Jump to content


Photo

How to reach my goal...


  • Please log in to reply
13 replies to this topic

#1 Jonathan Spear

Jonathan Spear
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 586 posts
  • Other

Posted 07 October 2005 - 06:42 AM

Goal:

Shooting an anamorphic feature in 35mm with low cost equipment (Konvas 2m, lomo lenses) and a decent lighting package - aimed for a film festival. Script calls for CG characters, greenscreen work, cranes and dollies and those dreaded night shots in forests.

Problems:

1. No $$$
2. Little experience
3. No production team

---

How can I reach this goal?

I can't afford to put myself through filmschool, and although I've been spending at least 5 hours a day every day for the past two years trying to teach myself every single aspect of filmmaking, I don't have any hands on experience. I've been shooting stills for some time now and I can draw storyboards and now the basics of lighting for motion pictures (I've read lots of books on the subject - but again - no hands on experience).

I've been thinking lately about starting a production team with some talented friends, but where would we begin? Our main goal is to start small and work up to shooting our feature. One of the guys with me on this is a computer animator, another is studying interior design + graphic design and the third is a freelance composer.

Here are some ideas we've discussed:

1. Create a logo (pro bono of course) for a local company to get our feet wet in the advertising industry.
2. Make a short animated film on 8mm or 16mm (1-5 minutes long) and submit to a film festiva.
3. Shoot a few shorts on 8mm and submit to a film festival.
4. Pool money together, buy lights and shoot some spec mixed format shots and submit to fantasy art contests (Spectrum competition).
5. Screw it all and pool all our money together and get everything needed for our 35mm anamorphic feature.

We're intent on creating a quality product and won't settle for anything less (I know, I know - I might as well tattoo it on my forehead), but would it be a good idea at this point to invest in equipment, lights and CG software -- or are we aiming for the stars here?

How can we start small, make some money to buy or rent equipment, and bring our script to life the way we see it in our heads?

Thanks for any replies,
Jonathan
  • 0

#2 Tim J Durham

Tim J Durham
  • Sustaining Members
  • 742 posts
  • Director
  • East Coast, Baby!

Posted 07 October 2005 - 07:53 AM

How can we start small, make some money to buy or rent equipment, and bring our script to life the way we see it in our heads?

Thanks for any replies,
Jonathan

1) Get jobs.
2) Shoot shorts on weekends. Edit them at night after work. Refine your skills.
3) Continue step 1 for the forseeable future and repeat step 2 until you become competent.

As for the film festivals, you might want to wait until an adequate level of competence is achieved.
  • 0

#3 Tim J Durham

Tim J Durham
  • Sustaining Members
  • 742 posts
  • Director
  • East Coast, Baby!

Posted 07 October 2005 - 08:24 AM

And one more thing....

Goal:

Shooting an anamorphic feature in 35mm with low cost equipment (Konvas 2m, lomo lenses) and a decent lighting package - aimed for a film festival. Script calls for CG characters, greenscreen work, cranes and dollies and those dreaded night shots in forests.

Problems:

1. No $$$

Thanks for any replies,
Jonathan


When you say "low cost equipment", have you priced a set of Lomo Anamorphics? They certainly cost less than other brands but I wouldn't call them "low cost":

http://www.cineused....anamorphic.html

*** Lomo 2.35 (Russian) Anamorphic lenses in PL mount. Geared on the focus ring. Markings in meters. Manufactured in Russia in the 1980's. Excellent quality optics and mechanical movement. 35mm, 50mm, 75mm, 100mm & 150mm. $ 3,700- 5,600 each.


