Blueshifted

Director of photography and special effects for a short film

👥 Involvement: director of photography, special effects

💡 Skills: photography, cinematography, camera operation, special effects

As a member of the UCLA Video Production Crew, I was the director of photography (“DP”) and head of special effects for the club’s quarterly short film, Blueshifted. In my role as DP, I was in charge of cameras and lighting. I managed camera operators and grips to set up and film shots.

Several dark scenes made this film technically challenging to shoot. For outdoor nighttime shots, we lacked lighting equipment to flood areas with light, so I was forced to come up with creative lighting solutions. These included pointing a high-powered LED flashlight at a walking actress from off frame. This handheld light served as a kicker to provide contrast between her figure and the surrounding darkness.

A starry sky was central to outdoor scenes. I had to create this look in post thanks to LA’s smog. I generated starfield textures, masked out buildings, and used Blender’s compositor to feed an animated noise texture as input to the alpha channel of the masked starfield to create a twinkling star effect.