A camera operator, is a professional operator of a film camera or video camera as part of a film crew.
In filmmaking, the cinematographer or director of photography (DP or DoP) is sometimes called lighting cameraman or first cameraman. The DP may operate the camera themselves, or enlist the aid of a camera operator or second cameraman to operate it or set the controls. The first assistant cameraman (1st AC), also known as a focus puller, is responsible for maintenance of the camera, such as clearing dirt from the film gate and adjusting the follow focus. A second assistant cameraman (2nd AC), also known as a clapper loader, might be employed to load film, slate scenes, or maintain the camera report (a log of scenes, takes, rolls, photographic filters used, and other production data).
A camera operator in a video production may be known by titles like television camera operator, video camera operator, or videographer , depending on the context and technology involved, usually operating a professional video camera. As of 2016, there were approximately 59,300 television, video, and motion picture camera operators employed in the United States.
Important camera operator skills include choreographing and framing shots, knowledge of and the ability to select appropriate camera lenses, and other equipment (dollies, camera cranes, etc.) to portray dramatic scenes. The principles of dramatic story telling and film editing fundamentals are important skills as well. The camera operator is required to communicate clearly and concisely on sets where time and film budget constraints are ever present.
In filmmaking and video production, a crane shot is a shot taken by a camera on a moving crane or jib. Most cranes accommodate both the camera and an operator, but some can be moved by remote control. Camera cranes go back to the dawn of movie-making, and were frequently used in silent films to enhance the epic nature of large sets and massive crowds. Another use is to move up and away from the actors, a common way of ending a movie. Crane shots are often found in what are supposed to be emotional or suspenseful scenes. One example of this technique is the shots taken by remote cranes in the car-chase sequence of the 1985 film To Live and Die in L.A.. Some filmmakers place the camera on a boom arm simply to make it easier to move around between ordinary set-ups.
A film crew is a group of people, hired by a production company, for the purpose of producing a film or motion picture. The crew is distinguished from the cast as the cast are understood to be the actors who appear in front of the camera or provide voices for characters in the film. The crew is also separate from the producers as the producers are the ones who own a portion of either the film studio or the film's intellectual property rights. A film crew is divided into different departments, each of which specializes in a specific aspect of the production. Film crew positions have evolved over the years, spurred by technological change, but many traditional jobs date from the early 20th century and are common across jurisdictions and filmmaking cultures.
16 mm film is a historically popular and economical gauge of film. 16 mm refers to the width of the film; other common film gauges include 8 and 35 mm. It is generally used for non-theatrical film-making, or for low-budget motion pictures. It also existed as a popular amateur or home movie-making format for several decades, alongside 8 mm film and later Super 8 film. Eastman Kodak released the first 16 mm "outfit" in 1923, consisting of a camera, projector, tripod, screen and splicer, for US$335. RCA-Victor introduced a 16 mm sound movie projector in 1932, and developed an optical sound-on-film 16 mm camera, released in 1935.
Cinematography is the art of motion picture photography.
A movie camera, film camera or cine-camera is a type of photographic camera which takes a rapid sequence of photographs on an image sensor or on a film. In contrast to a still camera, which captures a single snapshot at a time, the movie camera takes a series of images; each image constitutes a "frame". This is accomplished through an intermittent mechanism. The frames are later played back in a movie projector at a specific speed, called the frame rate. While viewing at a particular frame rate, a person's eyes and brain merge the separate pictures to create the illusion of motion.
Steadicam is a brand of camera stabilizer mounts for motion picture cameras invented by Garrett Brown and introduced in 1975 by Cinema Products Corporation. It mechanically isolates the camera from the operator's movement, allowing for a smooth shot, even when the operator moves over an irregular surface.
A clapperboard is a device used in filmmaking and video production to assist in synchronizing of picture and sound, and to designate and mark the various scenes and takes as they are filmed and audio-recorded. It is operated by the clapper loader.
A focus puller or first assistant camera is a member of a film crew's camera department whose primary responsibility is to maintain the camera lens's optical focus on whatever subject or action is being filmed.
