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Christopher Santucci

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Christopher Santucci last won the day on September 3 2017

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About Christopher Santucci

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  • Occupation
    Cinematographer
  • Location
    Buffalo, New York
  • My Gear
    Red Epic, 5DMKIII, EX1R

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  • Website URL
    http://santucci-cinematographer.com

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  1. I was once asked by a motion graphics guy to place 2 cameras on same axis with different focal length lenses. I'm not sure if he ever made use of the both perspectives, however. It may have been just a safety measure.
  2. Hahaha, I have such a pet peeve about demo reel music. Most I've seen have way too obtrusive, irritating music. I saw one once that had some really loud, overbearing dixieland jazz that had me immediately reaching for the volume control. I was tempted once to make a demo for myself with no music, but I think something needs to be there. It should really be innocuous, I believe.
  3. Back light placement often has as much to do with space as it does with where you ideally want it to be. That is, it's gotta be high enough to be above the frame (most of the time) and not cause flare. Using a larger source as a top back light may not even be possible depending upon ceiling height. As for the look, if you want a hard rim of light, the source would be further behind the subject. Generally, you don't want that kind of light to spill onto the forehead or nose or cheek bones.
  4. Commercial cinematographers are primarily highly skilled technicians with an artistic eye. They should be able to mimic or replicate or originate any style as required by any given project. That said, it's preferable to have a signature style of your own, sure, but it would have to be something pretty special which of course would fall out of fashion eventually. "Impossible to replace" is kind of a pipe dream and really only happens because of a long standing relationship (personal, professional, or otherwise).
  5. Yeah, I love using them together to make large banks. Seems the 1x3 is not available anymore which is a shame.
  6. I've never come across a rain cover that actually allowed for functional access to camera controls. I've been using clear ribbed shelf liner for rain situations. It bends itself naturally in one direction, is easy to cut, and it's cheap.
  7. As mentioned, more frontal is better. Could be hard or soft light, but more frontal always looks best for women. If you're ever tempted to "keep it real" and use a more sidey source on women, especially 40+, don't.
  8. I would look at the LED mats. Skypanel is too large/cumbersome and too heavy. Last year I picked up some low cost 1x2 and 1x3 mats that I've been using a lot. Color isn't perfect (close enough), but they're bright, portable, and dimmable.
  9. I would keep the gear as far away from sand as possible. Get a magliner with a top shelf or a camera cart, and work off of it. Of course, some kind of motorized vehicle could also provide a clean platform to work off of.
  10. Do you not have ambient light where you live? 😛 I don't think you can go wrong with Aputure, but seriously, you should try and work with available light if at all possible.
  11. It really depends on budget, the nature of the script, the expectations of the director, and how the DP likes to work. I've DP'ed features where there was zero prep or even discussion about the cinematography, but then I worked on a spec PSA once and the director wanted to discuss at length every aspect of the cinematography down to also visiting the location to discuss it even more. I worked on a feature that was completely storyboarded by the director, but we never much discussed lighting, etc. I think I've DP'ed 9 features, but I don't remember ever doing any screen tests with actors. When performing lighting tests, it's generally to work out a difficult lighting situation or to test a non standard technique, so really, it's more about just knowing what will work and what won't work on the shoot day.
  12. Build 2 large book lights to place on each side of the frame, one closer to camera and one further back.
  13. Clipped highlights, drastic focus issues, and just generally poor lighting, is what stands out for me. They're using the overheads and keying with small sources, it looks like. I'd guess they had a very small lighting package for this.
  14. 2-3 years sounds about right but of course now the danger is that new camera models are being released more frequently and you don't want to get stuck with an obsolete camera that producers and directors aren't asking for anymore. That said, I'm still using a Red Epic MX and have no intention of upgrading. Buying used is the way to go with the pricier cameras, I'd say, especially given the lesser lifespan of cameras as of late. I would expect a reputable rental house would have maintained and restored a sale item to 100% prior to sale.
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