All posts by Klaus Schreier

Zwei Schmalfilmabende in Dresden

Zwei Schmalfilmabende in Dresden

Halbzeit bei den Schmalfilmtagen in Dresden. Ich war mit einem Film im Found-Footage-Wettbewerb am Donnerstagabend vertreten und lies mir auch das Programm am Freitag nicht entgehen.

Wie immer waren die Beiträge bunt gemischt. Es gab “echte” Filmprojektionen in Super8 und 16mm, viele Filme wurden aber als digitale Fassung gezeigt.

Donnerstagabend

Auszug aus dem Festivalprogramm

Zur Eröffnung am ersten Abend gab es Amateurfilm in seiner reinsten Form: private Urlaubs-/Reisefilme eines Herrn Eisenhuth, ehem. Kapitän zur See, die sich in ihrer selbstironischen Machart von den üblichen Flohmarktfunden dieser Art abheben. Eine kleine Auswahl der Filme wurde im Original mit Super8-Projektor vorgeführt. In der Festival-Lounge gab es Abtastungen der übrigen Filme zu sehen.

Sehr interessant fand ich das darauffolgende Programm mit Filmen des amerikanischen Avantgarde-Filmers Stan Vanderbeek. Es wurden 16mm-Filmkopien projeziert, die eigens von der Film-maker’s Cooperative zur Verfügung gestellt und aus USA eingeflogen wurden.

Auszug aus dem Festivalprogramm

Hauptprogramm am ersten Abend war der Found-Footage-Wettbewerb. Hier gewann der bereits mehrfach preisgekrönte Film THE HOUSES WE WERE von Arianna Lodeserto sowohl den Publikums- als auch den Jury-Preis.


“In sensiblen Bildern nähert sich der Film dem Anliegen, ein historisches Phänomen auf seine Gegenwärtigkeit zu befragen. Der Film legt in einer überzeugenden Montage die Schicksale derer frei, die im offiziellen Diskurs fortwährend vergessen werden”, so die Jury am Donnerstag abend.

Den Abschluss am Donnerstagabend bildeten 4 Filme aus dem Köln-Kuba-Projekt der Kunsthochschule für Medien in Köln. Leider lief nur der letzte davon als 16mm-Kopie.

Auszug aus dem Festivalprogramm

Freitagabend

Der Freitagabend begann mit sperrigen Experimentalfilmen von Dore.O

Auszug aus dem Festivalprogramm

Der anschliessende Live-Vertonungswettbewerb bot deutlich leichter konsumierbare Filmkost. Stumme Heimfilme aus alter Defa-Produktion wurden in unterschiedlichsten Stilen vertont und zum Teil auch mit Geräuschen untermalt.

Die Gruppe “Bamd” – eine der beiden Siegergruppen

Den Abschluss in der Motorenhalle bildete dann ein Programm mit vier Filmen der tschechischen FIlmgruppe “Bullshit” aus den 80er/90er Jahren.

Im Programm angekündigt als Underground handelt es sich aber bei diesen Filmen vielmehr um Surealistischen Film in der Tradition eines Jan Svankmeier , mit dem die Filmgruppe “Bullshit” den Vergleich nicht zu scheuen braucht.

Nach Mitternacht ging es dann noch einen Häuserblock weiter in den Keller des Riesa Efau zur Trash-Film-Nacht mit “Perlen” auf 16mm.

Den Höhepunkt bildete ein Pferderennen als Installation mit 3 Normal-8-Projektoren. Dieser Animationsfilm wurde von Jan Nordsieck, einem der Mitorganisatoren des Festivals angefertigt

Noch das ganze Wochenende,

stehen bei den Dresdner Schmalfilmtagen neben dem Internationalen Wettbewerb am Samstagabend verschiedene Filmprogramme und mehrere Workshops auf dem Programm.

Es lohnt sich!

Making the Agfa Microflex ready for Provie and E100D

Making the Agfa Microflex ready for Provie and E100D

 

For some time now, one of my cameras piling up is a Agfa Microflex 100, which seems to be still working flawlessly. At the very least, test shots with expired, self-developed Moviechrome film have yielded impeccable results.

