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Sharon Calahan
Sharon Calahan
ASC is an American cinematographer who was director of photography on the Pixar
Pixar
films A Bug's Life
A Bug's Life
(1998), Toy Story
Toy Story
2 (1999), and Finding Nemo
Finding Nemo
(2003), and was lighting director for Ratatouille (2007), Cars 2
Cars 2
(2011), and The Good Dinosaur
The Good Dinosaur
(2015). She took part in the early rise of computer animated feature filmmaking and the acceptance of that medium as cinematography. Calahan is the first member of the American Society of Cinematographers who was invited to join on the basis of a career entirely in animated film. She was nominated, with Bill Reeves, Eben Ostby, and Rick Sayre, for a 2000 BAFTA Award for Best Achievement in Special
Special
Visual Effects for A Bug's Life.[3]

Contents

1 Early life and education 2 Lighting and cinematography 3 Filmography 4 Awards 5 Works 6 Patents 7 Notes 8 References 9 External links

Early life and education[edit] Calahan is a graduate of Othello High School, in Othello, Washington, and of the art program at Spokane Falls Community College (SFCC)[4][5] Her studies did not include filmmaking, computer animation or computer science, but rather illustration, graphic design, and still photography.[5][6] She "stumbled into computer animation by accident", eventually leading to her career in feature film cinematography.[5] Lighting and cinematography[edit] Calahan worked in Spokane
Spokane
as an art director at KXLY-TV, KREM (TV), and at documentary film company Pinnacle Productions.[4] Calahan was part of the early years of the computer-generated imagery (CGI) industry's expanstion into television and feature films, as lighting director making commercials and TV programs for Pacific Data Images (later PDI/DreamWorks),[7] until she joined Pixar
Pixar
in 1994, first as a lighting supervisor on Toy Story
Toy Story
(1995).[2] The first time Pixar
Pixar
used the title Director of Photography
Photography
(DP) on a film was on Calahan's next project, A Bug's Life, representing a recognition that the processes and thinking behind computer generated film production had more in common with live action film than with cel animation.[7][8] At Pixar
Pixar
it became an established goal to make films that looked like live action, not cartoons.[9] More than a dozen years later, computer animated films at other studios, such as How to Train Your Dragon (DreamWorks, 2010) and Frozen (Disney, 2013) still did not credit a director of photography.[8] Calahan said that on any kind of production, whether entirely made of computer-generated imagery, or a typical modern feature that is usually a hybrid of live action shots with large amounts of added CGI, or a pre-computer era movies shot entirely on film, the director of photography "sets the visual tone" and will "create and realize an artistic vision for the composition, lighting and look of the movie as a whole," meaning that there is little real difference between a traditional director of photography credit and the new labels that were tested during CGI's infancy, virtual cinematographer, director of imaging, or computer graphics director of photography.[7] In a Pixar production, a team of about 30 to 65 lighting artists is overseen by the DP, whose lighting director guides master lighters, who both pre-light each scene and oversee shot lighters who light each shot individually.[7] This takes place in constant collaboration with the layout department, and with teams doing concept art, storyboarding, and previsualization. During pre-production, while sets and characters are being designed by the art department and the technical teams are designing workflows, lighting has not yet begun, but Calahan will paint several hundred lighting concept illustrations, based on the other teams' work but also influencing them as her paintings evolve alongside their design work.[7] During this iterative and mutually collaborative process, Calahan will begin to settle on lighting for each scene and will ask other teams for changes, like recomposing shots.[9] Calahan's work as both visual designer and lighting director of The Good Dinosaur was based in her experience as a native of the Pacific Northwest and from her time spent painting landscapes around the area of Jackson, Wyoming, which became Calahan's model for the film's setting.[5] Calahan had often vacationed in the mountains to do landscape painting.[9] During location scouting in the Jackson area, as well as in Yellowstone National Park, including a white water rafting trip, digital photos were collected, and added to Calahan's own library of photos of the region.[5] By the time directer Peter Sohn and director of photography-camera Mahyar Abousaeedi had sets and rough character animation to work with, they could establish factors such as blocking, camera lens focal lengths, and depth of field. This allowed Calahan and her team of close to 40 lighters to do a first lighting pass, setting the initial tone for the rest of the production, and giving the film its unique look.[5] For The Good Dinosaur, this meant open and natural landscapes with a rugged, pioneering feel, while for Ratataoullie the lighting was soft and romantic, and Cars 2, a "guy's film", was all about shiny metal.[9] In 2007, Calahan was invited to join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS).[1] She became a member of the American Society of Cinematographers in 2014, as the first member to be elected to that professional group who had worked only in animation, without also having done live action film.[2][10][8] Filmography[edit] Lighting supervisor

