DEFINITION January 2018

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“Ultimately there was a mixture of situations to manage,” he says, “and had I been working with prime lenses then I would have been continually changing them to get exactly the framing I wanted. With the zoom, however, things were simple: within moments I could achieve exactly the framing I was looking for, and it speeded things up no end. “Not only did this save me loads of time but it also meant that I had to carry a lot less kit to the shoot. Ultimately we shot around 95% of the entire film on the 18-35mm: the only extra shots were the odd cutaway and fill.” demonstrates the advantage the modern cine zoom can offer the filmmaker. Not so long ago lenses of this type, if available, were hugely expensive and usually a rent-in option only. For this reason, until recently most dedicated cine optics were primes, and although they delivered excellent quality they still came with limitations in terms of flexibility. “Hiring isn’t something that I like to do very often,” explains Alex. “I really appreciate the chance to own kit because otherwise I don’t feel that I ever get to know it as well as I might. It also means that if a client asks me to take on a test shoot for them then COMING OF AGE The success of the shoot

IMAGES Alex James started out just dipping his toe into the waters of shooting video but it has now become a major part of his business.

WITHIN MOMENTS I COULD ACHIEVE EXACTLY THE FRAMING I WAS LOOKING FOR AND IT SPEEDED THINGS UP NO END

I’ll have the kit in-house and it won’t cost me money to rent in the gear. “For all of these reasons it’s really good that the cine lens landscape is changing and that manufacturers such as Sigma are now coming to market with high-quality products that are more affordable. “Following my shoot with the 18-35mm T2 I’m now planning to buy this lens so I’ll always have it to hand. It’s such a good all-rounder

that I know it’s going to be a valuable addition to my kit. “I regularly shoot in 4K at 10-bit and so need a really good lens on the front of my camera to do justice to this. The quality of Sigma optics is totally up to this challenge and, despite being available at such a keen price point, there is no hint of a compromise. It’s also beautifully engineered and totally in scale with the Sony FS7. If I were to go with a still lens or one of the cheaper cine lenses that are available then, to my mind at least, it simply wouldn’t create the right impression on set.” This is an age where the lines between photography and filmmaking are blurring and more and more professionals are making the move across. For Alex, what began a few years ago as a toe dipped into the water has now turned into a major part of his business. “I’ve enjoyed the transition,” he says. “From starting out producing just a few short films a year, being primarily a stills photography business, I’m now shooting three to five short films a month working equally as a still and moving image maker. Things have totally turned around and I need to be serious about what I’m doing and to be working with kit that I know won’t let me down. Looking ahead the Sigma Cine lens range is very much part of my plans and I’m looking forward to trying out more of the range.”

MORE INFORMATION: www.sigma-global. com/en/cine-lenses www.alexjames london.co.uk

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JANUARY 2018 DEFINITION

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