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Stephen Sanchez

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About Stephen Sanchez

  • Birthday 10/17/1985

Profile Information

  • Occupation
    Cinematographer
  • Location
    Tampa, Florida
  • My Gear
    FX9
  • Specialties
    Science of light, commercial photography

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  • Website URL
    https://vimeo.com/stephensanchez

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  1. That's a lot of cameras. My god. Thanks Gabriel. Yeah, I've done rack mount converters for log multicam shows. I was hoping to hear about a DA box with LUT capability that would fit on the back of a camera. So it sounds like I'm heading in the best direction. Thanks for the suggestions. [edit: answered my own question]
  2. You know, if you have the budget and support, wouldn't you want to try something new? I mean how many can say they used literally celluloid to treat their final print? What treat that would be.
  3. Added reading if you want step-by-step. https://www.instructables.com/Lamp-Part-Wiring-Intro/
  4. Be sure to make the fixture hangable. Hanging bare bulbs and small lampshades work fine on the power cord itself. But really, anything with weight should have a load-bearing cable or chain. Fixtures will include it if it needs it, but creating "hanging practicals" like this where they're used in ways unintended, sometimes you need to prevent added strain on the cord. In this case, you're fine. Happy shooting my friend!
  5. This is easy to do. I've done several hanging fixtures this way and hung from the grid or menace arm. You can get an Edison plug from home despot. After that, it's just knowing the wiring. The image below shows where HOT, GROUND, NEUTRAL are on the outlet. The best way to remember is to know that HOT is always the SMALLEST blade. Modern outlets will always represent this. Some plugs, however (like the gray one on the left), don't represent this, so always refer to the outlet to find where it corelates to the plug. For AC, the wire colors go: Black is Hot (power) White is Neutral Green is Ground Make sure that these fixture wires land in the correct spot on the outlet and you're good. A note about incandescent bulbs and why your fixture doesn't ground to the bulb: Incandescent/halogen lights, heaters, water heaters and those coil cooktops operate by the same method: stick the Hot and Neutral together to make heat! It is this reason why some plugs meant for incandescence have two equally-sized prongs; because they both lead to the same place. Notice the ground wire isn't necessary for this action. We ground the housing to provide the electricity some place to travel if under short circuit (as opposed to through you), and it's included in especially anything with a metal exterior. So the ground will prevent the housing from shocking you if there is a short, that's all. If there is only a screw socket for a bulb and no housing, typically there is no ground, because there is nothing to ground to that could shock you.
  6. Welcome Andre! I shoot commercial, so other folks in the narrative world will have better practical advice. I've give some theory and approaches from my world. Cinematography is so subjective because it deals with what "looks good," which is dependent on the DP/director and the audience you're going for. For me, multiple shadows and bare-hard light is negligent because it doesn't present the products or people attractively. So, you'll have to define what's good and not good. If it's a gritty action, horror, period film/scene, the many shadows might fit the world. Practically, if you can't get away from multiple shadows, you can always throw in opal or hampshire out of frame for closeups and that will blur the sources. And also consider bulbs that don't show the filament, or frosted fixtures. My approach for spaces has been getting more and more natural. So in situations like night interior, I'd throw a quite soft "moon" through the windows that will touch a lot of set, and fake more "window light" out of frame or fake soft warm interior light out of frame (216 frame). Then place practical or practical-motivated stuff. But I also like side-light, which is why I start with those. But this is generally how a house would really appear, if only romanticized, and it takes care of "filling the room." As for Scene 2. Eggcrates on softboxes choke not only the degree of spread, but also the intensity of light at closer proximity. As your subject gets closer to the eggcrate, the slats begin to cut light from the furthest distances. The effect is that you don't get too hot. That would be my solution to your toplight. And as for those practicals playing as backlight. Backlight to me is quite strong, and making those practicals bright enough to edge the characters' back would make them comically hot. If you want a back edge and preserve the practicals, then find a way to place your own backlight out of frame. But again, maybe your look is more like Ocean's Eleven, where you don't mind burning parts of the background. Here's examples of table-lighting. Also consider that you're table will be longer and thus these solutions won't produce the exact same effect. It depends on if you wan't to be realistic to the set with a single chandelier, or cheat a source each for the talent. Remember, that would leave a dark spot in the center of the table, so maybe you'd want three center lights.
  7. I run into situations where my camera can't apply a LUT to the monitor out. It's been happening when post requests HD footage. And the FX9 camera can't downsample from the 6k sensor to HD and apply a LUT at the same time. So in the "HD" scenarios, I and everyone else gets log. Now, I've loaded a LUT into my on-cam monitor and can expose fine. But that LUT doesn't pass through to the director or clients. (It gives the option to pass a more contrasty default LUT, but not mine). You don't want the business end receiving a more blown-out image than you're actually recording. So, as a holdover, I've borrowed an AC-powered Blackmagic Teranex Mini Converter and use it on the director's end to apply a the same LUT. How the heck do you apply a LUT on camera-end and send it to all the monitors? Is Teradek the only option? What other on-cam monitors actually pass your loaded LUT through? Thanks folks.
