Magazine article American Cinematographer

Q&a

Magazine article American Cinematographer

Q&a

Article excerpt

This organization's membership is made up of manufacturers and dealers throughout the world. Direct all Q&As to AMERICAN CINEMATOGRAPHER, P.O. Box 2230, Hollywood, CA 90028.

Q How did Gordon Willis achieve the incredible look for the fantasy sequences in "Pennies From Heaven"? They had an "aged" look, yet exhibited no apparent increase in grain.

A Each sequence had different photographic values. No mechanical means were used to achieve an overall "look". Lighting, color, and shot structure were applied at what he felt were appropriate levels. All film was developed normal.

Q If a fan is needed inside a lighting fixture to cool it, can it be muffled without being disconnected or without restricting air flow while shooting?

A You must remember that fans are utilized to perform functions that cannot be achieved by normal convection cooling. The sound you wish to muffle is not necessarily the fan itself, but is the volume of air passing over the object. This produces the greatest unwanted noise. Generally, fans are selected that produce satisfactory air-flow in a "worst case" situation.

Unless it is possible to locate the object producing the unwanted noise at a distance from sound sensing devices, the alternative is to place a resistor in-line of the fan, limiting the current and producing only the required air-flow. The size and type of resistor should be determined by someone familiar with the fan and the task the fan must perform. Simply muffling the fan can cause damage to expensive components which need constant cooling.

Q Regarding the rated color temperature of daylight-in 1966 daylight, as I remember, was always rated at 5800° Kelvin. Nowadays it seems that everybody has standardized on 5500° Kelvin. What has brought about this change? Who determines the standards? Has some committee (if so when and where) decided that 5500° looks better than 5800° or does it have something to do with an actual change in daylight characteristics? …

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