Have you ever wondered how films manage to draw feelings to their audience in each scene? While great acting and likable characters are a given for films to evoke emotions from their audience, another factor that makes a movie a great one is its cinematography.
In a recently-concluded workshop, GMA Network tapped seasoned Hollywood cinematographer Mark Irwin, CSC, ASC to mentor its techno-creative personnel on how to improve their practices in cinematography.
Started last November 14, the five-day seminar was attended by directors of photography and key technical staff from the network’s engineering, public affairs, news, entertainment, and post-production departments.
With more than a hundred films under his name, Irwin is known for his exceptional works such as Robocop 2, Scream, Old School, and Scary Movie 3. He is also a member of the Canadian Society of Cinematographers (CSC) since 1970 and the American Society of Cinematographers (ASC) since 1992.
Serving as his first training in the Philippines, despite his decades of experiences in the industry, Irwin willingly shared his knowledge such as the proper way of setting up the lighting, camera angles, and even post-production techniques such as the right way of mixing color-grading.
“One of the things that I like about Mark Irwin is that he’s not secretive and he’s very much willing to share his knowledge,” said GMA Network Head of Studio and Remote Operations Jeffry Evangelista.
“Even with his credentials, he’s still open to suggestions and to train people. There are also times when he encourages the participants to speak up, ask questions, and share their own insights on how they do things. Coming from the participants’ inputs, that’s where he would give suggestions on how to improve,” he added.
Moreover, Evangelista that the veteran cinematographer also praised the network’s staff in terms of being experts not just in their equipment and tools, but also in what they are doing.
“I could say one of the strong points that Mark Irwin noticed in our GMA participants is that they know what he is doing. Whenever he mentions specific equipment, where to put it, and the manner of set-up, the people already know what to do. They are also quick on their toes since they understand the flow. The relationship between the facilitator and the participants was built during the workshop, wherein the discussions and interactions were easy,” Evangelista added.
Irwin, in turn, shared how his approach was in films and how it can help the network in producing more quality-wise TV series.
“Everyone has the skills and the experience and how to apply it. This is more of a filter class and your questions will be filtered through my experience back to you. I’m not this fountain of knowledge that just says, ‘there it is, take it or leave it.’ I want to apply what they need through what I can provide. So, the hard part for me is to know what people don’t know and fill in those blanks,” he said during the interview.
The workshop was made possible through the coordination of GMA Network’s Supply and Asset Management Department with Hollywood film equipment provider Birns & Sawyer.
“One thing that led me to pick him to bring here is that he has knowledge not just in films, but also in broadcast. So, I said, it’s a good fit and I think it’s going to work. He’s traveled and he’s shot here in Asia, so he knows our conditions like the weather. We came here not to change anything, but to add confidence to them,” shared Birns & Sawyer CEO and Owner Mari Acevedo.
Sparkle artists Aidan Veneracion, John Clifford, Waynona Collings, Charlie Fleming, and Bryce Eusebio also graced the workshop and participated as the subjects of the workshop.