordinator who is experienced and well versed in the relevant region’s safe-work protocol and occupational health and safety regulations.

This person will provide a clear written work plan that is easily understood by all departments, outlining cast involvement, level of risk and the equipment and procedures involved in executing the sequence safely.

Important Stunt Safety Risk Tolerance Guidelines:

Acceptable Risk Level re: Stunts

Minor lacerations, sprains and other non-long term injuries to a stunt performer fall within the Acceptable risk level when planning a stunt, e.g., minor lacerations of non-vital epidermis to a stunt performer when going through a tempered glass window is an acceptable risk.

Acceptable risk tolerance for cast should never exceed minor athletic injuries (minor bruising, minor abrasions, minor sprains, etc.)

Acceptable risk tolerance for stunt performers should never exceed moderate athletic injuries (moderate bruising, superficial lacerations, 2nd degree burns, non-long-term tendon and bone damage, etc.)

Unacceptable Risk Level re: Stunts

A stunt performer getting large, deep, permanently damaging lacerations or a laceration to a vital sensory organ or any organ is an Unacceptable risk. Other Examples:

  • Severe or cumulative concussions
  • Long-term or debilitating bone, ligament or tendon damage
  • Death

Common Stunt Safety Questions & Answers:

How do I find a qualified Stunt Coordinator for my project?

ACTRA and UBCP govern union Stunt Coordinators and Stunt Performers in Canada. They have a database of all current Stunt Coordinators. As always, resumes and IMDb can be used to review work history.

A Stunt Coordinator should have a provincially recognized:

  • supervisor safety certificate
  • fall protection certificate
  • occupational first aid certificate

These certificates ensure that the Stunt Coordinator has the tools necessary to determine a safe workflow that complies with insurance and liability requirements for their specific region.

Coordinators should also be familiar with the provincial (and/or state) occupational health and safety regulations.

What are some of the questions production should ask when planning a stunt?

  • Has the Stunt Coordinator completed a Safe Work Plan and Risk Assessment? (contact Sea To Sky Stunts to request these documents)
  • Who is involved in the stunt? What is the necessity of cast participation? 
  • Will the stunt require rehearsals? Early access to a location? 
  • What level of First Aid or Emergency Service will be required?
  • What other departments need to be involved in safely planning the stunt?

What are the best practices by which a Stunt Coordinator should be governed?

Most importantly: All performers have the right to say “No” to unsafe work.

It is the Stunt Coordinator’s responsibility to:

  • create an environment where open dialogue can occur (concerns and problems can be resolved without fear of retaliation, bullying or belittlement)
  • ensure that adequate rehearsals and planning occur prior to filming on set
  • ensure that performer credentials are vetted (applicable licences, certifications and accolades)
  • ensure that no agenda takes priority over a performer’s health and safety (artistic decisions by creatives, ethnic sensitivities, etc.)
  • present solutions that are within the acceptable risk tolerance of production

All stunt sequences are unique and present their own individual set of risks and challenges. Again, a qualified Stunt Coordinator will help guide production to produce exciting action sequences while intelligently managing their exposure.

Daily Safety Sign-in Sheet – FREE Download

You may download a copy of Sea To Sky’s Daily Safety Sign-in Sheet. [PDF]

This sheet can be used to keep track of any hazards, the safety precautions being taken to address them, and personnel on set. Ideally, the sheet would be completed in conjunction with a qualified Stunt Coordinator giving a safety orientation of the location at the start of the day.

The goal is to orient new workers, as well as make all workers aware of the workplace hazards on new locations, and clearly explain to all performers what the plan is for the stunts to be performed that day.

 

About:

Maja Aro is a stunt coordinator, stunt performer and filmmaker from Vancouver, BC.  Maja’s decade and a half long career has taken her around the world working on well-known Hollywood blockbusters (Good Boys,  Twilight Saga, The Cabin In The Woods, Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters) and hit TV shows (Once Upon A Time, The Man In The High Castle, Supernatural, Smallville, Lost In Space) alike. 

Maja has been nominated for three Leo Awards for “Best Stunt Coordination”, three UBCP awards for “Best Stunt”, and a Taurus World Stunt Award for “Best stunt by a stuntwoman”.  In 2015 Maja was honored with the Stunt Warrior Award from the Artemis film festival celebrating her work as a stuntwoman.  Maja was awarded the Artistic Innovation Spotlight award from WIFTV for designing, testing and using a stunt bra harness on Once Upon A Time.

Sea To Sky Stunts is a Vancouver based stunt company, operating since 2013.   The three owners (Jeff Aro, Scott Nicholson and Maja Aro) have over 60 years of combined experience, multiple awards and nominations, and hundreds of film, TV and commercial credits.  They are a trusted service provider for studios such as Netflix, Amazon, ABC, A&E, and NBC/Universal to name a few.

They specialize in providing stunt related services and consultation, stunt equipment rentals and pride themselves on being on the forefront of safety.

Front Row Insurance Brokers Inc. is an independent insurance broker that provides film insurance for the lowest possible cost. Should a claim occur, Front Row ensures that clients receive the money they are owed per the policy, as quickly as possible.

 

Related Posts:

FILM PRODUCTION INSURANCE: COVERING STUNTS AND SPECIAL EFFECTS

8 WAYS TO SAVE MONEY WHEN INSURING STUNTS & SPFX

DISCLAIMER: Informational statements regarding insurance coverage are for general description purposes only. These statements do not amend, modify or supplement any insurance policy. Consult the actual policy or your broker for details regarding terms, conditions, coverage, exclusions, products, services and programs which may be available to you. Your eligibility for particular products and services is subject to the final determination of underwriting qualifications and acceptance by the insurance underwriting company providing such products or services. This website does not make any representations that coverage does or does not exist for any particular claim or loss, or type of claim or loss, under any policy. Whether coverage exists or does not exist for any particular claim or loss under any policy depends on the facts and circumstances involved in the claim or loss and all applicable policy wording.

Topics: Stunt Insurance, SPFX Insurance

Protect Your Theatre Company and Patrons with Cyber Insurance!

Posted by Grant Patten on Jul 13, 2020 7:27:49 AM

Protect Your Theatre Company and Patrons with Cyber Insurance!

Protect Your Theatre Company and Patrons with Cyber Insurance!Source: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 635676176, Shutterstock

Don’t think a cyber hack could happen to your theatre company? Well, think again! Even smaller non-profit theatres can be and have been victims of cyber attacks.

Just look at the below real-life examples of theatre company hacks to see how real this threat is:

Small Catholic theatre company hack (2015)

In 2015, a small Catholic theatre company had its website hacked, and an obscene message was placed on its homepage. After their IT team investigated and determined that there was further malware, the company had to rebuild its website and database from scratch!

Rebuilding a database from scratch is expensive and accomplishing this usually means directing attention/resources away from your business’s normal operations. With cyber liability insurance, the included business interruption coverage would cover lost income and related costs.

The “Pharma hack” on non-profits (2016)

In 2016, a non-profit theatre company was hacked, along with various other non-profit organizations. This hack targeted non-profit websites, surreptitiously displaying messages about buying Viagra and other pharmaceuticals.

Hackers usually got access to these websites via a WordPress security vulnerability, transforming each site into an online pharmacy. They sometimes even built separate webpages within the site to host the pharmacy page or slipped keywords into the site’s content, such as “Viagra” or other drugs.

With Front Row’s cyber insurance product, the included forensic investigation covers the legal, technical and forensic services necessary to review whether a cyber attack has occurred, to assess the impact of the attack and to stop the attack.

Shakespearean theatre ransomware hack (2019)

In 2019, a Shakespearean theatre was hit with ransomware, which took down their entire ticketing system and patron information database! The theatre was getting ready to deliver their first performance of Dickens' A Christmas Carol, but the ransomware attack put a damper on those plans and they had to cancel the show. They were forced to rebuild their entire database from scratch.

