ACS Short Ends E News - October 2011

From the President

Greetings ACS colleagues,

The 2011 AGM was held in the ACS HQ, for the first time, along with the Accreditation screenings. It certainly was a very comfortable feeling to have these important events taking place in our own premises.

There were many matters discussed at the National Executive meeting on the Sunday, some of which I'll share with you here. Should you wish to read my extended report you'll find it on the ACS website.

The first item was to elect our Office Bearers for the next twelve months.
Those elected were:
National President: Ron Johanson ACS (QLD)
Vice President: Ernie Clark ACS (SA)
Vice President: Alan Cole ACS (VIC)
Secretary: David Wakeley ACS (NSW)
Asst. Secretary: David Burr ACS (NSW)
Treasurer: Mylene Ludgate (SA)
Asst. Treasurer: Ernie Clark ACS (SA)


The Australian Cinematographers Society has announced the names of the four cinematographers that were recently Accredited at screenings held on September 23 & 24, 2011.

Those Accredited were: Aron Leong (QLD), John Bean (QLD), Dan Freene (NSW) and Robert Hill (SA). These 4 members join 332 other Accredited cinematographers since the inception of Accreditation by the ACS in 1963. They will have their certificates and Accreditation pins presented at their local State & Territory awards in November.

National Vice President, Ernie Clark ACS has written a detailed Accreditation Report, which can be seen below.

Life Membership

In recognition of their outstanding service to the Society the following recipients have been granted Life Membership.

John Wheeler ACS (Victoria)

Mylene Ludgate (South Australia)

Life Membership is in recognition of their service over many years not only to the ACS, but to the Australian industry as a whole.

John has dedicated his time and expertise as Victorian President for two, long terms and has held a position on the Federal/National Executive for at least that period of time and serves currently as a Victorian Vice President.

John is highly respected as a cinematographer and a man who believes in the future of our craft and our industry.

Mylene has also dedicated her time and expertise as South Australian Treasurer and Committee member for such a long period of time, and has held a position on the Federal/National Executive representing the South Australian branch. She is the current National Treasurer of the Society, for which we are all grateful.

I congratulate you both on all you have achieved and look forward to presenting you with your Life Membership at your respective ACS Awards in November.

ACS Memorial

It was decided that a permanent memorial be created within the ACS HQ to honour those cinematographers and others who have been killed in the course of their work. This has been motivated by the recent deaths of Paul Lockyer, Gary Ticehurst and John Bean. The memorial itself will be located in the Bruce Hillyard Room and designs are being drawn up by SA Vice President, Joanne Bouzianis-Selleck. This will be a fitting tribute indeed.

ACS Certificate of Competancy

After discussion with Mark Wareham ACS regarding his concerns that some younger ACS members, who undergo work experience or are an assigned attachment, discover that upon completion of the project, they have nothing "official" to show for it, it was decided that the ACS will put in place an ACS endorsed Certificate of Competency. The certificate would be signed by the National President and the Cinematographer with whom the crew member worked. It will be made available upon request, by contacting National President, Ron Johanson ACS.

The following words would be included on the certificate;

"This certificate recognises and confirms that the recipient has performed all assigned duties as an attachment to the Camera Department and is deemed to be efficient in carrying out those duties."

ACS Website

The ACS website is up and running with great success. There have been a few "speed" issues that we are resolving by upgrading to an SQL server. From then on it will be "full speed ahead." My thanks to Simon Russell and the web team for their tireless work.


At the side of every E News is a list of our ACS National sponsors. It's important for us all to remember the incredible support all our sponsors give us, and we should reciprocate. When you make your next purchase, I urge you to remember that loyalty goes both ways, and not be in too great a hurry to go "Direct to Checkout" with your online purchase, before you talk to one of our sponsors. They'd love to hear from you.

In closing, I thank you all once again for the honour you have afforded me, by allowing me to be your National President over the past twelve months. It's been a thoroughly enjoyable and rewarding experience and I am very proud of the ACS itself, its role within our industry, the generosity of its members and the optimism we all have for the future.

Until next time,
Ron Johanson ACS
National President

Click here to read Ron Johanson's extended President's Report for the AGM »

ACS State Awards Tickets Now on Sale

To book your ACS Awards tickets, please follow the links for your relevant Branch. Book early to avoid missing out on a good seat.

***A note for National & State Sponsors to remember to reserve your tickets too.***

WA & SA Awards:
Book for the Awards presentation, being held in Perth, at the link below.
If you wish to attend the Adelaide dinner, select that specific event after clicking the "Click here to book tickets to the Awards" link on the Perth booking page.

Don't miss this opportunity for not only a great night out, but also the chance to see some of the finest work by our ACS members.

