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Re: telecine-announce Digest V97 #32



Craig Leffel wrote:
>Let's assume for a moment that getting numbers from a dailies transfer that
>try to apporximate a completely different process is a good idea...
>

I find it strange that in our environment of color manipulation, which is 
curiously devoid of baseline references and standardization between 
mediums, that there would be resistance to the attempt of a respected 
research effort (albeit ultimately marketing) to provide some sort of an 
efficient and practical expression of exposure value that can be so 
critically important to a DP.


>Most DP's I talk to say every lab is different. They seem to have 2 choices;
>calibrate the way they shoot to a certain lab, OR accept slightly different
>points at each lab.
>
>You didn't directly say so, but Kodak (you mentioned them) seems to hold
>firm that 25 across is a good neg (normal). I disagree with that as a
>colorist. I still believe that slight overexposure is a good thing for
>telecine transfer. So already I've taken it to 30 across just as my base
>philosophy.  To stand behind the idea that linking an electronic process
>measured in ire to a physical process measured in physical density seems
>funny to me. I think it merely muddys the waters for already confused DP's.


How many times does it occur that a client asks you to show him what 
"normal" is, and the closest expression that you can show him (for that 
particular scene) is your interpretation.  Certainly, it may be a 
pleasing mix - as well as without crushing the blacks or blowing the 
whites, but "what is normal?".  At least for a DP, this can be an 
important starting point.    Kodak's description of normal (25,25,25) may 
not hold true for every lab, but it does nonetheless establish a 
meaningful starting point from which users could, for instance, derive 
reference sets that reflect the set-ups of particular labs.  In our case, 
here at Du Art , we enjoy the unique advantage of a close relationship 
with our in-house lab, and are working towards just that.


>I realize they want to hold on to something they know that is well worn, but
>one must ask "When is it time to learn something new?"  I applaud Rank's
>efforts to try and bridge the communication gap (Kodak too),  But I don't
>see much difference here. The only knowledge I've gotten from my Kodak demo
>or my TKG demo was that I can now (with these systems) tell a DP exactly
>where their exposure is revelant to someone else's idea of what "normal" is.
>We've all been telling shooters for years "this is 1 stop over/under, a 1/4
>down, 2 stops over, 5 stops over, blah, blah, blah".


Such generalizations wane in the face a well thought out and executed 
system, such as TEC.  Particuarly, for Colorist's without production 
experience and the ability to express image quality in f-stops (or 
t-stops), this is a welcome tool.

This kind of research by Kodak, as well as a huge effort in the graphics 
production world to resolve color differences between mediums (via 
underlying mathmatical expression) leads me to believe (Oh boy, here I 
jump into the lake of fire. . .) that it is inevitable that the process 
of real-time color space translation between mediums in the film to video 
world will one day become practical, resulting in an automatic initial 
transfer similar in ease to the the automatic photo printing process.  
Fear not though, our lives may still have purpose . . . requiring our 
skill to effect the Vision (imagine italics) of our clients upon the 
final product.


Tim Bond


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** thanks to Alan Thatcher and Grace & Wild Studios for 
contributing to the TIG in 1997
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