You can buy a Panasonic DVX-100A and an anamorphic adapter, or better yet- an XL-2 with an anamrphic adapter (then you can shoot 2.35:1):

http://www.centuryop.../133x/133x.htm#

for less than the price of ONE of those Lomos, then you can start ACTUALLY putting together some films. Instead of setting yourself up with an excuse to fail. I.e. your "vision" was compromised by the lack of being able to afford certain highly specialized equipment, therefore you had an excuse to do nothing.
  • 0

#4 Jason Debus

Jason Debus
  • Sustaining Members
  • 311 posts
  • Student
  • Los Angeles, CA

Posted 07 October 2005 - 11:15 AM

Problems:

1. No $$$
2. Little experience
3. No production team

---

How can I reach this goal?

I can't afford to put myself through filmschool


You can't make a movie without $$$. Plain and simple fact. I assume you have money but just not 'movie budget' levels of money.

On #2, I can tell you I once thought I could learn everything on my own without school, and for about the last 2-3 years it worked OK but I reached the point where you are now, kind of a 'what's the next step' stage. I've learned more in film school the last couple of months than I had learned on my own in the last 3 years, the knowledge payoff is huge. There are affordable film schools, for example my school is $26 a credit which is extremely affordable. Plus they have 16mm camera and lighting equipment that you get to use for FREE. Also you get a 20% discount on filmstock with your student card.

On #3, again, go to film school. There are plenty of willing students to help you on your no-budget feature. And it sounds like you have some talented friends to help.

Also, If you're thinking of buying the gear you listed, I would suggest looking into renting the camera and lenses.

The other ideas you listed are good. All of those ideas would be really easy to pull off if your enrolled in film school, and would ultimately be more affordable since you would have access to much equipment you would have to otherwise buy or rent. 16mm is pretty affordable ...
  • 0

#5 Stephen Williams

Stephen Williams
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4708 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Europe

Posted 07 October 2005 - 12:59 PM

And one more thing....
When you say "low cost equipment", have you priced a set of Lomo Anamorphics? They certainly cost less than other brands but I wouldn't call them "low cost":



Hi,

Buying Lenses from a broker is not the was to go if your into 'Low Cost'
On E bay I have seen a set of 3 in PL mount sold for around $1400. (Square Fronted)
I think thats cheap for PL but in original mounts they usually sell for under $500 each.

Stehen
  • 0

#6 Daniel J. Ashley-Smith

Daniel J. Ashley-Smith
  • Guests

Posted 07 October 2005 - 02:30 PM

Dude.. screw film school! Just make some short films, then start sending applications into people who are currently shooting 35mm films. Learn a great deal, for a great deal less. (My personal opinion.. take it or leave it)
  • 0

#7 Stephen Williams

Stephen Williams
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4708 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Europe

Posted 07 October 2005 - 02:47 PM

Dude.. screw film school! Just make some short films, then start sending applications into people who are currently shooting 35mm films. Learn a great deal, for a great deal less. (My personal opinion.. take it or leave it)


Hi,

I left school at 16 with that concept. 28 years later I don't regret it!

Stephen
  • 0

#8 Richard Boddington

Richard Boddington
  • Sustaining Members
  • 5482 posts
  • Director

Posted 07 October 2005 - 03:14 PM

Borrow as much money as you possibly can from as many banks, and loan sharks as you possibly can, then shoot your film. Don't listen to people that tell you you need training or experience, screw em', what do they know? Charles Linbergh never got any advice from the other guy that flew solo across the Atlantic he just went and did it, and look how well things turned out for him.

R,
  • 0

#9 Delorme Jean-Marie

Delorme Jean-Marie
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 513 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • paris, france

Posted 07 October 2005 - 07:46 PM

hi,
i'm never confortable whith the concept of buying you own gear because films have to look differents when it's the representation of what's in the director's head.
the reason why we have that many tools to deal with is because eatch tool is needed to make the image of a specific idea, so there is no way you can afford all the concepts posibles.
also you can practice with cheaper tools as well as agdv100a and then motivate production peaple with those images to invest on you.
Money peaple are nothing without creative ones so if they recognize a talented filmaker thrue your work, they will follow you as wel as techniciens, actors and so on...
i think filmaking is a step by step world unless you feel like a director (witch will always be a stange planet for me)
good luck and keep cool
my too cents (of euros)
  • 0