Click here to book tickets for the VIC/TAS Awards »
Click here to book tickets for the SA/WA Awards »
Click here to book tickets for the QLD/NT Awards »
Click here to book tickets for the NSW/ACT Awards »

ACS Accreditation Screenings

Ten ACS Accreditation applications for 2011 were assessed recently, on Friday and Saturday, September 23 & 24.

This year our ten applicants were from four different States and included many genres and styles of cinematography and four were granted Accreditation.

Those honoured, and now able use the letters ACS after their names, are Aron Leong ACS from Queensland, Robert Hill ACS from South Australia, Dan Freene ACS from NSW and the first, posthumous ACS Accreditation to John Bean ACS.


A full report by judge Ernie Clark ACS about the Accreditation Screenings is available on the ACS website.

Click here to find out more about ACS Accreditation »
Read Ernie's full report on the ACS website »

It's Your ACS

The Australian Cinematographers Society is your Society.

A Society, according to Webster's dictionary is:
"An organisation or a club formed for a particular activity."

Pretty broad description I would have thought, but having said that, it is what we are.

There are members of your Society who think they know how the Society can be improved, but do nothing about it. To them I say….

There are others who talk about it a lot, but don't put anything into action. To them I say….

There are some who ask for change, but do nothing to bring about that change. To them I say….

There are those who think it would be great to try something new, but don't actually bother to suggest something new. To them I say….

There are some who come up with some great ideas, but leave it entirely to others to implement. To them I say….

There are a few, who say it should be done, but don't actually contribute to the "doing." To them I say….

There are members who, when asked their opinions or to RSVP, don't. We are cinematographers, communicators. So, I say, let's communicate.

Then, there are those few, who do the work, the thinking and the putting it into action. To them I say…. thank you.

There are also those who don't complain, they just get in and do it. To them I say…. thank you.

To those who do put their hand up and become active participants. I again say…. thank you.

I guess the point I'm making is don't sit on your hands, don't assume somebody else will do it, pitch in and make the Society stronger, better. Give it a louder voice.

Contact your ACS Branch President, Secretary or me and let us know you want to do more for the Society and not just talk about it.

Please get involved. Ensure that the ACS continues to foster and grow as a Society that is not only yours, IT'S OUR ACS.

VALE - Eric Kenning ACS

It is with great regret that I inform you all of the passing of one of our ACT Accredited Members, Eric Kenning ACS.

Eric leaves behind wife Maureen, for whom he was caring for through her own illness, along with sons David and Michael and daughters Shelly and Jo. Son David is well known and respected by many in Canberra as a freelance sound recordist.

Eric was by all accounts fit and well. He was at the gym on the morning of his heart attacks, that ultimately he never awoke from. He passed on Friday evening after a few days on life support.

He will be dearly missed not only as a father and a friend, but as a working colleague to many. Eric was in the process of scanning some of his wonderful imagery into his computer, something that we know gave him much pleasure and enjoyment.

Robb Shaw Velzen
ACT President

"Directors of Photography - Personal Works" Exhibition

The 'Directors of Photography - Personal Works' photography exhibition opened at Gallery on the Lane on the Gold Coast on the 10th of September.

The exhibition features the work of cinematographers Don McAlpine ACS ASC, Ron Johanson ACS, Ben Nott ACS, John Stokes ACS, Nino Martinetti ACS, Jeff Mygatt (US Guest), Jon Cassar (US Guest), Mike Molloy BSC ACS, Philip M Cross ACS, Matt Stewart ACS, Nicola Daley, Allan Collins ACS, John Ogden ACS, Andrew Condor ACS and Mark Wareham ACS.

Joanne Bouzianis-Sellick attended the premiere, and her full report is available on the ACS website.

The exhibition will run at Gallery on the Lane until the 1st of November, opening every Tuesday to Saturday from 10am to 4pm. It will then travel to Sydney, where it will hang in the ACS Headquarters.

Read Joanne's report on the ACS website »

Sponsor Spotlight: Sony

Super35mm Digital Cinematography For All Levels Of Production

Sony's range of cameras for digital cinematography continues to expand, bringing the benefits of shooting with a large frame sensor to productions across the budget spectrum.

The recently introduced PMW-F3 and entry-level NEX-FS100P camcorders represent a breakthrough for independent producers, filmmakers and videographers looking for maximum value in these days of ever-tightening cost constraints. Both are purpose-built to deliver the features and performance you expect for shooting moving images with maximum creative control, without the compromises of other large sensor alternatives.

Sony's well-established F35 and SRW-9000PL cameras continue to find favour on a range of local feature and TV drama projects, delivering the highest standards of picture quality and on-set versatility, combined with solid and proven post production workflows.

