Jump to content


Photo

Aspiring cinematography student question about photography


  • Please log in to reply
19 replies to this topic

#1 Adam Filmore

Adam Filmore

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 4 posts
  • Student

Posted 26 January 2010 - 07:50 AM

I'm new here so hello to everybody. Sorry for my english, I'm not native speaker.
I'm planning to go to film shool next year as my dream is to become a cinematographer. I'm totally green and I've read here that the best way is to start with photography to learn about exposure, lighting, composition etc.
My question is, which type of camera, SLR or Rangefinder is better for that? I want totally manual camera because I want to learn every aspect of taking a photo and I love the look of old rangefinders. I think that 8mm movie cameras are also based on rangefinders, not sure about 16mm and 35mm. I will be greatly thankful if someone could help me with this.
  • 0

#2 David Rakoczy

David Rakoczy
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1579 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • USA

Posted 26 January 2010 - 08:36 AM

Get Film Lighting and The Negative ;)
  • 0

#3 Adam Filmore

Adam Filmore

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 4 posts
  • Student

Posted 26 January 2010 - 08:42 AM

The Negative and The Camera are already being shipped to me, but will I found answer to my question there?
  • 0

#4 Paul Bruening

Paul Bruening

    (deceased)

  • Sustaining Members
  • 2858 posts
  • Producer
  • Oxford, Mississippi

Posted 26 January 2010 - 05:43 PM

I'm totally green and I've read here that the best way is to start with photography to learn about exposure, lighting, composition etc.



Anything that you can get lenses for. Nikon's a good way to go. Ebay has plenty of bodies and lenses. An F3 would serve you the rest of your life. I love my FM2.
  • 0

#5 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7117 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 26 January 2010 - 05:54 PM

I'm selling an F4 if you're interested. Great Nikon camera which I'm sad to see go, honestly.
  • 0

#6 Chris Millar

Chris Millar
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1642 posts
  • Other

Posted 26 January 2010 - 06:47 PM

SLR will better suit your needs in learning than a rangefinder

You dont need The Camera but it certainly wont hurt - and perhaps The Negative might be a bit full on to begin with, but if you can get your head around it then you're going to MUCH BETTER placed, but get ready to be bored...

Lighting certainly - get into it !
  • 0

#7 Mike Lary

Mike Lary
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 472 posts
  • Other

Posted 26 January 2010 - 10:25 PM

Full-auto SLR is the way to go, Nikon or Canon. You can pick up a Canon AE-1 for a couple hundred bucks and there are plenty of good secondhand lenses available. It's a durable, reliable camera.

A great book for learning the technical aspects of photography is:
http://www.amazon.co...d/dp/0679742042
  • 0

#8 Chris Millar

Chris Millar
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1642 posts
  • Other

Posted 26 January 2010 - 11:27 PM

Full Auto ???
  • 0

#9 Satsuki Murashige

Satsuki Murashige
  • Sustaining Members
  • 3510 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • San Francisco, CA

Posted 27 January 2010 - 03:50 AM

Full Auto ???

Pretty sure he meant to say all manual... I've owned a few pentax slr's, the lenses are good, cheap, and available on eBay. I would recommend getting an incident light meter as well to practice.
  • 0

#10 Chris Millar

Chris Millar
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1642 posts
  • Other

Posted 27 January 2010 - 03:55 AM

If he's got The Negative and The Camera on its way he may as well buy a 4x5 and a spot meter :lol:
  • 0

#11 Satsuki Murashige

Satsuki Murashige
  • Sustaining Members
  • 3510 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • San Francisco, CA

Posted 27 January 2010 - 04:11 AM

If he's got The Negative and The Camera on its way he may as well buy a 4x5 and a spot meter :lol:

Spot meter for sure! It'll make a huge difference in learning exposure...
  • 0

#12 Mike Lary

Mike Lary
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 472 posts
  • Other

Posted 27 January 2010 - 06:38 AM

Pretty sure he meant to say all manual... I've owned a few pentax slr's, the lenses are good, cheap, and available on eBay. I would recommend getting an incident light meter as well to practice.

Yes, all manual is what I meant to say. I was probably thinking of a machine gun when I wrote full auto...
The AE-1 can go all manual or semi-auto depending on the lens. For learning purposes, one should stay away from anything that does the thinking for you.
Sorry for any confusion.
  • 0

#13 Adam Filmore

Adam Filmore

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 4 posts
  • Student

Posted 27 January 2010 - 06:45 AM

Thank you all, great advices! On another forum I was told to think about DSLR because they can shoot videos and photos but it's way above my budget now.
I have to mention that I'm applying to film school in the next year. I have no chances in this year because at this moment I don't even know how to hold a camera and there is about 10 people on 1 place. They also require sample photos. So I think the best way is to start with cheap SLR, learn basics of still photography, in the meantime read books on cinematography, then in december buy DSLR (i think prices will drop till then) and apply to school in june. It will require some work but the competition is strong. Am I going in the right direction?
  • 0

#14 Mike Lary

Mike Lary
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 472 posts
  • Other

Posted 27 January 2010 - 08:26 AM

So I think the best way is to start with cheap SLR, learn basics of still photography, in the meantime read books on cinematography, then in december buy DSLR (i think prices will drop till then) and apply to school in june. It will require some work but the competition is strong. Am I going in the right direction?