Toy Story
Toy Story
1995

Director of photography

A Bug's Life
A Bug's Life
1998 Toy Story 2
Toy Story 2
1999 Finding Nemo
Finding Nemo
2003

Director of photography, lighting

Ratatouille 2007 Cars 2
Cars 2
2011 The Good Dinosaur
The Good Dinosaur
2015

Color consultant

John Carter 2012

Awards[edit]

Nominee: British Academy Television Awards 2000 for Best Achievement in Special
Special
Visual Effects, with Bill Reeves, Eben Ostby, and Rick Sayre, for A Bug's Life
A Bug's Life
(1998).[3] Nominee: 10th Visual Effects Society Awards 2011 for Outstanding Virtual Cinematography in an Animated Feature Motion Picture, with Mahyar Abousaeedi, Jeremy Lasky and Jonathan Pytko for Cars 2 (2011)[11] Nominee: 43rd Annie Awards 2016, Outstanding Achievement, Production Design in an Animated Feature Production, with Harley Jessup, Bryn Imagire, Noah Klocek, and Huy Nguyen for The Good Dinosaur
The Good Dinosaur
(2015)[12]

Works[edit]

"Storytelling Through Lighting: A Computer Graphics Perspective" (PDF), SIGGRAPH, 1996  Brooker, Darren, ed. (2012), "Making Light Work", Essential CG Lighting Techniques with 3DS Max (3 ed.), Taylor & Francis, pp. 79–, ISBN 9781136138935 

Patents[edit]

US 9626774  with Shah Apurva. Saturation varying color space. April 18, 2017.

Notes[edit]

^ a b "oscars.org: Academy Invites 115 to Membership". Archived from the original on 2007-06-20. Retrieved 2007-06-19.  ^ a b c Giardina, Carolyn (January 31, 2014), "Pixar's Sharon Calahan on Animation, Live Action Convergence", The Hollywood Reporter  ^ a b Film; Achievement in Special
Special
Visual Effects in 2000, British Academy Television Awards, 2000, Nominees Bill Reeves, Eben Ostby, Rick Sayre, Sharon Calahan. A Bug's Life  ^ a b "The County Lines", The Spokesman-Review  – via  HighBeam (subscription required), Spokane, Washington, November 22, 1999  ^ a b c d e f Silberg, Jon (December 2015), "The Good Dinosaur; A Q&A with Sharon Calahan, ASC, about the cinematographer's role in digital animation", American Cinematographer  ^ "Sharon Calahan's Historic 'American Society of Cinematographers' Membership", Pixar
Pixar
Post, Pixar, August 28, 2014  ^ a b c d e Workman, Matt (August 24, 2014), "First CG Director of Photography
Photography
joins the ASC Q/A with Sharon Calahan, ASC", Cinematography Database, archived from the original on September 13, 2017  ^ a b c Wolff December 21, 2014, Ellen, "The Evolving Role of the CG Director of Photography", Animation
Animation
Magazine  ^ a b c d Pandell, Lexi (November 23, 2015), "How The Good Dinosaur Got Its Stunning Scenery", Wired  ^ Wolff, Ellen; Cohen, David; Barker, Andrew (March 10, 2015), "'Toy Story' at 20, and Counting", Variety, Penske Business Media  – via  ProQuest
ProQuest
(subscription required), vol. 327 no. 6, pp. 60+  ^ 10th Annual VES Awards; Outstanding Virtual Cinematography in an Animated Feature Motion Picture, Visual Effects Society, 2011  ^ 43rd Annie Awards (2016); 23. Annie Award for Outstanding Achievement for Production Design in an Animated Feature Production, Annie Awards, 2016 

References[edit]

Halliday, Fergus, "Interview: Our exclusive with Pixar's Sharon Calahan May 4, 2016", The Iris  Desowitz, Bill (November 2, 2015), "Immersed In Movies: How Sharon Calahan Brought A Painterly Reality to 'The Good Dinosaur'", IndyWire 

