Cinematography talk on a design blog?
Broadening your skills in the area of photography and cinematography are excellent additions to your skillset. You’ll start seeing design, composition, storytelling (advertising/branding) differently. You’ll build an entire new way of approaching things.
So I know I usually talk about design stuff – but I’m a sucker for anything motion-visual. I grew up creating films on a super-8 cam, VHS cams, 8mm, miniDV cams and just about anything that would let me capture images.
Below is Chels with a fully functional hand cranked Bolex 8mm film camera that fellow screen designer Mark Coleran gave me in New Mexico Last year. The design on that thing is amazing!
Now I have the 5d mark II and it’s the first time I feel I have the power of a true 35mm film camera in a tiny little package. Here’s how I filmed NYC with it – pretty much just a Zacuto Z-finder Pro and the camera.
(Gotta mention the Zacuto Target Shooter is ultra light and portable and also goes with me everywhere I go.)
This camera is such great quality that it’s been reported as being used on the most recent Harry Potter film and also onset for Iron Man II. Entire feature films have been produced with this camera. Check out an excellent short-form filmed entirely on a 5dmk2 by my good friend John Nguyen called ‘Denial’
The last thing about taking on photography and cinematography is that it’s a great way to see the world. My girlfriend, the rawkin’ Chelsea Nicole, has gotten quite famous for her absolutely stunning couples photography. She specializes in photographing people in love and it’s actually allowed us to pursue our dream of travelling the world together (whilst also getting paid to do something that’s just way too fun to be legal.)
Here’s a compilation of a few shoots from Malibu, LA, Vegas, New Orleans, Brooklyn, New York City.
In a few months we’ll be traveling to Texas, Paris, Lille, France, Amsterdam and possibly London. So you can see how a thing like photography can open doors for you in ways you might not have thought of before. It can open your eyes as well.
If you’re just starting out – I’d recommend two much cheaper cameras that have VERY comparable quality to the 5d: The 7d (about $1,500) and the T2i (an astounding $799.) The differences are mainly ergonomics – but the quality you’ll get out of any of them will blow you away. (Stay away from the non Canon vSLRs so far – they haven’t quite made it yet.)
In the following series of posts, I’ll do some write ups for tips and techniques I’ve learned the hard way. There’s a lot to learn with this camera, hopefully I can save you some of the pain of trial and error.