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Practical Cinematography, 2nd Edition

Book Description

Filmmaking is an art, but, like so many art forms, there are basic underlying tools and techniques and a body theoretical knowledge that must be understood and mastered before artistic expression can flourish. This book is an invaluable resource for all aspiring DoPs.

Practical Cinematography can be dipped into for quick reference - perhaps to answer a specific question or deal with practical problems relating to a shoot - or read from cover to cover. It discusses the principles of cinematography and the expertise which is unique to the Director of Photography (DoP). It deals with all the basic theory such as color temperature and sensitometry, and all the practical things a DoP needs to know, from the make-up of the crew to how to prepare an equipment list.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Halftitle
  3. Dedication
  4. Title
  5. Copyright
  6. Contents
  7. Preface
  8. About the author
  9. Acknowledgements
  10. Introduction
  11. Part One People
    1. 1 The Director of Photography – an overview
      1. The DP’s responsibilities
    2. 2 The DP’s preparation
      1. Research
      2. Preparing for a shoot
    3. 3 The camera crew
      1. An overview
      2. The trainee
      3. The clapper loader (AC2 or 2nd AC)
      4. The focus puller (AC1 or 1st AC)
      5. The camera operator
      6. The Director of Photography
      7. The grip or dolly grip
      8. The gaffer
      9. Crew protocol
  12. Part Two The Technology
    1. 4 The motion picture camera
      1. The persistence of vision
      2. Frame rates
      3. The intermittent mechanism
      4. The reflex viewfinder
      5. Viewing screens
      6. The film magazine
      7. Film camera layout
    2. 5 Lenses
      1. Artistic decisions
      2. Modern lens designs
      3. Lens distortion and aberrations
    3. 6 Film stock
      1. What is film?
      2. The history of the negative/positive photographic process
      3. The basic photographic process
      4. Colour negative film
      5. Grain and graininess
      6. When does grain become unacceptable?
      7. Perforations
      8. Edge numbers
      9. Care, shipping and handling
    4. 7 Basic sensitometry
    5. 8 The laboratory
      1. The laboratory contact
      2. Printer lights
      3. Contact printing
      4. Optical printers
      5. Negative cutting
      6. Cinema release prints
      7. The ‘long-handled’ negative cut
      8. Film grading
      9. Telecine grading
    6. 9 Digital intermediates
      1. Why turn a photographic image into digits?
      2. What do we mean by ‘digital’?
      3. The binary code
      4. Linear and logarithmic sampling
      5. Image acquisition
      6. The 16 mm DI route
      7. Deliverables
  13. Part Three The Cinematographer’s Craft
    1. 10 Exposure meters
      1. Camera speed
      2. Shutter speed
      3. Average scene reflectance values
      4. Types of exposure meter
    2. 11 Lighting ratios
      1. Defining a lighting ratio
      2. Visualizing lighting ratios
      3. Lighting ratios for film and television
      4. Lighting ratios when shooting for both cinema and television
      5. Using lighting ratios on the set
      6. Controlling the whole scene
    3. 12 Three-point image control
      1. There’s no such thing as exposure latitude
      2. Three-point image control
      3. Relating the three points to the sensitometric curve
      4. Control for television
    4. 13 Using the 18 per cent grey card
      1. The messenger
      2. Controlling print density
      3. Shifting colour
      4. Intentional colour changes
      5. Developments in grey cards
      6. Conclusions
    5. 14 Colour temperature
      1. What is colour temperature?
      2. Filters and Mired shift values
      3. The colour temperature meter
      4. Colour film
      5. Correcting lamps
    6. 15 Camera filters
      1. Colour-compensating filters
      2. Colour-correction filters
      3. Skin tone warmer
      4. Sepia, coral, colour effects, etc.
      5. Graduated filters
      6. Neutral density filters
      7. Low contrast filters
      8. Ultra contrast filters
      9. Fog filters
      10. Double fog filters
      11. Pro-mist filters
      12. Star filters
      13. Nets
      14. Matching shots
      15. Enhancing filters
      16. Fluorescent light correction
      17. Polar screens
      18. Filter factors
      19. The pan glass or viewing glass
    7. 16 Depth of field
      1. Depth of focus
      2. Circles of confusion
      3. Depth of field and Super 16 to 35 mm blow-ups
      4. Super 16 mm and 16 × 9 television
      5. Depth of field of 35 mm film when only shown on television
      6. Choosing the circle of confusion to use on set
      7. The effect of aperture on depth of field
      8. The effect of focal length on depth of field
      9. The mathematics of depth of field
      10. Depth of field calculators
    8. 17 Testing
      1. Why so much checking?
      2. Who checks?
      3. Tests that involve shooting film
      4. Lens testing
      5. Gamma testing
      6. What to do with the film tests
      7. Non-film testing
      8. Stores, supplies and expendables
      9. The camera car
  14. Part Four Operating
    1. 18 Composition and the rule of thirds
      1. Framing using the rule of thirds
      2. Framing using the sixths
      3. Diagonal framing
      4. Complex and combined composition
    2. 19 Lenses and perspective
      1. Frame size and focal length
      2. Perspective
      3. Focal length and emotional involvement
      4. What is a ‘normal’ focal length lens?
    3. 20 Aspect ratios
      1. The 35 mm frame
      2. The aspect ratio
      3. Widescreen
      4. Three-perforation pull-down
      5. Two-perforation pull-down
      6. Anamorphic
      7. 65 mm and 70 mm
      8. Super 35
      9. Television
  15. Part Five The Future
    1. 21 Aspect ratios when shooting for television
      1. The nature of the problem
      2. History – the evolution of the Super 16 mm format
      3. 16 × 9 television and Super 16
      4. Framing in several formats
      5. Framing solutions
      6. Festival prints
    2. 22 High Definition – HD
      1. Is film dead?
      2. Three-chip cameras
      3. Single-chip cameras
      4. Digital presentation
      5. Conclusions
  16. Index