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words of wisdom please!


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#1 falula falangi

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Posted 29 January 2006 - 12:44 PM

howdie! I am a twenty-year-old aspiring cinematographer, I've made a fair few shorts on video (and will hopefully get the chance to play with some 16mm later this year) but all the skills I have are purely a result of experimentation, and although I've been told I have a natural talent behind the camera *blushes* I lack concrete technical knowledge and expertise. So I was wondering if anyone had any advice on what I can do to learn more and hopefully become a professional cinematographer one day.
Are the courses at the nfts, lfs, etc. worth the money? Is it possible to get an apprenticeship with an established dp? or is it best to start as a runner and work my way up? or to continue teaching myself and enter my work in festivals in the hope of impressing someone? if so, are there any books you recommend?
It's been my dream to work in the film industry for many years now, but I just don't know where to go from here, and have no one to ask! So any help would be very greatly appreciated.
Thanking you in advance *offers tea and biscuits all round*

Lucy x
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#2 Jamie Metzger

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Posted 29 January 2006 - 02:17 PM

This kind of thinking pisses me off.

Just make something of yourself. Don't ask how to comform & how to be the lowest jackass on the totempole.

If you want to be on camera, you have to learn everything about it, everything related, and be the best at it.

Pick up the Kodak Student handbook.
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#3 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 29 January 2006 - 05:09 PM

Almost any career pathway to becoming a DP is as successful or unsuccessful as another -- you ask 20 different DP's how they got where they are today and you hear 20 different stories.

A certain obsessiveness in self-teaching, self-analysis is essential, so read all you can, see as many movies as you can, and practice in whatever manner possible as often as you can. Even if you ended up in an academic setting studying cinematography, the ability to teach yourself is invaluable. As you shoot more and have something to show people, you'll start to get an idea of the market and who might be interested in hiring you. The advantage of a film program is that you will be surrounded by people in the same boat as you and a couple of good contacts may make all the difference in finding a job.
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Gamma Ray Digital Inc

CineLab

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Aerial Filmworks

The Slider

Wooden Camera

Paralinx LLC

Visual Products

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

CineTape

Willys Widgets

Ritter Battery

Abel Cine

Metropolis Post

rebotnix Technologies

Tai Audio

Rig Wheels Passport