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Gabriel Cortez

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  1. It is of very much interest to me, actually! Thank you Mr. Whiteman. What I had in mind when I was talking about "higher contrast ratios" was exactly a sort of "graphic" look, as you well put it. It was a mere observation that movies which take on such a look (the noirs, especially), seem to be using the natural qualities of b/w at their best, so to say. It's a subjective opinion. I feel that with just subtle separation (like between different shades of blue, as you say) there is still the possibility of them getting mushed (through whatever combination of filtering, light (soft light especially :) ) etc effects); hence my opinion in favor of hard light to act also as separation (particularly with grainy stocks, as I said). I mean, separation is of course difference between different tones of gray, but those very tones are affected by light. You can arrive at separation by having different tones of gray in your set decoration in the same light, but when you start shedding different amounts of light over different areas, your tones change too. I guess I'm saying that with hard light and higher contrast ratios you can have maximum separation of tones (duuh), and that is best suited to b/w. This would be a purely aesthetic point of view about b/w in general, but in the end I agree that you have to suit your aesthetics to the "story and genre", as you said. Thank you, again!
  2. This is the follow-up to a thread I started in the "film stock and processing" forum, in which I was inquiring about the means to increasing the apparent sharpnes of the 7222. More contrasty lighting would be one of them, I agree. So ok, knowing that, I'll be lighting to a higher lighting ratio. But would it be mostly soft light or hard light? Which "behaves" or "looks" better in black and white? Everyone is keen of soft lighting nowadays, in color cinematography, and no doubt for a good reason. I've never shot b/w until now, but as everyone here I've seen a lot of b/w movies from the old days and they look gorgeous, lit with hard light (Casablanca, The Third Man and other noirs etc). While I know that there was also a technical hindrance to light them soft in those days (slower stocks), they look great because of that. Now, recent films such as "The man who wasn't there" and "Good night and good luck" do seem to have another feel to them, compared to the old ones, due to the use to a much larger extent of soft light. "The man.." looked quite muddy sometimes, when there wasn't enough separation (the transition from light to shadow was too soft). On the other hand, "The good german" went the "vintage way", so to speak, and it does more "justice" to b/w, don't know if I'm being too clear on this.. Anyway, I know this is a highly subjective opinion, a matter of taste, but surely there must be some guidelines and arguments for using hard or soft light in b/w; I wouldn't know, since I don't have experience with b/w, but I'm guessing that the absence of color should be an important factor to consider when planning the lighting in b/w; i.e. what works with color doesn't work with "not color" :) And then, there's also the grain factor with 7222 at least, which I found to be very annoying as it is amplified in out-of-focus and large continuous midtone surfaces. On the other hand, there are tons of gorgeos photographs making use of the infinite shades of grey, but somehow that seems harder to get in movies. So, what would be your view on the soft vs hard light in b/w ? I'm leaning towards giving more credit to the hard light as more appropriate for b/w in general. Thank you in advance! :)
  3. Alright then, it's all crystal clear. Thank you everyone for taking time to follow this thread and post your answers!
  4. Thank you for helping here, Mr. Kukla and Mr. Mullen. What about shooting at a higher light level (higher f/stop) for as much DOF as possible? Would that make a difference on the apparent overall sharpness of the image, and would it be worth the cost? (higher f/stop - more light - more money :) ). By higher f/stop I mean 4 or 5.6 (it's a studio shoot).
  5. Yes I know that, but I was thinking of the final print, which is silver in b/w and color dye in color film; there's also the "Callier effect" with the b/w, and I'm wondering what other "tricks" are to this.
  6. Thank you very much Jon Kukla, but are you saying that based on personal experience with the 7222? Just want to make sure; I haven't quite understood what are the particularities of the b/w stocks from an exposure/processing point of view, I mean if same general rules apply from color.
