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Anamorphic vs spherical (3 replies and 6 comments)

mindscrapper
6 years ago
mindscrapper 6 years ago

I am a big fan of anamorphic lenses last 5 years at list,even when I shoot a TV spot I insist to shoot anamorphic for its shallow DoF,flares bokeh and all that.

I know Roger Deakins is a "spherical lens guy",so to say,and he prefers to shoot spherical 2.4 widescreen.

My question to Roger and everybody here:

What are you pros and contras to use anamorphic or spherical lenses?

mindscrapper
6 years ago
mindscrapper 6 years ago

sorry for misprints, T9)

dmullenasc
6 years ago

If you've been shooting anamorphic for the past five years, and I assume plenty of spherical before that and now as well, I would think you know more than most people about the pros and cons. From my perspective, having only shot four features in anamorphic, the rest spherical, the cons tend to be (and I'm generalizing): (1) the rental costs are higher; (2) there are fewer sets available; (3) there are fewer specialty lenses in anamorphic (tilt-focus, macros, etc.); (4) the lenses tend to be larger and heavier and slower; (5) they tend to breathe more; (6) the wider-angle ones will have a certain amount of barrel distortion, making it hard to get straight verticals; (7) they often don't focus as closely; (8) the front anamorphic lenses have a different bokeh than the rear anamorphic lenses; (9) it's harder for CGI artists to match the lens distortions; (10) there isn't any extra area above and below the 2.40 image for repositioning, especially for visual effects; (11) the extra shallow depth of field can make the image look quite swimmy focus-wise when shooting near wide-open. Now having said all of that, I quite liked the look of my anamorphic-shot projects, but one of my primary reasons for shooting anamorphic was the larger negative area in 35mm over cropping Super-35 to 2.40, so I was getting less grain with anamorphic. This is less of an issue now with digital photography.

mindscrapper
6 years ago

Yes, thank you , that's obvious , but I'm asking more about personal artistic preferences and not on the technical aspects of optics )

RAS
5 years ago

Very happy to know that David Mullen is participating in the new forum.

mindscrapper
5 years ago

Yeah,that's good news!)

Morris
5 years ago

I'm not a fan of equipment, to be honest.
Every new project I take on, I try to find how I can best visualize the story.
Sometimes anamorphic lenses are an appropriate choice, sometimes they're not.
Most of the times it's not even a matter of choice, but budget steers you one direction 😉

mindscrapper
5 years ago

We are a bit more lucky here in Russia)economy crisis leads our rentals to lower prices even for anamorphic lenses but in the other hand there are not much projects at all)))

Roger Deakins
5 years ago
Roger Deakins 5 years ago

I have tested anamorphic so many times and only once came close to shooting it. But that project fell through! I think my documentary background has clouded my opinion of anamorphic. There is something about the lenses that I just don't connect with.

mindscrapper
5 years ago
mindscrapper 5 years ago

thanks Roger and all the participants for your answers!

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