While it is often said that experience is the best teacher, education is also important when preparing to enter the field of cinematography. In fact, a bachelor’s degree is usually a prerequisite for entering this highly specialized field. Thus, aspiring cinematographers can best be prepared by thoughtfully adding both education and practical experience to their palate.
There are several kinds of degrees that are available to people entering the field of cinematography. Those degrees include: a Cinematography Certificate, an Associate of Arts in Motion Pictures, and a Bachelor of Science in Digital Cinematography. These degree programs teach a plethora of skills ranging from directing to sound design to screen writing etc. Here are other areas that aid in growing a student’s knowledge of this field.
- Camera operation and videography: Cinematographers are part technician and part artist. They must know a great deal about the technical operation of different kinds of cameras, lenses, lighting and accessories. Fortunately, as this field grows there are many degree programs and courses offered in colleges and universities all around the world that support the development of aspiring cinematographers.
- Color science: Just as musicians use different tones and scales in order to create musical pieces, cinematographers use color to relay their artistic vision to the public.
- Watch movies: Every film class will have as part of its curriculum recommended movies that students should watch. Watching various movies from different cinematographers will help students understand why cameras move the way they do and why certain scenes are shot the way they are.
- Make your own short films: Creating your own independent project will help you gain actual experience telling a story using film. It will teach you storyboarding, camera work, etc.
- Get on a set: Greatness comes from humble beginnings. Apply for jobs such as production assistant, camera operator, lighting technician, craft service personnel in order to get some experience actually being on a film set. Take notes and soak in everything that is going on around you.
- Take pictures and short movies: Take every opportunity to utilize what you know by taking pictures and making movies with whatever equipment you have. Doing this will teach you framing, composition, exposure, texture, etc.
Ultimately, hard work and dedication do pay off. Cinematographers make a lasting effect on the public by utilizing education and experience they have acquired over a lifetime. Through our dimmer rentals and wireless dimmers we impact how film makers, stage directors and other professionals use light to
convey their stories.