Giving cinematographers a brilliant new canvas on which to tell stories, the F65 was designed from the outset to exceed 35mm, combining true 4K resolution with the vast potential of 16-bit linear RAW recording on SR Memory solid state media. Commercials, music videos, feature films and TV drama - the F65's remarkable image sensor delivers the maximum potential for exploration, refinement and improvement in post. » - Visit the Sony Professional Solutions website

Article: "ABC Crew Remembered in Documentary"

The Australian newspaper recently included an article about the ABC's tribute to journalist Paul Lockyer, cameraman John Bean and helicopter pilot Gary Ticehurst, who were killed in a helicopter crash near Lake Eyre. The article also mentions John Bean's posthumous ACS accreditation.

Click here to read the article in The Australian online »

A Postcard from Geoffrey Simpson ACS

Geoffrey Simpson ACS has recently completed filming on the film "Satellite Boy," written and directed by Catriona McKenzie.

Geoffrey wrote from Kununurra WA about his experiences shooting the film.

Read Geoffrey's postcard on the ACS website »

ACS NT Masterclass with Pieter deVries ACS

According to the widely travelled cinematographer Pieter deVries ACS, the worst thing you can do on arrival at Darwin Airport is to make any reference to the heat - it's an immediate sign of weakness, a sign that you're "not from 'round these parts". If you can resist the temptation, there's a chance you'll fit right in.

And fit right in he did!

The Northern Territory branch hosted its first ever Masterclass in Darwin on September 26 with Pieter deVries ACS offering a lifetime of experience to an enthusiastic group.

The audience consisted of some experience freelancer operators, news cameramen from the ABC and Channel 9, and a number of emerging camera operators and filmmakers. Against this backdrop of mixed experience, Pieter brilliantly tailored the day, so that all participants were able to walk away with a sense that they'd been empowered with a new idea for a camera angle, a sequence or the placement of a light.

Steering clear of heavy duty tech talk, Pieter's emphasis was on using the image for creative storytelling. He spent a valuable part of the session dissecting some of his sequences from various projects, explaining how he likes to build up to the establishing shot via a sequence of tight frames.

Pieter covered considerable ground during the day-long session, including the pros & cons of DSLR, exposure and shutter use, colour temperature and interview lighting techniques. Throughout it all he remained highly approachable, very relaxed, incredibly knowledgeable and rather humorous - actually he was bloody funny and real fun to be around, not to mention quite inspiring.

Without once mentioning the heat, he's too cool for that, Pieter DeVries fit right in..

And there's already discussion of a return for a lighting class. Thanks to Pieter for a fabulous day, and to Jennifer & Ian Richards, Ian Redfearn and Katie Cummins for helping to bring the day together.

(The Pieter deVries ACS Masterclass was an initiative of the ACS NT Branch as part of the Film & Television Association of the NT 2011/12 workshop series and funded by the NT Film Office).

ACS Sponsors Brunch

A brunch was held for ACS NSW and National Sponsors at the Andrew "Boy" Charlton Pool in Sydney on September 13th.

A few images from the event are below.

John Seale ACS ASC Retrospective

The University of Sydney's Centre for Continuing Education will host a John Seale ACS ASC Retrospective at the Australian Film, Television and Radio School on Sunday, November 6th 2011.

John Seale will guide us through his career over the course of the day in conversation with Andrew L. Urban and through Q&As, illustrated with several clips and three complete films.

Academy Award winning Australian cinematographer John Seale ASC ACS (American Society of Cinematographers, Australian Cinematographers Society) will be presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Plus Camerimage in Poland in November 2011, the unique international event which celebrates excellence in cinematography. That award - the first for an Australian cinematographer - will sit on top of a mountain of awards Seale has received to date, including an Oscar for The English Patient (and three more nominations).

For more information, or to enrol for the Retrospective, please see the link below.

Click here to view more information and enrol for the John Seale Retrospective »

The 11eleven Project

The 11eleven Project would like to invite ACS members to be part of a unique worldwide film project called the 11Eleven Project.

On 11/11/11 this year we're inviting cinematographers all over the world to pick up their cameras and to capture a moment of what life is like on planet earth. Post that date we will take the created works and turn it into three major projects:

- a 2 hour cinematic documentary
- a photographic book
- a world music album

Already a few Oscar winners have agreed to participate on the day, but we're looking for more cinematographers to get involved.

Would you be wiling to help us?

The 11eleven Project really is a unique opportunity for everyone to become part of the global narrative.

Click here for more information about the 11eleven Project »

Gold Coast Film Festival

The Gold Coast Film Festival presented by Australia Fair Shopping Centre, will be held November 21-27 at Australia Fair Birch Carroll and Coyle Cinemas in Southport. The theme for 2011 is: Get Some Action!

Gold Coast City Council's Film Gold Coast is the major Government sponsor of the event. The full program of films and events will be launched in October, and will include Action On Film: a showcase highlighting some of the best new action films from around the word; Cool Japan: a Japanese pop culture program; and Queensland Showcase: a program of independent films shot in Queensland; as well as international critically acclaimed films, free outdoor movies and a program of free seminars on various aspects of filmmaking.

For more details please see the festival's website: »

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