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getting a black sky during the day


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#1 Olivier Gossot

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Posted 26 October 2007 - 05:51 PM

Hi everyone!

I have to shoot my first year end film in january. It is a 16mm color film shot on a bolex H16. I would like to shoot on the snow-covered flat plains of the Province of Québec. For the mood of the film, I want the sky to be deep black even during the day scenes (I'm not talking here about day for night... It is day scenes). That means that the bottom part of the frame should be well exposed bright snow and the top part really black sky. Do you know if it is possible to achieve that effect with gradual NDs and a polarizer?

The horizon lines of my locations are horizontal and straight, so the gradual NDs should be easy to use. Unfortunately we have only a 2 days shooting range, so I can't decide what the weather will be (cloudy or clear sky). What would be the filters you would use in both conditions?

Thanks!

Olivier
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#2 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 26 October 2007 - 05:55 PM

You could use Nd filters, but you're need a lot of them to make it go black black. It might be best just to do it in a color corrector. JUst isolate the sky and drop the blue level down. What's best is it'll keep the cloud white as well. So long as you don't move 'round too much the corrector will work. A pola filter would help pop out clouds more so, and some /nd to begin with would be nice too.
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#3 Olivier Gossot

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Posted 26 October 2007 - 06:36 PM

Hey Adrian, thanks for the input!!

You could use Nd filters, but you're need a lot of them to make it go black black.


Ok, that's was I was gessing too!

Unfortunatelly, I can't do any digital post-production.

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#4 Chris Keth

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Posted 26 October 2007 - 07:16 PM

If you shot black and white a deep red 25 filter would make the sky go really dark. I don't know about black but it gets dark.
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#5 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 26 October 2007 - 09:09 PM

No transfer at all? IN that case, I dunno what to tell you. I know that you can do it in FCP if you get the blue's pretty isolated and saturated. how are you going to edit it all together? IN camera?
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#6 Jonathan Bowerbank

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Posted 26 October 2007 - 09:49 PM

If you shoot during magic hour, with your back to the sun and your lens pointed in the direction of the approaching night sky, you'll probably get as close as you can get to a black sky.

If you're shooting Daylight stock, I would also consider placing an 85 or an 85+Polarizer filter on the lens, but making sure to shoot a grey card at the beginning of the shot with the filter on. The 85 filter will cut down on the blue information being exposed to the film, and make your sky darker.

As an example, look at this test I shot in basic color correction. Scroll towards the end to 4:48 and look at what happens to the blueberries when they're shot with an orange filter and corrected back:


When your color timer prints or does a telecine, he'll time for that grey card so your image isn't completely orange, and the effect that happened to my blueberries will be similar for your sky.

You can also consider a grad filter if your horizon is flat enough.
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#7 Olivier Gossot

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Posted 26 October 2007 - 10:38 PM

"how are you going to edit it all together? IN camera?"

The cutting and editing is on a Steenbeck.

"If you're shooting Daylight stock, I would also consider placing an 85 or an 85+Polarizer filter on the lens, but making sure to shoot a grey card at the beginning of the shot with the filter on. The 85 filter will cut down on the blue information being exposed to the film, and make your sky darker."

That's a good idea!! I should shoot some tests soon, I'll try that!

It's true that would be easier to achieve this effect with B&W stock, but I really want to stick with color film.

Thanks everyone for your help!!

Olivier
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#8 James Steven Beverly

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Posted 27 October 2007 - 12:24 AM

Shoot during an total eclipse....but you may have to wail a while! :blink:
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#9 Jonathan Bowerbank

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Posted 28 October 2007 - 01:59 AM

Anyone up for a trip to Russia next August?

http://sunearth.gsfc...E2008Aug01T.GIF
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#10 James Steven Beverly

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Posted 28 October 2007 - 04:46 AM

Won't work, dude, no snow in August. :rolleyes:
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#11 Douglas Sunlin

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Posted 29 October 2007 - 04:36 PM

Is there such thing as a graduated red filter?
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#12 Chris Keth

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Posted 30 October 2007 - 08:34 PM

Is there such thing as a graduated red filter?


Not that I've ever seen or heard of. They're usually used to control contrast when shooting black adn white film so being graduated wouldn't really do much for you.
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#13 David E. McMurray

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 04:46 AM

Hi everyone!

I have to shoot my first year end film in january. It is a 16mm color film shot on a bolex H16. I would like to shoot on the snow-covered flat plains of the Province of Québec. For the mood of the film, I want the sky to be deep black even during the day scenes (I'm not talking here about day for night... It is day scenes). That means that the bottom part of the frame should be well exposed bright snow and the top part really black sky. Do you know if it is possible to achieve that effect with gradual NDs and a polarizer?

The horizon lines of my locations are horizontal and straight, so the gradual NDs should be easy to use. Unfortunately we have only a 2 days shooting range, so I can't decide what the weather will be (cloudy or clear sky). What would be the filters you would use in both conditions?

Thanks!

Olivier


Your matte box needs a lot of filter holders. I think this is a tough order. Just have your hard ND12 & ND9 with pola. Black sky? Shooting against white snow could save you, but I don't know how you are going to see your talent. All your shots would have to be locked down if they have sky.

Shoot a test before hand or die in the screening room!
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#14 Edgar Dubrovskiy

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Posted 01 December 2007 - 11:15 AM

How do you calculate the exposure with red filter on?
Is there any particular numbers to look for?

Thanks.
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#15 Bobby Shore

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Posted 01 December 2007 - 07:11 PM

How do you calculate the exposure with red filter on?
Is there any particular numbers to look for?

Thanks.



There's a filter factor number that refers to the light loss of each particular filter... using 1 as the starting point (no light loss), the number will increase depending on the density of the filter in question. There's a direct relation to the filter factor number and the stop loss: a filter factor of 2 means that the filter cuts half the amount of light passing through the glass (or one stop of light, i.e. ND .3 has a filter factor of 2, ND .6 has a filter factor of 4, ND .9 has a filter factor of 8, etc.)... so, FF 4 would be 2 stops light loss, 8 would be 3 stops light loss, etc...


A red 25 filter has an FF of 8, which means the filter eats up 8 times the amount of light that would normally be going through the lens, which means you need to compensate by opening up 3 stops to let more light in...

And for the grad filter question, they do make them in all colors and qualities... Skyfire Red is a grad filter that's red. Hope that helps.

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#16 Edgar Dubrovskiy

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Posted 02 December 2007 - 08:24 AM

Thanks a lot!
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Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

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The Slider

Willys Widgets

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Visual Products

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