"In part 2 of our comparison, Felix Patzke of Heimspiel and I, looked at the differences of famous Zeiss cineglass and pretty affordable Samyang (Rokinon/Walimex) cineprimes. As in our first article, we where quite surprised, that the differences are not as huge as we thought.
Felix just got his hands on a set of wonderful Zeiss Superspeed glass. These are the older (MKII) lenses with the typical triangle bokeh and the aperture and focus rings are oil dampened. They are famous for their special look and the way they render microcontrast.
In the other corner we had a set of Samyang (Walimex/Rokinon) lenses. When they came out, they generated quite a stir, because of their speed and optical quality for the buck. Samyang produces those lenses in two different flavors. A traditional version for still photography and a cinevized version. The cineglass has the same optics, but comes with standard gear for focus and aperture, declicked iris and markings on the side, so your focus puller can see them. The focal lengths and speeds are 8mm/f3.5 fisheye, 14mm/f2.8, 24mm/f1.4, 35mm/f1.4 and 85mm/f1.4. Why there is no 50mm/f1.4 is beyond me though. I hope Samyang comes up with that missing link as soon as possible, since it’s not a complete set without a 50mm.
So here is the challenge. How can those affordable Korean cinevized still lenses hold up against expensive professional cineglass?"
"After many years of owning a wide range of camera systems, including a RED ONE and an EPIC, I decided to sell it all and rent. So for the past three years I have been exclusively renting cameras on a per project basis, that is, until recently when I made the plunge and bought the Canon C100. Little did I know how many eyebrows and questions it would raise when I posted a picture on Facebook. Here is why I chose a 1080p, 4:2:0 camera over a 4k RAW camera.
Reason 1: It Is The Craftsperson, Not The Tool, That Matters
I am a firm believer that it is the talent behind the lens that matters most, not the camera. I want to surround myself with people and productions who value the craft more than the tech. When was the last time you hired a carpenter and asked what brand hammer he was using? Or what brush the painter used on the oil painting you bought? Or how about the contents of this blog — does it matter if I am writing it on a Mac, PC, iPhone, or Android?"
We love cheatsheets as one can refer to them and make quick amendments to better our skills. Since many loved our last compilation of cheatsheet for designers, we’ve decided to compile another set of cheatsheets, this time for photographers.
"Hey everyone! It’s been a busy few days in Bolex land. We got back from Vegas on Thursday night, and we’re already back in the office fielding phone calls and meetings. For those of you who weren’t able to get out to NAB this year, I thought it would be fun to do a quick recap of our experience.
(...) We also spent a few hours with our fellow CinemaDNG users Ikonoskop, IndieCam, Blackmagic Design, The Foundry, and others at the CinemaDNG Developers meeting, where I was finally able to show off the new CinemaDNG Initiative website (going live around IBC in September) that I’ve been working on all year. I was voted Vice Chair, working with the re-elected Chair, Peter from Ikonoskop, so for the next year I get to be at the forefront of getting CinemaDNG into the hands of the masses, which is very exciting."
"Rick Macomber talks to Ikegami about their latest partnership with Arri that will put a 35mm CMOS sensor into a broadcast camera. The camera features a PL lens mount and a 3G transmission system and will bring cinema style depth to broadcast television."
"Gordon Willis is regarded by all of his peers as one of the greatest cinematographers in the history of film, and for many as the greatest of all time, period. Between lensing The Godfather trilogy, many of Woody Allen's best films (including Annie Hall, Manhattan, Stardust Memories, Interiors, and others) and several master thrillers for Alan J. Pakula (All the President's Men, Klute, The Parallax View, The Devil's own, and others), Gordon Willis practically single-handedly re-invented the craft of cinematography and the nature by which films were and are composed, lit, and executed. He has left an indelible mark on the craft of filmmaking and we are delighted to present him in a two part interview here. We hope you enjoy a small window into a great man's achievements and approach."
