DEFINITION January 2018


SOFTLY, SOFTLY… Alex James tapped into his photographic style and used the virtues of a Sigma Cine 18-35mm T2 High Speed Zoom to produce a dreamy, soft-focus film that explores the virtues of high-quality fabrics

bokeh that could be achieved was deliciously soft and smooth. “Having moved into film production off the back of being a photographer I was already well aware of the quality of the Sigma brand,” says Alex, “and with the introduction of the new Cine lens range I was particularly interested in trying out the 18-35mm T2. The commission to produce a film that focused on the beauty of high-end cloth was the perfect opportunity: I needed to pair my Sony FS7 with a lens that was truly versatile and also offered a wide maximum aperture, and this optic, on paper at least, certainly appeared to cover all the bases.” Working with a cine zoom offered several advantages. For a start Alex knew that he would be shooting in a number of different rooms, but prior to the day of the shoot he didn’t have details of the size of these, and so he needed to be prepared for any eventuality. The wide end of the zoom potentially could be a complete lifesaver should rooms be small, while there was also the opportunity to zoom out should room dimensions be bigger.

ometimes the things you don’t see in a film are more important than those that you do, a point reinforced by fashion and commercial specialist Alex James’ latest production, a delightfully dreamy and atmosphere-laden exploration of the virtues of high- quality fabrics. Minute depth-of-field and skilful use of slow motion defines pretty much every scene, focusing attention on the detail that Alex wanted to show and achieving its end through suggestion rather than by delivering detail-packed scenes that risk overpowering the senses. “I love working with a shallow working on a film. For photography my regular setting is around f/2-f/2.8, with a move up to a maximum of f/5.6 or f/8; that’s my recognisable style. My brief for my latest film was to tap into this look and go for a poetic, floaty feel that suggested more than it showed. We emphasised this by smoking the room and using backlighting.” Choice of lens was key to the production, and Alex went for the newly launched Sigma Cine 18-35mm T2 High Speed Zoom, an depth-of-field,” declares Alex, “whether I’m shooting stills or

optic that offers so much in the way of versatility that virtually the entire production was shot with it. At 180°, the rotational angle of the focus ring is more than double that of a still camera lens, enabling the high-precision focusing that was crucial to the success or otherwise of the film. Meanwhile the fact that it offered a nine-blade rounded diaphragm meant that the

BELOW Alex James created a poetic feel in the film by smoking the room, using shallow depth-of-field and backlighting.




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