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Filters for Night Shooting


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#1 Timothy David Orme

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Posted 08 November 2006 - 08:59 PM

I'm doing an entire short film that takes place at night. I was wondering what lens filters I'm going to need to provide my DP with, if any.
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#2 Dan Salzmann

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 05:26 AM

Why not ask your DP?
You will have to be more precise about what you are doing-interior, exterior, filmstock, look of the film in question, etc.
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#3 Timothy David Orme

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 10:12 AM

Why not ask your DP?
You will have to be more precise about what you are doing-interior, exterior, filmstock, look of the film in question, etc.


Well, I haven't hired a DP yet. :) So, I'm shooting a short that takes place outside on a porch. I'm going to shoot color reversal, 16mm (cp-16r). As far as the look goes, I'm not looking for anything particular. Just a basic, smooth look. If the footage looks nice, I'd like to transfer HD
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#4 Chris Keth

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 03:40 PM

I'm doing an entire short film that takes place at night. I was wondering what lens filters I'm going to need to provide my DP with, if any.


Well, ideally in my mind, night shooting is best with as few filters as possible. This, I'm sure, comes from my student mentality still of having very limited lighting available. In any case, it's a very personal thing and we can't answer for your DP.
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#5 Andy_Alderslade

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 05:12 PM

Well, I haven't hired a DP yet. :) So, I'm shooting a short that takes place outside on a porch. I'm going to shoot color reversal, 16mm (cp-16r). As far as the look goes, I'm not looking for anything particular. Just a basic, smooth look. If the footage looks nice, I'd like to transfer HD


Why shoot colour reversal?

If you're shooting a night scene out doors and actually at night (rather than in a studio or day-for-night) wouldn't you be better with a much faster negative stock of say 500 ASA, which can even push process.

Sticking to a stock of only 100ASA may turn out to be a bit of a challenge.
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#6 Timothy David Orme

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 06:49 PM

Why shoot colour reversal?

If you're shooting a night scene out doors and actually at night (rather than in a studio or day-for-night) wouldn't you be better with a much faster negative stock of say 500 ASA, which can even push process.

Sticking to a stock of only 100ASA may turn out to be a bit of a challenge.


You know, I always type reversal for some reason beecause I guess that's what I've dealt with in the past. Yes, we will be shooting color negative. Would we need that might light that we wouldn't be able to shoot something slower than 500ASA? I was hoping we wouldn't have toooo much grain.
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#7 Joseph Pytcher

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 09:46 PM

again, when choosing the ASA, you want to ask your DP what kind of look you are going for. If you are shooting with T film, depending on what kind of lights your using, the only filters I would recommend is an 80A or an 85B. It gets more confusing if you start using HMI's with T film. If you go with HMI's, dont forget to use CTO's or use i believe its 85B (i get them two confused).
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#8 Timothy David Orme

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Posted 10 November 2006 - 10:37 AM

Yeah, I understand that, but I am trying to learn as much as I can about cinematography also, so I have a better vocabulary to speak with my DP. So, I have some 2 1k and 2 2k Mole Fresnels. Would those need to be daylight corrected? I assumed they'd be fine (because it's at night), but I can see how moonlight or whatever available lgiht there is (the exterior door light, for example) could have a slight blue tint.
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#9 Stuart Brereton

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Posted 10 November 2006 - 11:28 AM

From what you've described, I'd recommend that you shoot with a 500asa tungsten stock. This will enable you to light to low enough levels that any existing lighting at your location, such as streetlights and practicals, can be incorporated into your lighting scheme.

Your DP may have other ideas, but I probably wouldn't use any camera filters, other than perhaps some diffusion, such as a Black promist, and only if the story needed it.
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#10 Brian Drysdale

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Posted 10 November 2006 - 12:44 PM

For night exteriors you usually end putting filters on the lights rather than the camera. If you're using 500T on 16mm, I'd tend to keep the camera clean.

There are some interesting camera filters, but I'd only use them if it's a story requirement or if you're doing a music video where anything goes and the effect suits the mood.
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