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Lecture 4

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Film Studies
Sandra Annett

Lecture 4 Cinematography: The craft of photographing moving images with a camera  Includes recording the image onto film stock or digital hard-drive, positioning and moving the camera focusing the image using different lenses and filters  Cinematography contributes to the viewer’s emotional response and aesthetic experience  Provoke emotional, intellectual, and aesthetic responses  Cinematographers “speak” to the audience in visual terms using images Director of Photography (DP) or Cinematographer: makes artistic and technical decisions about the cinematography Cameraman: start and stop shooting, moving the camera on a dolly or track, select and focus lenses Analog Video: A video tape system that records images onto magnetic tape, using electronic signals Digital Video: A system for recording images on magnetic tape using a digital signal Computer Generated Imagery (CGI): Images that originate from computer graphics technology, rather than photography The LENSES  The lens is the eye of the camera. It has an aperture to let in light, and a focal length to capture images at different distances Focus  Selective focus:  Rack Focus: when focus changes to shift audience attention  Depth of Field: the range of acceptable sharpness before and behind the plane of focus  Deep Focus: everything in the shot is in focus, from the foreground to background (first used in Citizen Kane [Orson Welles 1941]) Photography-Based Process  Involves photographic and chemical process  Developing exposed film in a chemical bath produces a negative  The negative is printed to another roll of film to produce a master positive  Copying a master negative onto reversal film produces a negative release prints are struck, (films exhibited in theatres) Creating Meaning and Time: The Shot-  The Shot, a single uninterrupted series of frames, is a film’s basic unit of expression  Shots vary in length- can be very brief or long  Editing several shots together produces a scene Scene: a complete narrative unit within a film, with a beginning, middle, and end. Often scenes are distinguished from one another by time and setting  Directors and cinematographers generally plan each shot ahead of time to use time efficiently  A method for planning shots is a story-board  Films are generally not shot in chronological order  Shots are filmed more than once (excludes low-budget productions)  Each version of the same shot is called a take  Editor and director decide which takes will appear on film  Rejected takes are called “out-takes”  Uninterrupted shots of more than 1min. are called “long-takes”  Long takes build dramatic tension, heightens drama  Speed of Projection: 24 frames per second  Establishing Shot: the first shot of a film that lets us know what the setting is Altering Time: Slow & Fast Motion  By reducing or increasing the camera’s recording speed, filmmaker’s can affect the viewer’s perception of time Slow Motion: A technique that involves filming at a speed faster the speed of projection (24 frames per second). Then projecting the footage at normal speed  Slow motion is used for both comic and dramatic purposes Fast Motion: Recording shots at a slower speed of projection. Fewer frames are exposed in one minute, so when projected at 24fps, the action takes less than a minute on screen and appears faster The Camera & Space: Height, Angle, & Shot-Distance-  3 important variables for any shot are: camera height, angle on the action, and distance from action  These variables convey info., form motifs, introduce ideas, and create mood  Camera placement excludes off-screen space Off-screen Space: a part of the story world implied by visual or sound techniques rather than being revealed by the camera  Filmmakers can use character behavior, dia
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