  7. :) Mr. Mullen, the basic point of the matter was if whether the darn thing yields some unique light when bounced, a light that couldn't be achieved by bouncing some other unit; but you say "you could do that with a Tweenie or something", so I guess there ain't anything special to "do that" with a kino. I haven't personally worked with kinos until now, so I wouldn't know any tricks there might be to them, that's why I'm asking stupid questions, perhaps. And of course I wouldn't rent a kino just to use it for bouncing! That much I do know. Sorry, it must be my fault that I'm not being too clear in my posts; English is not my native language, so please excuse. Thank you very much for your help, Mr. Mullen. Please address my post in the the film stock and processing forum too, if you will; forgive the insistence.
  8. I meant efficient from a cost point of view; I was wondering if bounced kinos have anything special to them (the quality of the resulting soft light) that cannot be duplicated by using another unit for bounce, and thus would justify renting a kino just for that. I didn't do this until now, so I'm just trying to imagine and draw from your experience with this technique. I think you can arrive at the same light quality by other means too, but I was curious if there is any secret about this, which would make bounced kinos unique. :) I guess there isn't. Sorry if all this was annoying to you, just trying to understand some things. Thank you very much everyone for your replies! Oh, and maybe you'd like to take a look at my question posted in the "film stocks and processing" forum, if you have any time; not sure I picked the right forum to post that. Thank you again.
  9. Right, Mr. Mullen, that is exactly the word for what I was concerned about: efficiency. Are bounced kinos an efficient way (kinos are kinda expensive to rent) to get that kind of soft light? Or can you do about the same thing, by bouncing some other unit? Well, I've already asked this question a lil bit earlier, but the answer is still not very clear.
  10. Well then, I see there are different opinions on bouncing kinos. I'm really curious if it's sort of a common or at least "normal" practice to do this, I'd hate to get funny looks from the crew on it and then find out they were right! :)
  11. Yeah that was my take on it too; and the softness depends of the relative size of the source to the subject. That's why I was asking about bouncing kinoflos > won't it be inneficient - from a productivity pov - to do that, instead of bouncing some other light, if the FINAL bounce (the card/board) is the actual source that matters? I mean it's quite a decision to include an expensive unit such as a kinoflo, to bounce it, and get the same result you'd get with bouncing some other cheaper light > it doesn't worth the money, does it? Any thoughts on that?
  12. I'll be shooting some 7222 and from the initial tests I found it to be hugely grainy, boiling all over the screen, especially in the midtones of course. Well everybody knows it's a grainy stock. Now, how can I get around that and come to as sharp an image as possible? A couple of things that come to mind are: - sharper lenses - deeper DOF (as much of the frame in focus) - more contrasty lighting? (avoiding having too many continuous midtone surfaces) Are these correct? Please give me some advice about this. Also, is there any exposure trick that could help ? I mean, like the widely accepted color approach "slightly overexpose and then print down", but for the b/w stock? Any lab processing manipulation? Thank you very much! Cheers
  13. Gabriel Cortez


    Did you ever do this? How does it look? Compared to bouncing a fresnel w/diffusion? All for a very soft light. Thanks.
  14. Darrin, Of course I tested the meter with my own greycard (which is brand new btw, purchased it recently from kodak), in the studio, lit by the book, no doubt about that. And yes, I did hold the meter properly when taking the reading, was very careful about that, even repeated the test on a shoot a few days ago because I was very much intrigued with this.
  15. Hello everyone, People say that the spotmeter on the sekonics is calibrated to 13% grey instead of 18%, and thus underexposes when taking a reading from a kodak grey card. It would seem that the incident readings are correct though. (note: the combi sekonics use two separate photosensitive cells) Is this true about the 13% thing? Are you aware of it? And if you are, did any of you had their meter recalibrated/compensated accordingly? I mean, in the end, an incident reading and a spotmeter reading of an 18% greycard should be equal, but it seems that with the sekonics it doesnt. I'm using the L-558 Dualmaster, but I assume the same is true for the 608 etc. Please shed some light on this one for me! Can't trust my meter anymore :(
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