Cyber risk insurance includes coverage for both business interruption (lost income) and ransomware investigation. The insurance will also cover payments to those who threaten to obtain and disclose sensitive information.

The included first-party cyber liability covers the cost of actions taken to “make right” a cyber attack for your patrons—things such as notifying them, purchasing credit monitoring services for them and PR efforts related to the attack.

WHAT IS CYBER INSURANCE | CYBER LIABILITY INSURANCE | CYBER SECURITY INSURANCE | CYBER RISK INSURANCE | HACK INSURANCE?

Cyber hack insurance for theatre companies is designed to protect them from certain losses associated with data breaches and hacks. After a hack, there are costs companies will incur, including (but not limited to):

  • notifying patrons that their information has been stolen (some provinces even have mandatory data breach reporting requirements)
  • paying for PR/crisis communications to explain what happened
  • paying to restore or recover any stolen data/hacked accounts
  • paying to conduct an investigation to determine what happened
  • losing money from business interruption

SO, HOW CAN CYBER INSURANCE HELP THEATRE COMPANIES?

Cyber hack insurance can help with expenses associated with managing a hack, such as incident response, crisis communications and data recovery expenses.

PROTECT your data: If you’re an Artistic Director or other theatre company employee, chances are you do a lot of work on websites and/or computers that hold databases with patron information. If these websites and/or computers are hacked, that could result in business interruption or the need to notify patrons that their information has been stolen, or both.

If you suffer a cyber hack, your insurance can help you manage the costs associated with the loss. Front Row's cyber hack insurance policy includes comprehensive cyber coverage with limit options up to $1,000,000.

90% of small businesses in Canada do not have cyber insurance: don’t be one of them. Take a few minutes to protect your theatre company and patrons!

Get a Quote Online In 2 Mins.

 

About: Front Row Insurance Brokers Inc. is an independent insurance broker that provides cyber insurance for the lowest possible cost. Should a claim occur, Front Row ensures that clients receive the money they are owed per the policy, as quickly as possible. Front Row has offices in Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal and Halifax.

Citations:

http://www.quovadistheatre.org/the-site-hacked-rebuild-blues/
https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/dec/21/pharma-hack-preys-on-nonprofits-to-peddle-drugs-on/ https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/news/security/ransomware-writes-drama-at-shakespeare-theatre/
https://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/smt-gst.nsf/eng/sf11177.html#s2.3

DISCLAIMER: Informational statements regarding insurance coverage are for general description purposes only. These statements do not amend, modify or supplement any insurance policy. Consult the actual policy or your broker for details regarding terms, conditions, coverage, exclusions, products, services and programs which may be available to you. Your eligibility for particular products and services is subject to the final determination of underwriting qualifications and acceptance by the insurance underwriting company providing such products or services. This website does not make any representations that coverage does or does not exist for any particular claim or loss, or type of claim or loss, under any policy. Whether coverage exists or does not exist for any particular claim or loss under any policy depends on the facts and circumstances involved in the claim or loss and all applicable policy wording.

Topics: Theatre Insurance, Cyber Insurance

Filmmakers, are YOU prepared with cyber insurance if you get hacked?

Posted by Grant Patten on Jun 29, 2020 9:15:08 AM

Filmmakers, are YOU prepared with cyber insurance if you get hacked?

Filmmakers, are YOU prepared with cyber insurance if you get hacked?Source: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 635676176, Shutterstock

Don’t think a cyber hack could happen to your production company? Well, think again! Just look at the below real-life examples of film production company hacks to see how real this threat is:

The Sony Pictures hack (2014)

In 2014, a hacker group (likely sponsored by the North Korean government) leaked a release of confidential data from Sony Pictures, including personal information about employees and their families, information about executive salaries at the company, copies of then-unreleased films, plans for future films, scripts and other information. Several Sony Twitter accounts were also hacked.

The group demanded the cancellation of the release of Sony’s comedy film The Interview (2014) and, indeed, major cinema chains opted not to screen the film in response to these threats.

Although the film eventually did reasonably well through a digital-only release, the cinema chain cancellations amounted to (potentially) millions in lost revenue for Sony. With cyber insurance, the included business interruption coverage could cover lost income and related costs.

If a hacker can breach the defences of a large entertainment company such as Sony Pictures, they can certainly breach a smaller production company, too. Hackers are becoming smarter, making it harder for production companies to defend themselves from a data breach.

The Larson Studios hack (2017)

In 2017, LA-based digital production company Larson Studios was hacked. The hackers apparently purloined 10 episodes of Orange is the New Black, which Larson Studios produces, then demanded ransom to prevent the shows from being released unofficially.

Larson Studios made the difficult decision to wire more than $50,000 USD in extortion money to the hackers. Yet, the unscrupulous hackers still leaked the stolen episodes on a file sharing website more than a month before the show was set to premiere. Cyber insurance would cover payments to those who threaten to obtain and disclose sensitive information.

Larson Studios made another expensive decision: to hire private data security experts to find out what happened. With cyber liability insurance, the cost of a forensic investigation is included in the policy.

WHAT IS CYBER INSURANCE | CYBER LIABILITY INSURANCE | CYBER SECURITY INSURANCE | HACK INSURANCE?

Cyber hack insurance for filmmakers is designed to protect them from certain losses associated with data breaches and hacks. After a hack, there are costs you may incur, including (but not limited to):

  • notifying customers that their information has been stolen
  • paying to restore or recover the stolen data
  • paying to conduct an investigation to determine what happened
  • losing money from business interruption

SO, HOW CAN CYBER INSURANCE HELP FILMMAKERS?

Hack insurance can help with expenses associated with managing a hack, such as incident response and data recovery expenses.

PROTECT your data: If you’re a filmmaker, the second-most important object you own, next to your camera, is likely your computer. You likely do your video editing using it, and likely maintain your production company website(s) using it.

Not only is your work stored on your computer(s), you may also have accounting, employee and/or client personal information on there. If you suffer a hack, your insurance can help you manage the costs associated with the loss. Front Row's cyber hack insurance policy starts at just $300 CAD annually and includes comprehensive cyber coverage with limit options up to $1,000,000.

90% of small businesses in Canada do not have Cyber Insurance: take a few minutes to protect your production company, which has taken you so long to establish.

Get a Quote Online In 2 Mins.

 

About: Front Row Insurance Brokers Inc. is an independent insurance broker that provides cyber insurance for the lowest possible cost. Should a claim occur, Front Row ensures that clients receive the money they are owed per the policy, as quickly as possible. Front Row has offices in Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal and Halifax.

Citations:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sony_Pictures_hack

https://variety.com/2017/digital/features/netflix-orange-is-the-new-black-leak-dark-overlord-larson-studios-1202471400/

DISCLAIMER: Informational statements regarding insurance coverage are for general description purposes only. These statements do not amend, modify or supplement any insurance policy. Consult the actual policy or your broker for details regarding terms, conditions, coverage, exclusions, products, services and programs which may be available to you. Your eligibility for particular products and services is subject to the final determination of underwriting qualifications and acceptance by the insurance underwriting company providing such products or services. This website does not make any representations that coverage does or does not exist for any particular claim or loss, or type of claim or loss, under any policy. Whether coverage exists or does not exist for any particular claim or loss under any policy depends on the facts and circumstances involved in the claim or loss and all applicable policy wording.

