Jump to content




Photo

Infinity Mirror effect (two mirrors facing each other)


  • Please log in to reply
18 replies to this topic

#1 Kenny Keeler

Kenny Keeler
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 37 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 10 March 2016 - 02:16 AM

Hey all,

 

I have a short coming up that has some interesting shots to achieve. The biggest thing I'm trying to achieve is this infinity mirror effect. Example when you have a mirror in front of you and a mirror behind you. It creates the visual effect that has multiple refections as far as your eye can see (tunnel like).

 

My first thought to achieve this is have one of the mirrors be a two way mirror. This way I can shoot through the two way mirror but the other mirror wont have camera reflections that would have to be removed in post. My thought is to build a wall that has a two way mirror and I can shot behind this wall. Giving me a variety of angles  and specific shots we need with out having to worry about the mirror seeing me.

 

-1. Has anyone used shot with two way mirrors?

-2. Would a prop house have a two way mirror to rent? (for tests)

-3. Anyone have any ideas on how to achieve this

 

Here are some screen grabs from a test we did today. We just used a mirror hanging on a C-stand to achieve the effect but the goal is to create a way to be behind the mirror and shoot through it to make this happen practically. There are not images for this but did tests shooting through plexi glass that had mirror tint on it. However the quality just was not up to par The affect did not work as well as the actual glass mirror did.

 

C0025.MP4.01_24_09_17.Still001.jpg

 

C0025.MP4.01_25_27_20.Still003.jpg


  • 0




#2 Phil Rhodes

Phil Rhodes
  • Sustaining Members
  • 11234 posts
  • Other

Posted 10 March 2016 - 05:27 AM

That's how it was done for an elevator interior in High-Rise.


  • 0

#3 Freya Black

Freya Black
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 4032 posts
  • Other
  • Right on the edge in London

Posted 10 March 2016 - 06:31 AM

I've often wondered about trying this stuff on a sheet of glass but I've not tried it yet:

 

http://www.ebay.co.u..._cVyvdoneAE-Krw

 

Freya


  • 0

#4 KH Martin

KH Martin
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 194 posts
  • Other
  • Portland, Oregon

Posted 10 March 2016 - 07:23 AM

That's how it was done for an elevator interior in High-Rise.

I'm supposed to be interviewing the director and VFX supe on HIGH-RISE this week (that is if Magnolia's PR dept. can reach them -- apparently DP is unavailable, maybe from shooting s3 PEAKY BLINDERS?)

 

Blew through 3 of the guy's earlier films in the last week, filmmaker seems twisted enough to do Ballard justice, and now nice to see some in-camera solutions.


  • 0

#5 Phil Rhodes

Phil Rhodes
  • Sustaining Members
  • 11234 posts
  • Other

Posted 10 March 2016 - 07:33 AM

Yes the DP is very busy right now.

 

P


  • 0

#6 Kenny Keeler

Kenny Keeler
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 37 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 10 March 2016 - 10:29 AM

That's how it was done for an elevator interior in High-Rise.

That is an awesome shot! I knew there was a way to achieve this effect practically. Now the tricky part is finding a two way mirror to test before we purchase one. Ideally it would be great if this is something we could rent but, more than likely I will bite the bullet.

 

 

I've often wondered about trying this stuff on a sheet of glass but I've not tried it yet:

 

http://www.ebay.co.u..._cVyvdoneAE-Krw

 

Freya

I tested Mirror window film like this on plexi and it does not give the effect like the actually glass mirror does. It gets kind of muddy and is not very sharp in terms of the multiple reflections. However i did not test the Mirror Film on clear glass. Not sure if putting the film on glass would change the quality of the effect or not. Below is a screen grab from the test with the plexi and the mirror film.

 

C0021.MP4.01_21_59_23.Still001.jpg


  • 0

#7 Satsuki Murashige

Satsuki Murashige
  • Sustaining Members
  • 3081 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • San Francisco, CA

Posted 10 March 2016 - 02:27 PM

I think the low-budget way of doing this is to give yourself more space between the mirrors, back up the camera and shoot with a long lens. That way you can minimize your own reflection a much as possible. Additionally, light with enough contrast so that the walls drop off into shadow and make a black drape for the camera or get black showcard with a cutout for the lens.
  • 0

#8 Kenny Keeler

Kenny Keeler
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 37 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 10 March 2016 - 05:05 PM

I think the low-budget way of doing this is to give yourself more space between the mirrors, back up the camera and shoot with a long lens. That way you can minimize your own reflection a much as possible. Additionally, light with enough contrast so that the walls drop off into shadow and make a black drape for the camera or get black showcard with a cutout for the lens.

Ohhh I see what your saying here. basically I would be in the mirrors but fall off in the shadows? Then in post bring the blacks down a tad and I would be gone. The only issue this brings up is, for a couple of shot the angel has the actor in center frame which means we are looking down the barrel of the infinity reflection effect But to achieve this the two mirrors have to see each other and i could not be in front so was thinking two way mirror is the solution for those shots.


  • 0

#9 Satsuki Murashige

Satsuki Murashige
  • Sustaining Members
  • 3081 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • San Francisco, CA

Posted 10 March 2016 - 05:52 PM

Yes, if you have to be centered then there's not a whole lot you can do. Other options would be to fill the frame with the actor in a close-up so that the mirror is barely visible, or to shoot the centered shots against a green screen so you can put in a clean background plate later. Usually for scenes with trick photography like this, using multiple techniques on a per-shot basis and cutting them together works well.

