Tuesday, January 26, 2010

4PLAY: DP PJ Raval... (PT 02)

The second part of my interview w/ DP PJ Raval. He and Paul (star of SF) have a big week ahead of them w/ the launch of Christeene's EP at Elysium on Friday (1/29). If you are in Austin, check it out, it's gonna be something else... entirely. - Kyle

3) How do you approach your work when you are asked to do A LOT on a VERY LOW budget? What tips could you pass along to budding dp's?

I think it's important to recognize high budget doesn't make a good film. Good ideas, good use of resources, good storytelling makes a good film. So for low budget work one always has to keep that in mind first. Be resourceful, be creative, use everything and anything that can help you accomplish this. With that said be flexible and spontaneous. On a practical level it's helpful to have lots of conversations w/ the director of course about the visual approach. Maybe you can't do sweeping crane shots but maybe that same concept can be told with the tools you do have available. Also have lots of conversations w/ the production designer especially since their color pallette and choice of set pieces really influences what you can do (i.e. lamps for lighting, colors for contrast, etc) and definitely use the location itself as the inspiration for blocking and shots. Maybe you can't remove a wall for a shot but maybe you can hopefully find a space and location that naturally allows for your visual approach. also when in doubt simply refer back to the original ideas and concepts of the film - do the visuals fit? if not come up w/ another option right then and there - nothing is ever set in stone...

4) Any interesting/memorable moments you'd like to tell us about from the SAN FRANCISCO or AUSTIN shoots?

A memorable moment for me shooting SAN FRANCISCO was definitely the bedroom scene. Enough said there. Also the AUSTIN porn arcade portion was a challenge - I mean lighting an ALL BLACK space that needs to be dark? Thank god for red lights and semi satin paint!

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