DPs and Gaffers - Digital

thefilmbook by Benjamin B

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! I continue the popular DPs and Gaffers series. Here is part 4 from the seminar with DPs and gaffers, held at Camerimage 2012 in collaboration with my friends at K5600 Lighting.

In Part 1, the panel discussed who does what, and the difference between the American & European systems. In Parts 2 and 3, they discussed their lighting and rag lists.

Here the subject is the impact of digital on lighting for DPs and gaffers.


The panelists: Vilmos Zsigmond, ASC, gaffer James Plannette, gaffer Reuben Garrett,

Michel Abramowicz, AFC, moderator Benjamin B, and best boy Matthew Butlerwhiteline775


1. the panel

The panel included 2 cinematographers, 2 gaffers and a best boy:

-- Vilmos Zsigmond, ASC - cinematographer

-- James Plannette - gaffer

-- Michel Abramowicz, AFC - cinematographer

-- Reuben Garrett - gaffer

-- Matthew Butler - best boy

The event was initiated by Marc Galerne of K5600 Lighting, with the additional support of Jacques Delacoux of Transvideo. The video was shot by young cinematographer Eloi Rimmelspacher. I did the editing.


2. digital style, monitors

The cinematographers, gaffers discuss the impact of digital cameras on style, and the growing importance of monitors on the set.


watch on YouTube


- Journalist Madelyn Most asks whether the DPs are losing their style with digital

- Vilmos shares his thoughts on style,

and the dangers of a minimalist approach

- Michel states that film's disappearance is a "sad reality"

- James stresses that lighting is not about exposure

- Reuben says that the monitor has changed his job,

and warns about an "overly crafted" image

- James says that digital has made him more daring

- Michel says the monitor changed the DP-gaffer cooperation

- Vilmos talks about monitors, viewfinders, and on-set screening


Cinematography master Vilmos Zsigmond





Michel Abramowicz

Matthew Butler

Reuben Garrett

James Plannette

Vilmos Zsigmond

Video cameraman

Eloi Rimmelspacher


K5600 Lighting


Camerimage Festival


Benjamin B, Vilmos Zsigmond and James Plannettewhiteline775+++

The seminar and videos are dedicated to the memory of Gilles Galerne.


wide shotwhiteline775


In Part 5, we discuss Hard Light and Fresnels versus PARs.


thefilmbook: DPs and Gaffers - 1. Who Does What

thefilmbook: DPs and Gaffers - 2. The Lighting List

thefilmbook: DPs and Gaffers - 3. The Rag List

thefilmbook: DPs and Gaffers - 4. Digital

thefilmbook: DPs and Gaffers - 5. Hard Light - Fresnel vs PAR




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