What's your justification for purchasing the DSLR? Would you be shooting video to submit with your application? If so, consider the rolling shutter issue (if it hasn't been fixed by December) and how it would greatly affect your shot design.

I think you have a good plan for pre-college studies, but you should find out as much as you can about your school's preferences when it comes to admissions. What kind of content do they prefer, and in what medium? Do they expect video from prospective film students expressing a goal to become cinematographers, do they want to see narrative work or beauty shots, and is photography acceptable?
  • 0

#15 Paul Bruening

Paul Bruening

    (deceased)

  • Sustaining Members
  • 2858 posts
  • Producer
  • Oxford, Mississippi

Posted 27 January 2010 - 02:34 PM

I just checked Ebay. There are still loads of Pentax K1000's for sale. Why, back in my day, the K1000 was the student camera of choice. Cheap, reliable, all manual and quality far exceeding price.
  • 0

#16 Chris Millar

Chris Millar
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1642 posts
  • Other

Posted 28 January 2010 - 01:46 AM

Yup K1000 is a great camera, you can put screw mount lenses on it also with an adaptor - (or just buy the spotmatic)...

You're all forgetting film costs though - they'll chew through your savings soon - but still, DO IT! ;)
  • 0

#17 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7117 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 28 January 2010 - 08:35 AM

Part os the use of doing a film SLR is exactly because of the costs , at least in my own opinion, it makes you think about what you're shooting and how you're shooting so as not to waste money. While there is something ot be said about "shoot everything," I think that in training to be a shooter, it's much better to be cognizant of how much each exposure will cost you.
  • 0

#18 Chris Millar

Chris Millar
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1642 posts
  • Other

Posted 28 January 2010 - 08:52 PM

All the more reason to get a 4x5 and actually learn the zone system (then make your own simplified version of it) - then The Camera book wont go to waste either ;)
  • 0

#19 Adam Filmore

Adam Filmore

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 4 posts
  • Student

Posted 29 January 2010 - 04:08 AM

Ok so now it's time to choose the SLR camera. I've decided that my DSLR camera in the future will be something from canon (5d or 7d) so the wise move would be to buy a SLR from Canon because of lenses compatibility but I heard that the older lenses from manual Canons are not workind with the new Canon DSLR cameras.

Generally what do you think of buying better SLR with better lenses system that I can use in the future on my DSLR instead of cheap one just for learning purposes? If I buy something better like Nikon FM2N I can start collecting lenses for my next DSLR from Canon (with use of adapter). Are the Nikon F mount lenses much better then M42 mount lenses?

In the school I'm going to apply to they do everything on film, not on digital, but I want digital camera for my personal use because I can't afford a film movie camera, even 8mm ones are quite expensive in Europe.

Thanks for replies, really appreciate your help.
  • 0

#20 Satsuki Murashige

Satsuki Murashige
  • Sustaining Members
  • 3510 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • San Francisco, CA

Posted 31 January 2010 - 05:21 AM

Ok so now it's time to choose the SLR camera. I've decided that my DSLR camera in the future will be something from canon (5d or 7d) so the wise move would be to buy a SLR from Canon because of lenses compatibility but I heard that the older lenses from manual Canons are not workind with the new Canon DSLR cameras.

Generally what do you think of buying better SLR with better lenses system that I can use in the future on my DSLR instead of cheap one just for learning purposes? If I buy something better like Nikon FM2N I can start collecting lenses for my next DSLR from Canon (with use of adapter).

Old manual Canon lenses are not compatible with modern EF mount lenses. You'd be better off with manual Nikon, M42, or Pentax K lenses and getting adapters for them when you get your Canon DSLR. I've had good luck with Fotodiox adapters off of eBay.
  • 0


CineLab

Paralinx LLC

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Tai Audio

Aerial Filmworks

Opal

Willys Widgets

Wooden Camera

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Rig Wheels Passport

rebotnix Technologies

Technodolly

Glidecam

CineTape

FJS International, LLC

Metropolis Post

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Ritter Battery

The Slider

Abel Cine

Visual Products

CineTape

FJS International, LLC

CineLab

Glidecam

The Slider

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Rig Wheels Passport

Technodolly

Abel Cine

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Metropolis Post

Opal

Tai Audio

Aerial Filmworks

rebotnix Technologies

Ritter Battery

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Wooden Camera

Visual Products

Willys Widgets

Paralinx LLC