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Patrick Neary

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Everything posted by Patrick Neary

  1. Betacam did kill film in the market it was aiming for; tv news (remember their old ads in AC?) :)
  2. Hi- I'm trying really hard to remember the last time I shot 16 for any job... Smaller spots, TV stuff, music vids and even some better-budgeted corporate stuff that would have naturally gone 16 several years ago are all some flavor of HD now. 16 doesn't even enter the conversation anymore. I wonder who still shoots S16 (or even regular16) on commercial jobs (not personal projects)? Somebody must. Although on the flip side I did just see "Wendy and Lucy" which was shot S16 and was a great little movie.
  3. Hi- I guess it's kind of tangential to the topic at hand, but In the "making of" (Dancer) they were shooting the dramatic bits with bigger Sony D-30 cameras. The small camcorders were used for the dance numbers where Von Trier placed dozens (hundreds?) of them all over the set. In the theater you could easily see the difference in image quality, although overall it was, well, DV.
  4. Hi- Yes it would have been better to say "similar to or better than" in my previous rant. But the point is the camera doesn't really matter in this case because the end product looks so horrible from a technical standpoint. I think where the previously mentioned films in particular went wrong was in shooting rather conventionally with very substandard gear and a lousy format (for that purpose), where films like "Celebration" and maybe "28 days" used the limitations of the Dv image and created something rough but appropriate. BUT, back to Paul's question, I did see a very cool episode of Nova on PBS a couple months ago about fractals, and if I'm remembering right, they talked about up-rezzing photographic images, or something related to that which was really interesting, and implied that what Paul is talking about may be possible in a way that runs counter to accepted ideas about squeezing blood from a turnip! .... after a quick search, here is that Nova episode, I'll have to re-watch it again sometime this week... http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/fractals/
  5. There were a handful of movies at the outset of the "DV revolution" (has everyone forgotten already? :) ) that made it to theater screens, "Anniversary Party" "Tadpole" "Dancer in the Dark" "November" and on and on, all shot with much better cameras than the Xl2, and despite the work of extraordinary cinematographers, they all looked like poop on the big screen.
  6. OK enough about slates, I wanna hear more about THIS!
  7. The only problem with that scenario is that testing one small batch of short ends isn't going to tell you anything about the quality of the next batch of short ends. Even if you bought an enormous stockpile of film from a reseller, that stuff is coming from all sorts of different sources, ranging from TV series to student shorts, so testing one batch really will only tell you anything about those particular rolls you shoot. The next roll and the one after that could be anybody's guess. I've had really good luck with shorties and recans (especially from reelgood), but one batch of 100' daylight rolls I ordered from a Canadian outfit (with a good reputation, as I understood) was complete crap.
  8. Hi- That's an old Mitchell (or I guess Panavision-branded in this case) viewfinder.
  9. You might have a problem getting that amount of footage from any resale kind of outfit. I've shot quite a bit of recans and short ends and it's generally no big deal if you're going to telecine, but on a short I did (where we struck a 35mm print) the wildly varying fog levels caused some issues in the color timing.
  10. In that vein, I shot a season or so of a goofy kid's series out of Santa Barbara, and our sound guy would sometimes slate the shots himself, and found all sorts of creative and interesting ways, including throwing the slate into the air, spinning, and then catching it one-handed as the sticks slapped together. It was very impressive and a technique we all tried, but could never pull off as well. It was a very casual set, I kind of miss it.
  11. Hi- Working with small lights generally means that your working with what's already there (natural light) and augmenting. You can't really light a city block at night with a 1k, but you can expose for the existing light and fill or "clean up" a face with even a small pepper.
  12. Does anybody shoot SD anymore? Even the corporate stuff I've done for the last two or three years for postage-stamp-sized web delivery has been shot HD...
  13. HI- Here's a music video I shot last year with the exact same set-up; we had about 6 (6k) space lights and a huge silk stretched underneath, all against a white cyc: (I even had the 10k off to the side!) It worked great, the silk made a huge difference in spreading the light and making it less "sourcey", but pulling the silk across lost another stop or two from the space lights, so that we were barely at f2.8 @iso320 24fps.
  14. Hi- So the big question is why? Generally when prepping a feature or any film project you want to test your emulsion(s) in the somewhat narrow confines of the stocks you plan to shoot souped at the lab you plan on using, and printed on the stock you plan on printing on. You want to know mostly what your playing field looks like in regards to over and underexposure, and what exposure constitutes a "normal" exposure within that system, or just what looks best for the project. Beyond that you might test certain effects or abnormal processes. Testing every stock under every circumstance (and f-stop???) seems very expensive, a little baffling, unmanageable and pointless. Not to mention that watching tests online wouldn't tell you anything useful about the filmstocks.
  15. Voigtlander/Cosina does have some nice lenses, it's unfortunate that they've fallen (wisely, from a marketing standpoint) into the commemorative "50 Jahre" this and "100-Jahre" that nonsense for their cameras. Apparently collectors with their bottomless bags of cash are a better market than actual photographers. May as well just get a Leica!