"Maybe all of you Vine users noticed an alert on your respective mobile devices, but for those of you who haven’t (or don’t have the app yet), Vine released an update that allows you to embed your videos on the web. Before the update, users were only given the option to share their videos on Twitter and Facebook, but now you can post your videos virtually anywhere, which can only mean that we’ll be seeing a lot more of Vine in the near future.
If you don’t know what Vine is, it’s a mobile app that allows you to create and post 6-second long video clips. It has been described as the “Instagram of video,” and its length restriction is reminiscent of Twitter’s 140 character limit — which seems appropriate since it was acquired by Twitter last October. Here’s an example of the types of videos you can make on Vine:"
What makes a scene beautiful? Art & photography direction play a big part, but sometimes it's a combination of the right song, good lines, the meaning behind the scene, the talent of the actors, the editing, etc.
"While you might have already seen the recent video featuring the history of the Steadicam in cinema, today we’ve got a video from Kevin B. Lee — who most recently gave us his best films of 2012 — that gets much more specific, and follows the career of Paul Thomas Anderson and his use of camera stabilizers. Not only does the video focus on specific shots in his films, but it also goes into the psychology of what the shots do (or are trying to do) for the scene in the context of the movies."
"SO EXCITED for @BeyondtheBolex, doc on inventor of Bolex, dir. by his great granddaughter. Insane archival material!"
(...) “Beyond the Bolex” is a character-driven documentary about the inventor of the revolutionary Bolex camera, Jacques Bolsey. Bolsey, a Russian refugee living in neutral Switzerland during WWI, envisioned a future where everyone would have access to the tools necessary to make movies. In the 1920's, at the introduction of 16mm film, Bolsey invented the Bolex- a camera simple and flexible enough that anyone could use it. Little did Bolsey know that this invention would outlive him, and decades later his camera would be key to bringing about his dream of a future of accessible filmmaking."
THE JACQUES BOLSEY PROJECT on vimeo:
• "For more information about the project or ways to get involved please do not be afraid to email us at:" firstname.lastname@example.org
"Not only do we have news that RAW video at 24fps is possible on the Canon 5D Mark III, but we now know it’s possible to get a full 1920 x 1080 image with 1000x speed cards. The first samples were possible by cropping the image to 1920 x 820, but g3gg0 from Magic Lantern has unlocked a way to get the entire image — the full 1920 x 1080. This makes the Mark III the first full-frame (36mm x 24mm) camera to shoot RAW video at 1080p. Also, now that we’re capable of getting really high-quality custom resolutions, a whole new world has potentially opened up for anamorphic shooting with the camera."
"Rocky Balboa's sprint up the stairs of the Philadelphia Art Museum in Rocky is a scene that would have once been impossible to film. Camera innovator Garrett Brown made it possible when he invented the Steadicam, a body-mounted camera that stabilizes handheld shots.
Brown has received three Academy Awards for his technical inventions and holds 50 patents for cinematography devices. The college dropout-turned-inventor will be inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in May.
"The way I see it, the prime inventing act is identifying something you really want which is missing," he tells NPR's Neal Conan. "It isn't just gadgets and gizmos and machines and processes. It's whatever you want, and the finding of it, the getting of it could be considered an invention."
When Brown started out as a filmmaker, he loved the stabilizing power of dollies but hated their klutzy nature and yearned for an easier way.
"We sort of have a stabilizer in our heads, if you think about it. You're not conscious of yourself lurching side to side when you walk, or rising and falling. The brain just smooths it all out for you, you know? So why should it look worse when you pick up a camera and try to walk? That's what sort of lured me on back then."
"Our last tests were a little rushed and we didn’t have time to take any shots outside. So we did another lens test this week using natural light. And to our surprise, the most flattering lens was the 38mm, which was our least favorite lens in the earlier test. We think this is because of the color temperature/CRI. We’ll be running more precise tests soon, and Kish is constructing special testing equipment to help finalize that process.
We shot these tests at Pershing Square in downtown LA from about 4PM to 5PM. The white box denotes the S16 frame, everything outside is the micro 4/3 frame."
