Thanks for a great semester! Here’s a short video showcasing some of the many projects we worked on over the last few months.
For the final project, work in groups to create a two-part collaborative film.
Want to combine the benefits of a gimbal, Steadicam, and crane in a single package that can handle a heavy cinema camera? Check out the ARRI Trinity and Maxima system – it’s a bargain at $60,700.
Recreate more famous camera moves.
Can’t get enough long takes? Check out Cinefix’s list of the top twelve best, StudioBinder’s three strategies of utilizing them, and Aputure’s four-minute tutorial on how to create them yourself.
Gimbals allow filmmakers to capture a variety of moves, including variations on dolly and slider shots. However, that doesn’t mean that sliders are unnecessary. Here are a few videos comparing the two pieces of gear.
A long take or “oner” is when an entire scene is captured in a single, unbroken take. These are technically difficult shots that require a lot of planning and coordination. The history of cinema is full of incredible long takes; some frequently-cited examples are in Touch of Evil, Goodfellas, Boogie Nights, Children of Men, and Gravity, but there are many more.
We’ve spent some time discussing “impossible” camera moves already – Steadicam and gimbal shots that give the impression of the camera floating smoothly through an environment. This week, we’ll be looking at another impossible move: the epic, bird’s-eye crane shot.
Need a refresher on motivated and unmotivated camera movement? Check out this great video essay, which focuses on a small, but impactful moment in the film Frances Ha.
We’ll continue to work on some in-class projects over the next few weeks, but it’s time to discuss the final project for this class, Lost/Found. This will be a collaborative project, so we’ll all be contributing to the finished piece.
Here are a couple more videos on Spielberg: his “point of thought” shooting style and his use of long takes.
Let’s continue to recreate some famous camera moves! We’ll start out with Michael Bay’s epic slow motion spin; then we’ll try an epic crane shot, as seen in the The Shawshank Redemption.
Netflix’s The Haunting of Hill House is a spooky show with high production values. One standout episode of the first season was “Two Storms,” which was almost entirely comprised of very long takes filmed on a Steadicam.
At this point in the semester, we’ve gone over several different cameras and several different kinds of cameras. As a quick recap, let’s review what equipment is ideally suited to different filming situations.
In terms of functionality, the FS5 is the most well-equipped camera in the Film/Media Studies collection. It has all the benefits of a dedicated video camera – unlimited recording time, long battery life, dual media slots, built-in ND filters, robust audio options, tons of external controls – along with the features present on our newer hybrid cameras, such as 4K recording and slow motion options.
Create a short film using the techniques you’ve learned so far.
StudioBinder makes preproduction software, but they also have an impressive collection of tutorial videos online. Check out their videos on movement, blocking, and long takes below.
We actually have several gimbals in our collection – each with different strengths and weaknesses. Here’s what we have and how to best use each one.
After decades of cinematography involving cameras on tripods, dollies, sliders, and cranes, the camera went mobile. Cinematographer Garrett Brown invented the Steadicam in the mid-1970s and it was popularized by two horror movies of the era: John Carpenter’s Halloween in 1978 and Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining in 1980.
Here’s a sweet (and utterly ludicrous) animated history of the camera from the always-delightful Royal Ocean Film Society.