18 May The Cinematographer
There are many videos, blogs and articles on cinematographers. Why is a cinematographer so important? From the Greek words “to record movement”, this is a simple understanding of what a cinematographer. It is not merely about recording movement but understanding light, shadow, colour, depth of field, framing, frame rates, lenses, filters. Beyond technical aspects, films are a multifaceted medium or art form – good films feel like moving artworks because they bring together music, photography, theatre, literature, philosophy, psychology etc. The cinematographer finds a way to bring this to life so that audiences understand or feel something through image.
Each cinematographer has a unique way of working. Some say it is an innate talent, whilst others say it is a way of viewing the world and framing it. Most cinematographers agree that equipment is almost unimportant and that a beautiful or evocative image can be captured on anything.
However, how does a young person just breaking into the film world become a cinematographer? How does one distinguish oneself when there is so much beauty to live up to? Some answers are to just keep watching movies – classic films such as Citizen Kane, The Godfather, Doctor Zhivago and Lawrence of Arabia, and to just observe the world around you instead of ruining your eyesight on the small screens that we’re addicted to.