Tiny Novo adds key cinematic touches to versatile GoPro Hero3 for professional filmmakers
LAS VEGAS (April 17, 2013) – "The Novo digital cinema camera, co-created by Radiant Images to remove the cinematic limitations of the GoPro Hero3 for professional filmmakers, is the recipient of the 21st Annual Mario Award given by TV Technology magazine.
(...) “We are honored that our Novo has been recognized for this coveted award,” said Michael Mansouri, co-founder of Radiant Images, an L.A.-based rental house and digital cinema innovator. “We were able to act quickly following the release of the GoPro Hero3 to come up with a solution for cinematographers who were enamored by the small form factor possibilities of the Hero3, but felt held back cinematically. With the Novo, those limits are gone.”
Radiant Images collaborated on the design and function of the palm-sized Novo with co-creator View Factor Studios. The Novo is available for rent only, exclusively at Radiant Images in the U.S. and through its rental partner in Europe, P+S Technik."
"If you are going to showcase what your camera company is, does, and can do, then BANG RED Digital Cinema nailed that brief. The RED NAB 2013 Showreel is a slow cooker with all the meaty goodness. There are some really tasty bits in this RED NAB showreel especially towards the end."
By the same author, you may read and watch also:
• OH Dear a RED EPIC Rocking It On an RC Hand Held Camera Rig (2 Videos)
• NAB Wraps and RED Jim Talks About 4k Then, Now, and Beyond
"We’ve all been speculating that this year’s NAB show would be a major one in terms of new cinema-style cameras at incredibly low price points. After Blackmagic Design shook up the cinema camera world last year, the market seemed destined for another company to swoop in an steal the BMCC‘s thunder. However, a photo of two brand-spankin’ new Blackmagic Cinema Cameras has been leaked, and it’s definitely real. It appears that Blackmagic has done it again, and their thunder is locked down in a vault that would leave even Danny Ocean and his team of 13 stumped. Check out the photo below for the limited details that we have at this point:"
• Update: It's Official: Introducing Blackmagic 4K & Pocket Cinema Cameras for $4K and $1K at NoFilmSchool.com
"Many of you have heard me talk about how I light to eye by either looking at the back LCD screen or a lighting monitor like an HP DreamColor. Lighting to eye is something that is based on experience and what you like esthetically. I trained my eye through the use of exposing film, not an LCD screen or a monitor, but a photo-chemical process and by the use of a light meter. Many say that the light meter is dead with digital. I disagree. It is the only tool that you have in your box that can measure what you love. It can tell you how you lit a specific scene in case you have to go back and pick something up later in your schedule. You will need that tool to measure footcandles and f-stops to guide you to make the match perfect."
"On CML the message was clear, Fujifilm UK has been going at it since 1934 supplying motion picture film stock to the professional film industry, but now sadly on the 28th of March 2013 the front door closes. Shop shut as they say. There is however one small glimmer of sunshine left but the sun has pretty much set. The last remaining two million feet of Fujifilm camera negative film stock in Europe is available at Film Stock Clearance. After that well it’s all digital."
"How's this for geekiness! On the night of 25th to 26th of March the UK's BBC HD channel will hand over to BBC Two HD, and in the programme break it will be your last chance to see iconic BBC test cards going back to 1934. Sometimes in the early days, testcards were all you had for entertainment on the "box".
Andy Quested, the BBC's chief technologist for HD and 3D, had this to say on his blog:"
"Last year I posted an interview with Mark Vargo, ASC. He has had a very successful career working in both cinematography and visual effects.
He recently posted an educational light metering video to vimeo. In it he explains how to meter and expose using an incident meter or a spot meter and talks about their usefulness in different situations.
If you don’t know anything about light meters this is a great introduction and even if you use them often this is a great review."
"Stumbled across this Pantecam on YouTube and liked the look of it. The Pantecam is a wirelessly controlled dolly that runs without a signature. Sure it is a funny sounding name and unfortunately we don’t know a lot about this one at this stage, other than that, the dolly is controlled by a 2.4GHz RC handset which handles Zoom, Iris, Focus, Record, Pan, and Tilt control. The Pantecam dolly can also stream wirelessly a 5GHz video transmission."