Pro Moviemaker Summer 2018




How going for a longer, fast lens can transform the look of your projects


T he vast majority of cinema lenses bought are fast primes, usually in the standard 35mm or 50mm focal length – they give great quality and often have a wide maximum aperture for pleasingly smooth, out-of- focus highlights. But if you really want a cinematic look to your work then you should consider a fast telephoto – it’s a great way not only to also get closer in to your subjects, but to create beautifully shallow depth-of-field. Many primes just aren’t available in longer focal lengths, but a zoom lens such as Sigma’s 50-100mmwill give the eŒective reach of a 150mm lens on a Super35 camera, such as Sony’s FS5 or FS7. And with a maximum aperture of T2.0, it can be used wide open to gather in lots of light and really focus on the subject, while allowing the background to go hugely out of focus. If you include some foreground that’s also out of focus

“Shooting the lens wide openwill make the background and any foregroundmore out of focus than on a shorter lens”

you just got closer and used a wider lens, you could still fill the frame with the subject, but the background would look very diŒerent. A longer lens will give the appearance of a shallower depth-of-field. So, shooting the lens wide open will make the background and any foreground more out of focus than on a shorter lens. This beautiful eŒect is what many people perceive as cinematic. It’s certainly the opposite of a small-sensor camera or an iPhone that has everything in focus from just in front of the lens to infinity. This has its uses if you can take the viewer’s eyes on a journey through the frame,

then the film takes on a beautiful, three- dimensional look. But you have to learn how to use a fast telephoto to get the best out of it... The advantages of telephotos Of course, a lot of getting to grips with teles is about what you include in the frame and choose to crop out. What a tele lens does is provide a tighter angle of view from a given viewpoint – this can help you isolate your subject from the background by getting rid of all the extraneous details that might confuse the view or get in the way of the story. If



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