Film sets are almost always more hectic than they look and nowhere is that more true than when filming in a real garage.
A typical residential garage usually offers every hardship a cinematographer hates to see and in today's breakdown we cover what we did to overcome those constraints and discuss why we took the approach we did.
We are breaking down one of 10 spots we filmed over 4 days and that fact, in and of itself, required a unique approach to getting what the director was after.
Enjoy the behind the scenes look!
A Cinematography System: The Playbook Approach
You like the breakdown episodes and you want to be a better DP? Would you like to hear how I think when it comes to cinematography and steal the methodology I built up over the years?
OK. Check out the course I created at the link below:
My mindset around cinematography has morphed and changed over time as I am always seeking the most efficient workflow to get the best results I can. In the course I lay out exactly how I breakdown a scene to make sure I am maximizing the tools I have available to me.
This is the closest thing I have created to a cheat code for up and coming DPs to bypass the years of trial and error I had to put in.
Patreon Video - Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore
This week on the Patreon Breakdown we were going to look at was Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore.
Instead we have another niche podcast as the last one was so well received and I am still getting lots of topics to go over from the group. So today's podcast for Patreon members is all about eye lights.
Should be fun!
You can find this week's Patreon content by clicking the link below:
If you are a fan of the podcast and want more video content the patreon group is the place to be. Each and every week I release an exclusive podcast, video, or live stream just for the Patreon members.
Patreon members also get access to the Private Facebook community for the show. The podcast couldn't exist without the Patreon support and I do my best to take care of the supporters.
Pushing the Limit - The Spot
We shot this ad on 2 x Alexa Mini LFs paired with a set of Cooke Full Frame 1.8x Anamorphics lenses.
No filters or any magic in front of the lens just the Cookes at near wide open and a whole lot of ND filtration.
The Location - The House
South Facing Exit.
Sun hitting background = hot.
The Spot - Shot by Shot
Shot 1 - The Wide
Our hero talent exits the garage and rides off.
We had a 12k HMI through a series of diffusion frame right outside the garage. The sun was almost directly above so the 12k is there to add some reach into the garage itself.
Tucked in the garage was an Area 48 ellipsoidal type LED that was being shot into the roof to provide some general ambient.
There is also a 4k HMI frame left coming through one of the windows in the garage.
Shot #2 - The Dirty Mid Shot
The camera floats and finds shots as the wide shot is rolling.
Same as above but as we go in tighter we can manipulate the interior levels by raising one of the garage doors or pumping in more ambient with the Area 48 as the frame is smaller.
Shot #3 - The Roving Single
This was a tracking shot were we played through the entire scene on this angle.
We had to re-rig the Area 48 ambient light and adjust levels on the 12k outside the garage but everything else is the same lighting wise because we had so much physical ground to cover we couldn't really light to one specific area.
Shot #4 - The Push In
This was the most important frame of the ad and the one we spent the most time on.
All of the blocking of the characters was built out for this specific angle to be possible on our hero shot. We used the 12k from outside to dial in the right amount of key and then wrapped it with some closer 4x4 diffusion frame left just out of frame.
Frame right is some 4x4 floppies to dial up the contrast and mood and then we manipulated the garage doors frame left to add or take away level from the background.
Shot #5 - Hero Angle
Tighter on the previous shot.
Shot #6 - Diopter Fun
This was the B camera angle while the previous two shots were being picked off.
I was operating here and acting as the bio-neg. I was trying to light via the angle as more or less contrast is revealed as we increase or decrease the angle of the camera relative to the subject's eyeline.