ACS Short Ends E News - December 2011

From the President

Greetings ACS colleagues,

What an amazing month it's been!

We've had ACS Awards presentations in Perth, Sydney, Brisbane & Melbourne. There were so many stand out entries right across the board, which made the judges' decisions even harder. The new judging system, devised by Ernie Clark ACS, was certainly put through its paces, and came out on top. I'm certain though, that Ernie will go back to the drawing board and listen to any suggestions the Awards Categories Committee may have.

The Awards in Perth were a great step forward for the WA Branch, and the evening went off splendidly, with MC Peter Rowsthorn well in command. As a matter of fact it was the year of the MC/Guest of Honour, with Ray Martin & the legendary cinematographer David Brill at the NSW/ACT awards, Kerry O'Brien at the QLD/NT awards and Chris Kehoe and Australian actress, Kerry Armstrong at the final one of the year, Victoria/Tasmania. There was a special, flying visit to the Queensland/NT awards by none other than our PM, Julia Gillard, although there were many who thought she bore a striking resemblance to Karen Hayward. I'm still to be convinced, because I did share a dressing room with both of them!

As I alluded to earlier, the standard overall was truly excellent, with some young student cinematographers showing an incredible amount of promise. I have to say that all goes well for the future.

State Awards Winners on Showreelfinder

All of the Gold winners from the ACS Awards for Cinematography presentations will soon be available for viewing on the SHOWREELFINDER website.

A very special thanks to Simon Higgins and all at SHOWREELFINDER for their support of the Society.

The first clips featuring Gold award winning entries to be included on the website are those from Victoria and Tasmania.

Please see the links below, and keep an eye out over the coming days for clips from the other states.

Click here to view clips from the VIC/TAS Gold Award Winners »
Click here to see the winners lists from all State & Territory Awards »


There were a number of events at the ACS HQ during November, including the launch of the new Canon system, simultaneously with the launch in Los Angeles - a first for Canon, an ARRI Australia mini expo featuring the ARRI Alexa, and a very informative evening highlighting the Apple Final Cut Pro X, which we have available at the HQ for the use of members.

Regular events at the ACS National HQ

If you are in Sydney on the third Thursday of any month, there is a regular Member drop in from 6.00pm at the ACS HQ, Level 2, 26 Ridge Street North Sydney.

If you would like more detail about what's on, subscribe to the NSW e-News, via your ACS personal webpage, by ticking the NSW e-News box. You will receive the regular NSW E Focus, with full information of upcoming events.

ACS Wall of Can Do

I am pleased to advise you all that ARRI Australia have come on board as our latest ACS Patron. David Lewis ACS & David Wakeley ACS were on hand to present Stefan Sedlemeir and Franz Kraus with their ACS Patron's certificate along with ACS pins. The ARRI Australia plaque on the Wall of Can Do was officially unveiled and our thanks go to ARRI Australia for their support.

IF Awards

Congratulations to Geoffrey Hall ACS on his IF Award for Cinematography for Kriv Stenders's wonderful film Red Dog. Geoff also won Gold at the ACS awards for the same film. What a success story Red Dog has been.

Raymond Longford Award

To top things off, and it doesn't get much better than this, Don McAlpine ACS ASC will be the recipient of the AACTA Raymond Longford Award. Don McAlpine's career spans more than 50 films made over forty years, and includes Australian classics such as Don's Party and 'Breaker' Morant, through to international blockbusters such as Patriot Games and X-Men Origins: Wolverine. His work also includes Moulin Rouge, which saw him nominated for a Best Cinematography Oscar®. Don is about to leave for New Orleans to commence pre production on "Enders Game" with Director, Gavin Hood. He joins an illustrious group of Australian screen greats, each of whom are previous Raymond Longford Award recipients, including Peter Weir, Geoffrey Rush, Fred Schepisi, Charles 'Bud' Tingwell, Jack Thompson and Russell Boyd ACS ASC . This marks the first award to be bestowed by the newly established Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA).

Don McAlpine ACS ASC, will be officially awarded at a special presentation at the Samsung AACTA Awards Luncheon on Sunday 15 January - the first of AACTA's two awards events, both of which will be held in January to fall within the start of the international screen awards season.

Congratulations from all of us Don, you are a wonderful cinematographer, a fine man and an inspiration to us all.

The Shadowcatchers

Our ACS book The Shadowcatchers went on pre publication sale in November and the response has been fantastic. I urge you to go to and order your copy. Whether it be the Collectors Limited Edition signed by our ACS Oscar winners, or the Standard Edition, this remarkable book will take pride of place in your library. It's an absolute cracker and I wouldn't want you to miss out, as this month it will be released for orders outside the ACS and indeed Australia. Gift vouchers are available and I reckon the book would make the perfect Christmas gift. Now there's an idea!

Visit the Shadowcatchers website »


While you're reading this I'll be braving the cold in Bydgoszcz, Poland, the home of Camerimage, recognised world wide as the most significant festival dedicated to the art of Cinematography. As I'm sure you're all aware, John Seale AM ACS ASC is being recognised with a Lifetime Achievement Award at this years Festival. A truly worthy recipient I'm sure you agree.

Apart from celebrating with John and Louise, it also affords me the opportunity, on behalf of the Society to attend screenings and also a number of Workshops and Seminars relevant to our needs within the ACS and the industry generally. I'll be filing a detailed report for inclusion in the next issue of AC Magazine and for use on the ACS website. It promises to be a full program of events over the six days I'll be there. To view the program, see the link below.

