Using color in cinematography – Seamus McGarvey ASC, BSC

On the latest edition of CookeOpticsTV, Seamus McGarvey ASC, BSC talks about the use of color in his films. He talks about what characteristics some colors can have and how they can be used to create an emotion or define a character. Seamus is one of the most accomplished cinematographers out there and he has … Continued

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Laowa 15mm f/2 FE Zero-D for Nikon Z and Canon RF mount & 10-18mm F/4.5-5.6

Laowa has announced the 15mm F/2.0 Zero-D for Nikon Z and Canon RF mounts, as well as the 10-18mm F/4.5-5.6 in Nikon Z mount. Both these lenses have previously been available in Sony E mount. Both these lenses are manual focus only and cover full-frame sensors. 15mm f/2 FE Zero-D The Laowa 15mm f/2 FE … Continued

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Sony a7R IV: What you need to know

Intro

The Sony a7R IV is the company’s fourth-generation ultra-high-resolution full-frame mirrorless camera. It’s built around a new 61MP back-side illuminated CMOS sensor. It’s the first new sensor in an ‘R’ camera since 2015.

The new chip has 567 on-sensor phase detection points, which cover 99.7% of the sensor’s height and 74% of its width, meaning you get depth-aware focus across a huge range of the sensor.

The camera uses the same front-end LSI and Bionz X processor as the a7R III. Sony says it knew there was a 61MP sensor coming from Sony Semiconductor, so was able to design these chips in anticipation of it.

The higher resolution of the chip means you still get 26MP images, even if you use an APS-C crop. Naturally, you get fewer PDAF points (325 in this case), but in exchange you get nearly 100% frame coverage.

AF Improvement

In addition to having more AF points than its predecessor, Sony has also added improved tracking modes to the a7R IV. The camera will now track subjects as soon as you half-press the shutter button, whether it’s looking at eyes, faces or a subject you’ve selected. It can do all while shooting 10 fps bursts or when capturing video. In addition to people, the a7R IV can also detect animals.

As you’d expect from a pro-grade camera, there’s a menu option to hide any AF area modes you don’t regularly use. And, given our experiences with the latest tracking modes, that should mean ‘most of them.’

A couple of small changes we’re pleased to see are the choices over whether the AF point appears as white or red (it was a rather recessive grey on previous models), and how the camera controls its aperture as it focuses. A new ‘Focus Priority’ mode prompts the camera to acquire focus with the aperture wide open, which is especially useful when shooting a small apertures in low light conditions, where the camera could otherwise struggle. This comes at the cost of slightly increased shutter lag, since the aperture still has to stop-down when you fully press the shutter.

Multi-shot modes

The Sony a7R IV builds on the multi-shot high-res mode offered on the previous model. The latest version will shoot up to 16 images. It moves the sensor by 1/2 a pixel each time, with the net effect being that it shoots four groups of four images: four images to fill-in the color gaps left by the Bayer color filter pattern shot in four positions to increase the overall spatial resolution.

This means capturing 960MP-worth of images to produce a 240MP final image with full color information at every pixel (and the tonal information/noise gain that comes from shooting 16 images).

The a7R IV also offers the simpler, quicker, four-shot, Bayer-cancelling mode offered by its predecessor.

Both modes use the camera’s electronic shutter. Both require the resultant Raw files to be assembled using Sony’s Imaging Edge software, so you can’t preview the results on the camera.

Ergonomic changes

The first thing you’ll notice about the a7R IV is that it has a higher-resolution viewfinder. It uses the 5.76M-dot finder we’ve seen in a number of cameras, such as the Panasonic S1/S1R. As with previous Sony cameras, you have to choose whether to prioritize resolution or refresh rate of the finder, depending on the demands of what you’re shooting.

Other ergonomic changes include a deeper, more substantial grip, a redesigned rear dial on the top plate of the camera, along with more substantial AF-On button and rear joystick ‘nub’. There’s also now a lock on the exposure comp dial, to prevent accidental operation. It’s a toggling lock, so you can leave it popped-up when you’re using the camera, then lock it down when stowing it in a bag, with the certainty that you won’t dial any extra compensation in, as you grab the camera to use it.

As with the A7R III, the IV has dual card slots, but now both of them support UHS-II. It also has a USB-C port, which you can for charging or tethering to a PC.

