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reduce contrasts with digital


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#1 anthony le grand

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Posted 27 March 2009 - 09:46 AM

Hi,

First, I didn't know where to post this so I'm sorry if it's not the right place.
I'll shoot soon a short film with a very low budget and will certainly use a sony Z1. The problem is that I actually want soft contrasts and am scared with the highlights in digital. It's mainly ext so we'll shoot at dusk and sunrise not to have something hard.
The look of the movie will be soft so that's why I'm worried. I can underexposed a bit to save details and bring it up in post but it creates a bit of noise.
So I guess the only possibility now is to work on the lens like with filters (low con or very soft diffuser).. Do you have any other idea? Any trick would help me.

Otherwise, I'll make some test with S8 cause even if the latitude is not huge, I think the highlights are way more beautiful than with digital..

Thanks
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#2 Serge Teulon

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Posted 27 March 2009 - 10:04 AM

Hi,

First, I didn't know where to post this so I'm sorry if it's not the right place.
I'll shoot soon a short film with a very low budget and will certainly use a sony Z1. The problem is that I actually want soft contrasts and am scared with the highlights in digital. It's mainly ext so we'll shoot at dusk and sunrise not to have something hard.
The look of the movie will be soft so that's why I'm worried. I can underexposed a bit to save details and bring it up in post but it creates a bit of noise.
So I guess the only possibility now is to work on the lens like with filters (low con or very soft diffuser).. Do you have any other idea? Any trick would help me.

Otherwise, I'll make some test with S8 cause even if the latitude is not huge, I think the highlights are way more beautiful than with digital..

Thanks


Hi Anthony,

I'm not a fan of the Z1....if you are hiring this camera you'll probably find that the DSR450 is affordable. If so, I would recommend you use that camera, as it is more manageable in the menus and the glass is, not only removable but also better quality.

However if you can't, then I would be very careful of the what you have in frame. As you'll want to control as much as possible.

By saying that you are shooting at sunrise and dusk, does that mean that you are shooting in the 'golden hour'? If so, this will help as the light at that time is even and less intense. Thus helping you to bring your subjects up to a aperture level which is close to your surroundings without needing lots of lights!

Alternatively just shoot it with your S8, it will look great!
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#3 anthony le grand

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Posted 27 March 2009 - 10:28 AM

Hi Anthony,

I'm not a fan of the Z1....if you are hiring this camera you'll probably find that the DSR450 is affordable. If so, I would recommend you use that camera, as it is more manageable in the menus and the glass is, not only removable but also better quality.

However if you can't, then I would be very careful of the what you have in frame. As you'll want to control as much as possible.

By saying that you are shooting at sunrise and dusk, does that mean that you are shooting in the 'golden hour'? If so, this will help as the light at that time is even and less intense. Thus helping you to bring your subjects up to a aperture level which is close to your surroundings without needing lots of lights!

Alternatively just shoot it with your S8, it will look great!


Hi Serge,

Thanks for your answer. I'm not a fan of the Z1 neither but unfortunately I don't have so many choices.. I'll see if I can test the DSR450.
Yes, I meant in the 'golden hour' to have a soft light and no hard shadows.
Did you ever try low con or diffusers with digital? I usually like the very very soft ones, enough to diffuse a bit the highlights but not strong enough to 'touch' too much the subject.

I think S8 would look better, I just have to see how much it will cost with a good telecine, that's the issue. Is the 7280 the only reversal made anymore by Kodak for S8? I heard Fuji makes some velvia but does it make a softer reversal as well?

Cheers
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#4 Serge Teulon

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Posted 27 March 2009 - 11:37 AM

As you are shooting in golden hour then your control will be a bit easier.

With post facilities being so good I hardly use any filters on most shoots(excluding nd's).....unless the story commands a strong filtered look, like you, and when I need to, I tend to just use very subtle amounts.
I really appreciate in the old films the soft look on the female lead but generally these days I just don't think it sits as well to be so heavy.

However as you are shooting low end digital I would advise a classic soft to just take away the sharp edges and give it a more natural feel. As for which one it is entirely to taste and only testing can tell.

I've only shot reversal on S8 once and I can't remember what stock it was. Sorry but maybe someone else here can help on that?!
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#5 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 27 March 2009 - 02:52 PM

Do you have any other idea? Any trick would help me.

Pick locations that don't have white walls or white buildings in the background. Avoid buildings with windows that will reflect the sun. Select wardrobe that doesn't have any white or black in it. Shoot under overcast light.

Do you have a budget for grip gear? Use frames of silk to cover the actors when the sunlight is harsh, 20x20' or 12x12' for wides and 6x6' and 4x4' for mediums and CUs. On no-budget stuff, you can even use a flex fill as a silk on tight CUs.

As a last resort, shoot toward the sun so the actors are backlit and use shiny boards, reflectors, or bounce boards to create a soft key light where you want it. This will bring up the exposure in the foreground to better balance an over-bright background. Use frames of nets behind the actors knock down a hot background. It's all about finding ways to balance the exposure in the foreground, midground, and background.
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