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Cinematographer - Career Guide

The cinematographer is the person who is responsible for getting the film on-screen visually from papers. They work with the director and the screenwriter to shoot the film according to the requirements of the story.





Who is a cinematographer?


A cinematographer or DOP (Director of Photography) is a person who is the head of the camera and lighting department. A cinematographer is one of the key members of the film unit. The vision of the director &screenwriter is turned into a film on-screen with the help of a cinematographer. Shooting a film is a major part of the production which is done by the DOP and his team.



How much does a cinematographer earn?


A cinematographer who is new to the business is paid Rs. 94,000 Rs. 1,00,000 every year. As the cinematographer turns out to be progressively encountered, their pay ascends to Rs. 5,00,000 - 6,00,000 per year. Gradually the compensation depends on the task with which the cinematographer is dealing.



What skills does it take to be a Cinematographer?


Camera, Lighting, and Computer skills are major technological skills that a cinematographer should be handy with. A cinematographer also needs to have a vision and imagination to envision what the camera shot will look like before it is captured.


Along with this hard work, passion, dedication, determination, communication skills, and creativity are all the skills that one will need to become a cinematographer.



What does the job of a cinematographer entail?


  • The most important thing is analyzing the screenplay, characters, and story structure and deciding on a visual approach with the director.

  • Acquiring and sourcing required equipment, tools, and crew members according to the budget given.

  • Manage research regarding available locations, props, and weather conditions at the prospective film sites.

  • Visiting locations and taking a series of test shots before deciding on the angles, filers, film stock, framing, equipment, lighting, and techniques that will be used to create the desired atmosphere of the film.

  • Approving costumes, make-up, and hair, as well as the color and textures used on set.

  • Attending cast rehearsals and providing advice where appropriate.

  • Working with the post-production team to ensure the desired effects are preserved and that the mood of the film is maintained.







Desired Qualifications of a Cinematographer?


While educational requirements in this artistic field are not set in stone, earning a bachelor's degree in film or cinematography is typical. Cinematography programs may also be found at the certificate and associate's degree levels.



Some Notable Indian Cinematographers -


Santosh Sivan

P. C. Sreeram

Anil Mehta

B. R. Vijayalakshmi

Balu Mahendra

Ravi Varman

Priya Seth

S. Thirunavukkarasu

Ravi K. Chandran

Rajeev Ravi

Deepti Gupta

Sudeep Chatterjee

Subrata Mitra

Anjuli Shukla

Ashok Mehta

Govind Nihalani

Ashok Kumar

K. S. Prasad



Cinematographer Association and Unions in India



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