Acclaimed Indian Cinematographer and Director, Rasool Ellore, was at Annapurna College to give our Cinematography students a true masterclass in the art of cinematic aesthetics. We met up with him.
Cinematographer and Director Rasool Ellore gives Annapurna College students a Masterclass
What should a cinematography student keep in mind before joining the industry?
- Know the basics well: Once you have a strong foundation, all one has to do is keep honing your skills and you will move up the ladder.
- Learn every aspect of filmmaking: Gaining knowledge about the various departments of filmmaking will equip a student to understand the work of a cinematographer better. It’s always good to have more information. I would suggest that a student should never restrict themselves to the study of cinematography only.
- Follow you heart: Understand what you want to express and then formulate how you want to do it.
What characteristics are necessary to excel in the field of Cinematography?
A cinematographer is an alternate artist. If an artist is painting on a canvas, a cinematographer is doing the same through his camera; projecting his visual qualities on to the screen. His job is to be connected to his artistic sensibility. He needs to have a good sense of image, color, and composition.
Cinematography is a variation of artistry. A future cinematographer needs to have or develop a sense of aesthetics.
How has the digital revolution affected cinematography?
Digitization is nothing but an extension of cinematography. It’s a natural progression of what used to be done on celluloid and is now being done with the help of digital technology.
It is wrong to think that with the onset of the digital age, cinematography has become easier. The basic knowledge of art and artistic sensibility remains the same, just that the medium is different. The format has changed, but the content remains the same.
How should a student keep himself updated with the latest trends in the field?
As long as students have a strong base in education, changing trends don’t matter. Though in this digital environment, change is rapid, education forms the basis for any good cinematographer.
All he has to then do is keep up-to-date with the changing technology. If you know an earlier version of an operating system, then the higher version would come easily to you. But you have to keep a look out for this higher version. Like any other field, this field also has a constant learning process. And this is good as this will keep your mind sharp.