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Los Encinos


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#1 Matt Bizer

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Posted 20 January 2009 - 01:48 AM

Hello all.

I just finished up and am beginning to go into post on a short Entitled "Los Encinos".

It was a quick scramble to get this one rolling and it seemed even quicker to try and get it in the can.

The Director and lead actress Kerrie Cox is a talented woman but it didn't sink in until on set what it meant to shoot for not only a first time director but also someone who is in the film. I Found myself almost directing at times and running between the AD, producer, and my crew was a test of my patience up there with what I have felt on my own projects. However, with all the stress and rough environment including cold, rough roads requiring me to buy a new tire, new headlight bulb, and a serious car wash - and dust which lead me to realize all of the functionality of a bandanna, I really think it was a good time and we ended up with some beautiful shots.

here are a few of the stills. Let me know what you think and feel free to ask questions:

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The above is lit with 2 dino 12k fixtures from b&m. These are by far my new best friend. Cheap, functional, easy to move and work with and they are tungsten! we had narrow, med and wide for all heads in the fixture as well as my new best friend the stippled lens. they are both center road and cut a bit as to not spill on the G&E truck directly beside (don't ask). In the foreground we shot a par can ran off of my remaining put put generator that also ran the monitor. last we used the headlights of an concoming truck to accentuate the scene as it comes over the ridge and hits the armed Coyote.


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The above here is lit by God's beauty and a 6x6 super bounce as a bit of fill.

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This one in the general store consisted of the maxi fired through opal outside of the window, corrected HMI 1.2 par in the store simulating similar spill, a 2k Fresnel through the back room window and the fill is created with a few home-made kino units we through together with duro bulbs and Cat5 connectors to the ballasts on the floor with standard household switches... this is my own contraption so if you want to see an example let me know and Ill upload some pics.. they are quite comical.

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Just the good old man upstairs here.

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This is a few dedos cut to hell on a make shift dimmer flicker gag, a 1k rim lighting him from behind and the rest is flag city and patience.

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The dinner table is a few practical 212s in the overhead fixture draped of to what looks like a space light, 2 1.2 HMIs outside the windows all with opal, and then the room is also lit with a few covered wagon 9 bulb fictures on dimmers and 212s in those as well.


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This one is the 1.2s outside as well as a few kinos floating through the house all diffused and cut up.

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this one is all shiny boards and sun (note that this is from a take we cut from the film (do you see me in his shades?)

More to come as well as a few production stills.

I wanted to also give kudos to my Gaffer JJ (janet jensen from Austin) and Spencer as well as Nick Barker on Grip and Jacob Esquivel backing him. All good folks and a solid team on this rough low budget. We got a truck package discounted from Texas film and Light here in Austin TX and our quiet gen compliments of film fleet. (never forget those favors)

Best,
Matthew
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#2 Jon Rosenbloom

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Posted 20 January 2009 - 02:46 PM

That looks like a job well done. What about the camera system?
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#3 Matt Bizer

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Posted 20 January 2009 - 11:56 PM

Ah, yes the camera. We shot on the Sony Ex1. It was the 1st time I had worked with it but after a rather frustrating shoot on the red 1 a few weeks prior I found it a gift from the camera gods. Sharp, rich images. True color representation, and it is great in low light with the fast standard lens. We were limited on camera budget due to the light needed on the big nights so I opted out on the use of a 35mm adapter. All in all I was pleased with the results. Most night exterior was shot wide open and. In daylight I used nd and grads as well as a pola to deal with hot white gravel (even occasionally flipping the grad upside down or sideways to cut hot spots like roads in tight time crunches.
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#4 Matt Bizer

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 04:40 AM

Here are a few more from the other day.

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This is a long 30 foot dolly shot through the tall grass lit with the soft cloudy sun as well as a 12x12

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This was keyed by the low sun and we parked the G&E truck about 10 yards away as a fill... kind of a make shift 20X20 bounce... now I know why they make em white.

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high hat shot with morning sun.