Topics: Cyber Insurance

10 Best Laptops for Photo Editing in 2020 / Best Photography Computers

Posted by Grant Patten on Jun 23, 2020 12:05:45 PM

10 BEST LAPTOPS FOR PHOTO EDITING IN 2020 / BEST PHOTOGRAPHY COMPUTERS

Let’s review the ten best laptops for photo editing available on the market now. We’ll discuss:

  1. Apple MacBook Pro
  2. HP Spectre
  3. Lenovo ThinkPad
  4. Dell XPS
  5. Dell Inspiron
  6. Microsoft Surface
  7. Asus ZenBook
  8. Acer ConceptD
  9. MSI Prestige
  10. Razer Blade

 

1. Apple MacBook Pro (various sizes) | best computers for photo editing

Apple MacBook Pro

The famous MacBook is at the top of our list of best laptops for photo editing simply because its performance is excellent (especially if you opt for up to 32GB of memory) and it can handle high-level processing for programs like Photoshop, Lightroom and Final Cut Pro.

The 16-inch larger screen [Amazon Link] is more expensive than the smaller 13-inch [Amazon Link], of course, but both are excellent machines.

2. HP Spectre x360 15 | best computers for photo editing

HP Spectre x360 15

The HP Spectre [Amazon Link] was rated by Laptop Mag as the all-around best laptop for photo editing.

A stunning 4K OLED display; this display is coated in Gorilla Glass, so it has a high quality, sturdy look and feel, with a touchscreen that is both accurate and responsive. The computer’s discrete graphics card (NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q) should allow photographers to do demanding photo editing without any issues.

Colour gamut values are very good: it reproduces 256% of the sRGB gamut.

3. Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 | best computers for photo editing

Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 2

Are you a professional photographer looking for a laptop that excels at both image editing and manipulation? Then, the Lenovo ThinkPad P1 [Amazon Link] is the best photo editing laptop for your unique needs.

This computer is compact, lightweight, and highly portable.

The Lenovo P1 has a 15-inch 4K display and supports 100% of the Adobe RGB colour space.

4. Dell XPS 15 7590 | best computers for photo editing

Dell XPS 15 7590

The Dell XPS 15 [Amazon Link] is a laptop geared toward video production, photo editing, and professional use. The dedicated NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 4GB graphics card provides excellent performance and fast speed in graphic design, photography, and photo editing.

The OLED screen is 4K. It has a full SD card slot, which should be useful to photographers.

The XPS 15 and MacBook Pro use the same CPU. Includes 16GB of RAM; can be upgraded.

5. Dell Inspiron 13 7373 | best computers for photo editing

Dell Inspiron 13 7373

Another solid option for photo editing in the Dell line is the Inspiron 13 7373 [Amazon Link].

The generous 256GB solid state drive will be able to store plenty of images at large file sizes. The 1080p display is bright and vibrant.

The RAM is 8GB, though, which should be acceptable for light-to-moderate photo editing work, but heavy-duty, complex photo editing may not be ideal at this modest level of RAM.

6. Microsoft Surface Book 2 | best computers for photo editing

Microsoft Surface Book 2

Microsoft’s Surface Book 2 [Amazon Link] is a powerful little machine that is able to convert into a laptop or a tablet. However, if you wish to use a stylus with the touchscreen, a Surface Pen has to be purchased separately.

The 3000x2000 display is vibrant and impressive, and the 256GB solid state hard drive will be able to store a generous amount of photos.

Colour accuracy is adequate for most graphic design and photo editing. Should you need 100% Adobe RGB, you'll have to connect to an external monitor.

As with the Inspiron, though: the RAM is also 8GB, which should be acceptable for light-to-moderate photo editing work, but could be challenging for highly complex photo editing.

7. Asus ZenBook Pro Duo | best computers for photo editing

Asus ZenBook Pro Duo

The Asus ZenBook Pro Duo [Amazon Link] is an impressive computer with 16GB RAM, so it should be able to handle even complex photo editing work. The 1TB solid state hard drive will be able to store an enormous amount of images at large file sizes.

The 4K secondary touchscreen works seamlessly with the main 15.6-inch 4K UHD OLED touchscreen.

This ZenBook has excellent heat dispersion; there are fans on both sides of the chassis that blow heat outward to the left and right.

8. Acer ConceptD 7 | best computers for photo editing

Acer ConceptD 7

The Acer ConceptD 7 [Amazon Link] is an excellent laptop from an underrated, often overlooked brand. This machine includes 32GB of RAM, which means that it will be able to handle even the most complex photo editing jobs and RAW photo files.

The magnesium alloy chassis is durable, thin, and lightweight, measuring only 0.7″ thick.

The 15.6” 4K Ultra HD (3840 x 2160) screen is more than adequate for most photo editing jobs. This display runs in the Adobe RGB colour space and is Pantone Validated.

9. MSI Prestige 15 | best computers for photo editing

MSI Prestige 15

The MSI Prestige 15 [Amazon Link] is a powerful laptop with 16GB RAM and a 512GB solid state drive. The computer is specifically marketed toward photographers, videographers and content creators.

This computer has an excellent 4K True Pixel display, delivering 100% of the Adobe RGB colour gamut.

The Intel Core i7 U-Processor and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 work together to deliver “a 40% increase for editing programs such as Photoshop and a 50% faster experience for a fluid creative workflow, especially during multi-threaded processes.” (MSI)

10. Razer Blade 15 Studio Edition | best computers for photo editing

Razer Blade 15 Studio Edition

The Razer Blade 15 Studio Edition Laptop [Amazon Link] includes 32GB RAM and a 1TB solid state drive, making it capable of handling the most complex photo editing tasks.

The 0.7" thin aluminum unibody makes this computer lightweight and highly portable. The computer also has a “vapor chamber cooling” system for maximum performance and comfort.

The 4K OLED touch display will be pleasing to most photographers.

Photo Editing Accessories for your Laptop | Photo Editing Laptop Accessories

If you’re getting a laptop for photo editing, don’t forget about these important accessories:

A laptop sleeve will help protect your laptop against dust, debris and scratches. You could get the “official” one that is usually an accessory to the laptop purchase, or you could get a generic one that fits various laptops of a certain size, such as the RAINYEAR 13 Inch Laptop Sleeve. [Amazon Link]

Having an external monitor is generally better than having just the laptop screen, so consider getting a nice 4K resolution monitor to complement your laptop (you’ll want a monitor that is colour accurate. Computer speed and high performance don’t matter so much if your colours are off!) A good one to consider is the Samsung 28-Inch UE570 UHD 4K Monitor. [Amazon Link]

KwiltGo Personal Cloud Storage DeviceAn external hard drive and/or subscription to a cloud storage service such as Dropbox would be advisable because even if you have a large hard drive on the laptop, you will likely be surprised at how quickly that drive can fill up. A well-reviewed external HD to consider is the KwiltGo Personal Cloud Storage Device. [Amazon Link]

Photo editing software will obviously be essential and some standard options to consider are Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom, Photolemur and/or ON1 Photo RAW. Pro Tip: consider getting an external graphics-processing unit (eGPU) if you’ll be doing highly complex image work/editing many RAW photos. Many laptops have a substantial amount of RAM and a powerful CPU, but often lack a powerful graphics processor.

Note: ~8GB of RAM can be a bit tight if you're using both Photoshop and Lightroom, plus other software like a web browser, so if you’ll be using a lot of software simultaneously, always opt for more RAM.

Get Photography Insurance | Photography Equipment Insurance | Photographer Insurance | Photography Laptop Insurance

Front Row’s insurance for photographers is a good option for insuring your photo gear. You can get a quote and purchase a policy online in just a few minutes, or read more about the coverages available on the photography insurance site.

Note: Front Row’s insurance for photographers automatically includes $5,000 (CAD) Laptops Coverage, at no additional cost.

Refer a Friend to Front Row Insurance

Based on customer demand, we’ve setup our referral marketing program and if you refer a friend to Front Row, you could win a $15 Amazon eGift Card OR be entered into a random draw to win a $99 Amazon eGift Card! (depending on your province)

 

Related posts:

THE BEST CAMERAS FOR YOUTUBE/VLOGGING

HOW TO PROTECT YOUR CAMERA LENS(ES)

Amazon Associates Disclosure: Front Row Insurance is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon. This post may contain affiliate links. There is no additional cost to you.

