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Photo Flashes

Published : 16th Jan. 2007

Hello everyone.

I was wondering about the photo flash light effect. I have to shoot an actor with flashes seen on his face, and also in the reverse shot see a bunch of tourists clicking.

Now, is it like gun flashes (I guess it is) that one has to be careful that the camera actually see the flashes ? I did some tests but I am not sure how useful they are since synch is never going to be the same.

I tried long flashes, but they look to me more like gun shots.

I am after the modern short length flash effect of still cameras, not the slow effect of older magnesium flashes.

Thanks to anyone who can share experience with me.

Jean Marc Selva
DP, Paris.
Tel : 06 82 94 87 48


class="style15">>>I was wondering about the photo flash light effect. I have to shoot an >>actor with flashes seen on his face, and also in the reverse shot see a >>bunch of tourists clicking.

We had this issue some years ago. We had Panavision Hollywood make a sync box that was connected to the flash on the camera. When the shutter on the Panavision camera was open, only then was the flash able to be triggered. Worked well in both shots. i.e.. on the actors face and the reverse of the picture taker.

Nils Benson
D.P./West Coast, US


There is a paparazzi light that does precisely this. It is DMX controllable and is easy to use.

Cheers,


Jared Hoy
Gaffer || BBE
Los Angeles, CA


There are lots of options :-

Not sure what is available in Paris, but DMXable strobes are often the best. If you want to go that route you should look at Martin's Atomic 3000 head. It is easily controlled from any Lighting console. Lighting Strikes also makes a variety of units depending on how much light you need.

The easier, and sometimes better looking effect in my opinion is a handful of photo flash heads (a dozen or so) and just giving them to the electricians. All they have to do is hit the test button as soon as the flash recharges. You won't get all of the flashes on film, as it presents the same problems as muzzle flash, but if you have enough lights you should get a good effect -- Plus they are cheap, readily available and easy to move around. Unless your shooting at a deep stop you should have plenty of light.

Erik Messerschmidt
CLT, LA


Jean,

Turns out paparazzi light may just be the slang term for it, lord knows we all have our own terms for this stuff…

Check out this link:

http://lightningstrikes.com/products/lightning-strikes/parabolic.html

Hopefully this helps you out!

Cheers,

Jared Hoy
Gaffer || BBE
Los Angeles, CA


class="style15">>There is a paparazzi light that does precisely this. It is DMX controllable >and is easy to use.

I have researched this paparazzi light but didn't find anything.


What is it precisely ?

Jean Marc Selva
DP, Paris.


class="style15">>I have researched this paparazzi light

http://www.lightningstrikes.com/products/lightning-strikes/parabolic.html

It's the 8K on this page.

Phil Badger
gaffer, Los Angeles


You can't really _get_ a strobe effect on screen, because you are limited to 24 fps. If you have one frame printed pure white, the audience sees two flashes of about 1/60 sec each, which really doesn't look much like a strobe. But that's really as close as you can get.

The lightning gadgets are fine, or you can have a frame optically printed
white in the lab.

But the perception isn't going to be the quickness of a strobe because the projector just can't do that.

Scott Kludge



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