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Panavision goes "Educational"


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#1 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 31 May 2016 - 11:38 PM

Quite under the radar, Panavision has not only updated their website, but has made a fantastic series of educational videos which are well worth watching.

Their vimeo site is: www.vimeo.com/pvision

Enjoy!
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#2 Leon Liang

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Posted 05 June 2016 - 04:30 AM

I'm confused about how Sasaki explains the difference in magnification and perspective between anamorphic and super 35.

 

Here's the video: 

 

How is it that a 35mm anamorphic would be more 'compressed' than 17.5mm super 35, if both have pretty much the same angle of view? Would a 50mm in 65mm therefore be more compressed than a 25mm in super 35, while maintaining the same angle of view?

 

Thanks,

 

Leon


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#3 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 05 June 2016 - 09:19 AM

I think people over-emphasize the focal length numbers -- if two lenses have the same field of view at the same distance, then they have the same compression of depth, the same perspective.


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#4 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 05 June 2016 - 12:34 PM

The 35mm lens has more compression of depth (background to foreground) simply because it is a longer focal length than the 17.5mm lens. Therefore, the background appears much larger in frame relative to the foreground with the same foreground subject size. In the 17.5mm example, the camera is physically much closer to the actor to achieve the matching subject size. Thus the background appears much smaller in relative size due to perspective distortion.

Lens perspective has a lot to do with the physical distance from camera to subject and the relative proximity of the background to the foreground subject. This is the reason that most people find a 'normal' perspective focal length lens like a 35-50mm for the 35mm motion picture format to be aesthetically pleasing (or at least, not distracting); it forces you to be a certain distance away from the subject for standard shot sizes like wide shot, medium shot, medium close up, etc., creating a naturalistic perspective.

The reason that the horizontal field of view of the two shots matches between different focal lengths is that, 1) the 35mm lens is physically further away from the subject; 2) the anamorphic film format is physically larger at the image plane, roughly twice the height of Super 35 with 2.39 extraction; 3) the 2x squeeze of the anamorphic optics acts as a wide angle adapter in the horizontal dimension. All these factors allow the 35mm 'scope lens to 'see more' on the horizontal axis, making the job of matching field of view with the much wider 17.5mm lens easier. Regardless, if you want to understand perspective, the attributes of subject to camera distance and relative proximity of background to subject are the important points here.
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#5 Alexandros Angelopoulos Apostolos

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Posted 05 June 2016 - 12:46 PM

This is the reason that most people find a 'normal' perspective focal length lens like a 35-50mm for the 35mm motion picture format to be aesthetically pleasing (or at least, not distracting); it forces you to be a certain distance away from the subject for standard shot sizes like wide shot, medium shot, medium close up, etc., creating a naturalistic perspective.

 

But in 35 mm format, is it also true, just as in the still-cameras world, that the lenses with the field of view closest to the human eye are those with focal lengths of around 50 mm? Is that a “boring” view, avoided as uninteresting? Or quite the opposite?


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#6 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 05 June 2016 - 02:27 PM

No view is anything in isolation. It's all about what's happening with your frame and the "language" you've developed in your film.


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#7 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 05 June 2016 - 04:42 PM

The traditional notion is that a "normal" focal length is similar to the measurement of the diagonal of the film format (or sensor).  For the 8-perf 35mm horizontal still camera format, similar to the VistaVision format in cinematography, the diagonal for the 36mm x 24mm format is 43mm, hence why a 50mm is considered a "normal" lens.

 

This concept was so ingrained with early photographers of 35mm that a 50mm was also considered "normal" for the 4-perf 35mm cinema format, though the diagonal measurement is shorter, closer to 30mm, and so would the focal length needed to match a 50mm in FF35 still photography.  Since most people think in terms of horizontal view, not diagonal view, it is easier to just compare the horizontal measurements, so if FF35 has a frame that is 36mm wide, and Super-35 has a frame that is 24mm wide, that's a 1.5X difference (what is known as the crop factor).  So the equivalent horizontal view for a 50mm lens on a FF35 camera is 33.33...mm on a Super-35 camera.

 

But since the 50mm lens was one of the most commonly-built lens in early cinema, most movies were shot at this focal length for the majority of shots.  Sometimes a 35mm would be used for wider shots and an 75mm or 85mm for close-ups.  Ozu's movies were famously all shot on a 50mm lens.  Most of "Psycho" was also shot on a 50mm.  Most of "The Godfather" was shot on a 40mm.

 

Keep in mind that once 1.37 Academy movies started being cropped by projectors to widescreen, usually to 1.85, the loss of vertical view from the crop made the 50mm look tighter than in 1.37 Academy and filmmakers drifted towards shorter focal lengths partly out of compensation, partly out of stylistic trends.

 

A normal lens is either "boring" or "natural" depending on your tastes and the needs of the story (and depending on how close you physically get to the object with the lens -- some people feel that an extreme close-up shot on a 35mm, 40mm, even a 50mm, has a bit of distortion still in it, that it is less-than-flattering.)

 

The first CinemaScope lens was adapted from a 50mm and used to shoot all of "The Robe", but a 50mm 2X anamorphic has double the horizontal view of a spherical 50mm, so the view was more like a 25mm horizontally.

 

The problem with saying that a "normal" lens is equal to human perspective is that human vision includes peripheral vision, so while a normal lens does not exaggerate size nor distance, the aspect ratio and size of the display all come into play in terms of creating a perspective like human vision.  For example, IMAX movies are often shot with very wide-angle lenses but on a very large screen much of the picture on the top and sides start to fall into your peripheral vision so you are basically concentrating on the "normal" perspective in the lower center of the screen and not noticing the wide-angle distortion.  But reduce an IMAX frame to a small screen display, and the wide-angle photography often used is very obvious.


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