A cinematographer or director of photography (sometimes shortened to DP or DOP) is the person responsible for the photographing or recording of a , television production, music video or other live action piece. The cinematographer is the chief of the camera and light s working on such projects and would normally be responsible for making artistic and technical decisions related to the image and for selecting the camera, , es, s, etc. The study and practice of this field is referred to as . The cinematographer is a subordinate of the , tasked with capturing a scene in accordance with director’s vision. Relations between the cinematographer and director vary. In some instances, the director will allow the cinematographer complete independence, while in others, the director allows little to none, even going so far as to specify exact camera placement and lens selection. Such a level of involvement is less common when the director and cinematographer have become comfortable with each other. The director will typically convey to the cinematographer what is wanted from a scene visually and allow the cinematographer latitude in achieving that effect. The images recorded by the cinematographer are passed to the film editor for .


In the infancy of motion pictures, the cinematographer was usually also the and the person physically handling the camera. As the art form and technology evolved, a separation between director and emerged. With the advent of artificial lighting and faster (more light-sensitive) s, in addition to technological advancements in optics, the technical aspects of cinematography necessitated a specialist in that area. Cinematography was key during the era; with no sound apart from and no dialogue, the films depended on lighting, acting, and set. The (ASC) was formed in 1919 in Hollywood, and was the first trade society of cinematographers. Similar societies were formed in other countries. Their aims include the recognition of the cinematographer's contribution to the art and science of motion picture making.
The ASC Vision Committee

Societies and trade organizations

There are a number of national associations of cinematographers that represent members (irrespective of their official titles) and are dedicated to the advancement of cinematography, including: *the (A.S.C.) *the (A.B.C.) *the (ICFC) *the (C.S.C.) *the (F.S.C.) *the (G.B.C.T.) *the (B.S.C.) *the (A.C.S.) *the (C.G.K.) *the (F.S.C.) *the (A.F.C.) *the (A.I.C.) *the (W.I.C.A.) *the (I.S.C.) *the (BVK) *the (MySC) *the (NSC) *the (S.A.S.C.) *the (A.E.C) *th
International Federation of Cinematographers
(IMAGO) *the Uruguayan Society of Cinematographers (S.C.U) *the Lithuanian Association of Cinematographers (LAC) *Cinematographers XX *Illuminatrix The A.S.C. defines cinematography as:

Noted cinematographers

The is an awarded each year to a cinematographer for work on one particular . A number of American cinematographers have become directors, including who lensed ' and Beyonce's ' before winning an Emmy for directing '. , originally the ' DP; , cinematographer on films such as ' and ', directed ' and '. , cinematographer on films such as ' (1963) and ' (1964), directed ' (1973) and ' (1976). photographed ' as well as a number of films such as ' and ' before directing episodes of ''Legion'' and ''Ozark.'' In 2014, , cinematographer on 's , made his directorial debut with '','' whilst British cinematographers and regularly moved between the two positions.

See also

* * * *, a communication forum for cinematographers * * * * * *


External links

Cinematography.comCinematography Mailing List (CML)International Cinematographers GuildThe History of the Discovery of CinematographyAmerican Society of CinematographersThe Guild of British Camera TechniciansBritish Society of CinematographersIndian Society of Cinematographers (ISC)

European Federation of Cinematographers/IMAGOAustralian Cinematographers Society (ACS)German Society of Cinematography, BVKItalian Society of Cinematography , AIC (Autori Italiani della Cinematografia)Lithuanian Association of Cinematographers, LAC
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