The a7R IV is also the first Sony Alpha to accept a digital audio input. This is achieved via a new version of the Multi-Interface Shoe (the series of connection pins at the front of the hot shoe). For now, this can be delivered by an external shotgun mic and updated version of Sony’s XLR adapter that have analogue-to-digital converters built into them.

Construction changes

Like its predecessors, the a7R IV is made primarily from magnesium alloy. However, Sony says it’s done work to enhance the dust and moisture resistance of the new body. There’s a foam gasket around the battery door and the edges of the card door, to prevent water ingress.

The rubber port covers have also been redesigned: the ports now have lips around them, which engage with the port covers. This is designed to create a more complex pathway that water would need to work its way through, to enter the camera. We wouldn’t go so far as to call it labyrinth sealing, but it’s still and improvement.

The Mark IV uses the same NP-FZ100 battery as before, and is able to match its predecessor’s 530 shots-per-charge battery life figure when using the EVF. Shooting with the rear LCD actually sees a 20 shot-per-charge jump compared with the a7R III, now achieving a pretty respectable rating of 670 shots. As always these numbers don’t necessarily reflect how many shots you’ll get (it’s not uncommon to get double the number of shots), they’re best thought of as a yard-stick for comparing cameras.

Video

What’s most interesting is how little has changed in terms of the camera’s video capabilities. On the plus side, the a7R IV can shoot both 24p and 30p footage from the full width of its sensor. This doesn’t use full-pixel readout (multiple pixels are ‘binned’ together), but it means you get to retain the full angle-of-view offered by the lens, notwithstanding the crop from 3:2 down to 16:9.

As with the a7R III, you get more detailed 4K footage by shooting in Super 35 mode. The good news is that the 24p footage is now taken from 6K footage (1.5x oversampling in each dimension). The not-so-good news is that the ‘Super 35’ mode now has a 1.6x crop for 24p and a 1.8x crop for 30p (ie a 1.1x crop and 1.2x crop, relative to what you’d expect). This has at least some negative effect both in terms of achieving a wide angle-of-view and in terms of image quality.

So, not only is there no 4K/60p on the a7R IV but the camera remains a strictly 8-bit video camera. Most rivals now offer 10-bit capture or output: something that gives a significant boost in terms of editing flexibility to Log footage, so it’s odd not to see it here.

What’s not changed

We’re a bit disappointed to see little work done on the camera’s menu structure. It still features very little in the way of signposting, to help orient you in the menus and find your way to the options you’re looking for. You’ll frequently need to simply memorize where settings live, which ideally wouldn’t ever be the case. Like its predecessor, you can at least create a ‘My Menu’ tab to cluster-together all the settings you use most often.

One definite improvement is the ability to define different Fn menus for stills and for video shooting. Oddly, though, the Fn menu still isn’t touch-operable, which still catches us out the first couple of times we pick up the camera, partly because the Fn menu looks like a series of buttons waiting to be pressed, but mainly because this is how modern cameras work.

There’s also no change on the Raw side of things. The camera offers 14-bit uncompressed Raw (that ’15 stops of DR’ figure Sony is advertising is with downscaled, 8MP images) or compressed Raws that use Sony’s potentially destructive compression. There’s still no lossless or visually lossless compression option.

Another function that pretty much all of Sony’s rivals offer but is missing here is the ability to process the camera’s Raw files in the camera. This isn’t a feature everybody’s going to need, but there are times it’d be helpful to be able to try applying different color or sharpening settings to a file before outputting it.

What this says about the future

At the risk of attempting tasseomancy, it’s perhaps interesting to read into the a7R IV and assume that the changes we’re seeing here are likely to be reflected in the next generation of Sony cameras.

The decision to stick with 8-bit video output could indicate that competitive space is being left for the long-expected a7S III. Or it could simply indicate that Sony doesn’t believe there’s demand for more extensively editable 10-bit video from its audience.

The relatively minor changes to the camera’s UI, despite the recognition of the need to update the ergonomics, is also something that’s likely to get carried-over to other forthcoming cameras. Again it looks like Sony is more focused on adding attention-grabbing new features (and, to be fair, Full-time Eye AF / Full-time Tracking are very impressive), rather than resolving existing quirks and foibles.

While the a7R IV helps nudge Sony in front of the pack, but doesn’t look like as big an upgrade as we’re used to seeing between whole version numbers. Equally, it perpetuates a handful of irritations that have persisted for multiple generations, now.