The Microflex with its metal case is very well made and with its small dimensions an ideal pocket camera to follow you anywhere. I was really eager to use it with up-to-date colour reversal material with 100 ASA sensitivity and daylight sensitization, but the Agfa Microflex 100 is only designed for use with 40 ASA tungsten films – the standard film material at the time:

The film sensitivity is fixed at 40 ASA, a sensor is missing in the cassette compartment for sensitivity detection or even the possibility of manual setting of film sensitivity.

Exposure measurement of the Microflex 100 is not happening through the lens but by an external exposure meter placed above the lens. I took advantage of this circumstance in order to be able to correctly expose 100 ASA films: By using a neutral density filter with a factor of 2 (ND2) in front of the lens, the amount of light entering is reduced by 50%, which corresponds to the use of a film with 50 ASA instead of 100 ASA. This comes close enough to the camera-based sensitivity of 40 ASA to be able to expect correctly exposed shots.

However, the camera lens does not have a filter thread and due to the focus adjustment design, there is also no way to use a snap-on filter.

I helped myself with a 35.5 mm (1.4″) diameter filter, which gets mounted reversed (flipped) on the lens and is fixed with tape, in such a way that the sharpness setting is still possible without hindrance.

A filter with a diameter of 35.5 mm (1.4″) fits on the lens of the Microflex 100 when mounted reversed
The neutral density filter, mounted flipepd, here still without adhesive tape fixation – if the sharpness setting was activated, it would fall down
Fixing the filter with a tape cut out – sharpness markings excluded

Now it was still necessary to outsmart the fixed “artificial light mode” of the camera and to pan out the daylight filter. The Microflex 100 also lacks a switch available for most other cameras. The filter can only be disabled in a cumbersome way if a contact is pressed at the bottom of the tripod thread with a sufficiently long screw. Appropriate screws are available in various versions in the online photo accessories stores.

Warning: The usual tripod filter screws are too short and do not disable the daylight filter reliably!

 

 

 

The three threaded screws to the left of the picture are sufficiently long with about 10 mm screw length each. Right for comparison a usual tripod screw with too short thread.

The first Fuji Provie meanwhile ran amazingly smoothly through this modded Agfa Microflex 100, without the film jamming not uncommon to this film stock. After the development of the film by Frank Bruinsma, it will become clear whether these measures have had the desired effect.

Super8 at Berlinale 2019

Super8 at Berlinale 2019

Die Kinder der Toten (“The Children of the Dead”) – a film project by Kelly Copper and Pavol Liska based on the novel by Elfriede Jelinek – consists of 8mm found footage material and newly shot scenes on Super8. The film premiered at this year’s Berlinale. A detailed report can be found here

Filming with Super8 cameras:

And here’s another trailer with found footage:

Cost-effective digitalization of Super 8 frames

Cost-effective digitalization of Super 8 frames

Various special lenses for 35 mm reflex cameras were offered “at the time” to photograph Super 8 individual images.

With these special macro lenses, the format-filling reproduction of Super 8- and/or 16 mm individual images on 35 mm film was possible. The connection is made via T2 thread adapters to the different camera mounts.

The Rondo Copy-Tube-8 is often offered on the internet
With this product from Fuji, Super 8 and 16mm individual images can be photographed using different long extension tubes and interchangeable film masks. Without a mask and with the 16mm extension tube, two Super 8 frames can be photographed including their sprocket holes (“Open Gate”)

I like to use individual images from Super 8 movies for handouts or movie covers. For editing on the computer with the usual image or layout programs, the analog 35 mm negative or slide is of course suboptimal.

However, when using these lenses on digital cameras with interchangeable lens mounts, there is the following problem: Only with expensive cameras with a full-format sensor, which corresponds in size to the 35 mm format, the film frame is completely captured. For all other digital cameras, only a cut-out magnification of the individual film image is possible with these lenses.

Also, these lenses are quite slow and require strong daylight for reasonably short exposure times.

