MISCREANTS – Telling a story through dance with the ZEISS CP.3 Lenses
Joseph Rubinstein is a cinematographer in Los Angeles, the founding member of Digital Bolex, and a life long film enthusiast. He had the chance to shoot his latest project MISCREANTS with the new ZEISS CP.3 lenses.
This year I decided I was going to make a passion project on a scale I had not attempted before. I was able to sign on Olympic athlete Olga Sokolova, one of the world’s most talented dancers. We wrote a story we could tell through dance, something we hoped would be touching and meaningful to viewers even if they do not usually appreciate dance. What we did not do was set any boundaries on it, this film would be as long or as short as we needed it to be. What we ended up creating is a 55 minute dance movie called MISCREANTS.
In pre-production we talked a lot about how we wanted the camera to move like a dancer. When capturing dance we believe the camera has to either be relatively static and wide, or move fluidly with the dancer. I also wanted a film with strong colors and beautiful sequences in which the subjects move into focus from a blur, so the lenses we used had to have a strong beautiful bokeh. The ZEISS CP.3 lenses gave us all of this and more.
Most of the film was shot on an Alexa Mini with a gimbal rig, which allowed us to move the camera in and around dancers, making the camera feel like an extension of the dancers’ movements. The ZEISS CP.3 lenses are very compact and exceptionally well balanced and weighted, which made switching between lenses on the gimbal rig fast and easy, with minimal rebalancing.
The focused areas were tack sharp, and the out of focus areas were soft and glowing, which creates a beautiful contrast when put together in the same frame. But the most important part to me was the color and contrast we got with the lenses. The color clarity enhanced spatial separation and made the image feel deeper and more dimensional that almost any lenses I had ever used before. The camera crew on our shoot commented everyday at the beauty of what we were capturing in no small part due to the color and clarity of the CP.3 lenses.
I would recommend the ZEISS CP.3 lenses to anyone who wants rich, deep, colorful images, that feel tack sharp on the characters, but also airy and beautiful in the background. I feel for the first time I am seeing images from affordable lenses that feel every bit as powerful and professional as the images that come from MUCH more expensive lenses.
About the Author
Joseph Rubinstein is a cinematographer in Los Angeles, the founding member of Digital Bolex, and a life long film enthusiast. He has been in love with the photographic process since he was first able to hold a camera. His first real job was at a camera store, cleaning, fixing, and painting the trade-in cameras. In art school he was the teaching assistant for the photography classes. And in 2012 he started a camera company whose focus was creating a digital cinema camera that mimicked 16mm motion picture film. Today, he is a cinematographer who loves and respects traditional formats and processes, so even though he now shoots mainly digital, he is always aspiring to a look and feel that possess a more more natural, filmily look, even when the subject is supernatural.
Director: Joseph Rubinstein
Choreographer: Olga Sokolova
Fashion Design: Victor Wilde
Indigo Star Carey
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