Normally, when I make calls to try to drum up work, I try to chat with folks a bit before I tell them that I'm unemployed. It just seems less.. curt, I guess.
Me: "Hey, Bob! How's the family?"
Bob: "Oh, same old, same old. How are you?"
Me: "Good, good.. What's new with you? You working"
Bob:"Yeah, we're doing this three week long indie. You wanna play with us?"
Me: "I'd love to!"
Bob:"Cool. I think I have days next week"
Now, it's very, very slow, and folks are getting frantic. The calls are going like this:
Me: "Hey, Bob. What's new?"
Bob:"Are you working? Please tell me you're working. I'm dying here."
It's normally only slow for a few weeks, but when you work freelance like this, it's always a panic.
I can always judge how busy it is by how many shoots I pass - and what the trucks look like.
5 ton truck = shitty rate. Probably a student film. I usually just drive past these.
10 ton truck = music video or commercial. Commercials are hard to get on. The rate's really good and those guys only hire their friends. I can aways try, though. I'll slow down and try to see if I know anyone on the crew.
48 foot trailer = big show, and probably running for months with more than one crew (first unit, second unit, rigging). Even if I don't know anyone on the crew, I'll stop and introduce myself to the best boy in the hopes of getting work.
Right now, I'm not even seeing 5 tons. It's dead out there.
Maybe not a bad thing. It's still hotter than hell, although the cheerful weather guy says it's going to cool off towards the end of the week.