I was therefore looking for a way to digitally photograph film frames or film strips with a sufficient quality for these purposes, or to be able to publish them on the Internet in a quick and easy way.

As a diehard analog photographer and filmmaker, I don’t own a “decent” digital camera. For a double-digit euro amount, I got the camera body of a slightly older digital SLR camera. In my case, this was a Nikon D100 — Nikon because my T2 adapter is intended for Nikon bayonet.

As a reproduction lens, I use a Hama slide duplicator with zoom magnification option, also available cheaply on the Internet. This duplicator was originally intended to make partial enlargements of 35 mm slides or negatives.

 

The slide mount with a matte glass screen is removed because it is in the way when inserting longer film strips.

An old Meopta enlarger serves as a repro tripod. For this, there used to be a special “repro arm” as accessory, which was screwed on instead of the magnifying head and to which the camera is attached.

The repro mount for Meopta enlargers — bought 20 years ago at “Foto Brenner”

 

As a light desk, I use a new but cheap model from “Dörr”.

Due to the magnifying factor of the duplicator together with the crop factor of the digital camera sensor, in theory, approximately format-filling images of Super 8 individual images are now possible.

Theoretically, because my “trial” setup shows a rather noticeable hot spot as of a zoom factor of about 1.6.

So I leave it with photographed film strips with an magnification to up to three Super 8 single images. It is precisely this series of individual frames in connection with the visible film perforation and possibly edge marks that also express the special aesthetics of the small format film in the still image. This representation seems, in a way, “authentic.”

Resolution is sufficient for publication on the Internet or for use for Handouts/Covers. For good enlargements in photo size, this combination of devices is not quite good enough. Here are a few more examples:

 

Small Gauge Film Culture in Canada

Small Gauge Film Culture in Canada

In Canada, two film festivals specifically aimed at small format film will once again take place in the first quarter of this year.

The 8fest will be held in Toronto for the twelfth time on the last weekend of January.

A few weeks later and a few thousand kilometers further west, there will be the 27th edition of the Artifact Film Festival (formerly the $100 FilmFestival) in Calgary at the beginning of March.

Both festivals also have Super 8 films from Germany in their program:

In Toronto, my film Am Zeppelinfeld will show. In Calgary, Katzenlotto by Dagie Brundert gets shown as well as L ‘homme et la mer by Patrick Müller.

 

Inside Bolex

Inside Bolex

Filmemacher und Beteiligte des “Analog Resistance Festivals” hatten am Festival-Samstagvormittag Gelegenheit die Firma Bolex in Yverdon-Les Bains zu besuchen.

Ankunft bei Bolex – stilgerecht mit zeitgenössischen Automobilen (Fahrzeuge der Organisatoren)
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Wettbewerb der Schmalfilmtage Dresden – ein subjektiver Sehbericht

Wettbewerb der Schmalfilmtage Dresden – ein subjektiver Sehbericht

Den Höhepunkt der 18. Schmalfilmtage in Dresden vom 19. – 21.01.2017 bildete auch dieses Jahr am Samstagabend der Internationale Wettbewerb für Kurzfilme, die auf 8 oder 16 mm breitem Filmmaterial gedreht wurden.

In den beiden Retrospektiven vor dem Wettbewerb liefen ausschliesslich 16mm-Filmkopien. Hier konnte man den Charme der klassischen Filmprojektion mit atmosphärischem Filmkorn und knisternd-sonorem Ton von der Lichttonspur genießen.

Im Wettbewerb dagegen wurden die Beiträge abwechselnd mit Filmprojektor und Beamer vorgeführt.
Von den 13 Filmen im Wettbewerb liefen sieben Stück als digitale Projektion.
Fast ausnahmslos erfolgte bei diesen Filmen Schnitt, Betitelung, Vertonung und die sonstige Post-Produktion im digitalen Work-Flow.
Drei Filme wurden als Super8-Original mit Magnet-Tonspur vorgeführt, ebenfalls drei Filme liefen in 16mm.

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