Learn the fundamentals of motion picture cinematography and be introduced to the basic creative and technical properties of film and digital formats.
In today's film and television production environment, cinematographers work in a variety of acquisition formats. Digital technology evolves continually, while many high-end productions continue to shoot on film. Whether a creative artist elects to tell their story with a film stock or a digital sensor, the basic tools of cinematography include a camera system, an imaging plane, lenses, filtration, and lighting units.
In this workshop, students are introduced to the craft of cinematography through motion picture film and digital still photography. They explore the use of exposure, contrast, color, depth-of-field, and the importance of latitude and dynamic range in the creative process. Through hands-on exercises in the soundstage and on location, students discover the nuances and characteristics of film and digital technologies.
Students learn how to setup, load and operate a 16mm film camera and discuss the film lab process. Footage shot on film is sent off to be processed for review the following week. The week continues with basic demonstrations of DLSR cameras. Students consider framing and composition, the camera's angle and movement, along with the design of the project's shot series and sequences.
The major non-camera related aesthetic tool addressed in basic cinematography is portrait and scene lighting. Students touch upon the fundamentals of lighting portraits and scenes, and address different lighting strategies for film and digital cameras. In this workshop, students will learn how to setup and operate tripods and essential lighting and grip equipment.
Throughout the week an emphasis will be placed on set safety and etiquette. Students will also explore the roles within the camera department of a production.
"Maine Media Workshops is about the whole experience...its got the best of everything...makes me want to come back every year."
- Shisha Guha Thakurta
"This course helped me grow as an artist and as a technician, increasing my knowledge while allowing me room to explore my own impulses."
- Jeremy Steeger, Cambridge, MA