Preface: What Is a Director of Photography?

I think of the title Director of Photography the same way Robert Frost regarded the term poet: a “gift” word. It's not something you can just decide to call yourself— at least not if you want it to have any meaning. Director of Photography is a title someone else confers on you, “gifts” you with. It happens when you get hired to shoot a film, and your credit on that film is Director of Photography. We don't have to be so scrupulous about cinematographer. That's just describing the work done by the photographer of a movie.

The job of Director of Photography demands an ability to be creative and artistic while dealing with technical requirements, communication and organizational skills, budgeting, planning, ...

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