Citations:

https://www.techradar.com/news/best-laptops-for-photographers-and-photo-editing-in-photoshop
https://www.findingtheuniverse.com/best-laptop-for-photo-editing/
https://www.laptopmag.com/articles/best-photo-editing-laptops
https://www.windowscentral.com/msi-unveils-prestige-and-modern-laptops-built-creators

Topics: photography insurance, Best of

How to obtain Los Angeles film permits / LA film permits

Posted by Alyson Forster on Jun 15, 2020 6:54:55 AM

HOW TO OBTAIN LOS ANGELES FILM PERMITS / LA FILM PERMITS

HOW TO OBTAIN LOS ANGELES FILM PERMITS / LA FILM PERMITSSource: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 604497425, Shutterstock

How to obtain Los Angeles film permits / LA film permits: The Do’s and Don’ts of Film LA

If you have ever been a part of a production that was shot in the Greater Los Angeles area, you have more than likely worked with Film LA. Film LA is the permit authority for all productions taking place in and around Los Angeles County.

Obtaining a permit in Los Angeles is different from most other parts of the US. They not only have specific insurance requirements, but they also have an online insurance verification system known as KwikComply. If you need to obtain a permit, you must have your insurance agent submit on your behalf.

When you are new to working with Film LA, it can seem overwhelming and frustrating at times. There are many steps that are unique to the Greater Los Angeles area.

We have collaborated with Film LA to show you the “Do’s and Don’ts” of obtaining a film permit in Los Angeles.

Map of all the areas Film LA serves / Los Angeles filming locations:

Map of all the areas Film LA servesSource: Film LA (Above image can change frequently as Film LA updates their areas served when they begin working with new clients. Potential customers should still check with Film LA to eliminate any confusion and ensure accuracy.)

DO: REVIEW FILM LA’S CURRENT INSURANCE REQUIREMENTS BEFORE PURCHASING COVERAGE

Film LA’s insurance requirements are constantly changing due to regulatory decisions from the State of CA. When speaking with one of their reps, they recommended double-checking their website to make sure you are aware of any new changes.

An example of a new insurance requirement in effect July 1st, 2020 is that Workers Compensation is required on all productions. This is due to the CA AB5 (California Assembly Bill 5) that was passed in the beginning on 2020.

This is a state statute that requires employers to treat independent contractors as regular employees unless they pass a three-part test. This means offering medical and workers compensation coverage.

Example of who would/wouldn’t need to be supplied workers compensation coverage under CA AB5:

Nike can hire a videographer as a 1099 (contractor) to work on a commercial or event since video production is not related to making shoes, but if your business is filmmaking, anyone who works with you in production is an employee, such as a camera op or production assistant. The businesses must be fundamentally unrelated.

DO: CHECK OUT THE RESOURCES FILM LA HAS TO OFFER

Film LA has a great resource page for productions of all size. They have information on the California Film Commission, where you can apply for a CA Film Tax Incentive, local contacts, and software made specifically for filmmakers, such as MYLA311, which is an app with a useful directory of LA city services and phone numbers

DO: LOOK FOR AN INSURANCE BROKER THAT SPECIALIZES IN PRODUCTION AND ENTERTAINMENT INSURANCE

As much as you may like your agent who bundles your home & auto insurance, production insurance is a specialized niche of insurance. Make sure to do your research before binding coverage. Review their website – see if they specialize in entertainment; if not, they may not know how Film LA requires insurance verifications.

See Front Row’s US homepage for the US film insurance products we currently offer.

DO: BUDGET IN THE COST OF THE PERMIT ITSELF | HOW MUCH DO FILM PERMITS COST IN LOS ANGELES? | how much do film permits cost in la?

According to Film LA, “The base fee is $699 USD and from there it will increase. Most commonly, a typical, single location permit in the City of LA will run about $957 USD at the minimum. Because of the uniqueness of each production and the permit they pull, we cannot provide a hard range of fees. I have seen permits in the tens of thousands of dollars and I have seen permits for as little as $784 USD.” (pricing subject to change)

To receive an exact permit quote, please email info@filmla.com.

DON’T: SAY “NO” TO A WAIVER OF SUBROGATION

A Waiver of Subrogation is a requirement of Film LA. It is a contractual provision whereby an insured waives the right of their insurance carrier to seek redress or seek compensation for losses from a negligent third party.

Be sure to let your agent know that this waiver is needed before coverage is bound.

Adding this waiver to your policy will add additional premium and may take more time for the insurance company to endorse. Note: Receiving this endorsement from the insurer can take anywhere from 24-48 hours.

DON’T: WAIT UNTIL THE LAST MINUTE TO SECURE A PERMIT

This process of obtaining the correct insurance coverage, your agent submitting your coverage through KwikComply, getting approval from the City of Los Angeles and Film LA… this all takes time. Having your agent properly quote, bind and submit proof of coverage will take a minimum of 24 hours.

So, keep in mind: if you have a shoot on Saturday, you may not be able to secure coverage if you call your agent on Friday afternoon.

DON’T:  ASSUME ALL OF LOS ANGELES COUNTY HAS THE SAME INSURANCE REQUIREMENTS

Certain areas of Los Angeles County, including school districts, beaches, parks, or cities may require specialized verbiage, limits, etc. If unsure, visit Film LA’s website or speak with your permit coordinator.

Citations:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_Assembly_Bill_5_(2019)

https://www.investopedia.com/terms/w/waiver-of-subrogation.asp

Topics: US Film insurance broker

10 Tips to Protect Your Camera at the Beach / Protect Camera from Sand

Posted by Grant Patten on Jun 8, 2020 7:35:18 AM

Protect your camera at the beach / protect your camera from sand

Protecting your camera at the beach / how to protect your camera from sandSource: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 1697115355, Shutterstock

Many (often amateur) photographers think that water is the most dangerous element on a beach that could potentially damage their photography gear – but seasoned photographers know that sand is just as much of an issue. Many of these photographers have likely learned the lesson the hard way – a small grain of sand managed to get into their camera lens or sensor, sometimes irrevocably damaging it. Moreover, even if salvageable, this kind of delicate repair often comes at a high cost.

10 Tips to consider for protecting your camera at the beach / protect camera from sand

  1. Don’t change lenses while out on the sand. Ideally, though, don’t change lenses at all – just pick the one you want to go with and have it on your camera prior to arrival at beach
  2. If you MUST change lenses: don't change lenses outside or set lenses down in the sand (or even on a beach towel; that can still be risky). If windy, change the lens in a bag or in a beach changing room, if available
  3. Try not to use lenses that “breathe” (lenses that slightly move in and out during focusing). These lenses can inhale sand, which will get all over your sensor
  4. Avoid using cameras with cheap plastic bodies and/or zoom lenses. Zoom lenses can be badly compromised from just a few grains of sand! Therefore, especially avoid zoom lenses that zoom and/or focus externally; some are reasonably OK against spray and sand, but most are not
  5. Avoid touching your camera with dirty/sandy hands – the sand particles could easily transfer from your hands onto your camera gear
  6. Have a clean towel on hand (e.g., cotton towels, one to put your camera bag/case on and one to cover it. White towels are preferable; keeps things a bit cooler)
  7. Bring a bottle of freshwater so you can use a damp towel to wipe down your gear immediately if any saltwater spray gets on it
  8. Don't leave the camera in direct sunlight for long, and have it in a bag and/or Ziploc for extra protection from sand when not in use. Just be wary of sand in general
  9. Always keep the lens capped (except when shooting, obviously)
  10. To be on the safe side, consider purchasing a professional camera cleaning after your beach sojourn

Some cameras to consider for beach photography / Protecting camera at beach

Whenever doing beach photography, it would be safest to use weather sealed cameras (and lenses). Weather sealing a camera refers to having rubber gaskets in the seams to keep sand from the camera’s internals. However, if the lens doesn't have weather sealing also, sand can still enter into the camera through the lens mount.

