Jump to content
Jonathan Jones

CRI of Lights on B&W Projects

Recommended Posts

Hello,

 

I'm in the early stages of a project and we're heavily leaning towards black and white. My question relates to the CRI of our lighting fixtures.

Considering CRI is specifically the Color Rendering Index, can we just ignore it on B&W projects? My first thought is yes, but I want to cover my bases in case I'm forgetting any beneficial qualities high-CRI lights provide beyond accurate color.

 

Furthermore, does the answer change depending on shooting format? (B&W Film vs. Epic/Alexa Monochrome vs. shooting color and grading in post)

 

Thanks for contributing and I appreciate your advice!

Edited by Jonathan Jones

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you are shooting on B&W Film film... even though the result is monochome, the 'panchromatic' response of B&W is affected by the spectrum of light.

 

It may be 'ignoreable'... or cause problems with apparent contrast of 'color', whereas the B&W registers some different contrast.

 

In the past the Wratten 90 filter was recommended for viewing a scene, and estimating the resulting B&W film response. These days, perhaps shooting test film with a color chart, under the anticipated lighting, and then evaluating the color response would be a good idea.

 

In the case of Digital, unless you have a 'monochrome' sensor(which will still have some 'panchromatic' response), you are still shooting 'color', and only in the post processing phase converting it to monochrome. Digital sensors are more sensitive to red/infrared than B&W Film film, and so, a light that has more 'red' may impact the color balance, and resulting conversion to monochrome.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Use it to your advantage the way you use wratten filters to enhance certain colors in B&W. There's a great ASC podcast about the movie Nebraska where Phedon Papamichael does exactly what you're talking about. He dives into the politics of doing it as well, and the importance of having people in positions to fight for those choices when they inevitably ask to see it in color (though you shot it while lighting/filtering to your b&w lut).

 

http://www.theasc.com/site/podcasts/nebraska-phedon-papamichael-asc/

Edited by Jaron Berman

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

John,

 

Excellent advice! I forgot about the "hidden colors" translating to different luminosities in b&w. I'll have to consult my copy of Ansel Adams' "The Negative" again. And I'll be sure to shoot some tests before diving into anything serious and get my hands on a Wratten 90 filter.

 

Jaron,

This is a great resource! I should have known Nebraska would have some nuggets of wisdom for my situation.

 

Thanks again for your help!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.



  • Metropolis Post



    Broadcast Solutions Inc



    Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS



    Visual Products



    New Pro Video - New and Used Equipment



    Glidecam



    CineLab



    FJS International



    Ritter Battery



    Tai Audio



    Wooden Camera



    G-Force Grips



    Abel Cine



    Gamma Ray Digital Inc



    Serious Gear



    Rig Wheels Passport



    Just Cinema Gear



    Paralinx LLC


    Cinematography Books and Gear
×
×
  • Create New...