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NY Subway 16mm Arri SB, 200T or 500T?


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#1 Adam Gonzales

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 07:17 PM

Shooting my first 2 min short myself on r16 in th NY subway platform, all fluorescent practicals. Stealing the shots/no permit. 500T or 200T?

 

Thanks.


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#2 Adam Gonzales

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 07:19 PM

oh, looking into renting some cooke kinetal lenses

 

cheers


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#3 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 08:11 PM

I'd probably go 500T but a quick trip with your light meter will tell you all you need to know.


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#4 Adam Gonzales

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 09:58 PM

Nice reel and thanks for the reply, I really appreciate it

 

I was gonna rent a meter for the actual shoot, but do have my built in meter on an old mamiya 35mm slr camera, will that work even though the frame is bigger (35 vs 16) and the lenses are smaller (10mm, 17.5 etc. vs 20mm, 35 etc), or does none of that matter??

 

thank you


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#5 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 10:10 PM

Doesn't matter.

You'd want to set your ISO on the camera for 500 (or chances are your camera will only have 400) and 1/50th of a second, or as close to that as you can get (although motion picture is really 1/48th of a second). And then point it towards something "neutral" in luminance in the area. Caucasian skin is a good choice, just open up a stop from what it says and that'd be your exposure on 500T. That is assuming your camera is set right.

From memory in Philadelphia, on some of the subway platforms, it'd read somewhere in the neighborhood of 2.8 @500T. But it really depends on the specific platform.

I"d maybe just buy a meter. Something like an old Sekonic Studio IIA is very cheap and something you'll have on you for the rest of your life probably.


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#6 Adam Gonzales

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 10:21 PM

Dude, Adrien, thanks for being so generous to me. I appreciate it.


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#7 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 10:26 PM

Anytime Adam. Were I back east I'd tell you to hope NJ Transit and I"d lend you a meter for your recce-- so long as I'm not using it.

 

http://www.bhphotovi...Deluxe_III.html

 

 

 

there's the meter I mentioned. It's 100% analog. I keep one in my bag as a backup to my 758 when/if the batteries go in the middle of nowhere. Really solid meter. Good to have and learn how to use.

In your case, I'd just hold it under a light, eye level, fill the lumisphere to get a rough idea of how bright it'll be under the lights; then go to a shadow spot; give you an idea of the range you'd be dealing with.


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#8 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 10:32 PM

One more thing. Flicker and unnatural colors will be there. It's better to just embrace it than try to fight it if you're stealing shots.


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#9 Adam Gonzales

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 10:36 PM

Rad, double thank you Adrian. I'm gonna keep you posted and let you know how this goes.


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#10 Gregg MacPherson

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 10:57 PM

 

http://www.bhphotovi...Deluxe_III.html
 
there's the meter I mentioned. It's 100% analog.


I second Adrien on that. Get a meter. Those Seconic studio delux analogues are great. I used one. Cheap as french fries now on ebay. For a while, don't leave home without it, measure the light and the basic ratios.

Good luck.
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#11 Adam Gonzales

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 12:05 AM

Thank you

 

cheers


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#12 Matt Stevens

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 11:13 AM

I've shot 100D, Tri-X, 200T and 500T in NYC's subway system on SUper8 using a Nikon R10. Surprisingly, the 100D came out best of all, being perfectly exposed. That was inside a subway car with the subject at the door and the lights above her clearly being new. They were white and not the standard ugly yellow old subway lights turn. 

 

Everything I shot came out with varying degrees of success but no doubt if you shoot the 200T you will not need to expose one full stop over to be safe and minimize grain. 


Edited by Matt Stevens, 06 August 2013 - 11:13 AM.

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#13 Adam Gonzales

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Posted 07 August 2013 - 12:48 AM

Thank you. Yeah that was my concern, the blacks getting super grainy as its so dark down there. And I like the look of 200T, seems to have more contrast and just feel brighter, but as I am using all mta practicals/stealing the shots and probably gonna shoot on a zoom, I feel like it might be safer to roll the 500T, as I'm gonna probably have to open up pretty wide as it is and the last thing I want to do is worry about DOF/focus if I'm all of the sudden at a 1.8. Gonna do some photo tests Thursday. This stuff is pretty confusing though.

 

Thanks sincerely for the info


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#14 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 07 August 2013 - 12:52 AM

Normally i'd rate the 500T @320 or maybe even 250, so as to over-expose it (it can handle it), and then crush the blacks in post which'll help knock out some grain. Over-exposure normally helps with grain anyway as it "fills in" the "gaps," a bit. Also, for myself, I tend to notice grain more the lower in contrast the scene is; so if you have a high contrast situation anyway. . .

