In the last few years there has been a massive surge in retro-styled cameras. Fuji and Olympus lead the way with their micro 4/3 camera lines, but even Nikon has jumped in with both feet releasing the Nikon FD. On the video front, retro-styling of camera gear has been slower but still on the rise with cameras like the Black Magic cinema, and the digital Bolex. One recent entry into the fray is the new Chinon Bellami HD-1 Super 8.
The Bellami, was Inspired by the 8mm film camera of the same name from the 1970s. The shape, control systems, ergonomics, weight, optics placement and more mirror the original.
The Bellami HD-1Digital Super 8 shoots full HD, 1080p at 30fps. The frame rate might put off some who swear 24fps is the only way to shoot. Frankly I’m not one of them. I think the whole 24fps vs 30fps needs to be put to bed. It’s a Mac vs Windows argument. The thing is, this camera isn’t designed to be a workhorse. It’s a retro-styled camera with digital capabilities. The look is designed to appeal to the nostalgic, not compete with a Canon C300.
What the Bellami does offer is a screw on lens mount that let’s you slap a ton of full manual lenses on the front. It shoots RAW DNG files which allow the cinematographer to tweak the footage in post to create a stylized vintage look by creatively tweaking color balance, temperature, and exposure.
The Chinon Bellami HD-1 is available for about $850 USD depending on exchange rates with the Yen. Currently available only in Japan, it can be bought online if you’re willing to pay for shipping.
Three of my favorite things have come together in these illustrations by Federico Babina. Illustration, Architecture, and Film. Below are series of images that Babina has created representing the architectural space in each of these films. rendered with a solid style, Babina’s illustrations capture the architectural space that in many ways is an equal supporting character to the film itself, creating a space that is as memorable as the performances by the actors. Simple layouts, muted color pallets, and limited typography help to transport you to these memorable film locations.
When you are a brand as big as Prada, you can get Roman Polanski to direct a web commercial for you. When you are Roman Polanski, you can get Helena Bonham Carter, and Ben Kingsley to star in it. It also means that you have a great production facility at your disposal. If all TV commercials looked this good, and were this well written, I might watch more of them.
May 8th marks the 100th anniversary of Universal Pictures. The montage below shows the way the logo (which is shown at the beginning of every motion picture Universal creates) has changed. The clip ends with the latest incarnation of the animated logo which was created by Weta Digital.
In addition to this clip, if you are a fan of film, the movies, cinema, the talkies, or what ever else they have been called over the last 100 years, do yourself a favor and check out the excellent experience at Universal’s 100th Anniversary website. It is worth your time.