VOL 93 (2012) FROM ASC CLOSE UP – BEST PROFESSIONAL ADVICE RECAP

 

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From ASC CLOSE UP american-cinematographer-logo Vol 93(2012)

What’s The Best Professional Advice you’ve received?

RODRIGO PRIETO, ASC, AMC

On my first day on my first job as a PA, the production manager was late, and a grip said, ‘ it is disrespectful to be late on a shoot day.’ That made a big impression on me.

ROBERTO SCHAEFER, ASC, AIC

Listen to your gut instinct and believe in it. And Remember that the craft-service person on this job might be producer on the next.

JONATHAN TAYLOR, ASC

Stay calm, listen, observe and lead by example.

ALAR KIVILO, ASC, CSC

Don’t try to be someone you are not.

DARIUS KHONDJI , ASC, AFC

1)Learn how to listen; 2)Choose one strong idea per film; and 3 ) Really understand your motivations, why you do something and not something else, and the direction you take in your work.

SAM NICHOLSON, ASC

The film business is like a prizefight;it’s not how many times you get knocked down that counts, it’s how many times you get up and go again.

PETER LYONS COLLISTER, ASC

Treat everyone on a set as a human being . Learn everyone’s name, and don’t abuse any perceived power. I’ve witnessed such bad behavior by megalomaniacal  producers, directors, actors and , yes, cinematographers.Even in the stress of your 18 hour day, remember that PA has worked 23 hours already.

DAVID BOYD, ASC

Michael Chapman told me that if I didn’t want to shoot a project, I should just double my rate— That way I could be happy doing it. I’ve never tried it,but he made me laugh.

JOHN NEWBY, ASC

Know what you want to see in the shot before you plan logistics.

ROBERT PRIMES, ASC

After hearing complaints from an actor that I was putting too much light in his eyes, an executive producer called me into his office to remind me that I could be fired and he could be fired, but the actor could not be fired.It was a great lesson in political reality.

PETER DEMING, ASC

From George Folsey Sr. :’ Whenever you go in to production, eat a good breakfast and sit down whenever you can.’ Good Advice.

JERZY ZIELINSKI, ASC, PSC

Don’t let yourself become too obsessed with technology. Find a balance with your creativity.

VOL 92 (2011) FROM ASC CLOSE UP – BEST PROFESSIONAL ADVICE RECAP

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From ASC CLOSE UP american-cinematographer-logo Vol 92(2011)

What’s The Best Professional Advice you’ve received?

JACK COUFFER, ASC

From editor Irving Lerner: ‘Cut out all the comin’s and goin’s’

BARRY MARKOWITZ, ASC

‘There’s only one way to shoot this thing : Two Ways’

CRESCENZO NOTARILE, ASC

From Owen Roizman :” There’s no need to have an ego as a man. Let your work on that screen be your ego”

DENNIS MUREN, ASC

Jim Danforth taught me the value of critical thinking, especially about your own work, and how to see your work as the audience will see it. And during THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, George Lucas showed me a helicopter shot and asked if I could add a creature running in the ground, which at the time seemed impossible because of the six axis camera motion. He said, ‘ Give it some thought,’ and within 15 minutes I had a solution,That Taught me that a right answer might be one thought away.

TOBIAS SCHLIESSLER, ASC

‘Don’t shoot your demo reel.Be true to the story.’

DEAN SEMLER, ASC, ACS

From George Miller:’Just be bold,Dino!Be as bold as yo want!’

BRUNO DELBONNEL, ASC, ACS

When I was an AC, a gaffer told me, ‘Don’t run on a set, ‘because you show everyone that you probably forgot something. I still don’t run on set, and I try not to forget too many things’.

TOM HOUGHTON, ASC

I received early encouragement from Woody Omens,ASC; and Walter Lassally,BSC taught me many crucial concepts over the course of several projects. I also appreciated the opportunity to be on set of Fat City, where Conrad Hall, ASC was executing  innovative ideas using 8k (4x2K) umbrella lights for the fight scenes.In dailies,John Huston would just put his head on down and listen, trusting Conrad to deliver their visual plan.