Think of how they sold the hobbit-scale effect in 'The Lord of the Rings' films - some shots with human-sized hobbits and very tall stunt doubles, some with normal-sized humans and very small stunt doubles, sets and props of different scales, forced perspective, greenscreen. Cut them all together and you have a really convincing illusion.
  • 0

#10 Satsuki Murashige

Satsuki Murashige
  • Sustaining Members
  • 3081 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • San Francisco, CA

Posted 10 March 2016 - 05:59 PM

Hopefully, with enough space to back up and a long lens you and the camera can be out of the reflection entirely. Longer focal lengths have a narrower field of view so even with the same shot size on your actor you won't see as wide behind them.
  • 0

#11 Tristan Noelle

Tristan Noelle
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 26 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • North Hollywood, CA

Posted 10 March 2016 - 09:08 PM

Caleb Deschanel talked about doing this scene from Being There:

 

12806092_10205808575279642_2584460995794

 

Quoting Caleb Deschanel in "Film Lighting" (Kris Malkiewicz, p. 126):

"In Being There we did an interesting scene; we built a set for when Peter Sellers is being made up for the television show.  It was all mirrors and it was impossible to be inside the room without actually seeing yourself.  So we actually made one end of it from a two-way glass and shot through that.  No matter where you looked, you would not see the camera because the camera was actually filming through the mirror."


For my two cents: if you have the budget to get a one-way mirror and making a false wall with it, it should work.  Optically it should be like looking through teleprompter glass.  If you can keep all the light off of you and your camera behind the glass, you shouldn't be seen.  A glass supply place may have a small sample pane, like 12" by 12", that you could shoot through and determine if it will work. Hope this helps,

Tristan



Edited by Tristan Noelle, 10 March 2016 - 09:09 PM.

  • 0

#12 Kenny Keeler

Kenny Keeler
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 37 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 13 March 2016 - 03:18 PM

Awesome to know this concept works! Thanks for the info Tristan. I think that is the route we will go. Build one wall with two way mirror. My task now is finding a place with that has two way mirror in LA. 

 

I wonder if there would be any color shifts with say a two way mirror from a glass store. Where as teleprompter glass is specifically made for quality optics.


  • 0

#13 Kenny Keeler

Kenny Keeler
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 37 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 13 March 2016 - 05:16 PM

Thanks everyone for the advice and knowledge!! Keep you guys posted and will post screen grabs after principal in a week.


  • 0

#14 Tristan Noelle

Tristan Noelle
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 26 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • North Hollywood, CA

Posted 13 March 2016 - 05:22 PM

No problem and best of luck.

 

One last thought. This may be out of budget if you don't have insurance, but DC Stages (just east of downtown LA) has a lot of the old sets from Law and Order still standing.  I gaffed a commercial there recently. I'm pretty sure they have an interrogation room set up with a two-way mirror. Then it would be bringing flats for walls and to place the real mirror on.   May be worth giving them a call to see if they have one standing.

 

http://www.dcstages.com/

 

Tristan


  • 0

#15 Kenny Keeler

Kenny Keeler
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 37 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 13 March 2016 - 09:33 PM

No problem and best of luck.

 

One last thought. This may be out of budget if you don't have insurance, but DC Stages (just east of downtown LA) has a lot of the old sets from Law and Order still standing.  I gaffed a commercial there recently. I'm pretty sure they have an interrogation room set up with a two-way mirror. Then it would be bringing flats for walls and to place the real mirror on.   May be worth giving them a call to see if they have one standing.

 

http://www.dcstages.com/

 

Tristan

 

Nice good to know! Unfortunately on this one the budget is small. I think we will be building one wall in an existing bathroom that has a two way mirror on it. I wish we could rent the two way mirror to save a few bucks.


  • 0

#16 Daniel Meier

Daniel Meier
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 69 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Leipzig, Germany

Posted 23 March 2016 - 12:26 PM

What about using a Shift Lens? Wouldn't that work as well?


  • 0

#17 Kenny Keeler

Kenny Keeler
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 37 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 23 March 2016 - 01:43 PM

What about using a Shift Lens? Wouldn't that work as well?

Never thought about using tilt shifts before. I dont use them often so I am not sure there capability in a situation like this.How do you think they could help! Thanks for the suggestion!


  • 0

#18 aapo lettinen

aapo lettinen
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 704 posts
  • Other
  • Finland

Posted 02 April 2016 - 07:03 PM

when I was child I was playing with normal mirrors by removing the back protective layer or them with solvent ( I think acetone worked for this) so that I got *kind of* one way mirror. 

The aluminum surface scratches very easily in the process but it may not matter if the scratches are out of focus. eats up lots of light though and changes colors. 

If there is a factory near you that manufactures mirrors they could probably sell you couple of coated mirrors without the protective layer. or you could also have one made in a optical company (may be expensive though)


  • 0

#19 aapo lettinen

aapo lettinen
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 704 posts
  • Other
  • Finland

Posted 02 April 2016 - 07:12 PM

the one way mirror is based on that the observer side has lot less or no light at all compared to the subject side. you will see through to the observer side as well if there is enough light on that side. same principle than how a normal glass window behaves at night but the partially reflective metal coating (just like in ordinary mirror except no protective lacquer on the surface) enhances the effect


  • 0


Rig Wheels Passport

Aerial Filmworks

rebotnix Technologies

Abel Cine

Willys Widgets

Technodolly

CineLab

Zylight

Ritter Battery

Tai Audio

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Glidecam

Paralinx LLC

Visual Products

CineTape

The Slider

Pro 8mm

Paralinx LLC

Pro 8mm

Abel Cine

rebotnix Technologies

CineTape

Visual Products

Ritter Battery

Willys Widgets

Zylight

Aerial Filmworks

Glidecam

The Slider

Tai Audio

CineLab

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Rig Wheels Passport

Technodolly