Jump to content


Photo

About to shoot super 8 short film. need advice!!


  • Please log in to reply
7 replies to this topic

#1 Kevin Jones

Kevin Jones
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 25 posts
  • Director
  • Woodstock, GA

Posted 22 December 2008 - 02:55 AM

Hey all. I'm a director about to shoot a super 8mm short film using two different stocks for two different situations: KODAK Tri-X reversal 7266 for outdoor, "reality" scenes, and KODAK Ektachrome 64T for indoor, "imaginary" scenes.

To note, the outdoor shots will be looking into a house from some long shots leading up to closer shots, maybe even from right outside the windows of the house. Also, all outdoor scenes will be shot at night, meaning all light will be coming from inside the house.

I am shooting this on a Yashica Super 60 E (electronic) super 8 camera.

I am looking for advice on how to light these "reality" and "imaginary" scenes. I am especially wondering how I can get detail from a long shot outside the house looking in. See, I'm worried that if I use too much light inside the house, then the subjects I am trying to catch on film will be lit too much and therefore not seen on the end product. Keep in mind that I am trying to not use the zoom function on my camera, rather I will be getting closer shots of the house as the film's story progresses.

Also, I am needing advice from you guys on how to properly use the "backlight" and "spotlight" features on my Yashica camera, if I need to at all. One shot the comes into mind is a close up of a woman's face looking directly into the camera while a halo of light coming from a bedroom window glows around her head. Keep in mind fellas, this will be shot on the Ektachrome color reversal film.

More advice is needed on the subject of filters. Since I will be shooting outside looking indoors, I need to know if I have to use my built in filter (I believe its an 85) or other filters. Again, to be specific, I will be shooting outside looking into a kitchen which has Fluorescent lights. But I am shooting the outdoor-looking-indoor scenes on B&W reversal, so maybe filters dont matter much. If thats the case, then direct most of your advice on what filters I should use for the indoor, color reversal scenes. All will be shot in a bedroom that has normal, non-fluorescent lights. The aforementioned shot (woman with halo of light) may be shot with those cheap, ACE hardware lights (if you know what I'm talking about), or I might just use the sun's light through the window. In either case, which filters should I consider using?

And to add something else, I have been reading from many a super 8 filmmaker's sites that, though cinematographers love to use their external light meters, I should consider not using one because most Super 8mm cameras (including my Yashica Super 60 E) have odd exposure logarithms, the point being that if I were to use an external light meter, it's reading might not be the exact reading that the camera itself has. Plus, I dont have an external light meter and dont really have the money for one, mostly cuz I'm saving all my money for the processing and transfer of the film to miniDV.

I know this is a lot of stuff to get advice on, but I want to make sure that the money that I am putting into this film will be money well spent. Plus, I want to make a good lookin' film, but hey, who doesn't want one?

Thanks in advance to all those who help.
  • 0

#2 Richard Tuohy

Richard Tuohy
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 482 posts
  • Other
  • Daylesford, Australia

Posted 22 December 2008 - 06:22 PM

Hi there,
if you want to save money and time and other people's time on the shoot, it is imperative that you shoot a test roll of both stocks. Don't consider this an optional extra, but as an essential component of what you are doing.
It will test the camera's meter function on both stocks (which is absolutely critical) as well as give you some idea of what kind of results you will be able to achieve.
You will need to get some tungsten lights for shooting the 64t inside. Naturally, when using lights, you won't want to use the camera's internal 85 filter. With the bw the internal filter will probably be disengaged automatically. In any case, you won't need it. Except that it does offer a little bit of nd. My advice with the bw is to let the camera do its thing and see how it looks in the test roll.
good luck
richard
  • 0

#3 andy oliver

andy oliver
  • Sustaining Members
  • 258 posts
  • Other
  • uk

Posted 22 December 2008 - 08:47 PM

Hi, have you ever exposed any super 8 film before? I 100% agree with Richard Tuohy post, film test the camera and if possible set up required scenes and film around 5-8 secs, perhaps rope in a willing helper to use as your subject matter. As for exposure, avoid auto iris on backlit subjects, if your lacking an exp meter, use the cameras auto, zoom into subject, avoiding any baclklighting, manually lock the iris, reframe, this will act as a guide for the exposure...
  • 0

#4 Ira Ratner

Ira Ratner
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 558 posts
  • Other
  • Coral Springs, Florida

Posted 22 December 2008 - 09:21 PM

Hi, Kev.

