Cinematographer

   Information, Media and Telecommunications

Menu
Film and Television Lighting Operator - Careers Online
Media Diver

Related Jobs or Working with these Jobs

 

Artistic or CreativeSkill Level 2Skill Level 3Skill Level 4Skill Level 5

Cinematographer, for Film, TV or Video [Camera operators, Cameraperson], record film or television productions using film or video camera equipment. They read scripts to work out the best shots to take and liaise with the director, producer and other key technical personnel about the best way to achieve these. Future Growth Strong

They set up camera equipment in conjunction with lighting technicians, compose or frame shots, and operate and monitor camera equipment for the duration of filming. Cinematographers work all over Australia, filming television programs and news footage for community, government-funded and commercial television stations in our cities and towns, and shooting films on location in our beautiful remote and regional areas.

ANZSCO ID: 212313

Alternative names: Camera operator, Cameraperson, Film and Television Camera Operator, Director of Photography,

Specialisations:

Director of Photography:
The Director of Photography co-ordinates the cinematography and lighting, and the technicians who operate camera and lighting equipment, on a film or television production

Focus Puller (Film): A focus puller is someone who works alongside the camera operator on video productions to control the focus of a camera’s lens. Cine lenses for the types of cameras that are often used on major motion pictures and TV commercials, do not have autofocus lenses. Instead, the lens is manually focussed during the recording.

The focus puller’s job is to carefully watch the take and adjust the focus smoothly as the subject moves around the scene. Focus marks are often set with sticky tape, on the floor of the set. The distance of the camera from those marks is measured by the focus puller so that they know the actor’s distance precisely at those points. With a precise distance known, a precise focus ca be achieved by rotating a device called a follow focus, which is attached to the lens on the camera. Sometimes focus pullers will use LCD monitors on the camera to confirm their focus, and sometimes, the really accomplished ones will simply do it visually.

Believe it or not, a good focus puller can look at any object and tell you how far away it is, then set the lens barrel’s focus ring to the exact position to put the lens in focus on that object. What’s more, they can do this on the fly as actors move throughout a scene. With film budgets being so high these days, there’s little time for getting things wrong, so the job of a focus puller is extremely important. It’s no good if the actor gives the performance of their life, but the shot of out of focus! Increased camera resolutions these days have also narrowed the tolerances on what is acceptably in and out of focus.




Knowledge, skills and attributes

A cinematographer needs:Filming

  • a passion for film and visual arts

  • creative flair

  • the ability to follow instructions

  • technical and practical ability

  • good communication skills

  • the ability to work as part of a team.

 

Duties and Tasks

 



Working conditions


Cinematographers work in film and television studios, as well as on location on film sets. When working outside they may experience all types of weather conditions. They work long hours, often until late, and may be required to work on weekends or public holidays. They may also be required to travel locally, across Australia or overseas to shoot on location.

Tools and technologies

Film camera operators use 16 mm and 35 mm film cameras or digital video for motion pictures, whereas television and video camera operators use cine-electronic television or digital video and video cameras for direct telecast and for recording. Camera operators may also wear headsets to receive instructions about shot type and effects from the director or assistant director.

Education and training/entrance requirements

You can work as a camera operator (film, television or video) without any formal qualifications and get training on the job. However, entry into this occupation may be improved by obtaining a formal qualification in screen, film, media or other related areas.

VET qualifications and degree courses in these fields are widely available at TAFE Colleges and universities throughout Australia.




Did You Know?

Don McAlpine

Australia has many famous cinematographers!

Read about Don McAlpine's life as a cinematographer

 

Cinematographer

Journalist

Applications Programmer

Film Producer

Photographer

Web Designer

Publisher

Graphic Designer

Multimedia Specialist

Newspaper Editor

Games Developer

IT Analyst

Radio Producer Presenter

Writer

Illustrator

Director

Broadcasting Technician

3D Animator

Archivist

Librarian

Social Media Manager

Journalist

Applications Programmer

Film Producer

Photographer

Web Designer

Cinematographer 

Publisher

Graphic Designer

Multimedia Specialist

Newspaper Editor

Games Developer

IT Analyst

Radio Producer Presenter

Writer

Illustrator

Director

Broadcasting Technician

3D Animator

Archivist

Librarian

Social Media Manager

Journalist

Applications Programmer

Film Producer

Photographer

Web Designer

Cinematographer

Publisher

Graphic Designer

Multimedia Specialist

Newspaper Editor

Games Developer

IT Analyst

Radio Producer Presenter