DANTE SPINOTTI, ASC, AIC

It was actually given to my son  when he was getting ready to direct his thesis film at the American Film Institute.Jay Fortune, a New York gaffer I ‘d just completed a film with, suggested to him, ‘ Don’t lose your sense of humor,even when everything seems to be going in the opposite direction.’

XAVIER GROBET, ASC, AMC

Life is like an airplane: you either get on board , or you don’t . It’s up to you.

DAN MINDEL, ASC

When I was a focus puller on a movie with Adrian Biddle, BSC, I told him I did not have focus marks, and he said ‘ Feel The Force. ‘ I use that advice all the time.

LUCIANO TOVOLI, ASC, AIC

‘The Edges of the frame are often more interesting then the center’

To Be Continued… –つづく…

VOL 91 ( 2010 ) FROM ASC CLOSE UP-BEST PROFESSIONAL ADVICE RECAP

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From ASC CLOSE UP american-cinematographer-logo Vol 91(2010)

What’s The Best Professional Advice you’ve received?

BILLY DICKSON, ASC

Stay true to Yourself. When Everything is crazy around you and you feel like you’re being forced into making all the compromises,do what is right for you and make the compromises you can live with.In the end,what people see on the screen is what they remember you by.

PAUL CAMERON, ASC

Invest in yourself, and if you ‘re not willing to risk everything,then don’t bother doing anything.

SALVATORE TOTINO, ASC

The Advice I got the first day I worked in the film business: Always be five minutes early to work, never five minutes late.But more importantly, live on the edge when it comes to your photography–Take risks.Put your ideas on film and fall down a few times; it will make you a great filmmaker.

RENE OHASHI, ASC,CSC

Have a clear vision, design and objective for every scene. Then, by lighting with your instincts along with your intention  and setting you own level of excellence, you will find satisfaction.

FRED ELMES, ASC

It’s the director movie.The Director is always right.

JOHN SCHWARTZMAN, ASC

From my grandfather, Carmine Coppola: What you do with your non-working time is more important than what you do with your working time.

THOMAS A. DEL RUTH, ASC

From Jordan Cronenweth: ‘Minimize compromise,be prepared for rejection, and save your money’

CHARLES MINSKY, ASC

I’m not sure it’s the best advice,but when I first began working as a camera assistant , Joe Ruttenberg, ASC lived next door.He took me into his house one day and showed me his two Academy Awards and told me to become an editor because they had more control on his art than he did.It did not deter me, but it made me aware that I wasn’t in complete control of the finished product.It’s a lesson I’m still learning.

DEJAN GEORGEVIC, ASC

Lee Rothberg’s Mantra :’ Keep Calm,Cool and collected at all times’

JIM DENAULT, ASC

From Tim Beiber: ‘ Show up early,don’t sit down,and act like you give a shit.’ It’s easy to remember and has far-reaching implications’

PHEDON PAPAMICHAEL , ASC

Roger Corman used to tell his young directors to sit down on an apple-box whenever they got an opportunity.I always try to pace myself through a long shoot;I see a lot of folks burn out before the film is done.

FRANK B.BYERS, ASC

From my agent: ‘Be the happiest guy on set.’ He was right

To Be Continued… –つづく…

SHOWBIZ

MY MOST INSPIRING , INFLUENTIAL PERSONS , ARTISTS , “PEN” AND GOOD FRIENDS IN THE SHOWBIZ

DANTE SPINOTTI AIC ASC Cinematographer L.A. – Muina di Ovaro (Italy)

MICHAEL MANN Director,Producer L.A.

GUSMANO CESARETTI Photographer,Producer L.A. Lucca 

JOHN MURPHY Composer,Musician L.A. Liverpool

STEPHEN PIZZELLO publisher and editor-in-chief of American Cinematographer

PETER MARTORANO Location Manager L.A.-St.Petersbourg FL

MAXIME ALEXANDRE AIC Cinematographer Venezia – L.A.