You're asking all of the right questions, which is one of the reasons you should REALLY look into the camera into you're using:

The auto iris thing is a bitch--it's not a good thing. With the cost of film and processing, the absolute MINIMUM you want to do is take a meter reading and know what aperture you'll be shooting at, and to be able to adjust your F stops manually.

It's just too easy for your meter to be fooled by backlight situations, but the above advice about zooming in for your reading and then zooming out is great advice.

But does you camera allow you to manually adjust your aperture? Or is it only auto iris?

One more thing though:

I would consider long and hard about shooting the main footage in B&W and the dream in color. I may be totally wrong on this, but since it's always done the other way, are you sure it's not going to throw people off? Like, it seems to me that it would be just too weird and not have your intended effect.

Again, I may be totally wrong. I'm only commenting on my first instinct about this.

Edited by Ira Ratner, 22 December 2008 - 09:26 PM.

  • 0

#5 Kevin Jones

Kevin Jones
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 25 posts
  • Director
  • Woodstock, GA

Posted 22 December 2008 - 09:26 PM

Unfortunately, it will not allow me to change the f stop on the camera. Its an auto iris.

I finally found an authentic manual for my yashica on ebay, and will be getting it soon. Hopefully it will have further info on it other than the info I have already gained from super8wiki.com
  • 0

#6 Alessandro Machi

Alessandro Machi
  • Sustaining Members
  • 3318 posts
  • Other
  • California

Posted 23 December 2008 - 12:25 AM

Unfortunately, it will not allow me to change the f stop on the camera. Its an auto iris.

I finally found an authentic manual for my yashica on ebay, and will be getting it soon. Hopefully it will have further info on it other than the info I have already gained from super8wiki.com


If you can actually hold the exposure lock button comfortably when shooting, you might be able to make the camera work to your satisfaction.
  • 0

#7 Kevin Jones

Kevin Jones
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 25 posts
  • Director
  • Woodstock, GA

Posted 25 December 2008 - 02:46 AM

So I finally got the manual for the Yashica Super 60 E, and I found out that when I have film stock in the camera, I can lightly press down on the shutter release trigger, setting the correct exposure and locking it for the shot. Then I can press the trigger all the way and get the shot I need.
  • 0

#8 Kevin Jones

Kevin Jones
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 25 posts
  • Director
  • Woodstock, GA

Posted 05 January 2009 - 07:19 AM

Another question:

Of course, I want to use as much film as I can with the film I did buy, so would it be fine to shoot at 18 fps, knowing that there might be a flickering problem when I transfer it to MiniDV (to edit off of), or should I just rehearse the timing of the scenes out as much as possible and shoot at 24 fps?
  • 0


Paralinx LLC

The Slider

FJS International, LLC

Rig Wheels Passport

rebotnix Technologies

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

CineTape

Aerial Filmworks

Technodolly

Abel Cine

Ritter Battery

Wooden Camera

Metropolis Post

CineLab

Willys Widgets

Opal

Tai Audio

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Glidecam

Visual Products

Tai Audio

Aerial Filmworks

CineLab

Ritter Battery

rebotnix Technologies

Paralinx LLC

Wooden Camera

Glidecam

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Opal

FJS International, LLC

The Slider

Willys Widgets

Metropolis Post

Rig Wheels Passport

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Abel Cine

CineTape

Visual Products

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Technodolly