 

Another option which could be interesting, if you want something very stark, would be to expose just for the highlights and then really crush things down, so you have this pervasive darkness all around an area of some light. Then again, this might look like ass as I idiotically sometimes played it too safe in times past to ever try that out.


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#15 Adam Gonzales

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Posted 07 August 2013 - 10:16 PM

I like both those ideas. Maybe I can do that instead of overexposing a stop. The highlight idea could look sick too I bet. I'm gonna mess around with both tomorrow and get it developed and see how it looks. Stay tuned...

 

Meanwhile, I really like the way this looks, this guy shot this in 1986 on reversal film, I think it's a little too soft for what I am doing, but your highlight idea made me think of it, and its just rad to see NYC like this. Any idea how to achieve something similar in contrast/colors with neg film? Regardless, enjoy:

 

 

and as always, thank you


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#16 David Cunningham

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Posted 08 August 2013 - 08:31 AM

I don't think the film is the primary source of the softness in this clip.  I'd say a combination of lens and transfer.


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#17 Adam Gonzales

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Posted 08 August 2013 - 11:16 PM

Yeah, I have been checking out those schneider lenses and they are really poor, but regardless they don't make the 7250 Kodak 16mm color reversal 400T film anymore and I can't shoot at 200. I did some photo tests today and there is no way I can shoot with 200T film, none. I'm reading at a 1.4 to 2.8 on 400/500 almost everywhere down there. Rough.

 

I did do some tests at at 3, 3.5 and 4 which I am going to rate at 1600 (thanks Adrian) and see what happens, but I'm gonn have to shoot wide open, I'm super scared.

 

But man, I'd love to shoot reversal as this is my first project and I'm probably really gonna make some major missteps.


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#18 David Cunningham

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Posted 09 August 2013 - 08:30 AM

Those Schneider Cine Xenon lenses are usually pretty good.  It could be the focus or the fact that it's probably close to if not wide open.

 

Leaning more towards bad transfer than anything else.

 

Shooting reversal would be cheaper for your missteps, but would be less likely to handle your missteps.  If you shoot Vision3 500T, wide open, 24-fps, with 140-180 degree shutter, you will actually over-expose the highlights like the lights and what not.  But, being negative, you should be able to correct almost everything in post.  In your scenario, you could be 2 or 3 stops off and although not ideal, you could "fix" most of it because the information will still be there.  With reversal, if you're off by more than 1 stop (or you have more than 3 stops of range) you will loose lots of data.

 

In the example above, notice that the light fixtures and everything around them are blown out, but yet the shadows are black and detail-less. (Not to mention bad transfer).  That's just reversal for you.  Even with negative from the time period, it would have looked much better with the same exposure.

 

With 500T in indoor scenarios like this, I like to spot meter my primary focus... usually peoples faces.  This will ensure the best/most accurate exposure of faces and skin tones.  Then, the latitude of 500T and colorist will do the rest of the work.


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#19 Matt Stevens

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Posted 09 August 2013 - 10:55 AM

500T is far grainier than 200T. I think you can safely expose 200T and have a sharp, clean image. It's certainly more forgiving that Tri-X. Below is my Straight8 entry, TRAPPED. We shot the underground stuff between 11 PM and 4 AM throughout the Manhattan subway system. 

 

Straight8's are shot and edited 'in camera" so you need to get it right the first time. Everything is shot in order. What a nightmare! I won't do it again. Too exhausting. :)

 


Edited by Matt Stevens, 09 August 2013 - 10:56 AM.

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#20 Adam Gonzales

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Posted 10 August 2013 - 01:07 PM

Matt! This is seriously, rad. You nailed that thing: no edits?? Dope. And nothing like an existentially disturbing film to start a day! Sincerely, thank you for posting this, it is really helpful. I just read a bit about that camera, were you shooting wide open/at 1.4? And what was the largest focal length you were able to shoot at with out any DOF issues?

 

David, thank you. That is relieving, another friend of mine mentioned post fixing, just wasn't sure what I could get away with. I ask you both the same question: Is shooting wide open like that gonna be mess as far as DOF/focus? Say shooting at a 1.4? The glass I am getting as of now is 12mm, 16mm, 25mm and 35mm (again shooting 16), Tstops 1.3. Or because it is so dark, will more be in focus than if the frame were flooded with light, (Matts film was all in focus)?

 

Sorry for the amateurish questions, just want to do this right.

 

Thanks again for the generous responses.

 

One more amateurish question:

 

If I am shooting say with a 35mm lens on 16mm film (~~70mm on 35) if "it's" in focus in my lens will "it" be in focus on the film? Or do I need to do some serious DOF homework and get the DOF tables for the lenses I am using?


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