Sunday, 23 March 2014

John Schwartzman ASC Document

Another in my series of personal study documents this time featuring the work of John Schwartzman ASC

Download the ipad version of the latest DOP document here

Monday, 10 March 2014

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

"Abdullah" Stock Tests

Preparing for a new short film at the end of the month I wanted to test a combination of lenses/stocks and lab processing to nail down part of the visual style I'm going for.

Ive uploaded the results to Vimeo below.

I'm shooting the last of Kodak UK's 5230 stock alongside Kodak's 5219 stock. Both stocks are 500asa but the 5230 was rated at 400asa after clip testing. I also wanted to compare both Panavision's G and B series anamorphic lenses, and I wanted to PULL process both stocks and combine with the Panaflasher to see how much extra detail i could get out of the shadows.

The lighting setup was very straightforward: One key light and one backlight.

I started with the 5230 which i rated at 200asa after the 1 stop PULL.  From there I underexposed by 1 and 2 stops by closing down the iris before opening back up to the base stop, adding the panaflasher and stopping down again. The test was then repeated with the B series lenses.

The telecine was a one light telecine based on the greyscale and no other changes were applied after that.

When i switched to the 500T I deliberately rated it at 500asa after the 1 stop pull, which is why that footage is a further 1 stop underexposed compared to everything else.

Flashing was based on the Panaflasher tables and because I knew from past experience i was most likely going to flash 10% thats where i started testing from. Just for curiosity I also shot some additional material flashed at 20% and 30%.

The footage is interspersed with my iPhone video memory aids:-)

View the tests here

With thanks to Lee Mackey at Panavision and our model Carla Harrison-Hodge

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Douglas Slocombe BSC Document

Another DOP study document, this time covering the work of Douglas Slocombe BSC specifically on the Indiana Jones trilogy.
As usual the document is best viewed on an iPad and can be found here

Friday, 17 January 2014

Notes on the Tiffen 4K Diffusion Tests

At the forthcoming BSC expo in London, Carey Duffy of Tiffen will screen the Tiffen 4K Diffusion tests I shot late last year. The tests consisted of a series of simple comparisons between every brand of Diffusion filter Tiffen currently offer and serve as an excellent reference.

Designed in conjunction with Steven Poster ASC the test is a simple, but very effective, starting point for a Cinematographer to compare the effect of Tiffens range of Diffusion filters before selecting specific filters to test under their own lighting conditions.

We wanted to keep as many of the parameters as simple and unbiased as possible. The light is soft but not too soft to allow us to see the effect of the filter. The half light allows us to judge contrast changes, the backlight and bare bulb allow us to see blooming. Similarly the Primo primes were chosen because I felt they were a). familiar to most Cinematographers worldwide and b). sat somewhere between Master Primes and Cooke S4's in terms of sharpnes and contrast and therefore would be a better lens to showcase the effect of the filter.

Shot on a Panavisied Sony F55 in 4K the tests will be presented in 4K at events around the world over the coming months. I believe the idea is that eventually Panavision and Technicolor, who co-sponsored the tests, will have copies of the 4K DCP as reference for projection in facilites around the world, so speak to your local Panavision/Technicolor rep for details, or contact Tiffen directly.

As Cinematographers we are very lucky to live in an age where we have such an extended array of creative filters at our disposal and I'd urge you to seek out these tests and see them in 4K.

Some Notes from the shoot:
- All footage was shot 4K raw on a Panavised Sony F55 using Primo Lenses.
- The 2 shot was shot on a Primo 27mm lens at a distance of approx 7 1/2 feet.
- The close up was shot on a Primo 75mm lens at a distance of approx 7 1/2 feet.
- The set was lit to a T5.6 and the lights were scrimmed down to give a shooting stop of T2.8
- The shooting stop of T2.8 was maintained throughout the 2 shot and any changes in density arising from the filters used were corrected for in the DI.
- No ND filtration was used on the camera except in the specific testing of the IRND combo filters
- For the IRND combo filters the lighting scrims were removed to bring the set back up to T5.6 and the lens was opened to T2 for the IRND.9 combo

Nick Shaw has detailed our Post workflow here

Richard 2

A commercial I shot late last year for Director Chris McGill at Dusthouse. Red MX shooting timelapse with Cooke Xtal Express Anamorphics and a matte box full of ND grads and Corals