Photography at Halloween Horror Nights?

Discussion in 'Photography Board' started by Gdad, Oct 11, 2011.

  1. Gdad

    Gdad I'm fuzzy on the whole good-bad thing

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    I was planning on going to Halloween Horror Nights for the first time ever this year and was wondering if anyone knows if there are any restrictions on cameras (or "professional" cameras / dslr's / etc.) in the park or in the houses? I read online that there were no pictures allowed in the haunted houses (only in Orlando?) but I can't seem to find that on the official website. If anyone can confirm or deny this I would appreciate it. Thanks.
     
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  3. GrillMouster

    GrillMouster Mouster of the Grill

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    Several years ago I brought a small DSLR and a small prime lens to Halloween Horror Nights in Universal Orlando. I had no problems. I packed it away in the haunted houses to protect it from possible spray and frightened guests who run, bump, grab, and pull.
     
  4. Gdad

    Gdad I'm fuzzy on the whole good-bad thing

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    Spray?
     
  5. GrillMouster

    GrillMouster Mouster of the Grill

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    I didn't want to give away too much about the haunted houses, but in some scenes you getting sprayed (with water) to give the feel of being hit with blood as a powertool goes through a body. Not many houses or scenes have this, but if you knew which ones it would ruin the surprise. So, I played it safe. The houses can be really dark, making it hard to focus quickly. If you linger to adjust settings, you'll be targeted by "scarers". IMO best to forget about photos inside the haunted houses.
     
  6. MarkBarbieri

    MarkBarbieri Semi-retired

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    Or just where a GoPro or two and take what you get.
     
  7. GrillMouster

    GrillMouster Mouster of the Grill

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    Awesome idea using the GoPro! Please do this and share the pics/videos.
     
  8. Groucho

    Groucho <font color=blue>Why a duck?<br><font color=purple

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    OK, lo-o-o-o-ong time with no posting, and reviving an almost year-old thread to boot. :)

    Gdad, any update as to how it worked out? Anyone else have any thoughts? I am doing a solo trip to Orlando at the end of October and planning on three days at Universal, and I figured that I might as well hit HHN while I'm at it, but finding out any information about the camera policy is darn near impossible. I am figuring that, no matter what, I won't have my full-size tripod, so I'm hoping that I can have my camera bag with my Gorillapod strapped to the side (or even stuffed inside if necessary), I should be all set. I doubt I'll be trying to get shots inside the houses... but who knows? I should be able to hit it two nights in a row, so maybe I'll be feeling adventurous the second night!
     
  9. Hockeyman

    Hockeyman It's not a purse, it's called a satchel. Indiana J

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    They are pretty strict with photo taking inside the houses themselves but anywhere out in the park is fair game. Also like early in the post, be careful with your camera inside the houses, cant tell you how many times I have been bumped into by others who are sacred and also the notorious spray lol.
     
  10. Groucho

    Groucho <font color=blue>Why a duck?<br><font color=purple

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    Thanks! I'll be sure to mount my weathersealed lens inside the houses; unfortunately it's only F2.8 but I may see what I can do anyway. :)

    Having not been to Universal Orlando in over 15 years, I've got some research to do about camera strategy in general. I know they're not nearly as permissive as Disney...
     
  11. handicap18

    handicap18 <font color=blue>Husband, father of 3, and Disney

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    Restrictions are no Pentax or Canon. Nikon is perfectly fine though. ::yes:::duck:
     
  12. pointandshoot

    pointandshoot DIS Veteran

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    So that is why we never see any good shots from the event :)


    Thanks all for the tips on the moisture. I plan to take dslr, fast 85mm 1.8 or 50mm 1.2 prime, and a drybag. I will forget inside shots.
     
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  13. Groucho

    Groucho <font color=blue>Why a duck?<br><font color=purple

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    Hmm... I can't see Nikon being the go-to camera at Universal, since that's Disney's choice and Universal has to be the imitation... so maybe that are the C**** cameras. ;)

    It is actually surprising how few "decent" shots there are of HHN. The most I could find (admittedly, without searching too hard) was the occasional blown-out cellphone photo, and one or two decent scareactor photos. I'll see if I can add some thing the mix. :)
     
  14. Hockeyman

    Hockeyman It's not a purse, it's called a satchel. Indiana J

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    I think part of that is because the park is usually very very dark and its near impossible to set up a tripod with some of the crowds I have witnessed during the event. I really dont know what the tripod policy is during the event to be honest with you. And also they are strict with taking photos in the house and also during Bill and Teds so you would have to be a phot ninja to make those happen :lmao:, Im trying to make it up for at least one night this year and if so this will be my 1st time at HHN with a DSLR, a Sony so im safe from Nikon-Canon discussion :rotfl2:
     
  15. Groucho

    Groucho <font color=blue>Why a duck?<br><font color=purple

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    Sorry for the late reply, I'm not sure how I missed your message! I would assume that they would frown on full-size tripods because of the dark and potential for actors and guests to be running flat-out and trip on you tripod. I'm hoping that I'll find fences or somewhere here or there to use with the GorillaPod, or if on the ground, at least it's small enough for me to protect it and no one will be tripping over it. I will be there two nights in a row so I will have a chance to adjust my plans for the second night if need be!

