Shooting Kim Coates: How To Balance Crew, Cast And Client Needs In A Corporate World

Earlier this summer, Cinescapes Collective was hired by Tourism Saskatoon to produce a video series featuring some of Saskatoon’s local and international talents as they talk about why they love Saskatoon so much. One of the people we featured in the series was Kim Coates, star of the show, “Son’s of Anarchy”. We felt his was the perfect advocate for the city. For the short film, we wanted to not only talk about why he loves Saskatoon but also find out about his journey as an actor. What we want to do with this post is give you insight into how the project went down and also talk about what we learned through the process of working with talent. Our three main topics include:

  1. Working with Talent
  2. Balancing Client, Cast and Crew Needs
  3. Production Breakdown

Coming into this project we were excited for the opportunity to work with Kim Coates. The diversity of his body of work intrigued us and really played a role in the direction we wanted to take the project.

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Variable 3 point LED lighting kit for macro/miniature for $55

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Welcome to my tutorial on how to make a 3 point light setup kit that allows you to vary the point LEDs independently. I wrote this for fun and i hope it inspires you! Warning: ManualMode.ca and I are not responsible for ANY damage caused to you, others or your household while following this tutorial.

I decided to make this kit because i shoot macro a lot and I’ve been disappointed by the macro mini studios i bought mostly because i could not control the light intensity for each bulb and even if I hacked it into a dimmable solution, fluorescent lights do not dimm, so i had to buy special white light tungsten bulb. I was also limited by size of the bulb and the heat it generated. All i wanted is to have positional whitelights that can vary their brightness and small enough so i can use it for macro.

Before I dive in, look at the lead image to see some quick tests I made with the completed setup

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What I’ve Learned So Far: Seven; Gear Envy Sucks

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Gear envy takes two major forms;

  1. “I can’t do what I want with this crummy gear.”
  2. “I can’t believe that guy/gal has such great equipment when their work sucks so bad.”

Actually envying someone by what their gear collection is – “I so wish I was him, I would be so awesome with that gear” – is more a sign of needing some professional help. Please see someone straight away.

So let’s look at number one first, the thought that you cannot shoot with your current crummy gear.

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How to Find Good Light for Portraits Even at Midday

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You’ve probably heard you need to have good light for portraits. Okay great, but what does that mean exactly, and how do you find that elusive good light? In this article you’ll get some tips on how to recognize different kinds of light, and make choices based on the look you want for the final portrait. You’ll also learn about open shade, quality of light, direction of light and how to bring it all together so that you can work faster, smarter, and with less gear. Let’s begin!

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DIY: Leather Dual Camera Harness for $70 | Holdfast Moneymaker style

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I think the Holdfast Moneymaker is pretty awesome. Not just because it’s made of durable materials, but because it’s an elegant solution to the problem of weilding two cameras without looking like a Navy Seal. My jaw did drop when I saw the $200~300 price tag though, since it’s basically TWO BELTS. The portrait sliders are extra, and will set you back another $50… if you want to be able to shoot vertically, that is.

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It’s Anything But A Normal Lens

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Right off the bat I have to clear up a misunderstanding some have to what a 50mm ‘standard’ lens actually is. Throughout my teaching career I’ve heard beginner photographers refer to them as prime lenses and, of course, they’re correct. However, as the conversations develop I’ve found that a good number also believe that only a 50mm is a prime lens. In actuality any non-zoom is a prime lens.

With that small but important point out the way let’s move on to why I think the prefix ‘standard’ can be a little misleading and undermine this focal length and the many advantages there are for using one.

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How The SNL Title Sequence Was Made? With A Ton Of Creative Camera Use

Editor’s Note:  I am a big SNL fan and I love their super stylish opening title sequence. The production of this sequence shows true mastery and understanding the photography format (they use freelensing, creative bokeh, light painting, tilt-shifting and just about any other creative tool out there). Alex Buono, the Director of Photography of the sequence shares how it was made.

…And we’re back! After a much-needed summer hiatus, it’s that time of the year again when my comrades in the SNL Film Unit all reconvene on the 17th floor of 30 Rockefeller Plaza for another season of filmmaking speed-drills.

While the usual shoot is a dead sprint from Thursday thru Saturday night, every few years we produce a new Title Sequence and that sprint becomes a 3-week non-stop marathon. Especially when it’s the 40th Anniversary season. The passing of Don Pardo — the legendary voice of SNL since 1975 — only amplified the feeling that this new sequence needed to be something extra special.

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Open Letter To Client re: “Job Killer” Quoted Rate

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Hello Potential Client,

Regarding your last email in which you said:

“… if they (your client) saw the $700/ $1400 a day fee for the photographer they would dismiss the project immediately … (most of my client’s people make between $25 and $45 an hour)… Showing $100/hr was also a job-killer as you can imagine”.

Well sure thing. I see where you’re coming from… Let’s rewrite the quote to show the actual number of hours I will work on this job, instead of only those spent with my face in a camera. Maybe that will help.

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Consider Using Long Lenses For Landscape Photography

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Do you use long lenses for landscape photography?

When most people think about landscape photography, they often think Wide. Using wide angle lenses is very common with landscape photography and for a good reason. Wide lenses have some great advantages for landscape photography. They capture a wide view of the scene; they provide great depth of field; and they create a deep perspective which emphasize the foreground and minimize the background. But in many cases they’re not the best choice, and you shouldn’t fixate on shooting wide every time you see a great landscape.

Using long (or tele) lenses allows you to capture amazing scenes you wouldn’t be able to shoot with a wide angle lens for several reasons:

  1. The immediate foreground (which is closer to you) is not always interesting, and it doesn’t have to be included in the frame in every shot. Sometimes you only want a more distant part of the scene.
  2. Landscape is not always about huge and wide scenes, it can also be more intimate and include a small part of a scene like part of a water stream or mountain edge.
  3. A long focal lens does exactly the opposite of a wide lens in terms of perspective – long lenses compress foreground and background so you can capture and balance them both.

Here are some examples:

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Wedding Photography Prices: ON or OFF Your Website?

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It’s the age-old question, should a wedding photographer put his/her prices on the website, or leave them off? I’ve asked myself this, and seen many photographers ask the same thing. Lots of opinions, some of them very strong opinions, but no one seems to back it up with actual data.

An argument I’ve heard for putting prices online is that the potential client wants to know if you’re within her price range. If you make it too difficult to find that information, she won’t bother to contact you because there are plenty of other photographers to look at. Would you go look at a new car if they wouldn’t tell you the price until you got to the dealership?

The counter-argument is that wedding photography can be expensive, clients don’t always have an understanding of how much they should expect to spend, and placing too much emphasis on price means that the client misses out on less-tangible benefits that the photographer has to offer. If you make the client ask for pricing, you can then strike up a dialog with the client and build a relationship before getting icky with numbers.

Both arguments seem reasonable. And those photographers who can’t make up their minds usually wimp out and put a “starting at $xxxxx” on their site! (That’s what I do currently. :) )

But I’ve got some Actual Data!

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