The Process Camera

Bipack Printing Matte

A simplified, cut-away sketch of a process camera, loaded for bi-pack printing. Duplicating negative raw stock is loaded into chamber A, emulsion-in. A master positive is loaded into chamber B. emulsion-out. The exposed dupe negative is taken up into chamber C, the master positive into chamber D. The two strips pass through the intermittent movement, emulsiotl-to-emulston, with the raw stock to the rear.

Figure 4-9 The process camera. Courtesy of Dr. Raymond Fielding.

printer, each was recollected into its own receiving spool (A into C) and (B into D). The goal of this setup was to use this process camera as a step printer. In photographic terms, a step printer is an apparatus that develops film whether it is 35 mm film from a reflex camera or a 35 mm movie camera. (Remember, cinema is fundamentally photography.) Keeping this concept in mind, the master positive was used in the bi-pack process as a "negative," and the raw film stock was used as high quality photographic "paper" to accept a new printed image. Anyone who has spent time in a darkroom is familiar with how film is developed. Early filmmakers realized this and used these fundamental concepts for their new craft. What would the new image be? It would be whatever needed to be added to the master positive to complete the finished image on the filmstrip.

How was a new image added to the master positive? Fig. 4-9 also shows a square of matte board that acted as a rigid easel for holding either matte or counter-matte images like those shown in Figs. 4-10A and 4-10B. As long as the image on the matte board was evenly lit, the light rays bouncing off the board would act as the primary light source in the photographic step printer, etching a new image as it passed through the aperture and the master positive onto the raw film stock behind. The new image would be

The New Doctor Light
Figure 4-10A Matte/counter matte . . . Courtesy of Dr. Raymond Fielding.

and resulting composite image. Courtesy of Dr. Raymond Fielding.

Figure 4-10B

and resulting composite image. Courtesy of Dr. Raymond Fielding.

a combination of the originally shot footage with the image on the matte board. This technique of manipulating film stock and images was prevalent during the mid-later twentieth century, 1965-1980. Although this information is somewhat technical, the concept is important. Once the range and technique of any of these processes is understood, the concepts can be more confidently applied as the basis for solutions to new problems.

Speed and greater precision are what digital techniques add to the foundation of these concepts.

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Film Making

Film Making

If you have ever wanted the secrets to making your own film, here it is: Indy Film Insider Tips And Basics To Film Making. Have you ever wanted to make your own film? Is there a story you want to tell? You might even think that this is impossible. Studios make films, not the little guy. This is probably what you tell yourself. Do you watch films with more than a casual eye? You probably want to know how they were able to get perfect lighting in your favorite scene, or how to write a professional screenplay.

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