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2 to 3 stops overexposure.


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#1 Paul Bruening

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Posted 15 December 2006 - 09:47 AM

Hello Gang,

First, may I say what a pleasure it has been to forum with all of you.

Second: I was watching the making of Butch Cassidy on DVD. George Roy-Boy mentioned that they (Conrad Hall) were overexposing the negatives as much as 3 stops. Please, volunteer what you think are the pros and cons of doing that.

Thanks,

Paul
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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 15 December 2006 - 11:38 AM

Well, the cons of overexposing 3-stops and printing down is that your highlights get grayish and washed-out because now they are lying on the flatter (thus lower-contrast) shoulder of the characteristic curve. Plus your printer lights get stuck at 50-50-50, making balancing the color harder should one color need to be even higher than 50 (Conrad Hall sometimes got the labs to recalibrate the scale so he could print "higher" than 50.)

And for telecine work, your negative is so dense that more signal has to be pumped through it, starting to create noise in the highlights.
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#3 John Holland

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Posted 15 December 2006 - 01:14 PM

Hi are sure he said 3 stops over , i am all for over exposing max 2 stops me .Anyway Conrad Hall did get an Oscar for it think it it is a beautiful film , went to cinema everyday for a week to just look at images . By the way its George Roy Hill , the director of this picture .
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#4 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 16 December 2006 - 03:42 AM

The problem with heavy over or underexposure, by a couple of stops, is that while you may like the results, you have to be VERY precise in your exposures because you may fall over the edge if you are a half-stop off in your calculations. 3-stops overexposed may print OK, but 3 1/2 stops may create a problem. You give yourself no latitude for error when working at the extreme ends of the characteristic curve rather than the middle.
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#5 K Borowski

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Posted 17 December 2006 - 01:20 AM

Especially if you're doing this yourself Paul, not a good idea. In stills the filters go past 50, up to 140 on most enlargers and printers, at least the two that I own. I'm not sure if that means you have nearly 3 times the filtration with still film as you do with movies or if the numbers are just calibrated in different CC units, but you have to remember you're getting a FILTER effect from the film itself in additoin to the filters you have to put in place to account for the color shifts that heavy overexposure usually entails. Further, you're going to run into LONG exposure times, meaning you have to buy brighter printing lights and you're getting slowed down. Now, with this in mind, 1/2 stop is OK, and I usually shoot with this as a safety factor, as do many others, as underexposure is quite ugly, but don't overdo it. There's no advantage of exposing the finer grains past perhaps one stop. Unless you really like the effect, it is a bad idea.

Regards,

~Karl Borowski
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