It certainly is a unique opportunity to listen, observe and learn. There will also be screenings on a daily basis of many films, including a John Seale ACS ASC retrospective, and other films; SNOWTOWN, SUICIDE ROOM, MELANCHOLIA, LAST DAYS OF THE ARCTIC, REBUILDING GROUND ZERO USA, ARTIGAS - THE PORTRAIT, WITNESS, THE BOOK OF LIFE, WE HAVE A POPE, OFFSET, THE HOUSE, THE WOMAN IN THE FIFTH, OUTSIDE SATAN, GRAVEDIGGER to name but a handful of so many fine films shot by so many talented cinematographers, representing so many countries.

It all culminates on the final evening with the presentation to John Seale ACS ASC and others who will also be presented with Special Achievement Awards. It will be, without doubt a visual feast!

Click here to see the full program for Camerimage »

So, don't forget to order you copy of The Shadowcatchers, by going to Finally, I urge you to always consider using the products and services of our ACS National and State Sponsors, in recognition of their ongoing invaluable support of the ACS.

Until next time…
Ron Johanson ACS
National President

A Postcard from Robert Humphreys ACS

Robert Humphreys ACS is currently in Carcassonne in the south of France, working on the set of Labyrinth.

To read his postcard from set, please visit the ACS website.

Click here to read Robert's postcard on the ACS website »

Apology to Sponsors

The ACS National Executive would like to apologise to Southern Cross Television, Tasmania, Murray Tregonning Victoria and Lemac for the inadvertent omission of their logos from the Victorian/Tasmanian ACS Awards program.

All these companies support the ACS generously in all our endeavours and we regret not giving them the Awards recognition they richly deserve.

Dragon Image Offer for ACS Members

ACS NSW Sponsor Dragon Image is pleased to offer ACS members the following discounts and promotions on presentation of their ACS membership card:

• Up to 20% off studio and equipment hire
• Up to 10% off Lightpro lighting and accessories
• 10% off lighting/camera workshops
• Access to monthly specials for ACS members only
• Free coffee from our coffee bar

Please visit the Dragon Image website for information about the company.

Dragon Image »

Miller Camera Support End of Year Promotion

To celebrate the holiday season, Miller Camera Support is offering an end of the year special from now to December 31st 2011.


For details contact your nearest Miller dealer, call Greg or Daniel on (02) 9439 6377 or visit our website:

Find your closest Miller Camera Support dealer on the Miller website »

For Sale: Aaton XTR Plus Super 16 Film Camera

WA member Richard Malins ACS is selling his personal Super 16 film camera. The camera is an Aaton XTR Plus with three magazines and two Canon lenses - the 8-64 T2.4 (no breathing) and the Canon 11.5- 138 T 2.5.

Please see the photo of the camera and accessories. Interested parties should contact Richard by email for more information:

Email Richard Malins ACS »

"On Borrowed Time" Documentary

In "On Borrowed Time," documentarian David Bradbury brings us an affectionate portrait of the life and work of venerated Australian director Paul Cox.

Arguably one of the most important filmmakers to come out of this country, and certainly one of the most prolific, director Paul Cox (Man of Flowers 1983, Lonely Hearts 1981, My First Wife 1984, Innocence 2000) occupies a unique place in the Australian film landscape.

A Dutch native who relocated to Melbourne his early 20's in the 1960s, Cox went on to make more than 22 feature films over the next four decades, all highly personal and artistically ambitious, and all outside the Hollywood model.

Featuring a who's who of Australian film and intellectual life of the past 30 years - including David Stratton, Phillip Adams, Chris Haywood and Gosia Dobrowski - Bradbury's tribute to the great director delves into Cox's outlook on filmmaking and life, particularly in the wake of his remarkable recent brush with cancer.

For more information on the film, including screening times, please visit the On Borrowed Time website.

Reel Australia Short Film Competition

Entries are currently open for the 2011 Reel Australia short film competition.

The theme for 2011 is 'Make Your Mark Australia,' which encourages Australians to showcase and explore the many, varied and valuable contributions that have been made locally, nationally and globally. This can be about anything that has made a mark on your life as an Australian or a mark you have made on Australia. It is up to you, and you can be as creative as you want.

Entries close on the 6th of December, 2011.

This year we have three divisions people can enter with some fantastic prizes up for grabs, not to mention the media and public exposure the filmmaker can receive.

Visit the website below for more information.

Click here to read more about the Reel Australia Short Film Competition »

Upcoming AFTRS Courses

The following two AFTRS courses will be held in early 2012:


This hands-on course will show you how to shoot HD on the Canon 5D Mark II.

Through practical exercises you will explore the camera's imaging capabilities as well as techniques for getting the most out of its operation.

The class will shoot test footage across a range of environments which will then be critically evaluated. The fundamental differences between still photography and cinematography will also be addressed. You will leave feeling familiar with the camera and knowing when it is the appropriate choice for your shooting needs.

Please note participants are requested to bring in their own 5D or similar Canon cameras for the course.

9 - 5pm / $590 ($531 Industry discount)
E: / T: 1300 065 281

Click here for information and bookings. »

20 - 24 Feb 2012

AFTRS course tutor Louis Irving covers basic lighting skills and how to apply them to the visualisation of a story or concept in this five day hands-on workshop. The course will be taught in our state-of-the-art studios examining artificial light sources, and on a location shoot studying the changeability of natural light in both exterior and interior locations.

Course topics include:

-Natural light and artificial light. - colour temperature.
-Direct/bounce light, Soft/hard light.
-The use of Anti fill, cutters, diffusion gels
-Types of film lights and Camera filters and Basic lighting equipment packages for use on location.
-Lighting continuity.
-Lighting the face.
-Contrast ratios.
-Dealing with reflections.
-On set communication.
-Camera techniques to assist lighting.
-General lighting and post production.

9am - 5pm / $1100 ($990 Industry discount)
E: / T: 1300 065 281

Click here for information and bookings. »

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