Camera height in dialogues (4 replies and 2 comments)
I wonder how you choose camera height in dialogue scenes (shot/reverse)...
Do you set the camera height to the eye level of the person you are filming or to the eye level of the opponent ?
Or do you set camera height in both shot and reverse to the eye level of the character you want the audience to associate with ?
It depends what emotion you are going for; placing the camera just below eye level is usually my first instinct. If it is a more emotional shot of a character quietly crying, for instance, I would put the camera at eye level.
The trick with shooting reverses is to keep them interesting. Your reverses don't always have to match. Its about trying it a few different ways and seeing what works for you; which shot gives you the feel you are going for.
Camera height and position would also depend on the content of the conversation and the idea being conveyed, correct? I'm thinking of The Maltese Falcon when the main players are all in Humphrey Bogart's apartment having a conversation and as the power in the conversation shifts their relationship to the camera changes through camera position and character choreography.
I read in the book 5 Cs of Cinematography normally you should should the OTS at the eye level of the person you are shooting.
But - For the following POV CUs you should put on eye level of the opposing person.
This is the standard approach according to the book, but of course you can derive from it for emotional impact. What are you thinking of that ?
If there is one actor sitting and the other one standing:
At which height do you put the camera.
- at eye level of the actor we are seeing
- at eye level of the actor they are speaking to (which I found a bit exegeratted)
- or at eye level slightly below or above eye level to give the sense of the height of the actor they are speaking to