  8. If 240v house lines are available, then the more power to you! That'd be awesome. Rick, a silk is going to return less light than a solid white surface because it's a porous weave. In addition, I'd be concerned that 1200w of LED will not return a decent light level with an 18ft ceiling or a silk bounce. Consider that can always take light away, but you can't add light if you're fixtures are maxed out. I'll typically run with larger fixtures if I'm put into a situation I'm unsure of. Eye lights is a great point as Guy mentioned. Anything at eye level will show in the eye. But I'd avoid a hard source for the sake of casting shadows on the background. @Guy Holt Your first link directs to an index and I couldn't find the short you mentioned. I did find a dumpster scene with two women and three flatheads, it looked like.
  9. Consumer LED's are hit and miss when it comes to banding. Some are more intense, others less noticeable. And if you use different manufacturers, you'll see banding on banding. Yeah, on Sony cameras at least, consumer LED tints green. My suggestion would be to use brighter tungsten. Mogul base screw sockets are like 5 bucks, and they allow for 500w and more to run through them. I used Mogul with 1000w tube bulbs in studio. There are also 500w versions. Some may say it's a fire hazard, but that is practically a non-issue suspended in the lantern. It's a halogen bulb incased in a second thicker glass shell that runs cooler. It can still "toast" the paper if resting on the surface over an hours period. A great thing about lanterns is they can be lowered easily. A drawback is power distro, which you can't pull from the house. It'll have to come from generator, renting a few Honda 7000s would work. An alternative is to use punchy HMI and bounce it overhead. If using the natural ceiling, I'd go for a couple 4ks. Which would amount to 2 Honda 7000s again. You can bring the ceiling closer by suspending a 12x12 or 12x20 ultrabounce frame overhead and using smaller HMI fixtures like 1200s, or 1600s. I'm no rigger, so I'd consult a rigger or gaffer on that solution. Large spaces with high light gets to a certain expense no matter how you try to do it. The only workaround to the power draw is to use a camera with higher sensitivity. Sony's FX6 has an incredible high ISO of 12000. Those are my thoughts on that scenario.
  10. I forgot to mention. Of course, this is really dependent on the shots too, and you're needs. I can understand the desire to work around bigger rentals or gear limitations. If you can get the wide shot perfect with mirrors, then when you move the camera in, the beam doesn't have to stay consistent. People won't notice a change if you have to wiggle the mirror. I adjust set lights all the time for camera angle changes. No one notices.
  11. Hello Boris, I've never done a mirror into a mirror for more than a few minutes at a time. I can see a few issues. You know a guy will have to remain up there to adjust the sun-collection mirror. Something like every 3 minutes. Make sure they have a radio and perhaps a timer. It's best to call for another re-aim just before a take. I'd call for it right after camera rolls. Also, as the collector follows the sun, its angle to the second mirror will change over the day. The steeper the angle, the less light will be reflected. This will manifest as a thinner beam and less bright. This is only an issue if you need that exact look the whole day. But something to consider if the reflector is placed in a way that will have a steeper angle by shoot time. If you move the collector for a better angle, it will affect the beam angle transferred below. Be sure to plot the sun's arch so the topper's placement doesn't cast a shadow on the sun mirror. Practically, I see it as a pain in the arse. If I had the option, I'd forego the sun collection and use the M40 lensless and laserbeam it into both mirrors, or avoid mirrors altogether. This saves the headache of adjustments and loosing a guy all day. The photometrics of that light will tell you what lux you'll get on full spot without a lens. All you need is the distance. If the lux at that distance isn't near daylight (80,000lux) then you will need more wattage or dealt with it being dimmer than real sun.
  12. Offer to help out in any way and you will get to know them better. Or offer your skills for free ( even though shorts rarely pay, this still sounds like a deal). I did this with the local group, offering to edit their project. Over the course of the project, I ended up handling the post-production, then color grade when the colorist did a bad job. Then you end up with good friends who help each other, as what happened to me.
  13. Not that I know of. Arri has their own app as mentioned. I've had to search the web for each fixture. It takes a minute to compare, too. Because not every manufacturer measures intensity at the same distances. So then you have to do conversions.
  14. LA Times article: https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/business/story/2021-08-30/behind-hollywood-glamour-this-instagram-account-highlights-darker-side-for-workers How many of you are experiencing this? This seems to be narrative work. What about those of you working commercials?
  15. You're looking for photometrics. Most big companies, even Aputure, have photometric documents that display a fixtures intensity measured at various distances and their beam angle. That, plus knowing the stop loss of your diffusions will help find the stop you'll get. As practical advice, if you can afford it, try to always have more fixture wattage than you need. You can always remove light, but you cant get more if you need it.
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