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Kubrick- Wide Lens Question


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#1 Simona Analte

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Posted 26 April 2010 - 09:46 PM

This may seem like a silly question but Id love for someone to answer this question for me,

Stanley Kubrick, mostly used Wide Angle Lens
I took a Cinematography workshop, and an instructor informed us that Kubrick used Wide Lens
but Shallow Depth of Field.

Now I'm confused. Because Wide lens has Great Depth of Field.

What happens when you use small aperture opening on Wide lens?

What effect does that give?

Thanks
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#2 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 26 April 2010 - 11:54 PM

Kubrick may have used wide lenses, but by moving actors closer to the lens and by shooting at a more open stop, one serves to decrease the DoF.
DoF depends on focal point (e.g. ft from lens) as well as the aperture among other considerations (wide v long lens and size of the imager). So, just because I throw a wider lens up doesn't mean I'll necessarily get more DoF as if I want the same shot size, such as a head and shoulders, on a wider lens I have to move the camera closer and in doing so I'll loose DoF.
Using a smaller aperture on a wide lens is the same as on a long lens, you get more DoF. Try not to think in terms of "wide lenses have more DoF," what I find useful is wider shots, and higher F sotp gives more DoF.
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#3 Jay Oxley

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Posted 29 April 2010 - 04:39 AM

There is also a documentary on Kubrick called 'Kubrick: A Life in Pictures' which is definitely worth watching. There is a small section where it talks about a wide lens that he had made for one of his shoots, which with the widest aperture measured F/0.7.
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#4 chris descor

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Posted 29 April 2010 - 11:04 AM

http://www.visual-me...c/len/page1.htm
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#5 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 29 April 2010 - 11:08 AM

There is also a documentary on Kubrick called 'Kubrick: A Life in Pictures' which is definitely worth watching. There is a small section where it talks about a wide lens that he had made for one of his shoots, which with the widest aperture measured F/0.7.


It wasn't a wide-angle lens -- it was a 50mm Zeiss lens. He had some adaptors made to create a 36.5mm version but any wider and the resolution dropped off, so I think Kubrick lived with only having a 36.5mm and 50mm focal length for those f/0.7 scenes.
http://www.visual-me...c/len/page1.htm

Wide-angle lenses give the illusion of deep focus, especially in wide to medium shots (when you focus to something close, you see how little Depth of Field there actually is at wide-open apertures.) Wide-angle shots do this because they make the background details smaller in frame so it's hard to see how in or out of focus they are. True Depth of Field is the small range in either direction of where the lens is focused at that will also be in relatively sharp focus. That's different that whether a shot looks deep focus or not, which is half-illusion or impression.

Depth of Field is mainly controlled by f-stop (aperture) and Kubrick often shot wide-open in low-light interiors.
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#6 Mark Dunn

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Posted 29 April 2010 - 11:28 AM

The f/0.7 was intended for the candlelit scenes in 'Barry Lyndon'. Kubrick's own BNC was modified to take it; Joe Dunton offered it for rent for a while, but since he went to Panavision it seems to have gone into hiding.
Back to Childwickbury perhaps.
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#7 Simona Analte

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Posted 01 May 2010 - 09:51 AM

Thank you all for great answers!

Much appreciated. I have a much better understanding of Wide Angle lens effect now.

Simona
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#8 Jay Oxley

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Posted 27 May 2010 - 09:38 AM

It wasn't a wide-angle lens -- it was a 50mm Zeiss lens. He had some adaptors made to create a 36.5mm version but any wider and the resolution dropped off, so I think Kubrick lived with only having a 36.5mm and 50mm focal length for those f/0.7 scenes.
http://www.visual-me...c/len/page1.htm

Wide-angle lenses give the illusion of deep focus, especially in wide to medium shots (when you focus to something close, you see how little Depth of Field there actually is at wide-open apertures.) Wide-angle shots do this because they make the background details smaller in frame so it's hard to see how in or out of focus they are. True Depth of Field is the small range in either direction of where the lens is focused at that will also be in relatively sharp focus. That's different that whether a shot looks deep focus or not, which is half-illusion or impression.

Depth of Field is mainly controlled by f-stop (aperture) and Kubrick often shot wide-open in low-light interiors.


David,

Sorry, my mistake about the wide angle lens on that one. Do you know if he used it only for 'Barry Lyndon'?
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#9 Lester Dunton

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 02:28 AM

The f/0.7 was intended for the candlelit scenes in 'Barry Lyndon'. Kubrick's own BNC was modified to take it; Joe Dunton offered it for rent for a while, but since he went to Panavision it seems to have gone into hiding.
Back to Childwickbury perhaps.



We do still have the 0.7's together with the camera. Looking to move them into the digital age, and have been considering fitting them to an Alexa M head. the reason being that the stock lowpass filter is too thick to allow correct back focus adjustment, therefore a special chip block has to be produced. The Mitchell however is ready to go!....
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