Many cameras are already weather sealed, but don’t assume that your camera is necessarily weather sealed just because it’s a new model. Be sure to check with the camera manufacturer to verify. Ideally, if you're really into shooting in sandy conditions, get a sealed camera body and lenses.

Good weather sealed cameras for beach photography / Weather sealed DSLR

Front Row Photography: PENTAX K-70The Pentax K-70 Black [Amazon Link] is fully weather sealed and has largely positive reviews on Amazon. This camera is built specifically for outdoor shooting. Another solid, less expensive option from this brand is the Pentax K-30 16 MP CMOS Digital SLR [Amazon Link], which is also weather sealed and built for shooting outdoors.

The RICOH WG-50 Still/Video Camera Digital [Amazon Link] is waterproof, which means it will keep out sand as well. This highly rugged camera should be able to handle most extreme weather conditions while shooting on a beach.

The Olympus Tough TG-6 Waterproof Camera [Amazon Link] should also be considered because it is not only waterproof, but also dustproof, shockproof, crushproof, and freezeproof. This would also be a good choice for beach photography.

The NIKON COOLPIX W150 [Amazon Link] is an affordable waterproof (and shockproof) camera that would be a good choice for shooting on a beach. The 13.2 MP CMOS image sensor means you should be able to capture nice images with it, even if you’re on the beach at night.

If you MUST use a non-weather sealed DSLR on the beach, consider putting an elastic hair tie around the base of the lens mount to provide a little extra protection.

Consider also getting a camera condom – yes, that’s a thing! A camera condom (or skin camera protector) is a rubbery skin for cameras, similar to the cases that have been protecting iPods and iPhones for years. Well-known brands selling these include Delkin and Polaroid. [Affiliate Links]

GoPro for beach photography / best GoPro for beach

Rather than a DSLR, though, you might want to consider a GoPro for beach photography. A good one to consider is the GoPro Hero5 [Amazon Link], which is durable by design and can handle some sand on it without being ruined.

Camera accessories to consider for beach photography / protecting camera at beach

—Do not touch or rub the lens glass. Use a squeeze blower, such as the SODIAL(R) Rubber Air Dust Blower Cleaner Pump [Amazon Link]

—A damp microfiber cloth to collect any stray sea spray/sand grains can also be helpful. Some clothes are designed for camera lenses, such as the Eco-Fused 18 Pack of MicroFiber Cleaning Cloth [Amazon Link]

—You certainly don’t want sand getting into your memory card slot(s), so gaffer tape your card compartments shut, including the hot-shoe and flash. A good gaffer tape to get is the XFasten Professional Grade Gaffer Tape [Amazon Link]

—Use only one lens and have a filter on it, ideally a UV/clear filter such as the AmazonBasics UV Protection Camera Lens Filter [Amazon Link]

Bewinner Bayonet Lens Hood—Consider getting a cover for your camera and/or lens, such as the LensCoat LCRCPM4 Raincoat Pro, the Peak Design Shell Large Form-Fitting Camera Rain and Dust Cover or the Bewinner Bayonet Lens Hood Rainproof Snowproof Sandproof Camera Lens Shade [Amazon Links]

—Use a good, sturdy tripod; a cheap one will almost certainly tip over in moderate wind and make your camera + lens eat sand. You can also get a cover for your tripod, such as the LensCoat LensHide camo camera tripod cover [Amazon Link]

—Keep your camera + lenses in a backpack, such as the BAGSMART Large Camera Backpack Bag; or, a case, such as the Pelican 1510 Case [Amazon Links]

Some Beach Photographs | Sand Photographs | Beach Photography | Beach Photos | Beach Family Photos | Beach Photographer

Father taking photo of his toddler son playing on pebble beach

View from behind of a father taking photo of his toddler son playing on pebble beach.
Shutterstock: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 1711353739

Ostrich burying head in the sand

Ostrich burying head in the sand, Tsavo East National Park, Kenya, Africa.
Shutterstock: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 1570154773

Boy and girl playing on the beach

Boy and girl playing on the beach on summer holidays.
Shutterstock: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 1010324137

Woman photographer in red dress standing & soaking in water

Woman photographer in red dress standing & soaking in water on beach and holding camera in hands.
Shutterstock: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 1708859563

Get Photography Insurance | Photography Equipment Insurance | Front Row Photography | Photographers Insurance

Following these tips will, hopefully, allow you to avoid any sand-related damage to your photography gear. However, just in case something like that does happen, you will want to have photography insurance in place to help cover the cost of repair/replacement.

Front Row’s insurance for photographers is a good option for insuring your photo gear. You can get a quote and purchase a policy online in just five minutes, or read more about the coverages available on the photography insurance site.

Refer a Friend to Front Row Insurance

Based on customer demand, we’ve setup our referral marketing program and if you refer a friend to Front Row, you could win a $15 Amazon eGift Card OR be entered into a random draw to win a $99 Amazon eGift Card! (depending on your province)

 

Related posts:

Protecting your camera from overheating / protect your camera in the heat

Protect your camera lens(es)

What to Know About Rain Photography: Protecting Your Camera in Rain

Theft from Vehicle: Photography Insurance

DISCLAIMER: Informational statements regarding insurance coverage are for general description purposes only. These statements do not amend, modify or supplement any insurance policy. Consult the actual policy or your broker for details regarding terms, conditions, coverage, exclusions, products, services and programs which may be available to you. Your eligibility for particular products and services is subject to the final determination of underwriting qualifications and acceptance by the insurance underwriting company providing such products or services. This website does not make any representations that coverage does or does not exist for any particular claim or loss, or type of claim or loss, under any policy. Whether coverage exists or does not exist for any particular claim or loss under any policy depends on the facts and circumstances involved in the claim or loss and all applicable policy wording.

Amazon Associates Disclosure: Front Row Insurance is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. This post may contain affiliate links. There is no additional cost to you.

Citations:

https://www.shuttertalk.com/protect-camera-from-dust-sand

Topics: photography insurance

Protect your camera from overheating / protect your camera in the heat

Posted by Grant Patten on Jun 2, 2020 6:54:41 AM

How to protect your camera from overheating

Protect your camera from overheating / protect your camera in the heatSource: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 1638413680, Shutterstock

It’s true – if you’re a professional photographer who can afford to purchase the highest quality camera bodies, they should be able to withstand the heat without any issues, but there are still some best practices that you should keep in mind when shooting in hot weather. Let’s review those in this article…

Tips to protect your camera from overheating / protecting your camera in the heat / shooting in high temperatures

First, check with your camera’s manufacturer to find out the operating temperature of the camera. Avoid taking the camera into environments that will likely exceed this temperature.

Avoid condensation issues by allowing your camera and other equipment to warm up gradually before exposing them to a hot environment. Avoid rapid changes in temperature; limit the number of transitions from warm to cold, and vice versa. For certain camera models, you can even find anti-fog eyepieces [Amazon Link] that reduce condensation.

Consider placing your camera body and lenses in airtight, sealable bags with silica gel packets [Amazon Link] inside before exposing them to heat. An airtight camera case such as the Pelican Small DSLR Camera Case [Amazon Link] would also do the trick.

If you have a camera with an articulating LCD screen, tilt the screen away from the camera body. If you leave the LCD pressed up against the body, this will increase the amount of heat on the camera and can lead to overheating.

Consider leaving your camera’s battery door open, assuming the batteries are adequately snug inside. The door usually doesn’t have to be closed to use the camera. This practice can help dissipate heat.

If possible, use external batteries. If you’re shooting and have a power outlet nearby (or one that could be accessed with extension cords), there are dummy battery adapters that could be used. The dummy battery rests in the camera, which only has a power cord inside, and not an actual battery.

