A cinematographer, also known as a Director of Photography, is in charge of the camera and the lighting crew. They’re the person responsible for creating the look, color, lighting, and for framing of every single shot in a film. The film’s director and cinematographer work closely together, as the main job of a cinematographer is to ensure that their choices support the director’s overall vision for the film. The cinematographer may also act as the camera operator on more low-budget productions.
What you will do
Chooses a visual style for the film. A cinematographer determines the visual style and approach of the film. For example, a cinematographer on a documentary film determines whether to use re-enactments, or to rely heavily on photographs and found footage.
Establishes the camera setup for every shot. A cinematographer decides which types of cameras, camera lenses, camera angles, and camera techniques best bring the scene to life. Additionally, a cinematographer works with the script supervisor and, if necessary, the locations manager to scope out each scene and design what the most effective vantage points for the camwill be. This helps preserve the intention and scale of the film.
Determines the lighting for every scene. A cinematographer uses lighting to create the right visual mood the director aspires to achieve. They must know how to enhance an image’s depth, contrast, and contour to support the story’s atmosphere.
Elevates the vision of the director. A good cinematographer will introduce ideas and concepts the director may not have considered.