Miss DeBauch teaches at a prim and proper 1950's finishing school for young ladies and gentlemen, after they finish regular school at age 18. But sadly Miss does not have the knack of classroom control- her rowdy students keep playing mean practical jokes on her! Today's games lesson has not gone AT ALL to plan- they've tied her up on the vaulting horse and gone outside to smoke cigarettes behind the conservatory! Oh dear, they've even gagged her so she can't call to the senior mistress for help!
Hywel's Note: Once I'd shot the "normal" photos for this set, I had a play around with shooting with an anamorphic adaptor.
These devices from film-era movies squeeze the picture horizontally to achieve a wider-screen look (originally done this way
to make best use of the limited sensor area of 35 mm cine film whilst still giving a very wide, cinematic image). These days we
have enough resolution and to spare with digital sensors that if we wanted to we could just throw information away and crop the image
for a wider-screen format.
Anamorphic adaptors have some non-obvious optical properties which because synonymous with big budget
cinema and we subconsciously think of the resulting optical effect as being "grand" or cinematic: out-of-focus areas go oval, you get blue streak flares from light sources in or near frame, and there's a difference in the way in focus and out of focus areas are rendered. Some of these are easy to imitate in post (see J. J. Abrams' mania for lens flares) and some are subtly impossible.
They are (it turns out) a bugger to shoot with, and I need a lot of practice to get the hang of it. In this set I had the anamorphic adaptor on the front of a zoom lens, and it vignetted at pretty much all zoom settings- very badly at the wider end, producing a black hard vignette "spotlight" effect. Which is kinda cool in the right situation, so I've filed it away for special effects (think Terminator vision, or a really creeeeepy point of view video, or in a very low-fi grainy black and white low key set). Admittedly it doesn't suit this set in an evenly-light bright room very well, but that's the sort of thing you only learn by experimenting and making mistakes.
So I need to try again, with a diferent taking lens behind the anamorphic element, a more contrasty lighting pattern and ideally somewhere on location where I can have a larger depth separation between subject and background. I decided to leave the experimental shots in the set as a) they're still kinda cool b) Anita is doing maximum drama and looks fabulous and c) some of you are photography nerds like me and might be interested!