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night exterior with fuji 400 or kodak 500


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#1 Roberflowers

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Posted 31 January 2006 - 05:03 PM

Hello everyone,
I'm shooting a thesis film that requires a lot of night work. So, I know that I'm going to use a faster stock like the 18, but I had a conversation with the director and we looked at MY SO-CALLED LIFE, and that is what she would like her film to be like. Along those lines, I was thinking of going with a softer look in the picture, and I was reading up on fuji's 400T...I'm going to shoot a test of it tomorrow, but I am wondering about everyone's thoughts on this choice I am to make

Should I go with the 400T for the nights and go with another stock for the days? I've heard some say that its too soft in day exteriors.

OR

should I stick with the 18 and use filtration to achieve a softer look, I am thinking something like a pro mist, or those classic softs that some of you have been talking about. I like the way the highlights look with those.

what are everyone's opinions on the 400T fuji? Our school is a kodak school, so fuji info is a bit scarce.

also, because it is night, what about rating the 18 320 and pushing it a stop...would that solve some grain isues? I know it would increase the contrast, and make the blacks richer, which I like, but with the filtration would I still have a soft look? would it look too crunchy?

thanks for any insight that you all can give me.
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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 31 January 2006 - 06:56 PM

I hesitate to recommend messing with pushing, pulling, etc. for a look when you're not already familiar with the "normal" look of a stock, because then you'll never learn what the stock basically gives you. But when in doubt test, test, test.

Yes, Fuji F-400T is softer, more pastel, less contrasty. The Kodak equivalent is Expression 500T (72/5229).

Using a softer stock and sharper lenses versus a harder stock and diffusion is just two different looks -- you have to pick one.
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#3 Joseph White

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Posted 31 January 2006 - 07:11 PM

yeah i agree with David - they are all perfectly viable options, it just depends on what overall look you're going for. and contrasty versus non-contrasty stock is only a start in terms of the look - you can give a scene a softer look with lighting alone, you don't necessarily need a different stock to achieve it. if you want less contrast, put more light in your shadow areas and your facial-fill.

i've had great experiences with the vision2 5229 stock with night work - very nice skin tones, a generally softer look - a huge improvement over it's predecessor 5284. pushing it a stop will definitely add grain, but if you overexpose slightly - maybe rate at 800 asa - and are really really careful with your exposures and use nice sharp lenses like primos or ultra primes you probably won't even notice it that much (again grain is a very relative thing).

and yes - if you can test - do it by all means. i'd be happy to show you some night stuff i've done with 5229 pushed a stop if you like, just drop me a note.
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#4 Matt Frank

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Posted 01 February 2006 - 04:44 PM

Wouldn't rating it at 800 under expose a asa 500 stock?
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#5 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 01 February 2006 - 04:50 PM

Wouldn't rating it at 800 under expose a asa 500 stock?


He means combined with a one-stop push so you end up with a slightly denser negative than if you rated 500T at 1000 ASA for the one-stop push.
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#6 Matt Frank

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Posted 01 February 2006 - 05:53 PM

He means combined with a one-stop push so you end up with a slightly denser negative than if you rated 500T at 1000 ASA for the one-stop push.


Ahh I understand. Thanks for the help.
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