DANNY MIGUEL Freelance Director L.A.

OTTAVIA DA RE Publisher,Journalist,Photographer @ Venice Film Festival San Donà di Piave Venezia

PIER MARIA BOCCHI Writer,Author,Film Critic,Torino Film Festival, Vigevano Italy

MATTEO MERLI Director Producer Freelance Arkadin Pictures Mirandola Italy

ANTONY HARDING’s July Skies West Midlands U.K. Musician

Other memorable meetings and contacts:Mogwai(Post Rock Group)Glasgow-Alan Howarth(Composer) L.A.-Stephane Piter (special Efx Painter)France-Rick Eager(Writer,Actor,Real Estate Agent) Norman OK-Temecula CA-Fulvio Bortolozzo (Photographer) Torino-Alessandro Borri(Writer/Author)Roma-Edoardo Graziani(Photographer)Bologna-Roy H.Wagner ASC(Cinematographer)N.Y.-Duane C.Manwiller(Camera Operator,Cinematographer)L.A.

BLACKHAT TRIBUTE

BLACKHAT TRIBUTE

BLACKHAT INVISIBLE STAIN

ANOTHER TRACK(From WE CUT THE NIGHT Album) COME TO VISIT ME AND SUDDENLY I HAVE A SPECIAL NEED TO DO THIS MASHUP, SO I SPENT A COUPLE OF HOURS IN MY AVID STUDIO AND I GUESS THIS IS ONE OF MY BEST TRIBUTE.ENJOY THIS MUSIC FROM FRENCH BAND AaRON and THIS OUTSTANDING AS UNDERRATED MOVIE BY M I C H A E L  M A N N

VOL 90 ( 2009 ) FROM ASC CLOSE UP-BEST PROFESSIONAL ADVICE RECAP

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From ASC CLOSE UP american-cinematographer-logo Vol 90(2009)

What’s The Best Professional Advice you’ve received?

GABRIEL BERISTAIN, ASC, BSC

Kate Nelligan , a superb actor, once told me that if I could light women beautifully, I would not help many careers, but I would also definitely help mine.

PETER SUSCHITZKY, ASC

I Was once invited to a dinner where Billy Wilder was one of the guests.He asked me what I was doing, to which I replied, ‘Oh , a small movie’ He said,’ There’s no such thing, just good ones and bad ones.’ For the rest, I listened to an inner voice that said,’Develop as many interests as you can, as you will need them to fill the long gaps between movie and enrich life in general.’

PETER  WUNSTRORF, ASC

‘Be Yourself’. I was about to interview for the aforementioned pilot (Millennium), and I was nervous.;my Good friend Dominique Fortin said, ‘Just be yourself;they will like you.’ I didn’t try to fake it. I thought it went badly, but in prep, the producer told me, ‘You came in and only spoke about the work,and that’s all Chris Cater cared about.’

THOMAS ACKERMAN, ASC

Legendary gaffer George ‘Popeye’ Dahlquist used to tell his lamp operatos ‘Boys,if you’re not 10 minutes early,you’re 10 minutes late.’Readiness is a big part of what we do.

JOHN LINDLEY, ASC

When I wanted to quit a miserable show, the director, Virgil Vogel,said,’Kid, never quit.If you have to leave, get fired.If you quit,it will always reflect on you.’

ALAN CASO, ASC

From John Frankenheimer: ‘Alan, whatever you do in this business,don’t ever let them push you into shooting something you know is just bad,something you’ll end up regretting or hating.Simple rule of thumb: ‘don’t shoot s**t!’

MARK IRWIN, ASC, CSC

When director Gil Cates chose me to shoot a love story starring Bea Arthur and Richard Kiley, he said he liked what i’d done on The Fly.I reminded him that Jeff Goldblum and Geena Davies were in a horror film, not a love story.He said,’No,they were in love, and that’s what the audience saw. Sometimes you have to ignore the words and let the pictures tell the story.

