The Bolex’s footage counter showed 90. I dearly wanted to get the film out for processing. Seven or so feet to go. I hate wasting film. Like many independent film-makers I have a shot-list as long as my arm, and I hastily ran through it. For such times I generally choose to do very easy shots, but I thought I could perhaps try a slightly harder one today. It was a shot of a tile falling off a roof on a stormy day. I had initially thought of doing it for ‘real’ (though that wouldn’t work today… sunny July 1st !) No, it would be easier anyway to do it as a miniature. So I set up a miniature card tile with blutak on a circular pane of glass (about £8 at my local glass merchant). It revolves by hand in a wooden grooved stand I’d rigged up. The background is a slide composite projected on to white card. With the “tile” lit obliquely by another slide projector, I quickly realised that the slowest speed on my Bolex wasn’t going to give a small enough f-stop on the lens to put both planes in reasonable focus. I was getting f2 but I really needed something like f4 on the 26mm Switar.
Then I remembered an add-on RD MF-14 motor that had yet to be put into use. This unit goes at 4 fps giving more light. So this was bolted on the camera and switched on. Now as the motor hummed into action I rather slowly turned the glass panel. I found this quite difficult, trying to be smooth, but maybe a slight jerkiness could look more realistic. We shall see ! I managed a few takes. If successful I plan to add some superimposed rain later.
That was about 4 o’clock this afternoon. I got the film out and cycled down to the post office. Now awaiting Andec’s email. Then the postman… These bits of excitement you miss with digital !
By the way, I got this idea of the circular glass from the gravity-free pen shot in “2001″. Wonder how Kubrick attached the pen to the glass prior to the air hostess retrieving it ?