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Reggie A Brown

Pincushion Distortion

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Hello guys,


I'm pretty sure I can get an answer from one of the great cinematographers and/or DP's on this site! The screenshots below are from the movies The Eyes of My Mother and The Hatred. If you look at the outer edges (the door frames) you'll see they curve inwards (pincushion distortion) instead of outwards (barrel distortion) like most people are used to seeing; and with this pincushion distortion, it seems to make the female talent(s) look slimmer. I googled searched "lenses that give pincushion distortion" and I couldn't find any answers.


Would anyone happen to know what type of lenses are being used to get this pincushion distortion? Is this the characteristics of a certain brand, and a particular model from that brand? Is it some type of anamorphic filters? Is it some other type of filter? Is this done in post?


Thanks for any feedback!!



Edited by Reggie A Brown

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Thanks for the response David. Looking that the background compression and separation seems to be similar to that of a wide angle lens, especially looking at the movies in a whole and seeing the set from a lot of different angles.

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Not sure about Hatred, but The Eyes of My Mother was shot with Cooke anamorphics, some of which have pronounced pincushion distortion.


Large range zooms are the most typical lenses where you see pincushion distortion, especially toward the long end. It's a common compromise even in modern zooms to allow some distortion.


I think modern cine primes tend to have better correction of the distortion that can be found in older telephotos or wide angles.

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Maybe not how it was done in these examples, but it's easy to do in post, just use the lens distortion correction tool in the wrong direction.

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