#10 Landon D. Parks

Landon D. Parks
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1735 posts
  • Producer
  • Cincinnati, Ohio

Posted 08 October 2005 - 12:50 AM

I can tell you if your script calls for extensive greenscreen and CG work, You'd better count a D.I into that budget. Try, say $150,000 should do it... Better have an aufull good job!
  • 0

#11 Josh Bass

Josh Bass
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 552 posts
  • Other

Posted 08 October 2005 - 03:59 AM

Get yourself in as a PA on commercials, corporate videos, movies, etc. Harass DPs (that's your chosen field of interest, yes?) during lunch or downtime (not so much while they're setting up a scene, maybe) 'til something sticks and you can follow 'em around or get mentored or something.
  • 0

#12 Alex Ellerman

Alex Ellerman
  • Sustaining Members
  • 228 posts
  • Other
  • Chicago

Posted 08 October 2005 - 11:00 AM

Hey Jonathan -

From reading your posts, it seems like you have an abiding interest in film, writing, and animation. If you are low on funds, I would vote that you and your friends start scripting and making short Flash movies. Very cheap, quality, and definitely the kind of thing that can hone your skills and still get noticed. Submit to fests, get feedback, and start figuring out your 'workflow.' Maybe you prefer the writing, maybe it's the shot selection, etc. At your age, you have time.

In my own experience, I came very close to making a film in my early twenties. would have spent all my money. i thought i was ready. i'm quite confident now that the film would have been weak and that my money would be long gone and sitting in a VHS tape on my shelf. now i'm thirty, and i think i'm ready. so my thought is that (youthful) enthusiasm can sometimes override caution and common sense... but time is the one thing you do have... so take some and practice the craft before jumping into a feature.

Best,
ae
  • 0

#13 Josh Bass

Josh Bass
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 552 posts
  • Other

Posted 11 October 2005 - 12:06 AM

Oh yeah. . .

Make a short first. Make several. Use whatever techniques you want in the feature (film, CG, etc.), on a short form scale.

I don't why everybody thinks they're ready to just jump into feature-length projects. It's an insane amount of work. Baby steps. Baby steps.
  • 0

#14 timHealy

timHealy
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1252 posts
  • Other
  • New York

Posted 11 October 2005 - 09:06 AM

Shooting an anamorphic feature in 35mm with low cost equipment (Konvas 2m, lomo lenses) and a decent lighting package - aimed for a film festival. Script calls for CG characters, greenscreen work, cranes and dollies and those dreaded night shots in forests.
Problems:
1. No $$$
2. Little experience
3. No production team


I think you answered your own question. There comes a time when a filmmaker must learn when not to do a project. It seems as though you do not have the resources (money crew experience) to do this very ambitous project at this time.

I have been working in film for 15 years I would have to call in every favor and everyone I know to get something like you discribed done. And even with that, it would still be a challange and expensive.

It may be better to aim a little lower at this point and make a great 16mm or DV film and get your feet wet.

But that is for you to decide.

Best

Tim
  • 0


Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Abel Cine

Willys Widgets

Ritter Battery

Technodolly

Wooden Camera

FJS International, LLC

Visual Products

Metropolis Post

Opal

rebotnix Technologies

Aerial Filmworks

The Slider

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Tai Audio

Rig Wheels Passport

CineTape

CineLab

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Paralinx LLC

Glidecam

Willys Widgets

Metropolis Post

Paralinx LLC

Opal

Rig Wheels Passport

Glidecam

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

FJS International, LLC

Tai Audio

rebotnix Technologies

Abel Cine

Technodolly

Visual Products

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Broadcast Solutions Inc

CineTape

Aerial Filmworks

The Slider

Wooden Camera

CineLab

Ritter Battery