Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Still & Moving

A February winter sky - North Yorkshire, UK

Many years ago, a film and TV lecturer of mine stated that he could always tell a photographer who had become a film maker. John never elaborated how he could tell, but from what he disclosed in the conversation, it sounded as though it was the lack of camera movement that gave the game away. The more the camera moved about during the film, the less likely that the director/film maker had a background in still image making.

At the time i disagreed with that simplistic visual analysis of someone's film making style. I still do. The comment was made in such a fashion to make it sound  like photography and film making were world's apart creatively. I don't believe they are. Photography is, to me at least, a basic, but essential element in film making, after all, if the film is badly photographed, no matter how good the story is, the film will fail to capture the viewers attention. Photographers can move into film making and vice versus, and the change isn't that radical. I started my photo education on a TV, film and photography course, and over the years I've noticed that the TV/film part has become more and more relevant to contemporary photography. Multimedia production and the introduction of digital video recording to many top Pro SLR cameras means that photographers are often shooting video too. Within ten years, almost all SLR digital cameras will have some sort of video capability. The divides between the moving image and the still image are really starting to blur now.

All of those lessons i had in video and audio work, many years ago now, are taking on a new importance. Yes the technology may have changed but the processes of creating work haven't. As you may have heard in various audioBoo podcasts and blog posts, i am the director of photography for a vampire film being filmed in nearby Whitby. My role is mainly a creative visual one, I'm tasked to develop the film's visual style through the use of the lenses, angles and lighting. It'll be a challenge to work with the moving image after many years of shooting still images, but I'm looking forward to creating some great vampire movie moments on camera, and eventually seeing them on the big screen itself. Photography and the moving image.... in perfect harmony.


*MEGULA* said...

Let me preface this by saying that I love your work! I found your site through Kathy and Alex, other photographers who inspire me :)

In regards to this post, I think it's an interesting topic. I have seen photographs that beautifully capture the fluidity of life and I have seen films with scenes that are like photographic poetry... so I do think there is an important connection there.

Of course, it all depends on the artist and the art ;)

Thanks for sharing!

Richard said...

Thank you for your kind comments about my work :o) You are right about film making/photography depending on the artist and what they are trying to capture. My lecturer's comments just came back to me as i started working on this film. Hopefully this film will look OK :o) Anyhow I hope you enjoy the blog, i think this year will be an interesting one creatively ;o)