Jump to content


Photo

How do you decide between lens filters or gels?


  • Please log in to reply
1 reply to this topic

#1 Jamie McIntyre

Jamie McIntyre
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 212 posts
  • Student
  • Los Angeles / Reading, UK

Posted 12 March 2007 - 05:04 AM

I have been wondering this for a while. I shot a small project and put some magenta gels on the lights to create a romantic feel for a bathroom effect. However, i lost all the skin tone in the actresses face (i know, shoot me) So im wondering if a lens filter would have been better. However, i WAS shooting on the XL2.

For future reference, what do you think guys? How do you make that decision?
  • 0

#2 Hal Smith

Hal Smith
  • Sustaining Members
  • 2280 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • OKC area

Posted 12 March 2007 - 08:13 AM

............I shot a small project and put some magenta gels on the lights to create a romantic feel for a bathroom effect. However, i lost all the skin tone in the actresses face (i know, shoot me) So im wondering if a lens filter would have been better. However, i WAS shooting on the XL2.

There's no difference between lighting a scene completely with one gel color and filtering on the camera. In either case the camera records that color. One trick for getting a particular color mood and yet not having your actors look like something out of a freak show is to splash color on the background, foreground, etc. while lighting the actors with something more neutral and skintone friendly. A recent film reference would be the bar scene in "The Astronaut Farmer". David Mullen lit the bar with red gels and Christmas tree lights, but lit the principal actors' faces with half-orange gels. That way the scene came out very saturated in red but the actors didn't look like they had just stepped off the bus from Hades.

This technique will effectively "cut" the actor out of the background even with a strongly saturated gel lighting their face if that gel's color is different than the rest of the scene.

Henri Toulouse-Lautrec knew how to do this with oil paint.

[attachment=1835:attachment]
"At the Moulin Rouge".
http://www.artic.edu...l/C49967_WL.jpg

The original is at the Art Institute of Chicago, go see it if you ever get a chance. Spend a day there with their French Impressionists and Modernists, at the end of that day you'll be a better Cinematographer.
  • 0


Visual Products

The Slider

Technodolly

Abel Cine

Opal

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

CineLab

Glidecam

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Paralinx LLC

Rig Wheels Passport

Aerial Filmworks

rebotnix Technologies

Metropolis Post

Broadcast Solutions Inc

FJS International, LLC

CineTape

Tai Audio

Wooden Camera

Willys Widgets

Ritter Battery

Metropolis Post

Technodolly

Tai Audio

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Glidecam

Rig Wheels Passport

Wooden Camera

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Visual Products

Willys Widgets

Aerial Filmworks

Abel Cine

The Slider

CineLab

FJS International, LLC

Paralinx LLC

Ritter Battery

Opal

Broadcast Solutions Inc

rebotnix Technologies

CineTape