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Stuart Brereton

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Everything posted by Stuart Brereton

  1. You're asking for crash course in skills which take years to acquire. There is no easy, quick way to learn them. If you're serious about learning to light and shoot, rather than just doing it as a way to cut costs, then you should know that books and other people can tell you where to put the lights, but they can't tell you why. Only experience can do that. Bottom line is: you want good-looking videos, but have no experience in lighting or camera. Answer: hire someone who does. There's quite a few around here, strangely enough.
  2. In this image from the ASC website you can see some of the lighting units that were used. The main lamp looks to be a large fresnel, perhaps a 20k
  3. David, Is this situation a definite "it's all over" or has the production just been placed in limbo whilst agents scramble to make deals? my sympathies, either way....
  4. I use my Canon 10d this way all the time. I don't trust the LCD monitor on the camera, so I load the stills into my laptop for viewing. I find it's perfectly adequate for judging exposure. It's very popular with directors as well, as they can see a clear hi-res image of the shot, rather than what they get off the video tap.
  5. Dynaphos make a copy of the Chimera Octolume system, which will fit these lamps. They're sold in the US by Amvona.com, who also sell via ebay.
  6. David, it might be news to you, but your name is not out of place in that list.... :-)
  7. Last time you started banging on about 'Pig cops' you were asked to show some respect or get lost. The request still stands.
  8. It's been talked about before. Michael Nash suggested Bastard Amber + 1/4 CTO. Paul Cameron uses LEE Apricot 147 + Rosco Cal color Yellow 15. Either of these are good for High Pressure Sodium. There's plenty more in the archives.
  9. What I can't figure out is what the hell gives you the right to speak to people in this abrupt, rude and dismissive manner. You've asserted that shooting and transferring Super 8 using 'Professional' equipment yields better results. Well, guess what? No argument there. We're all well aware of the benefits of using superior lenses and TK formats. The question that was asked of you was: Given the extra effort and expense you are going to in order to improve your results from Super 8, would it not be simpler to shoot Super 16 instead? If you can't answer politely then please don't answer at all.
  10. Actually handcranks are making a comeback - just ask Tony Scott....
  11. I'd go with varying grades of tobacco filters, combined with tobacco grads for the sky when your action allows you to use them. Sepia might work as well, depending on your taste. Some uncorrected overexposure might help with a sun-baked, otherworldly look, too. Unless you've got lots of time for testing, I'd be tempted to just go part of the way in-camera, and finish the look in post.
  12. If you're struggling for exposure, and there is no movement in the frame other than the road, you could of course shoot at 12fps and drive half as fast. You may even get away with 6fps.
  13. If you're shooting at night, where most of your frame is in darkness and the only thing which is lit is the road surface (which is probably dark grey) then all of your scene information is exposing on the toe of the characteristic curve of the stock. This means that you are exposing only the biggest grains in the film. If you decide to 'print up' to lighten the dark area a little, you will just increase the grain in the picture. By overexposing, you are placing the scene info much higher up the curve. This means that you will have additional shadow information, and less grain. When you get to telecine, you just 'print down' to however dark you want it. Lenses are often not their best wide open. Contrast and apparent sharpness can suffer. In this instance that's probably not too much of an issue as your subject (the road) will be moving past camera at some speed, and any slight lack in sharpness will be hidden in the motion blur.
  14. What lenses do you have available to you? Car headlamps are PAR designs and have a considerable output in the centre of their beam. Take your lightmeter out one evening and meter them. With 200T and some fast lenses you should be OK, particularly if you're not bothered about seeing too much outside the beams. If you can, overexpose your stock. A night shoot with only black tarmac (or blacktop) illuminated will cause you problems if you decide to 'print up' for any reason.
  15. I think it was actually Burt Lancaster in the film, but you're right, it had a lot of poolside scenes, each different in tone as the main characters' mental state deteriorated. I remember the film being very good. It was also 'homaged' by Levi Strauss in one of their 501 commercials from the 80's.
