Wayne Norman, Video Engineer

Video Engineer
Video Controller (Shader)
Technical Director
Video Painting Engineer

Digital Image Technician
Engineer in Charge
Technical Manager
Technical Supervisor

Talk Shows
Reality Shows
Music Videos
New Media

Triax, Fiber, and Copper Camera
Set Up and Operation Specialist

Experienced with all brands of Digital Cinema Cameras,
including Alexa, Red, Sony, and Phantom

Field, Studio, Flight Packs, Mobile Units

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Below is a brief explanation of the different types of video related engineering production positions.  

I am qualified in all areas listed below and will provide exceptional customer service to you and your clients.  I strive to make the systems as redundant as possible and work with vendors to assure you are getting the best deal possible with as many accessories as can be reasonably expected.    

If you need assistance in assembling a video package for your shoot, please contact me and I will be happy to assist you in preparing an equipment requisition for your review and approval.

Thank you.

Video Engineer

A true video engineer is a sophisticated and capable person who understands the complete set up and operation of complex single and multi-camera productions.  What makes a video engineer exceptional is their ability to quickly diagnose system or component failures, and then offer the skills to return the equipment or component back to full functionality.  

This person has the ability to design and assemble sophisticated production systems that include Switchers, Cameras, VTRs, Graphics Systems, Ultimatte Systems, Routers, Down and Up Converters, Computer Interfaces, and other video peripherals.  They take into account the production requirements and then complement them with a set up of components that allows the producer and director to specifically accomplish their production objectives.

A competent video engineer is capable of putting together a complete technical requisition order for equipment that suits the production demands and budget of the producer and director and do it with minimal  interaction, leaving the technical to the video engineer and the creative to the producer.  A sophisticated video engineer builds in as much redundancy as possible in the event of system or component failure.

A great Video Engineer has a working knowledge of each component and is able to integrate it into the system.  They will also have a strong working knowledge of audio and intercom systems, although there may be limitations because there are so many different brands and models that it is difficult to keep up with all of the variations.  

A Video Engineer may or may not have the ability to paint or "shade" a camera, as this is an exceptional skill that requires a special eye.  Often the video engineer must remain available and flexible during production to have the ability to address issues that may arise.

Video Controller (also known as Video Shader)

Video Controllers or Video Shaders are essentially people who have a fine eye capable of recognizing color and image variations and the skill to adjust the cameras so they match and are properly irised.   There are very few people with exceptional color skills, and if you add video engineering or Digital Image Technician skills to their repertoire, then they become even rarer.

Few Video Shaders or Controllers have systems understanding and have little if any diagnostic skills.  If you hire a video Shader, you may also have to hire a video engineer or DIT.

Video Shading Engineer

A Video Shading Engineer is a Video Engineer with Color Shading skills.  This is the most practical technician for most productions and gives you the financial advantage of hiring one person, and get the sophistication of two Job functions.  \

I include in my skill set the title of Video Shading Engineer.  I have a very demanding eye and can paint cameras as well as help design looks through detailed menu knowledge.

Digital Image Technician

This is a union defined position for HDTV technicians for cameras and includes people who have a basic knowledge of specific brands of cameras and some support systems.  Most are former utility people and First Assistant Camera People who have been trained to set up camera systems and provide simplistic diagnostic skills.  

Few have the ability to paint cameras and their diagnostic skills may be limited.  They have been trained in how to set up cameras in a High Definition world.  What they lack is a systems understanding and how ancillary equipment will effect the operation of the camera.  These people are essentially a knowledgeable additional set of hands for quick set up and break down.  Most DITs are limited in their skills and knowledge, so be careful that you select the person who fits your specific application.

All of today's cameras are software based, and the control of the camera is accessed through a menu structure that varies from brand to brand and even model to model.  Sony, as an example, has one set of firmware for their HDC series of cameras, while the Cine Alta line operate with a completely different firmware structure.  This means the settings from an HDC series can never be loaded onto a Cine Alta camera and vice-a-versa.  Even worse, the menu structures are not the same, and external control devices like paint boxes and RCPs (Remote Control Panels) that work on the HDC series have limited of no access to control the functions on a Cine Alta series of camera.


Many Digital Image Technicians are brand specific in that they are competent  with only one or two specific brands of cameras.   Some camera systems such as The Viper require a person who is truly qualified to operate them.

Some Digital Image Technicians are also Video Shaders and these people are of great value.  In addition to being able to support the set up and operation of the camera, they have strong knowledge of the menu structure of cameras and can match them with minimal effort.

Engineer in Charge (EIC)

This is an engineering supervisory position for complex productions requiring multiple levels of engineering sophistication.  The Engineer in Charge is the conduit between Production and Engineering and provides the leadership to timely build and operate the audio, video, lighting, power, and transmission systems.  He or she must have a complete understanding of the production goals and the equipment specified. 

The Engineer in Charge interfaces with all facilities and puts together an effective plan for the installation and operation of the production systems and components.  The EIC coordinates the engineering labor so they work succinctly and efficiently, staying within time constraints and budget. 

Often the Engineer in charge will assist in the selection of vendors, equipment, and when required personnel.  He or she will know which vendors offer the best deal or have the availability of specialized equipment.

The Engineer in charge must have strong knowledge of all aspects of audio, lighting, video, power, and when applicable satellite, microwave or fiber optic transmission.  The person needs excellent people skills and the ability to explain technical issues to the production staff that may not be familiar with the vernacular.  Excellent logistical skills and the ability to prioritize, as well as knowing what are reasonable times for completion of system set up. 

Technical Manager or Technical Supervisor

This is a management position and oversees the Engineer in Charge, or acts as both Technical Manager and EIC for shoots with large logistical demands.  

The Technical Manager has more interaction with the production during the Pre-Production Process and will help make executive decisions regarding the set up and operation of all engineering facilities.  He or she will interface with all vendors, as well as the location facilities and utilities to make sure all communications and logistical issues are addressed in advance of arrival.

They work closely with production in designing sophisticated production systems and facilities within the budget parameters specified.  He or she is over all responsible for delivering te best production value for the dollar and maintains contact with all vendors and coordinates equipment deliveries and pick ups.

This position requires a very logistically sophisticated mind and is only for those who understand the wide variety of equipment options available.  They must have excellent communication skills and be able to quickly adapt to conditions and changes.

I can provide this technical leadership for the most sophisticated engineering systems.  I have strong vendor relations and can get the most impact for the budget.

Selecting the right person for your production

So how do you select a proper technician for your shoot.  If you are doing a multi camera shoot in which the cameras must be color matched you are best off with a Video Painting Engineer.  This person is both a video engineer and video Shader/controller.  They have extreme sophistication and should be able to address any issue that may arise and provide perfectly matched cameras with minimal effort.
Copyright 2015 Wayne Norman