Consider covering any large black surfaces of your camera with aluminized heat shield tape [Amazon Link]. This should reflect the majority of radiant heat. Similarly, placing a white towel or rag over the camera body and lens should reflect sun and keep the camera from heating up too much. Just drape the towel; do not wrap the camera, as you want some air to be able to flow around it.

Consider getting a Lighting Reflector and Stand Kit [Amazon Link]; leave the camera under the reflector with the silver side up. Similarly, you could place a mini umbrella [Amazon Link] over the camera.

Front Row Photography: E-Z UP portable tentConsider using a portable tent such as the one from E-Z UP [Amazon Link]; keep yourself and your photo gear under this for the majority of the shoot and you’ll avoid overheating issues.

Cordless fans powered by lithium-ion batteries [Amazon Link] can help cool down your photography gear in hot environments.

Look at upgrading your memory card(s) – especially if they’re old – to ensure they’re efficient; your camera will then not build up as much internal heat while you shoot.

Device-intensive features such as Live View and HD video recording will generate heat; therefore, don’t use them in the heat unless truly necessary.

If feasible, have a backup camera body and rotate between the two bodies.

Best cameras for hot weather photography / warm weather photography / hot weather photography

Always favour weather sealed cameras. Weather sealing a camera refers to having rubber gaskets in the seams to keep the elements from the camera’s internals. However, if the lens doesn't have weather sealing also, elements can still enter into the camera through the lens mount.

Many cameras are already weather sealed, but don’t assume that your camera is necessarily weather sealed just because it’s a new model. Check with the camera manufacturer to verify.

GoPro is likely the first brand that most people consider when thinking about shooting in harsh, hot climates, and certainly they have some good options, such as the GoPro HERO7 Action Camera. [Amazon Link] However, the image quality on GoPros often isn’t the greatest and they’re generally better for videography than photography.

Point-and-shoot cameras are fine for daytime shooting in hot weather, but you’ll want a basic DSLR & kit lens for any nighttime, low light performance.

Some good DSLRs to consider for hot weather photography:

The Nikon D850 DSLR [Amazon Link] is big and bulky; not much else can match its combination of speed, image quality, and ruggedness.

The Olympus TG-6 [Amazon Link] is branded as “Tough” because it can handle shooting in most harsh environments. It is waterproof, dustproof, shockproof, crushproof, and freezeproof.

Front Row Photography: PENTAX K-70Pentax is known for having excellent weather sealing. The Pentax K-70 Black [Amazon Link] is fully weather sealed and has largely positive reviews on Amazon. This camera is built specifically for outdoor shooting. Another solid, less expensive option from this brand is the Pentax K-30 Weather-Sealed 16 MP CMOS Digital SLR [Amazon Link], which is also weather sealed and built for shooting outdoors.

The Canon 1DX Mark II [Amazon Link] is built for abuse but is also quite expensive. Only professional photographers will want to consider this one.

Other camera accessories to help prevent overheating:

Place a UV filter on your lenses; more specifically, a UV-Haze filter [Amazon Link] can help cut through moderate smoke/particles that can be in the air on especially hot days.

You could place cold gel packs [Amazon Link] on your camera body/other photography equipment to help cool down gear.

Similarly, thermal paste and thermal pads [Amazon Links] can be effective at preventing overheating on many electronics by ensuring that heat generated from the CPU is dissipated.

Generally, carbon fiber tripods [Amazon Link] do better in hot weather than regular tripods.

Have some camera wipes [Amazon Link] on hand to dry off the camera.

Some Hot Weather Photographs | Hot Weather Photography | Warm Weather Photography | Summer Photography

Maybe one of these pictures can inspire you to do some hot weather photography of your own:

Front Row Photography: Beautiful sunset in the mountain landscapes

Beautiful sunset in the mountain landscapes, reflection of sky, majestic sundown mount.
Shutterstock: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 1200723487

Front Row Photography: Woman yoga practice in hot spring water area

Woman yoga practice in hot spring water area with natural hot stream water.
Shutterstock: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 1007762446

Front Row Photography: Hot weather and no rain

Hot weather and no rain makes drought and fires.
Shutterstock: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 190813220

Get Photography Insurance | Insurance for photographers | Photographer Insurance | Fire Photography Insurance

Following these tips will, hopefully, allow you to avoid hot weather-related damage to your photography gear. However, just in case something like that does happen, you will want to have photography insurance in place to help cover the cost of repair/replacement.

Front Row’s insurance for photographers is a good option for insuring your photo gear. You can get a quote and purchase a policy online in just five minutes, or read more about the coverages available on the photography insurance site.

Note: if you are interested in doing any kind of fire photography or photography in and around pyrotechnics, that is not automatically covered and will require special underwriting authorization. Contact us to discuss the details.

Refer a Friend to Front Row Insurance

Based on customer demand, we’ve setup our referral marketing program and if you refer a friend to Front Row, you could win a $15 Amazon eGift Card OR be entered into a random draw to win a $99 Amazon eGift Card! (depending on your province)

 

Related posts:

10 tips to protect your camera at the beach / protect camera from sand

What to Know About Rain Photography: Protecting Your Camera in Rain

Protecting Your Camera Lens(es)

Theft from Vehicle: Photography Insurance

DISCLAIMER: Informational statements regarding insurance coverage are for general description purposes only. These statements do not amend, modify or supplement any insurance policy. Consult the actual policy or your broker for details regarding terms, conditions, coverage, exclusions, products, services and programs which may be available to you. Your eligibility for particular products and services is subject to the final determination of underwriting qualifications and acceptance by the insurance underwriting company providing such products or services. This website does not make any representations that coverage does or does not exist for any particular claim or loss, or type of claim or loss, under any policy. Whether coverage exists or does not exist for any particular claim or loss under any policy depends on the facts and circumstances involved in the claim or loss and all applicable policy wording.

Amazon Associates Disclosure: Front Row Insurance is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon. This post may contain affiliate links. There is no additional cost to you.

Citations:

https://blog.photoshelter.com/2010/08/keeping-your-camera-gear-safe-in-the-heat/
https://gimbalgarage.com/stop-your-sony-a6300-overheating/

Topics: photography insurance

Photographers, are YOU prepared with cyber insurance if you get “brandjacked”?

Posted by Grant Patten on May 26, 2020 8:07:38 AM

ARE YOU PREPARED WITH CYBER INSURANCE IF YOU GET “BRANDJACKED”?

Front Row cyber insurance: brandjacking

Don’t think a cyber hack could happen to your photography business? Well, think again! Just look at the below real-life examples of photography business hacks to see how real this threat is:

Australian photography company – MailChimp account hacked

An Australian photography company’s MailChimp account was hacked in 2018. The hacker imported their spam list and proceeded to email fake invoices from the commandeered account. This is known as “brandjacking”, whereby a hacker assumes the online identity of a brand in order to leverage that business's brand equity for nefarious purposes.

The hacker sent hundreds of thousands of fake invoices to emails around the world, resulting in an unfortunate and embarrassing situation for this photography business. Some consumers who received the fake invoices even reported the business to the Communications & Media Authority.

Hopefully the business had cyber insurance. If they did, they would be able to cover the cost of a forensic investigation to determine how the hack occurred and how to stop it.

Australian photographer hit with ransomware

In 2017, another Australian photographer was hacked – this time hit with ransomware on his computer. He posted about his ordeal on the Digital Photography Review forum, writing, “I have been infected with some sort of virus that has encoded files on my computer – mainly my RAW photo files – and has encrypted them, so now I can't use them.”

Ransom note: Australian photographer hit with ransomwareThe hacker was demanding payment of 0.5 Bitcoin to access a “Decryptor” that would, ostensibly, unlock the photographer’s RAW photo files.