  16. How about an advent calendar, and when you open the last window it turns out to be the take-up side of the mag full of the day's exposed film!
  17. Hi Everyone- I can pop in here with a few observations about shooting "Rope" style, as I had an opportunity to do just that about 10 years ago for a low-budget 16mm feature out in Colorado. I don't remember what our ratio was, but nothing remarkable, maybe 5 or 6:1 (this was an under-$200k feature, so we didn't really have the option of shooting too much more.) The all-local cast had been rehearsing for 5 months previous, and that was absolutely key to the successful shoot. We worked out the camera moves and blocking on set in an almost improv/jazz style; the camera was on the end of a Jimmy Jib which was on a western type dolly, so the dolly grip would map out key positions, and I had a good bit of flexibility with positioning the camera/jib head for good key positions throughout each 9 or 10 minute take. I also used a 10mm lens exclusively, and lit the three locations ( two separate sections of a large hotel ballroom and a hotel room) to a good 5.6 or so, so we had no focus pulls (well, maybe one or two, but nothing complex). While we didn't experience quite the litany of problems mentioned by Mr. Mullen, we did start the shoot with a bad Nagra and three mags with too-tight clutches, so that 6 minutes or so into each take the camera would jam. The gear all went back up to Film and Video in Denver (it had just come from there after being serviced) so we lost two days right off the bat. BUT, and here's the thing about shooting long masters nobody has mentioned yet, we still shot the entire feature in about 4 1/2 days. One day we rehearsed and shot (in 3 separate segments) almost 30 finished minutes. The schedule had originally been for 10 days, if I remember right, so I'm sure knocking off half of that trimmed the budget significantly. The key things were extensive rehearsals (and good actors), flexibility offered by a very mobile camera, and freedom from the tyranny of focus pulls :) Plus it was a really fun way to shoot. The electricity on set when a good take got to the 7 or 8-minute mark was nerve-wracking but it sure did keep everyone focused!
  18. I use a little printout with my Rollei-35 for fun, it's incredibly accurate. Might be a bit challenging for grabbing focus marks on the fly though. Plus it would look a little strange on set. :)
  19. It's "Caffenol" developer. Arm & Hammer Washing Soda, Folgers Instant Coffee and water. Add ascorbic acid powder to reduce staining from the coffee. :)
  20. When the dog chews up your fiberglass tape and the 2nd drops the cinetape into the honeybucket... http://www.tomchuk.com/rf_hfd/index.php
  21. doubling/halving is close enough when you're talking about matching the angles of view between the two formats, but once you start shooting 16mm, you'll just think in terms of 16mm (as far as the effect of focal lengths go) instead of 35mm. In stills shooting I've never heard any concern or confusion about the different fields of view between 35mm, medium format and large format, I mean if you're shooting 4x5 architecture and you need a wide-ish lens, you throw on a 90mm, you don't first think, "what's the 35mm equivalent of a XXmm lens?" You just "see" in the focal lengths as they relate to the format you're working with. The whole conversion thing is just an unnecessary (and unnecessarily confusing) step for most people. Ian's post above should be pinned somewhere on this site, it's one of the clearest explanations. And get a bolex!!! I haven't had one for years, but they are great machines!
  22. Hi- It's a M42 (or pentax screw) lens to c-mount camera adapter, like this: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1169...for_Pentax.html There's no conversion for stills lenses. If you want a slight telephoto or portrait lens, and sitting on the table in front of you is a pentax 50mm lens on an adapter, and an old Yvar or Wollensak 50mm lens that came with your bolex, either lens will give you essentially the same field of view. They're both 50mm, no math, end of story, period. hope that clears it up! :)
  23. Hi- Just get a M42 to c-mount adapter, ebay is rotten with them, B&H and a lot of other camera shops have them. And before someone jumps in and explains that a 50mm still-camera lens magically becomes a 100mm lens on a 16mm camera, no, it doesn't.
  24. oops- JK is JK Camera http://www.jkcamera.com (Jaakko Kurhi). I have one of his animation motors that has the Slo-Syn and a controller of his own design, I got it from an animator-special effects guy recently, but it's an older unit (it worked on Evil Dead II!) It's limited to a single shutter speed of 1/3 sec. For a brief bit I looked into making my own animation motor, and there's quite a bit of good info about that if you search the forum for "mitchell motor" or similar over at stopmotionanimation.com. Somebody over there posted rather complete plans and diagrams.
  25. Hi Paul- If it helps any, I've got a Slo-Syn SS50 stepper on my Mitchell at the moment (driven by an older JK controller). You can look up the specs for that motor, but it's a .3A, 50 Oz. In., 72rpm. I'm only driving it with a 400' load, but I'm sure it can pull a 1000' as well, and possibly a 2000'. One thing the guy at JK told me (apologies for forgetting his name at the moment) was to pull the big brass flywheel from the camera ( a GC) for single frame work so that the motor isn't fighting the weight and inertia of the flywheel.
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