First time cinematographer
Posted 18 November 2008 - 03:15 PM
I was just wondering if there was anyone out there who could give me tips, hints, advice and what to look out for in this role, as i need to compile a research essay.
Your help will be very much appreciated
Posted 18 November 2008 - 03:22 PM
Be realistic with the budget, your abilities, your director and yourself.
Try to find the grammar of/for the script.
Charge your batteries-- camera and self.
Go to all the locations and "feel," them.
Storyboard if that's your style, shot list if that's your stlye.
work out details with director.
pick your battles
learn the names of your crew.
look out for your crew
learn how your AC/Gaffer like their coffees, get them a cup when/if you can.
know the script/schedule/location as intimately as possible.
Know your director (get to know).
keep a sense of humor
things will go wrong, adapt, overcome.
things will go right- let people know they're doing a good job.
things will go wrong keep your temper.
K.I.S.S. sometimes the simplest lighting/camera motion is the best
You will make mistakes, don't repeat them once you find them.
you will make mistakes, admit when you do, don't pass the buck.
others will blame you for their mistakes, don't hold it against them.
keep yourself and others as safe as you can.
Learn your equipment, what it can and can't do, read up on manuals etc.
look to older art--other films, paintings, music, stills, wherever you find your inspiration (no art is really done in a vacuum and viewers have their own repository of information upon which they draw)
keep a sense of humor (very important for me at least).
trust in yourself, you got this gig for a reason.
that's about all i can think of; unless you get more specific with the project and what you're trying to do. the methods of shooting a doco, or a sci fi pic, or an epic, etc are all different and they all have myriad conventions.
Posted 18 November 2008 - 03:31 PM
Yeah, i'm shooting a film noir, so lots of moody lighting,
Also i forget to mention that i will be shooting in video format. i'll be using the JCY GY- HD 200, but we'll be sticking with the miniDV tapes, not HI DEF.
Posted 18 November 2008 - 03:36 PM
Posted 18 November 2008 - 03:41 PM
I'm not entirely sure what you mean by that, could you please elaborate.
Posted 18 November 2008 - 03:52 PM
so if you have people moving through a light shaft on your screen, and you want to keep a consistent stop, you use 1/2 full scrims (1/2 no scrim 1/2 scrim) to control the light level as they move through the beam. It's hard to do without visualizing. . .(excuse the bad drawing skills)
We see that father away is dimmer, and closer brighter. I drew in the scrim in the light there, and what it'll do is make that area of the beam closer in as "dim" as the area far away where the actor began his/her walk. Hope that makes some sense.
Other issues you'll have will be with bulbs in lamps/fixtures on set. If they aren't providing illumination you may have to dim them down to keep them from blowing out in the BG thus distracting the eye. You put them on a dimmer and bring their level down so as they are still "on," but not the brightest object around (which your eye will go to).
I'm not making as much sense as I wish I could.
Lets say, for example, you're shooting @ night but it's supposed to be morning. You have a lamp on in the kitchen; should it be brighter than the sun? No, so you might have to dim it down if your "sun," and the exposure it's generating isn't bright enough.
The other issue here is when you want to balance a scene between highlights and shadows, on video, you have a lot less range to get all those exposure values into, so you either need to bring down your highlights, or bring up your shadows in order to maintain detail in both.
Posted 18 November 2008 - 04:03 PM
appreciate the drawing by the way, nice work.
Posted 18 November 2008 - 04:10 PM
Is that an SR3
Sorry, I couldn't resist.
Posted 18 November 2008 - 04:35 PM
Especially in terms for outdoor/exterior shooting.
Posted 18 November 2008 - 04:41 PM
Also, just watch as many films in the style you'd like and deconstruct the lighting as far as you can.