A clapper loader or second assistant camera is part of a film crew whose main functions are that of loading the raw film stock into camera magazines, operating the clapperboard (slate) at the beginning of each take, marking the actors as necessary, and maintaining all records and paperwork for the camera department. The name "clapper loader" tends to be used in the United Kingdom and Commonwealth, while "second assistant camera" tends to be favored in the United States, but the job is essentially the same whichever title is used. The specific responsibilities and division of labor within the department will almost always vary depending on the circumstances of the shoot.
The role of an assistant director on a film includes tracking daily progress against the filming production schedule, arranging logistics, preparing daily call sheets, checking cast and crew, and maintaining order on the set. They also have to take care of the health and safety of the crew. The role of an assistant to the director is often confused with assistant director but the responsibilities are entirely different. The assistant to the director manages all of the directors in development, pre-production, while on set, through post-production and is often involved in both personal management as well as creative aspects of the production process.
In cinematography, the dolly grip is a dedicated technician trained to operate the camera dolly. This technician places, levels, and moves the dolly track, then pushes and pulls the dolly and usually a camera operator and camera assistant as riders. If the dolly has a moveable vertical axis, such as a hydraulic arm, then the dolly grip also operates the "boom". If both axes are used simultaneously, this type of dolly shot is known as a compound move.
A digital imaging technician chief (DIT) works in the motion picture industry. The DIT position was created in response to the transition from the long established film movie camera medium into the current digital cinema era. The DIT is the camera department crew member who works in collaboration with the cinematographer on workflow, systemization, camera settings, signal integrity and image manipulation to achieve the highest image quality and creative goals of cinematography in the digital realm.
Video assist is a system used in filmmaking which allows filmmakers to view a video version of a take immediately after it is filmed.
This article contains a list of cinematic techniques that are divided into categories and briefly described.
Neil Brian Davis was an Australian combat cameraman who was recognised for his work as a photojournalist during the Vietnam War and other conflicts in the region. He was killed in Bangkok on 9 September 1985, while filming a minor Thai coup attempt.
Frederick James Koenekamp, A.S.C. was an American cinematographer. He was the son of cinematographer Hans F. Koenekamp.
Hand-held camera or hand-held shooting is a filmmaking and video production technique in which a camera is held in the camera operator's hands as opposed to being mounted on a tripod or other base. Hand-held cameras are used because they are conveniently sized for travel and because they allow greater freedom of motion during filming. Newsreel camera operators frequently gathered images using a hand-held camera. Virtually all modern video cameras are small enough for hand-held use, but many professional video cameras are designed specifically for hand-held use such as for electronic news-gathering (ENG), and electronic field production (EFP).
David Russell Boyd, A.S.C. is an American cinematographer and director of television and film known for his role as director of photography for the FOX television series Firefly and the AMC series The Walking Dead. He also worked as cinematographer on the first three episodes of HBO's Deadwood. On the NBC television series Friday Night Lights he served as director of photography on 18 of 22 episodes in the first season and moved up to direct two more. He also directed the film Home Run, which was released in 2013.
William Cronjager was an American cinematographer who worked primarily in the television medium. The son, nephew and grandson of famous cinematographers, he began his career as an assistant cameraman, assisting on the 1957 film Oh, Men! Oh, Women!. In the 1960s he moved to the small screen, where he did the bulk of his work over the next two decades, beginning as the director of photography (DP) for the final three seasons (1967-1969) of the television melodrama, Peyton Place. While working as the DP for the first two seasons of the hit television drama Hill Street Blues, he won an Emmy for the premier episode, "Hill Street Station".
The Guild of British Camera Technicians is a not for profit organisation that represents knowledgeable, qualified and craft trained camera technicians working in film and high end television production around the world. The stated aim of the GBCT is to promote “The care and quality of cinematography through progress and innovation” There are currently around 450 members of the GBCT many of whom are members of other moving image craft organisations such as the British Society of Cinematographers and the Association of Camera Operators. The GBCT is currently based within the Panavision London offices.