You’ll Become a Props Expert with These Five Simple Tips [VIDEO]

How you dress a scene can influence a project’s tone and convey important information, so you have to consider props early on.

If you’re planning a shoot, you should be thinking about props in pre-production. Why?

Because props can be so much more than just items on a set — they can help you tell the audience about the tone you’re going for, about the characters on screen, and about the time period of the story.

Ever hear the old axiom show don’t tell?

Props are the perfect place for the informed and skilled filmmaker to do just that.

For instance, think of all those old-fashioned cars on the sets of Chernobyl. Or remember how that iconic episode from Barry conveyed a lot of story information about characters just through props in the house and how they were arranged? (Yes, I am still talking about Barry.)

Videomaker walks viewers through some basic tips and terms for working with props on productions. Watch the video below.

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RED drops prices on Mini-Mags Media

If you’re not aware, there has been some drama lately with RED and Jinnimag who opened up a RED Mini-Mag and claimed the price to be highly inflated using parts that only cost a few dollars. While we won’t go into the nitty-gritty of the heated discussion, it has resulted in RED President, Jarred Land … Continued

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Digital Heaven makes FCPX plug-ins available for free

Digital Heaven has announced its freeware range for FCPX has been significantly enhanced with the addition of 10 video plug-ins that were previously on sale for almost $180 USD. These free plug-ins include animated counters, split-screen effects, burned-in subtitles, fixing of dead pixels on footage and six dynamic transitions. Digital Heaven was one of the … Continued

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WANDRD’s Clever DUO Daypack Gives You Protection And Portability

WANDRD’s new DUO daypack crams full-size features into a mid-size bag.

WANDRD has made a bit of a reputation in crowdsourcing (we covered the last product from WANDRD back in April). Between Kickstarter and Indiegogo, the company has seemingly built its entire product inventory off of this funding method.

Fortunately, WANDRD also delivers the goods. Its newest design, the DUO Daypack, has already been fully funded (2341% funded to be exact) on Kickstarter and gives content creators a laundry list of helpful features. This thing is an organizational beast.

Take a look at the Kickstarter campaign video to get a better idea of what the DUO’s all about:

The marque feature here is most likely its accessibility. The DUO has top access, dual side access, and full internal access. So, whether you need to quickly grab your laptop, get your camera and lenses to get a shot, or look at all of your gear in your bag, you can do it pretty easily.

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Go Behind the Scenes of ‘Alien’ with a New ‘Making Of’ Book

“Alien” is one of the greatest science fiction films of all time. Now you can get the full story of what went on behind the scenes with this new book by J. W. Rinzler.

When Disney acquired Fox in a sale, I thought the coolest thing about it was that the Alien Queen now was basically a Disney Princess. But I did have my worries that movies like the Alien franchise would fall by the wayside since they were usually bleak, violent, and not suitable for children. Unless you want to scare some bad kids.

Still, it’s great to see a book like The Making of Alien by J. W. Rinzler rolling out.

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ARRI 10th anniversary M18 lamphead special edition

ARRI’s M18 daylight lamphead has been used on film sets worldwide for the past ten years and to celebrate ARRI has made a limited special anniversary edition that will be available in August. The special edition of the fixture will be limited to 500 units. The lampheads, printed with the anniversary logo on the housing, … Continued

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FT 000: Filmtrepreneur® Podcast – Introduction | Show Formalities | What to Expect

Filmtrepreneur® Podcast – Introduction | Show Formalities | What to Expect After months of preparation, it’s finally here, The Filmtrepreneur Podcast! After the success of the Indie Film Hustle Podcast and the Bulletproof Screenwriting Podcast, I felt there was another area of the filmmaking process that I could help filmmakers with, how to actually make money…

The post FT 000: Filmtrepreneur® Podcast – Introduction | Show Formalities | What to Expect appeared first on Indie Film Hustle®.

Sony α7R IV – 61 Megapixels

Sony launched their new full-frame mirrorless a7R IV (model ILCE-7RM4) today. With a new 61 megapixel sensor, this is Sony’s highest resolution full-frame camera. It has a totally new sensor—the first major update for Alpha still cameras since 2015. The full-frame sensor measures 35.7×23.8mm. We estimate the pixel pitch around 3.6 microns. Maximum resolution for stills is 9504 x 6336. Gone may… read more…

A First-Time Filmmaker on Why You Should Never Take Money in Exchange for Control

In ‘Rewind,’ Sasha Joseph Neulinger’s devastating personal documentary, the filmmaker reckons with the sexual abuse he suffered as a child.

