Slate And Action
Every single person involved in any way with the shooting of a scene must be at all times fully aware of what is going on and what is required of her/him. Filming is too complex an operation for a whole unit to be held up for hours because someone has not turned up or because an actor has forgotten that this was the day that the scene was to be filmed. It is the filmmaker’s responsibility to see that all people involved are aware of and reminded on the day prior to shooting.
Composition And Framing
The composition of each shot is something that can be decided by the cinematographer, camera operator and director in conveying the truth within each scene. There are an infinite number of rules that can be drawn upon about composition, but finally it is the instinct and the experience of the cinematographer, which will be the decisive factor in how each take is actually shot.
Working The Camera
When framing a shot, there are an almost infinite number of details that the cinematographer will notice that the audience may never ever be aware of. The cinematographer must ensure all verticals appear vertical and all horizontal are in fact parallel with the horizon. The cinematographer ensures that all visual information essential to the shot is contained within the frame, including all stages of the movement.
Continuity Of Story
Continuity is a responsibility shared by scriptwriter, director, cinematographer and editor. Decisions made during the actual shooting of the film are those that are really crucial to continuity; largely made by the cinematographer working with the director’s vision for the film. Continuity encompasses four main areas: continuity of action, continuity of place, continuity of time and photographic continuity. Because these are areas that can be looked at separately when constructing a shot: one interacts with another and all may play a part in the shooting of a sequence. Points about time and continuity lead directly to points of action continuity.
Continuity Of Time
An impression of continuous time must always be built up in the film. Screen time is very rarely the same thing as real time. The problem is normally caused the need to shorten real time but it can also work the other way. A legitimate device in cinema is to prolong a moment to heighten its impact and significance. More frequently, there is also the need to condense time for the screen that poses continuity problems.
Continuity Of Place
It is important that your audience always feels sure about the locations of the action and that no visual discrepancies occur to unsettle the audience’s conviction for narrative. A typical lapse can occur in this field when differing light conditions from different shooting sessions are intercut into a scene that is intended to appear continuous. If action takes us from one room to another, the next shot will tend to be taken from the place into which the action has gone. This whole process has almost infinite possibilities, which are continually explored during filming.
Visual texture that you want to be part of the story is important to be captured correctly and to flow smoothly to enhance narrative. Particular care must be taken for color rendering and lighting. In all forms, photographic continuity is the responsibility of the cinematographer.