On Sunday I was filming on the red carpet at another Film Premiere in London’s West End – Godzilla
Bryan Cranston, EIizabeth Olsen and Aaron Taylor-Johnson were the big draw for the crowd and according to Mr Cranston this film isn’t just a typical summer blockbuster but has a well developed script. With a review of 90% on Rotten Tomatoes I’m hoping he’s right.
Many people are using excellent older stills lenses from the 70’s and 80’s to shoot video on their DSLR cameras as they can be bought quite affordably second hand, they are generally superb quality glass and the key point is that they have a manual aperture ring which will allow the smooth and seamless aperture changes necessary when filming video (once the aperture has been de-clicked).
(I have a set of old Zeiss-Contax lenses that I have gathered over time which give that famous Zeiss look and are very sharp prime lenses for a reasonable price.)
He goes through the process of de-clicking the aperture (removing the little ball bearing inside the aperture ring that makes the ring ‘click’ from one F-stop to another), which can be a DIY process on some lenses, guides available on YouTube etc, fitting an adapter so that lens will mount on your camera and adding lens gears so that you pull focus using an ‘Follow focus’.
A really well made video by Walley Films which parodies some of the hyperbole that surrounds lots of the new film making kit that gets announced these days.
A short promo video that parodies the endless production and marketing of prosumer video cameras. Filmmakers Mark and Angela Walley have created a camera that is both a reverse trend in consumer electronics and “the most advanced camera ever built.”
Another informative article abut the craft of film making by Shane Hurlbut, lighting in particular. He goes through the basics of how to read a Colour Temperature meter and using that information to balance the lights in your scene – making practical lights and even street-lights more usable for your final image.
Several weeks ago, I went into how to read your light meter and why it is so important. I know that many of you have said the light meter is dead. Well, you are not on your way to serving yourself well as a cinematographer by thinking this way. You have to have the brick and mortar of light before putting together your creative house.
Another interesting article by Alister Chapman about Sony’s new Slog3 gamma for the F55 and F5 cameras. Alister explains that even though the untouched footage may look ‘noisier’ (unwanted ‘grain’ like structure) than the Slog2 setting, once both types of pictures are treated equally there is no more noise in one or the other, in fact there’s more details in the shadows with Slog3 in his opinion.
It’s been brought to my attention that there is a lot of concern about the apparent noise levels when using Sony’s new Slog3 gamma curve. The problem being that when you view the ungraded Slog3 it appears to have more noise in the shadows than Slog2. Many are concerned that this “extra” noise will end up making the final pictures nosier. The reality is that this is not the case, you won’t get any extra noise using Slog3 over Slog2 and Slog3 is generally easier to grade and work with in post production.
An interesting discussion about the future of camera technology over at The Knowledge
Thirty years ago, the debate about film and TV camera technology was a lot simpler, and they either they cost as much as a car or a house. Since then, technology has advanced faster than anyone predicted, and now it’s feasible to privately own a camera that would have made a 1970s designer bite his pencil in half with astonishment.
How far technology will progress in the next few decades is anyone’s guess, and it’s dangerous to make bold predictions in such a volatile area.
“If the mortar had landed 15 minutes later, the children would have been in their classrooms,” lamented a school official in the Bab Touma area of the Old City of Damascus not long after a mortar slammed into a schoolyard full of children this week.
“At 07:45 in the morning, nearly 300 children were playing outside.”
Mortars are inaccurate, indiscriminate, and many more are landing in cities across Syria.
They’re believed to be fired by rebels, but the government is also accused of launching them into neighbourhoods under its control. So brutal is this war that nothing is considered unthinkable.
Roger Deakins is the director of photography on films such as The Shawshank Redemption, A Beautiful Mind, No Country for Old Men, True Grit and Skyfall, the most successful British film ever.
He’s won more than 60 awards for his work, including three Baftas, and was last year presented with a lifetime achievement award by the American Society of Cinematographers. When he isn’t working, he spends his time living in LA, but his heart belongs to Devon, where he was born. “I miss it every day,” he says. Here are his top ten tips for becoming a successful cinematographer.
Yesterday I was filming at the World premiere of Amazing Spider-Man 2 which was shown live on Yahoo (the link above may still be showing the broadcast?)
It was a 5 camera Outside Broadcast with cameras and all technical facilities provided by Video Europe and the broadcast production by Sassy Films. I was on the red carpet with Will Best doing interviews with the stars of the film.
NAB2014 has seen the release of several new 4K cameras or updates to current ones. AJA have released the CION –
Las Vegas, NV, NAB Conference, Booth SL2505 (April 7, 2014)— AJA Video Systems today announced CION, an entirely new professional camera. CION features an ergonomic design and is capable of shooting at 4K/UltraHD and 2K/HD resolutions. AJA pioneered lens-to-post Apple ProRes workflows with the introduction of the Ki Pro product line in 2009; CION builds on this achievement by offering in-camera recording directly to the Apple ProRes family of codecs – including 12-bit 444 – for pristine image capture. ProRes codecs are well established in many post-production environments and offer wide compatibility with editing, color correction and finishing applications. CION enables today’s growing demand for high frame rate support and offers the ability to output 4K raw data at up to 120 fps via 4x 3G-SDI outputs. CION can record directly to AJA Pak SSD media at up to 60 frames per second.
Blackmagic Design have unveiled yet another 4K camera at NAB2014 :The URSA
Introducing Blackmagic URSA, the world’s first high end digital film camera designed to revolutionize workflow on set. Built to handle the ergonomics of large film crews as well as single person use, URSA has everything built in, including a massive 10 inch fold out on set monitor, large user upgradeable Super 35 global shutter 4K image sensor, 12G-SDI and internal dual RAW and ProRes recorders. Because the sensor and lens mount assembly can be changed, you can choose EF or PL lens mounts, or even a broadcast video sensor with B4 mount. This means you can upgrade to the latest sensor technology in the future and keep your investment in the camera body!
The URSA ticks a lot of boxes for professional camera-folk who are used to the more traditional ‘shoulder-mount’ design – it’s the right shape!
An interesting article by Sony ‘guru’ Alistair Chapman about recording and exposure techniques on the Sony F55/5 –
Prior to version 3 of the F5 and F55 firmware, Cine-EI was only available in raw mode with the R5 recorder attached. Now from version 3 onwards Cine-EI operation can be selected in both raw and non raw modes. You no longer need to have the R5 attached to use Cine-EI. EI stands for “Exposure Index” and in many respects Cine-EI mode mimics shooting on film.
The latitude and sensitivity of the F5/F55 like most cameras is governed by the latitude and sensitivity of the sensor and processing, which is 14 stops. Different amounts of conventional gain or different ISO’s don’t alter the sensors actual sensitivity to light, only how much the signal from the sensor is amplified.