External links[edit]

Sharon Calahan
Sharon Calahan
on IMDb

v t e

Pixar
Pixar
Animation
Animation
Studios

Feature films

Released

Toy Story
Toy Story
(1995) A Bug's Life
A Bug's Life
(1998) Toy Story 2
Toy Story 2
(1999) Monsters, Inc.
Monsters, Inc.
(2001) Finding Nemo
Finding Nemo
(2003) The Incredibles
The Incredibles
(2004) Cars (2006) Ratatouille (2007) WALL-E
WALL-E
(2008) Up (2009) Toy Story
Toy Story
3 (2010) Cars 2
Cars 2
(2011) Brave (2012) Monsters University
Monsters University
(2013) Inside Out (2015) The Good Dinosaur
The Good Dinosaur
(2015) Finding Dory
Finding Dory
(2016) Cars 3
Cars 3
(2017) Coco (2017)

Upcoming

Incredibles 2
Incredibles 2
(2018) Toy Story
Toy Story
4 (2019)

Short films

The Adventures of André & Wally B. (1984) Luxo Jr.
Luxo Jr.
(1986) Red's Dream
Red's Dream
(1987) Tin Toy
Tin Toy
(1988) Knick Knack
Knick Knack
(1989) Geri's Game
Geri's Game
(1997) For the Birds (2000) Mike's New Car
Mike's New Car
(2002) Boundin'
Boundin'
(2003) Jack-Jack Attack
Jack-Jack Attack
(2005) Mr. Incredible and Pals
Mr. Incredible and Pals
(2005) One Man Band (2005) Mater and the Ghostlight
Mater and the Ghostlight
(2006) Lifted (2006) Your Friend the Rat
Your Friend the Rat
(2007) Presto (2008) BURN-E
BURN-E
(2008) Partly Cloudy
Partly Cloudy
(2009) Dug's Special
Special
Mission (2009) George & A.J. (2009) Day & Night (2010) La Luna (2011) Hawaiian Vacation
Hawaiian Vacation
(2011) Small Fry (2011) Partysaurus Rex
Partysaurus Rex
(2012) The Legend of Mor'du (2012) The Blue Umbrella (2013) Party Central
Party Central
(2013) Lava (2014) Sanjay's Super Team
Sanjay's Super Team
(2015) Riley's First Date? (2015) Piper (2016) Lou (2017)

Series

Cars Toons
Cars Toons
(2008–2014) Toy Story
Toy Story
Toons (2011–2012)

Compilations

Tiny Toy Stories
Tiny Toy Stories
(1996) Pixar
Pixar
Short Films Collection, Volume 1 (2007) Cars Toons: Mater's Tall Tales (2010) Pixar
Pixar
Short Films Collection, Volume 2 (2012)

Other works

Beach Chair (1986) Flags and Waves (1986) Light & Heavy (1990) Surprise (1991)

Television specials

Toy Story
Toy Story
of Terror! (2013) Toy Story
Toy Story
That Time Forgot (2014)

Franchises

Toy Story Monsters, Inc. Finding Nemo The Incredibles Cars

Associated productions

It's Tough to Be a Bug!
It's Tough to Be a Bug!
(1998) Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins (2000) Buzz Lightyear of Star Command
Buzz Lightyear of Star Command
(2000–2001) Exploring the Reef
Exploring the Reef
(2003) Turtle Talk with Crush
Turtle Talk with Crush
(2004) John Carter (2012) Planes (2013) Planes: Fire & Rescue (2014) Borrowed Time (2016)

Documentaries

The Pixar
Pixar
Story (2007)

Products

Pixar
Pixar
Image Computer RenderMan Marionette

People

John Lasseter Edwin Catmull Steve Jobs Alvy Ray Smith Jim Morris

See also

List of Pixar
Pixar
characters

Luxo Jr.

List of Pixar
Pixar
awards and nominations

feature films short films

List of Pixar
Pixar
film references Computer Graphics Lab Industrial Light & Magic Lucasfilm Animation Circle 7 Animation Pixar
Pixar
Canada A Computer Animated Hand The Works The Shadow King Kingdom Hearts III Pixar
Pixar
universe theory Walt Disney Animation
Animation
Studios The Walt Disney Studios

Bo

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