AARON SCHNEIDER, ASC

When I was starting out, a veteran first assistant  told me the 2-make Rule,’ make your leading ladies look beautiful and make your day.’

ALEXANDER GRUSZYNSKI, ASC

I think it was Sven Nykvist, ASC who once said, ‘Take chances, but when you do, lower the ASA settings on your light meter.’ To this day, no matter how great the latitude of the film stock is, I always calibrate my meter to a lower settings than what the manufacturer recommends.

ANASTAS MICHOS, ASC

I was working with Don McAlpine,ASC,ACS, and getting impatient watching the director, producer and assistant director endlessly discuss the next setup. Don turned me and said in his inimitable Aussie drawl,’Relax: Sooner or later they’ll have to come over to talk to us.’

PAUL RYAN, ASC

Michael Chapman, ASC said ‘You have to give the impression you know what you’re doing even when you’re totally confused.’

To Be Continued… –つづく…

VOL 89 ( 2008 ) FROM ASC CLOSE UP-BEST PROFESSIONAL ADVICE RECAP

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From ASC CLOSE UP american-cinematographer-logo Vol 89(2008)

What’s The Best Professional Advice you’ve received?

GLEN MacPHERSON, ASC

‘Keep it Simple’. it’s Always exciting to try a new piece of gear, but sometimes two grips pulling a camera on a blanket is stille the best solution.

TORBEN JOHNKE, ASC

I once worked with Irvin Penn, who told me a simple rule: less is often better.He used a single soft light for most of his shots. We shot a number of Pepsi commercials that way, and those spots won several Clios.

WAYNE KENNAN, ASC

Right After I was accepted into the union as an operator, I was offered a job at Warners as An Assistant. I needed a letter from a producer to re-rate me.The Producer told me I’d be an idiot not to pursue operating because it might take me 10 or more years to ge there again.He was right;it was a struggle. But I established myself as an operator and was working steadily within a year.

RODNEY TAYLOR, ASC

When Leavie Asked me to work with him at Corman’s, the pay was 50$ a day.Levie said,’They’re not paying for experience .Take the job and you’ll meet people.’

ANTONIO CALVACHE, ASC, AEC

This is directly related to my memorable blunder. When Conrad Hall ASC gave me a lecture at AFI, he was asked what a single piece of advice he’d give to aspiring cinematographer.His answer :’Get Enough Sleep.’

ROB MacLACHLAN, ASC, CSC

My Dad told me it did not matter what I did for a living as long as I loved it.Also, much later, Richard Leiterman caught up with me at CSC Awards, where I’d  just gotten my fourth consecutive  award for TV series and was on a bit of a roll. He told me not to ‘get too damn comfortable’ and to ‘get the hell back to the USA while ya can!’ A year later, I was divorced, living in my native California, doing my most satisfying work ever, and shooting a big studio feature. My career and life have only gotten better since that.

BILL TAYLOR, ASC

When I asked Freddie Francis for his secret to glamour lighting, he said, ‘Put a great Big light over the lens. And get Brooke Shields if you can.’

JOHN S.BARTLEY, ASC, CSC

‘Light the Set, then turn off half the lights and shoot.’

PETER KOZACHICK, ASC

At ILM, Dennis Muren, ASC had a simple, powerful phrase:’ One Shot, one Thought.’ When we lapse into gliding the lily on a setup, that quote provides a reality check.

ROSS BERRYMAN, ASC, ACS

‘Be nice to people on your way up because you never know who you’re going to meet on the way down.’

VICTOR GOSS, ASC

When I was becoming successful shooting commercials, a wise producer friend learned over in a screening room once and whispered ‘Don’t let this go to your head.’About 23 years later, I figured out what he meant.

DONALD McALPINE, ASC, ACS

The late and wonderful Phil Gersh, my agent for many years, listed the directors one should avoid working with. I’m not going to publish that list.Reports and anecdotes over the years have been an indication of grief avoided.

To Be Continued… –つづく…