“This is the most documented family in the world,” proclaims Henry Nevison, director Sasha Joseph Neulinger’s father, from behind the camera in a home video featured in Neulinger’s documentary, Rewind. Throughout Neulinger’s childhood, his father relentlessly trained the camcorder on his family. The resulting 200 hours of home video would spend decades in storage. But six years ago, Neulinger decided it was time to face the demons he knew resided in that footage. He began re-watching his childhood, and there they were, in plain sight, among the quotidian suburban nostalgia.

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Photographer Captures Python Consuming Entire Crocodile in One Go

Photographer Captures Python Consuming Entire Crocodile in One Go

A new set of photos released by a wildlife rescue center in Western Australia shows a python incredibly eating a freshwater crocodile whole. The collection of images detail the drama from start to finish, with the outline of the croc evident inside its predator’s body.

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Primetime Emmy Awards Nominations

Presenters Ken Jeong and D’Arcy Carden have announced the nominees for the 71st Primetime Emmy Awards Tuesday morning. The Game of Thrones, which recently wrapped up its final season on HBO, is in the lead with 32 nominations. It is followed by The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (which received 20 nominations), Chernobyl (at 19 nominations), Saturday […]

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The Art of the Cut Podcast Eps. 4 (w/ Spider-Man: Far From Home Editors Dan Lebental & Leigh Folsom-Boyd)

The Art of the Cut podcast brings the fantastic conversations that Steve Hullfish has with world renowned editors into your car, living room, editing suite and beyond. In each episode, Steve talks with editors ranging from emerging stars to Oscar and Emmy winners. Hear from the top editors today about their careers, editing workflows and about their work on some of the biggest films and TV shows of the year.

Spider-man Far from Home photo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recently, Steve had a chance to talk with Spider-Man: Far From Home editors Dan Lebental & Leigh Folsom-Boyd. Listen to the full podcast below:

The Art of the Cut podcast is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Anchor, Google Podcasts, Breaker, Pocket Casts, Overcast and Radio Public. If you like the podcast, make sure to subscribe on your favorite podcast app and tell a friend!

The post The Art of the Cut Podcast Eps. 4 (w/ Spider-Man: Far From Home Editors Dan Lebental & Leigh Folsom-Boyd) appeared first on ProVideo Coalition.

Photographer Loses Battle Against Andy Warhol Estate, Judge Says Warhol Surpassed Copyright

Photographer Loses Battle Against Andy Warhol Estate, Judge Says Warhol Surpassed Copyright

A photographer locked in a legal battle against the Andy Warhol estate has lost her legal battle. After only recently finding out Warhol had “repurposed” her photo of Prince back in 1984, the photographer tried to take action but was denied after Warhol’s works were deemed to be in “stark contrast” to the original photograph.

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The LockPort XT3 HDMI is an adapter and port saver for Fujifilm X-T3 video shooters

The Fujifilm X-T3 has already shown its video prowess, but without an ecosystem of accessories to further expand the video capabilities the system remains somewhat neutered. Thankfully, accessory manufacturers are hopping onboard, including LockCircle with the new LockPort XT3 HDMI, an HDMI port saver for the Fujifilm X-T3 camera system.

Not the adapter plate appears to leave plenty of space for access to the other ports on the side of the X-T3.

Like other port adapters and connectors, the LockPort XT3 HDMI is designed to not only simplify the process of attaching a full-size HDMI cable to an X-T3, but also protect the main micro HDMI connection by making it an external connection that faces towards the rear of the camera thanks to the included micro to full-size HDMI adapter.

The kit retails for $119 / €99,00 (plus taxes and shipping) and includes the Baseplate, Adapter MicroCage, micro to full-size HDMI adapter, two hex tools and four hex screws for securing the adapter to the baseplate. The LockPort XT3 HDMI is CNC machined from billet aluminum and anodized in Italy.

LockCircle says the LockPort Adapter features gold-plated contacts and the baseplate works on ‘every plate, head, sliding plate, rig and support.’

You can find out more information and order the LockPort XT3 HDMI on the LockCircle website. It might not be a revolutionary product, but seeing accessory manufacturers take the X-T3 as a serious video tool is a welcomed sight.