  16. For PAL monitors, switch the camera to bars, then adjust the brightness control on the monitor so that the Black bar on the right of screen matches the screen surround. Then you need to switch the monitor to Blue Only. The switch for this is usually bottom left. The display will change to black & white bars. Use the Chroma control to adjust the left most black bar so that it matches the surrounding screen, then use the Contrast control to make the extreme left bar White. Switch off the Blue Only, and your monitor should be properly lined up.
  17. Bugger. I knew you'd say something like that :-) I was hoping that there might be rule of thumb that could be applied (roughly), but never mind.... Thanks anyway, Dominic.
  18. John or Dominic, How far off from the reference densities can film be and still be usable? By usable I mean correctable in TK to intercut with fresh stock. I know that this is a hard question to answer, and it's also the question that labs err on the side of caution with, but Dominic described the densities that Adam quoted as being 'not borderline, but BAD'. So, what is borderline, and where does it change to bad? Is there a rough rule of thumb that can be applied? I promise not to hold you responsible for your answers ;-)
  19. Do you mean having very underexposed areas in the frame, or generally underexposing the neg? Your dark, underlit location could have small lit areas which are at key level, surrounded by huge areas of shadow, or it could be lit with less contrast and underexposed by 3 stops. The important thing is to get your key lights at the level you want them, be it on stop, or 3 stops under. If you heavily underexpose your key lights, and then decide later that you overdid it and print up, you'll start to see grain in the shadows. I'd shoot some tests of faces etc with varying degrees of underexposure. Pick the one you like,then when you light the location set your keylights to that level and let the shadows fall away into black.
  20. I'll second that! HD is not some magic format that always looks fantastic straight out of the camera! All programmes need grading, particularly promos.
  21. If you want to be equipped for that fickle director, you're going to need those lenses and all that grip equipment regardless of what format you shoot. There is no reason why a 35mm kit has to be any more complex than an HD kit. An Arri IIIC with a couple of mags and a decent zoom is no more complicated and just as capable as a basic HD kit. Let's not have this turn into another Film vs Video debate. The question at hand was whether either format was a suitable investment for a startup company.
  22. Deals differ, but I often get transfers done during the day at a very reputable post house in Soho, with a real colorist, not a runner, for less than £300 per hour. Obviously they don't do this for everyone, but that's the whole point of a deal - it's whatever you can negotiate.
  23. Ballpark figures for shooting 16mm: Camera hire £500 a day (although there are ALWAYS deals to be had) Stock £90.00 per 400' roll (11 minutes running time @ 25fps) Processing £0.12 per foot Telecine £250 - £750 per hour depending on location, machine and facility. Say you shoot a promo in one day, with 6 rolls of stock, and Telecine in a cheaper facility 3 hrs @ £300ph Camera £500 Stock £540 Processing £288 Telecine £900 Total £2228.00 For HD: Camera £800 per day (again there are always deals) Stock £45.00 per 40 min tape Downconversions to SD £150.00 pr hour Grade and Colour Correction £250 - £750 per hour The same promo on HD Camera £800 Stock £90 Downconversion £250 Grade £600 Total £1740 There's a lot that could be wrong with these figures, but they're close enough to get some idea.
  24. In this country the competition is between 16mm and HD. They are much closer in terms of both quality and costs. Although it's true that there are 35mm promos made in this country, it's a very small group of artists who have the budget for it, certainly not enough to build a business around. If you're talking about larger budget promos (£20k+) then it's going to be either 16mm or HD. They both have their advantages, but film is preferred for its' cachet. But, as I've said, they are both huge investments if you want to own the kit, and I don't believe that promos will provide you with enough regular work to make the risk worth taking. If you're determined to buy, then you need to figure out other ways of keeping the camera working, so you're not totally reliant on a rather fickle market.
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