0.5 Bitcoin in Australian dollars (at the time of this writing) = $5,886. Certainly not inexpensive, but the reality is that – once hit with ransomware – you usually have a stark choice between either paying the ransom, or losing your files.

With cyber risk insurance in place, the included ransomware coverage would cover costs associated with investigating threats to commit cyber attacks and payments to those who threaten to obtain and disclose sensitive information.

London-based food photographer hacked

A London UK-based food photographer had his YouTube channel hacked in 2020, even though he had two-step authentication enabled! As he was using Google AdSense to monetize his YouTube videos, this potentially endangered his income.

The photographer theorizes that it was likely an email phishing scam that he fell for because he receives “100-200 messages a day.”

However, with cyber insurance in place, he wouldn’t have to theorize – the insurance would cover the cost of a forensic investigation to determine how, exactly, this happened. Cyber insurance would also include business interruption to cover lost income from the AdSense account.

Swiss photographer Facebook Page hack

In 2019, a popular Swiss photographer’s Facebook Page was hacked and used to scam hundreds of people! He was eventually able to regain access to his Page, but not before many of his followers were tricked out of their hard-earned money. When something like this happens, it is entirely conceivable that the scammed individuals may decide to sue for damages.

Cyber liability insurance includes first-party and third-party cyber liability coverage. The third-party coverage would be particularly useful in this case, as it covers against lawsuits from third parties (e.g., customers) due to a cyber attack on a business.

Portland-based photo business websites hacked

A Portland-based photographer tried logging into her business WordPress websites one day in 2017, only to realize that they had been hacked.

The hacker had sent 60,000 emails from the photographer’s email address.

The photographer called a website security firm to help her resolve the issue. The security firm quoted her at $275 USD per month to help her. With cyber insurance in place, you wouldn’t have to frantically call up random security firms you find on Google. You would simply file a claim and the forensic investigation process would then kickoff.

Ultimately, we’re not sure if any of the above-mentioned photography businesses had cyber liability insurance in place, but it certainly would have been advisable to have such a policy, in all cases.

WHAT IS CYBER INSURANCE | CYBER LIABILITY INSURANCE | CYBER SECURITY INSURANCE | CYBER RISK INSURANCE ?

Cyber hack insurance for photographers is designed to protect them from certain losses associated with data breaches and hacks. After a hack, there are costs you will likely incur, including (but not limited to):

  • notifying customers that their information has been stolen
  • paying to restore or recover the stolen data
  • paying to conduct an investigation to determine what happened
  • losing money from business interruption
  • potentially having to reshoot many photos since they’re now under the control of hackers

SO, HOW CAN CYBER HACK INSURANCE HELP?

Hack insurance can help with expenses associated with managing a hack, such as incident response and data recovery expenses.

PROTECT your data: If you’re a photographer, the second-most important object you own, next to your camera, is likely your computer. Your computer/laptop is, no doubt, essential to your photography business operations.

Not only is your work stored on your computer, you may also have accounting and client personal information on there. If you suffer a hack, your insurance can help you manage the costs associated with the loss. Front Row's cyber hack insurance policy starts at just $300 CAD annually and includes comprehensive cyber coverage with limit options up to $1,000,000.

90% of small businesses in Canada do not have Cyber Insurance: take a few minutes to protect your photography business that has taken you so long to establish.

Get a Quote Online In 2 Mins.

 

Citations:

https://procounter.com.au/2018/04/11/sydney-photographer-hacked-and-brandjacked/
https://fstoppers.com/originals/i-had-my-youtube-channel-stolen-454286
https://www.nationalphotographersinsurance.com/single-post/2017/11/15/Cyber-Hack---Photography-Professional
https://petapixel.com/2019/10/10/my-facebook-photography-page-was-hacked-and-used-to-scam-hundreds-of-people/

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/4153904

DISCLAIMER: Informational statements regarding insurance coverage are for general description purposes only. These statements do not amend, modify or supplement any insurance policy. Consult the actual policy or your broker for details regarding terms, conditions, coverage, exclusions, products, services and programs which may be available to you. Your eligibility for particular products and services is subject to the final determination of underwriting qualifications and acceptance by the insurance underwriting company providing such products or services. This website does not make any representations that coverage does or does not exist for any particular claim or loss, or type of claim or loss, under any policy. Whether coverage exists or does not exist for any particular claim or loss under any policy depends on the facts and circumstances involved in the claim or loss and all applicable policy wording.

Topics: photography insurance, Cyber Insurance

Underwater photography / In-water photography camera protection tips

Posted by Grant Patten on May 21, 2020 8:17:40 AM

Underwater photography / In-water photography camera protection tips

Underwater photography / In-water photography camera protection tipsSource: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 386799562, Shutterstock

Let’s face it – photographing underwater is an inherently precarious situation, but it can also result in some amazing imagery, so the reward can sometimes outweigh the risk. And photographers will continue doing underwater photography as long as this prospect exists, so let’s review some ways that photographers can protect their valuable gear while underwater.

Note: underwater photography is not automatically covered and requires special underwriting authorization (but coverage is available). Contact us for more information.

Tips on protecting your camera underwater / underwater photography

Consider using a dome cover for your camera such as the Vbestlife Underwater Diving Dome [Amazon Link]; these waterproof domes lengthen the distance between the lens and water by ~30mm, with a wide angle to make the picture clearer.

Get a water resistant hard case for your memory cards, such as the Honsky Aluminum Water Resistant Memory Card Carrying Case [Amazon Link]. A water resistant phone case would also be an option for holding the memory cards, such as the JOTO Universal Waterproof Pouch [Amazon Link].

Get a waterproof camera strap to attach to your underwater camera and/or housing so that your camera doesn’t float away from you! One example of such a product is the Float Foam Wrist Strap JJC Waterproof Camera Floating Hand Strap [Amazon Link].

DSLR Camera Universal Waterproof Underwater PouchThere are underwater camera bags; most are for DSLR cameras. The DSLR Camera Universal Waterproof Underwater Pouch [Amazon Link] looks like a decent option. It is waterproof down to 20 meters deep.

Get a dry bag that fits all your gear or even a whole backpack. Something like the Boundless Voyage TPU Waterproof Bag [Amazon Link] should work. It is large enough to carry most photography equipment and is 100% waterproof.

Try to minimize contact with the reef when shooting. Many underwater photographers carry a simple aluminum rod [Amazon Link] that also doubles as a pointing device for this purpose.

Underwater camera housings – how to know they are adequate?

UNDERWATER CAMERA HOUSINGIt’s true – there’s something scary about trusting a piece of plastic to protect $1,000 (or much more) worth of equipment from near certain death by drowning. This technique is not recommended for amateur photographers as it is a delicate operation, but most professional photographers shooting underwater will use DSLRs in underwater housings.

Don’t trust a simple plastic bag to protect your camera underwater, especially if it’s an expensive DSLR. However, keep in mind that high quality DSLR housings can sometimes cost more than the camera!

To be as safe as possible, first, you’ll want to purchase a housing that was specifically designed for your camera, if available. The Sony a6000, for example, has the Andoer MEIKON SY-13 40m/130ft Underwater Waterproof Camera Housing [Amazon Link]. The Olympus TG6 has the Olympus PT-059 Underwater Housing [Amazon Link], and so on…

Testing underwater camera housings / underwater camera housing test

You should always test your housing before every use. Always be sure to read and adhere to the special manufacturer directions before using your housing (prior to submerging the camera/housing, be sure of limits on depth of operations).

You can also get a vacuum device such as the Backscatter AirLock Vacuum System with Manual Valve to verify that your housing is free of leaks before you take it into water.

Once ready to shoot underwater – before entering – consider doing a slow entrance into the water and, ideally, have someone in the boat lower your camera down to you.

Note: approximately every 10m/30ft adds one atmosphere of pressure to your casing, so keep that in mind if you do discover minor leaks.

