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Lighting 64t Ektachrome


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#1 Will von Tagen

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Posted 20 December 2008 - 01:27 AM

Hey all. Im in Pre production for my next 8mm short and I will be shooting it entirely indoors. I will most likely be using 64t Ektachrome (unless I find someone willing to pick up the bill for a 200t negative telecine) Does anyone have any good advice on lighting a set for 64t without making it look blatantly lit and washed out? I also might not have tungsten lights available. I do have a crew member who is knowledgeable in lighting for still and digital video, but she has never lit film before. Basically, any tips that you have to offer would be greatly appreciated. Thanks?
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#2 Rick Palidwor

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Posted 20 December 2008 - 09:01 PM

Basically, any tips that you have to offer would be greatly appreciated. Thanks?


Trust your light meter and make sure you have enough light. If using the cameras internal meter, double-check that it can properly read that film. If not, you probably have to compensate by under-exposing from the reading by 2/3 stop. You need quite a bit of light for that film so if you are short on light make sure you've got a few highlights in the important parts of the frame so that they read. If you are really low on light shoot tight frames so you can get the lights in close. Heck, you could shoot that film with a candle provided the candle is close to the subject. If possible you might consider using an XL (low-light camera) and if you shoot at 18fps instead of 24 that will give you a little extra as well.
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#3 Will von Tagen

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Posted 21 December 2008 - 02:51 AM

Thanks Rick. I should probably also add that I'm shooting with my Canon 1014 E. What a great Camera!
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#4 Chris Burke

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Posted 21 December 2008 - 01:01 PM

Hey all. Im in Pre production for my next 8mm short and I will be shooting it entirely indoors. I will most likely be using 64t Ektachrome (unless I find someone willing to pick up the bill for a 200t negative telecine) Does anyone have any good advice on lighting a set for 64t without making it look blatantly lit and washed out? I also might not have tungsten lights available. I do have a crew member who is knowledgeable in lighting for still and digital video, but she has never lit film before. Basically, any tips that you have to offer would be greatly appreciated. Thanks?



It isn't the easiest film to expose properly, but it can yield good results. Lighting reversal isn't too different than lighting DV, they have a similar exposure latitude. As with all reversal stock, meter for the highlights and throw light into the shadows. I think your camera can handle the stock, but make absolutely sure that it does, otherwise you will have problems exposing it properly. Why wouldn't you have tungsten lights available? Are you using daylight balanced or fluorescents? Most importantly, how is the film being finished? Practical indoor lighting can suffice, if done with care. Tungsten lights are the most common and readily available, so why not use them? You can gel all your lights to tungsten if you need to, but just using them from the start is going to be way easier.
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#5 Ira Ratner

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Posted 21 December 2008 - 06:12 PM

For 64 indoor, you're gonna need light, and a lot of it. It ain't fast enough.
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#6 Rick Palidwor

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Posted 22 December 2008 - 12:50 AM

I think your camera can handle the stock, but make absolutely sure that it does, otherwise you will have problems exposing it properly.


The 1014E will recognize 64. But you will need light and how much light will depend primarily on the amount of space you are trying to light. If you want big wide shots of big spaces, you'll need tons. If you shoot tight close up frames that allow you to get the lights in close, you'll need less than you think.
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#7 Art Leal

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Posted 22 December 2008 - 02:17 AM

Thanks Rick. I should probably also add that I'm shooting with my Canon 1014 E. What a great Camera!


Here's a quick test I did last summer using the same stock and camera. It was grainier than what appears, but the compression lessened it some.


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#8 Rick Palidwor

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Posted 22 December 2008 - 04:00 AM

Here's a quick test I did last summer using the same stock and camera. It was grainier than what appears, but the compression lessened it some.


Excellent reference. Note the1050W light used.

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#9 Will von Tagen

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Posted 24 December 2008 - 02:43 AM

Here's a quick test I did last summer using the same stock and camera. It was grainier than what appears, but the compression lessened it some.



What was your F stop set to on this?
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#10 Hal Smith

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Posted 24 December 2008 - 10:01 AM

I've read that Ektachrome should be kept to a 4:1 key to fill ratio, which agrees with my experience shooting EK100VS 100EI Ektachrome still film (EK100VS is the same film as 5285/7285 reversal color motion picture film). You could get a spotmeter and run a lighting test or two keeping the key/fill ratio to around two stops.
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#11 Art Leal

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Posted 24 December 2008 - 01:37 PM

What was your F stop set to on this?


This was shot with the auto exposure on.
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