    It would be nice if they had an official "camera policy" posted somewhere; searching for such information on the internet gives very few worthwhile responses, none of which are authoritative. I see they let some groups video the 2012 houses already and put them on YouTube, but I'm assuming that was a one-time thing (not counting the extra-cost ability to tour the houses during the day with the lights on.)
     
  16. Gdad

    Gdad I'm fuzzy on the whole good-bad thing

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    It worked out fine except my just-turned-11 daughter absolutely FREAKED OUT in the first haunted house we went through- some kind of winter cemetery theme- and would not go in anymore houses. In fact we had to wander all over the place just trying to find a way out and avoid the roving bands of chainsaw wielding monsters and such. Funny because she will fearlessly ride absolutely any roller coaster or thrill ride out there with reckless abandon but people in monster masks that jump out and make zombie sounds really scared her.

    As for photography I did not get much of an opportunity to shoot. I went light with no tripod or camera bag- just the D700 & 20mm f/1.8. I think there were signs forbidding shooting in all the houses and I don't remember seeing anyone else with a tripod. There is enough light in many places to shoot handheld- also great opportunities at dusk/ early evening. I was thinking about going back without the kids this year just because I was kind of disappointed I couldn't do much last time- if you are going solo on a thurs/fri/sat night and want to hang out then hit me up on facebook or with an email.

    [​IMG]
    Halloween Horror Nights 21 by ~Life by the Drop~, on Flickr

    [​IMG]
    Bad Luck by ~Life by the Drop~, on Flickr
     
  17. Groucho

    Groucho <font color=blue>Why a duck?<br><font color=purple

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    I can see that - I imagine my 3-year-old will be the same way; she loves getting tossed around and being carried upside-down (and she loves zombies already, no doubt being helped by her big brother!) but I'm sure she'd turn into a blubbering mess in an environment like that!

    That would be fun - I have a 3-day ticket so will be at Universal a few days, the last one being a Thursday. I'll also be by myself so I'm sure that by Thursday, I'll be happy to have someone to talk to. :) I've got to squeeze in time to visit the Epcot F&W too; I'll be staying at AKL so I'll be nearby. I suspect that Universal won't have enough to keep me occupied for all three days so maybe I'll do that Thursday daytime... I'll send you a note and we can figure out the details.
     
  18. Hockeyman

    Hockeyman It's not a purse, it's called a satchel. Indiana J

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    Have you guys ever shot with your tripods at HHN? Trying to make it up there for at least one night at HHN and have been debating on bringing it with me or not. Afraid I may spend more time getting pictures than I would experiencing the event itself lol
     
  19. Groucho

    Groucho <font color=blue>Why a duck?<br><font color=purple

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    I'll be able to tell you in four weeks. :) If conditions warrant, I may bring in my full-size tripod (which I can strap to my camera bag) but I doubt that I will be doing that.

    Heck, I'm not sure how well it'd work anywhere in Universal Studios - I understand there are free lockers by some of the rides where they won't let you carry bags on, but are they big enough to fit a good-sized camera bag and tripod? :confused3
     
  20. Hockeyman

    Hockeyman It's not a purse, it's called a satchel. Indiana J

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    I might be going either the weekend of the 6th or the following weekend if things go according to plan lol.

    Universal is very very strict with bringing anything on the rides. They wont even allow you to enter the line with any sort of bag on the big rides. As for the lockers, im not sure since every time I have gone in the past I have avoided bringing in any bags to avoid the lockers at all costs or we have had the kids stroller to store stuff. I think you might be ok with a medium size bag but the the tripod may not fit. I have a Sony that folds down to about 24" tall and im pretty sure I could squeeze it in the locker lol. To tell you the truth though, while at HHN you want to do as much of the houses and shows that you can. The rides are there all year but the HHN stuff isnt. We generally dont do much riding during the event because we try to hit all the houses and shows.
     
  21. Groucho

    Groucho <font color=blue>Why a duck?<br><font color=purple

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    Good info, thanks. For me, HHN is a little bit of an afterthought; it just happened to overlap with my trip - I'm a big horror fan but not so much into haunted houses. As for the rides, I'm thinking more of what to do during the day, since I'll have my camera bag with me pretty much all the time. As it turns out, the tripod may not really be much of an issue - checking the hours, it looks like everything (except HHN) shuts down pretty early, so it'll probably not even be particularly dark by the time the parks close. Oh well!
     

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