FORUMS: list search recent posts

Film Burn Accuracy

COW Forums : Art of the Edit

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
Dave Brekart
Film Burn Accuracy
on Jun 22, 2011 at 9:53:26 pm

So, I'm shooting an engagement video for a couple and the piece/wedding is 1930s-themed.

Sepia tone: check. Scratchy/dusty/misfire filters: check.

But with film burns, is there a particular difference in the "look" between super old '30s-era film burns and Super 8-era film burns?

I know about the artbeats resource and have a couple of packages of burns, but I want to make sure that this thing is "authentic" -- as authentic as a '30s-themed video shot on a DSLR can be :)


Return to posts index

Scott Sheriff
Re: Film Burn Accuracy
on Jun 27, 2011 at 8:42:27 pm

[Dave Brekart] "So, I'm shooting an engagement video for a couple and the piece/wedding is 1930s-themed.

Sepia tone: check. Scratchy/dusty/misfire filters: check.

But with film burns, is there a particular difference in the "look" between super old '30s-era film burns and Super 8-era film burns?

I know about the artbeats resource and have a couple of packages of burns, but I want to make sure that this thing is "authentic" -- as authentic as a '30s-themed video shot on a DSLR can be :)"


You might be over-thinking this a bit, but I can appreciate your desire to make your piece very authentic.
IMO Sepia tone has a western feel, not a 1930's feel, and has become somewhat of a cliche'. I don't know if it would be my first choice. Although rare, there was color film in the '30's. A color image, with the muted and slightly off colors might work better. Lot's of times Sepia, and light leaks are used without motivation. Since what you're shooting has a 1930's theme, you might be able to pull this off.

I'm not a film expert by any stretch, but when I got into TV, 16mm was still being used. Here is my take on this.
In a very general sense light leaks all look the same, but yet have a unique look depending on the cause.
They break down into two major parts. Fogging, and heads/tails type.
A lot has to do with the camera, how it is loaded/unloaded and by the way the camera operator handles the film. Fogging can happen at the camera, or in the lab, and has a lot to do with how careful the operator is. If it's a camera that has to be loaded in a change bag and the person is in a hurry or careless you could fog the first few feet, and it might gradually diminish (or not!). If the film can is accidentally cracked open it could edge fog the entire roll. Or it might have a pulsing look where only part of the reel is accidentally exposed. You can also get fog where the cover seal on the camera is damaged, or the cover is sprung or not closed tight. These can vary from a pin-point light, to an edge to edge fog throughout the reel. These can change in color temp, size, or intensity as the camera is moved.
Light leaks for the most part are where the film is sticking out of the magazine for loading. The intensity would have a lot to do with how good the seals are, how much is pulled out for threading, and how much film is rolled off after loading. Home movies would probably have footage begin much closer to the loading. Flashes of white-blue or little lightning bolts from static discharge in the camera are also a possibility.
If it is color stock they can be any color but it seems they tend to be purplish blues, orange-yellows and reds, That has a lot to do with the film stock itself, and the color temp of the offending light intrusion. Color or B&W, the affected footage would have a much reduced contrast, and a lifting in the blacks in the damaged areas.

There are other things you can do to help sell this effect. Since you're shooting this, and not doctoring up existing footage, stick with short glass and small apertures. Try to get a lot of DoF. Narrow the EQ of the audio. Hair in the gate. Larger, coarser grain. Bad splices. Having the frame misaligned. Sprocket damage. Scratches aka jail bars. Water spots. Muddy colors (turquoise blues, brownish reds) from heat damage or worn out developer. Cue dots. Reel names written on the leader, or made with punched holes.
Just like I said about the Sepia tone, the whole light leaks thing has become a cliche'. I think to pull it off successfully, you're on the right track by going for accuracy. And avoiding the 'slap it on' way it is commonly done.

IMO the canned light leaks look too much alike, and just don't have the personality of the real thing. Understanding where they come from might help you doctor them up a bit to get a more realistic look.
The funny thing about this is back then, we spent a lot of time cutting this stuff out and trying to troubleshoot where it was happening. Now we put it in on purpose.

Scott Sheriff
Director
http://www.sstdigitalmedia.com

I have a system, it has stuff in it, and stuff hooked to it. I have a camera, it can record stuff. I read the manuals, and know how to use this stuff and lots of other stuff too.
You should be suitably impressed...

"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur." ---Red Adair


Return to posts index

Dave Brekart
Re: Film Burn Accuracy
on Jun 28, 2011 at 4:22:36 pm

Scott,
Thanks a TON for all the info on fogging, light leaks, etc - this is an AMAZING second opinion... not often you get great feedback that's both informative and specific to your project. Thanks again.


Return to posts index

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
© 2017 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]