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Peter Suschitzky


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#1 Christian Janss

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Posted 29 September 2007 - 02:46 AM

There are some interior scenes from Cronenberg's recent films History of Violence & Eastern Promises (History of Violence in particular) that have a striking look that I'd like to try to identify. The characters will be in say a living room, standing more or less in the middle of the room, away from the walls. Their faces will be well illuminated but their surroundings (walls, floor, etc.) have this kind of muddy, muted look. Like a Rembrant or something. I was wondering if anyone has any ideas as to how they did this?

I know the walls must be underexposed but it looks like there's something more at play there. It's the color of the background as much as the lower illumination.

Thanks!
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#2 robert duke

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Posted 30 September 2007 - 11:54 AM

Careful control of light by flagging and boxing the lights in. Skirting overheads so that they are cut off the walls.
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#3 Paul Nordin

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Posted 30 September 2007 - 02:45 PM

I know the walls must be underexposed but it looks like there's something more at play there. It's the color of the background as much as the lower illumination.
Thanks!


If you are into reading to learn, in the book "Reflections" put out by ASC press, there is a chapter on Yves Angelo with a couple of lighting examples. The title of the chapter is "Rembrandt Homage" and describes in detail, with examples, how to achieve the look you are describing.
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#4 Christian Janss

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Posted 30 September 2007 - 11:33 PM

If you are into reading to learn, in the book "Reflections" put out by ASC press, there is a chapter on Yves Angelo with a couple of lighting examples. The title of the chapter is "Rembrandt Homage" and describes in detail, with examples, how to achieve the look you are describing.




OK, I have that book. Great resource, I wish there were more like it with explicit diagrams. I'll check out that chapter.

It just seemed like the color of the light was different, but maybe I'm reading too much into it.

thanks
C
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#5 Jonathan Bowerbank

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 01:49 AM

Yeah, I noticed the distinct look of both History of Violence and Eastern Promises.

I think it's a combination of some minimal camera movement with carefully precise compositions, tight DoF, crunched blacks, and some crisp edge lights with an underexposed background that really separates the characters and makes them pop on the screen. I'd be interested to know what lenses he's used on both films as they really are quite sharp looking, to my eye.
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#6 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 11:29 AM

I notice that Suschitsky often likes a cool bias to his images. Or maybe that's Cronenberg... In "Spider" I saw some shadow patterns that could only be created by a rectangular soft source like a 4' 4-bank Kinoflo.
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#7 Jonathan Bowerbank

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 11:45 AM

I notice that Suschitsky often likes a cool bias to his images.


I was close to saying that in my previous post as well, but wasn't sure if it was my eyes or the general memory of the films' moods and tones. It's as if he likes to add just a little coolness to the key, perhaps just 1/8th CTB's worth. Don't know if it's done in post or in camera though.
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