The device, which turns the picture or rather light into an electric (electronic) signal, is called a video camera (camcorder). It’s usually equipped with a recorder, which records the signal and preserves it. It embodies centuries of development and innovation, as the term camera obscura has even been mentioned by Leonardo da Vinci. The development of optics, electronics, computer science and different equipment has allowed humans to look into micro- and macro-spheres once invisible to them. more about the camera >>
A shot is the basic film unit by definition. The length of a shot may differ; in the shooting process, a shot lasts from the beginning of filming (the moment we start the camera) till the end of filming (when we stop the camera). In the process of film editing, a shot lasts from cut to cut (or more accurately: from one editing transition to the next). This also defines it as the basic element of editing. A shot physically combines space, time and action. The shortest shot possible lasts 1 frame. The characteristic of a film shot is that it contains uninterrupted action and its composition changes according to the movement of objects and subjects, as well as the camera movement. Regarding the latter, we are talking about static or dynamic shots. more about the shot >>
Framing heights are defined according to the size of the human figure within the field of view of the lens or within the width of the shot. In a static frame, we talk about one framing height. Shots in which the camera or subjects are moving can have several framing heights. more about framing heights >>
The camera always takes a certain position in relation to the object being filmed. The filming angle always determines the camera angle and not the angle of the filmed object. The camera angle has a spatial and a psychological role. In the sense of creating the film space, it shows us when the characters have different heights (child, adult person) or different positions in space (one is sitting, the other is standing). In the psychological sense, angles suggest power or powerlessness. more about camera angles >>
In film history, the camera was at first always static. The static shot was completely adequate according to the requirements of the early era (making notes and documenting events). The first camera movements were still “robbed” of their creative role; the moving camera mostly just followed the characters, so they wouldn’t “escape” from the shot. In the 1920s, quite a few directors began to introduce camera movements as a thematic and psychological tool of expression. Nowadays, it is almost impossible to imagine an audiovisual work filmed without a motion camera.
The meaning of this word, which comes from Latin (componere – to put together), means something that is made out of single elements. The expression is common, for example we have heard about a train composition, musical composition, dance composition, composition in art, etc. A composition is a structure of single elements, that make a whole – in our case – a moving picture. Like every picture, the moving picture is also made out of basic art elements, which are point, line and plane. more about composition >>
Secondary school physics teaches us that light is a wave motion or flow of photons, which represents two different and mutually exclusive theories, yet light behaves according to the laws of both. To meet the demands of filming, it is sufficient to understand the basic characteristics of light, such as intensity, colour, quality and direction. more about lighting >>