• If mise en scene refers to what is placed in front of the
camera, then cinematography is concerned with
recording the elements within the shots. While
photography is the recording of a static image,
cinematography is the recording of a moving image.
The key areas are:
2. Shot size
3. Length of take
4. Camera movement
5. Camera angles
6. Depth of field
• A key ingredient of cinematography is
framing. Framing determines what is
included and what is excluded.
• There is a close link between framing,
composition and mise en scene. Mise en
scene refers to what is being filmed and
composition how it is arranged and
therefore in effect, both define what the
framing will be.
LENGTH OF TAKE
• The average duration of a shot is 6
seconds, but introductory shots are often
at least twice this length. This allows the
viewers time to become acquainted with
• There are 4 main types of camera movement.
1. Pan shot: the camera rotates horizontally around a
fixed position and is often used to follow movement.
2. Tilt shot: the camera moves vertically around a fixed
position, typically used to indicated height.
3. Tracking shot: this involves a horizontal movement of
the camera in which it changes location and is usually
fitted to a device called a dolly that runs on rails.
4. Crane shot: this shot enable the camera to be raised
and lowered and moved horizontally
It is also possible to zoom in and out using a hand held
• Camera angles provide another means of
producing different meanings.
• Eye level: these angles are the most
common that allow us to relate to the
• Low camera angle: this angle is used to
connotate power of a character.
• High camera angle: this can be used for
providing a general overview of a situation
or signify the weakness of a character.
DEPTH OF FIELD
• A camera can focus on just a small part of
what is in the frame or on the whole
scene. Focusing on only part of a frame is
known as shallow focus and is often
used as a device for encouraging the
audience to concentrate on a particular
part of the scene.
• Seeing everything in focus, from
foreground to background is known as
• Colours can be used to create meaning in
• Vibrant colours can be used to recreate
excitement e.g. Disney films
• Simple colours can be used to recreate a
realistic image – British realism
• Black and white may be used because it is
cheaper or for artistic reasons – Raging Bull,
Schindler’s List, Seven.