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This shot is a pretty wide night exterior with both Dino's in the air from the condor with stippled lenses ablaze and blued so that we could use an open tungsten halogen headlight from the truck as well as a 2k through silk from inside the windows of the house. There are a few more fresnels spotting and slicing edges in the background for relief as well.


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once again the dino flys while another sits on the ground giving some relief to the background. A 6x6 super bounce for fill on the actors.

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This one is the Dino in the Air, a 1.2HMI on the ground, practical as well as 2k inside and a dedo hidden on the floor to accentuate the door's light spill onto the actress on the ground as the door swings open.
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#5 Maya Bankovic

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 01:00 PM

Hi Matt,

Thanks for posting these stills, they look fantastic. It looks like you did a very nice job. Just to clarify, are these frame grabs or stills taken on an SLR? Anyway, I was wondering if you had any major complaints about the EX1, I'm looking into shooting my next film with it and searching the forum for any reviews.

Thanks!
Maya
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#6 Ram Shani

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 02:26 PM

look great

BTW what is covered wagon term used for in lighting?
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#7 Matt Bizer

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 03:42 PM

These are frame grabs from the footage. The EX1 is a really solid camera. I really have no complaints with it. I liked the entire experience and would do it 10 times over. I recommend you have someone who is keeping track of the footage and backing up on multiple drives (just in case), but I have had NO problems with footage corruption or anything like that. Like I said, great in low light, sharp, vivid, easy to operate and very mobile!



"look great

BTW what is covered wagon term used for in lighting?"

Rami, The covered wagons are something I picked up from a Gaffer friend of mine. They are basically a strip of light sockets mounted on a board with some sort of structure over the top making a cage where you can drape muslin cloth to diffuse the light. They are cheap, soft, and powerful. I have 3 of them I made with 9 bulbs per strip (9x 100w photo floods and you have a 900w fixture) I love them and they are a warm light and easy to dim especially if you wire it so that it has 2 cords powering every other bulb. In this case you can use store bought dimmers for cheap at home depot and make it even more versatile. All in all the completed fixture looks like an old covered wagon used to cross the open plains. I will upload a picture of it from set if I can find one. I am working on a prototype of one right now that has a pliable cage which holds shape when you need to bed it to fit in corners and such. I hope that is somewhat clear.
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#8 Matt Irwin

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 03:10 PM

Looks great Matt.

Since you mentioned it, do you have any pictures of your fluorescent rig with the CAT-5 and durotests? I ask because I used to make my own fixtures like that for certain applications and I'm always curious about how others go about the same thing. CAT-5 is and interesting idea--- are you using it as feeder?
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#9 Maya Bankovic

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Posted 23 January 2009 - 12:11 AM

Thanks Matt! I think I will give the EX1 a try, I've been hearing nothing but good things.
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#10 Matt Bizer

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Posted 23 January 2009 - 03:06 PM

Ill try and get you a picture of one of those fixtures when I get a chance.

Best,
Matt
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#11 Pedro Millan

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Posted 23 January 2009 - 03:54 PM

Good Job!!
The stills look really nice.
Can you write a little bit about which 35mm adapter did you use? I am about to shoot a project with the EX1 and I am considering to use an adapter.

Thanks
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#12 Matt Bizer

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 04:27 PM

Pedro,

We didn't use a 35mm adapter on this project. In the past between the Red Rock and such I really found my favorite to be the Letus extreme 35. It works great. Throw on a good prime set and It really delivers sharp and shallow images. (push for zeiss superspeeds.. you will need the stops when you don't have much light.



-Matt
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#13 Ram Shani

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Posted 25 January 2009 - 04:22 PM

thanks for the replay:)

do you remember how you set up the picture profile?

i am about to shoot commercial this week with the ex-3

and need any tip i can get

thanks
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#14 Pedro Millan

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Posted 27 January 2009 - 07:02 PM

thanks matt.
I've heard good things about the Lettus. Will try it.

Best,

p.
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