Best cameras for in-water photography / best underwater cameras

Always favour weather sealed cameras. Weather sealing a camera refers to having rubber gaskets in the seams to keep water from the camera’s internals. However, if the lens doesn't have weather sealing also, water can still enter into the camera through the lens mount. Therefore, make sure to keep the lens mount dry.

Many cameras are already weather sealed, but don’t assume that your camera is necessarily weather sealed just because it’s a new model. Be sure to check with the camera manufacturer to verify.

GoPro is likely the first brand that most people think of when thinking underwater photography, and certainly they have some good options, such as the GoPro HERO7 Waterproof Action Camera, which also has a Waterproof Housing from FitStill. [Amazon Links] However, the image quality on GoPros often isn’t the greatest and they’re generally better for videography than photography.

Inexpensive point-and-shoot cameras for which you can find a water case/bag should be considered, especially if you don’t want to risk flooding an expensive DSLR.

Some underwater cameras to consider:

  • The Sealife DC1400 [Amazon Link] includes the Sea Dragon Flash and is waterproof down to 200 ft. (60 m)!
  • The Nikon COOLPIX AW130 [Amazon Link] is a durable camera that is waterproof down to 100 ft., freezeproof and shockproof
  • The Canon PowerShot D30 [Amazon Link] is waterproof down to 82 ft. below sea level
  • The Olympus TG-6 [Amazon Link] is waterproof (50 ft. / 15 m), dustproof, shockproof, crushproof, and freezeproof
  • The Ricoh WG-50 [Amazon Link] is waterproof down to 46 ft. – perfect for use when submerged
  • The Panasonic DMCTS30A [Amazon Link] is waterproof down to 26 ft. (8 m)

Some In-Water Photographs | Underwater Photography | Underwater Photographer

In-water photography tip: Get a strobe light! An underwater strobe [Amazon Link], AKA underwater flash, is important in underwater photography because it allows you to reduce backscatter (diffuse reflection) and enables you to capture better imagery in dark waters.

Maybe one of these nice in-water pictures can help inspire you to do some underwater photography of your own:

Shallow coral reef and red tropical fish

Shallow coral reef and red tropical fish. Yellow corals and swimming fish. Underwater photography from snorkeling with the marine life. Location: South Sinai Governorate, Egypt. Shutterstock: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 1716574591

Happy child engaged in sports swimming in the pool

Happy child engaged in sports swimming in the pool. He swims underwater on a blue background in swimming goggles and with toys in his hands. Shutterstock: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 1151510360

Swimming Elephant Underwater

Swimming Elephant Underwater. African elephant in ocean with mirrors and ripples at water surface. Shutterstock: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 360848669

Get Photography Equipment Insurance | Front Row Photography | Photographer Insurance | Underwater Photography Insurance

Hopefully these tips should allow you to avoid water-related damage to your photography gear. However, just in case something like that does happen, you will want to have photography insurance in place to help cover the cost of repair/replacement.

Front Row’s insurance for photographers is a good option for insuring your photo gear. You can get a quote online and purchase a policy in five minutes, or read more about the coverages available on the photography insurance site.

Note: underwater photography is not automatically covered and requires special underwriting authorization (but coverage is available). Contact us for more information.

Refer a Friend to Front Row Insurance

Based on customer demand, we’ve setup our referral marketing program and if you refer a friend to Front Row, you could win a $15 Amazon eGift Card OR be entered into a random draw to win a $99 Amazon eGift Card! (depending on your province)

Related posts:

What to Know About Rain Photography: Protecting Your Camera in Rain

Protecting Your Camera Lens(es)

Theft from Vehicle: Photography Insurance

DISCLAIMER: Informational statements regarding insurance coverage are for general description purposes only. These statements do not amend, modify or supplement any insurance policy. Consult the actual policy or your broker for details regarding terms, conditions, coverage, exclusions, products, services and programs which may be available to you. Your eligibility for particular products and services is subject to the final determination of underwriting qualifications and acceptance by the insurance underwriting company providing such products or services. This website does not make any representations that coverage does or does not exist for any particular claim or loss, or type of claim or loss, under any policy. Whether coverage exists or does not exist for any particular claim or loss under any policy depends on the facts and circumstances involved in the claim or loss and all applicable policy wording.

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Citations:

https://photographycourse.net/testing-underwater-housing-before-entering-the-water/

Topics: photography insurance

Guidance on Health and Safety for Film & TV Workers during COVID-19

Posted by Grant Patten on May 15, 2020 11:04:26 AM

HEALTH & SAFETY FOR FILM & TV WORKERS DURING COVID-19 (WSPS)

HEALTH & SAFETY FOR FILM & TV WORKERS DURING COVID-19Source: Royalty-free stock photo ID: 1680037777, Shutterstock

The Workplace Safety & Prevention Services (WSPS) has released some helpful guidelines for those in the film, TV and live performance industries who will soon be returning to production work in this COVID-19 environment. WSPS is an Ontario-focused organization, but this information could still be useful to those in other provinces or even the US as well.

Front Row Insurance is merely passing on these WSPS guidelines that might be helpful to some in planning their return to production, but please also consult an employment lawyer, public health and industry associations and government recommendations. The below is for informational purposes only and should not be considered advice.

Controls to consider for returning to production during COVID-19:

The WSPS documents have some helpful points to consider, including…

Are there tasks you can minimize or eliminate? For example, could any scenes that were planned to involve numerous people potentially be cut down to fewer people? Similarly, can scenes that involved people close together potentially be restructured to allow social distancing?

Limit entry points and control who comes onto set, who they speak to, and what they handle.

Have all crewmembers and visitors wash their hands thoroughly with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available, before entering the set, after contact with others, and with surfaces others have touched.

Train crewmembers on COVID-19 transmission points, steps being taken to protect them, and how to protect themselves, including frequent hand sanitizing, and not touching their face.

Is there an opportunity to put barriers in place between crewmembers on set? Consider using floor markings to keep people at a safe distance apart.

Is there an opportunity to improve fresh air intake/air circulation on set?

Increase cleaning frequency – on everything from desks, seats and vehicles to commonly touched surfaces like cameras, computers, microphones, phones, door handles and switches.

Ensure laundering instructions are being followed for wardrobe.

Review sanitation practices for hair and makeup stations to avoid spreading the virus and implement new practices.

Replace buffets with wrapped food items.

Consider having personal protective equipment (PPE) for crewmembers. Some examples of PPE that may be suited to supervisors, production or operations management work include gloves, masks, goggles and/or face shields.

Review your preventative measures on an ongoing basis, and adjust them if they are not working well enough or causing other issues with your work.

COVID Guideline Documents from Workplace Safety & Prevention Services (WSPS):

The above points are selections from the WSPS documents; you are encouraged to download the full documents, linked below:

Download: Workplace Safety & Prevention Services Guidance on Health and Safety for Television Hosts, Technical Crews and other TV and Film Employees during COVID-19 [PDF]

Download: Workplace Safety & Prevention Services Guidance on Health and Safety for Television, Film and Live Performance Sector during COVID-19 [PDF]

NOTE: These documents are intended for informational purposes only to provide an overview of the potential hazards posed in the workplace due to COVID-19. They are not intended as medical advice, to provide a comprehensive risk assessment for all workplaces, or to replace any legislated workplace safety obligations. Due to the ongoing evolution of the situation in Ontario and around the world, these documents may be used as a guide for Employers in addition to guidance delivered by public health authorities such as the World Health Organisation (WHO), Ontario Ministry of Health, Public Health Ontario and the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).” Any use which is made of these documents by any Employer, or any reliance on or decisions to be made based on them, are the responsibility of the Employer.

Good luck and take care,
The Front Row Team

Citations:

https://www.wsps.ca/

Topics: Film Production, Film Producers, Film Production Companies, TV Series