Posts tagged aspect ratio
If you ask budding cinematographers what are the ways to contribute visually to the story, many will mention lighting and framing. And maybe even lens choice for perspective and dynamics control. It may not be immediately obvious, but so does the choice of a suitable aspect ratio. The aspect ratio commands the geometrical shape of the picture and thus defines the base for in-frame composition. This makes it one of the important choices for any video production, be it a feature, a short, an ad, or a music video. In the age of digital image acquisition and digital intermediate it is much easier to be independent from the capture medium in aspect ratio choice. This is even more true in the context of digital content distribution online. And there are artistic reasons for a specific aspect ratio choice even more than there are technical reasons.
With the advent of the digital SLR as a video capturing device in recent years there is a lot of raving on the internet about the “cinematic look” one can achieve with DSLRs. Cinematic look is often opposed to video look or TV look. On forums and blogs one can read both delusions and truth regarding this distinction. As is often the case with any hype – hype has the tendency to self-amplify – a lot of noise gets picked up and reiterated in such a discussion. This series of articles will attempt to examine in some detail the various characteristics of the cinematic look and then explore how they relate to the image of video capturing devices, including HDDSLRs. Hopefully, some myths will be cleared in the process. This first part in the series is focused on aspect ratios and sensor sizes and the closely related topic of depth of field.