SA eNews May 2016 Adelaide National Awards Bulletin - A Month of Sundays - Anamorphic Master Class - Profile David Gregan plus more


AC Magazines

National ACS Award Wrap Up

David Burr ACS congratulates Milli Award winner John Seale AM ACS ACS watched on by National President Ron Johanson OAM ACS. Picture courtesy of Rainer Hercher

Well done Adelaide, by all accounts the 45th National ACS Awards for Cinematography were a great success.

We had wonderful numbers at all the events including over 300 attending the ACS – SAFC Southern Light Expo, 40+ @ Ray Martin Stills retrospective , 80+ @ Meet the Nominee’s , 60+ @ the Dean Semler’s Road to Hollywood doco and 210 attended the 2016 National Awards at the Adelaide Convention Centre. Also 70+ attended “How they shot that!”

I'm told the Winery Tour was fantastic, with comments like "exquisite food at Penny's Hill", "the Olive oil and cheese at Primo was stunning", "what great value - we were tasting $80 bottles of wine!" What a shame I was attending the AGM after organising the tour.

The Oval tour was great even though only a dozen or so went and 44 enjoyed the food and wine at the CitiZen banquet. All in all, an enjoyable, fun, enlightning and educational weekend.

Not only that we raised $1,385 for the Motion Picture Industry Benevolent Society which provides financial and emotional assistance to industry workers who have fallen on hard times.

I thank the SA branch committee for all their hard work to produce a long weekend of celebration and appreciation of the best in cinematography.

I wish to thank the SAFC for sponsoring the expo and satellite events as without their support we could not have made these events free entry for all. Picture Hire for providing gear for recording and live streaming the events, Kojo for the enormous job off editing the compile of the awards presentation, Best FX for recording the VO's and the sound mix, Penny's Hill for providing the wine that went in the SA Tourism supplied sponsor goodie bags.

Congrats go to our own Simon Nicholls who received a Gold Tripod for Nomad Chef: Peru - Episode 7 in the John Bowring ACS TV Station Breaks / Promos & TV Magazine category. Simon & his partner flew in from Singapore especially for the Awards.

Congrats also go to SA's Geoffrey Hall ACS who won 2 Awards of Distinction. One is the Short Film Category for Flat Daddy and the other for Episode 4 of Deadline Gallipoli in the Drama or Comedy Series & Telefeatures Category.

Please find the links below for this year's National ACS Award Winners and the online video presentation on Showreel Finders site.

Also pictures from the events are available via Flickr:

Click to see 2016 National Awards Video Clips »
Click to go to the Winner's List »

SA Vice Pres JoAnne Bouzianis Sellick & Kirsty Stark, top John Seale AM ACS ASC & Geoffrey Halls ACS, bottom David Burr ACS & John with the Milli. Pictures by Les Ludgate

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Support a South Aussie Film

A Month of Sundays was shot right here in Adelaide and was Produced by ACS committee member Kirsty Stark. So get out there and see it!!

It's been getting really great reviews - including 5 stars from The Advertiser, 4 stars from the Sydney Morning Herald and 4 1/2 stars from Three D radio.

It's in 40 cinemas around Australia, and you can see a list of where it's playing here:

The more tickets they sell, the longer the theatrical run will be, so it would be fantastic if you can let your friends and family know to go and see it in the next few days if possible.

I really enjoyed the film and I hope you do too.

Click to see A Month of Sundays trailer »

Anamorphic Master Class

The Victorian Branch of the Australian Cinematographers Society is very excited to announce it will be running a two day advanced “Anamorphic Lenses Masterclass” led by the extraordinarily talented Peter James ACS ASC on Saturday May 14 and Sunday May 15, 2016 in Melbourne.

This highly sought after course is limited to only 20 successful applicants. It is part of ACS Victoria's “Cinematography Intensives” Masterclass and Workshop series.The two-day weekend course will be conducted both Interior and Exterior utilising Arri Alexa 4:3 cameras with a complement of equipment and lenses from Panavision including Anamorphic zooms and prime lenses as well as Spherical zooms and prime lenses for comparative purposes.

Participants will first learn about the history and application of anamorphic filming from its beginnings to the modern day and how the transition from film to full frame 4:3 digital cameras has effectively allowed a rebirth of anamorphic into contemporary film making.
Hands-on practical demonstrations will take place over the two days where we will explore perspective variation, lens length decisions, the effect of how different contrast, texture and lighting influence the shot. Spherical and anamorphic focus and distortion will be examined and explained.

Several scenarios will be shot by the participants, and the results later screened and appraised on large monitors or screens. The “mystery” of anamorphic will be demystified by Peter.
Camera and Lenses ex Panavision
Docklands Studios for interior workshop
Port Melbourne for exterior locations
Soundfirm 2k Grading Suite for rushes appraisal
Supported by professional grips, gaffers and camera assistants

Places still available but be quick!

Profile David Gregan

OK David were going to go back to some of our original ?'s so what's your fav film?

That's a tough one, so I will answer in 2 parts. Cinematography wise I would say “Road to Perdition” shot by Conrad Hall ASC for it's incredible modern noir lighting, and from a story point of view I would say E.T: The Extra-Terrestrial, as I am a sucker for a Spielberg epic with a big John Williams score.

Favourite TV show?

Of the recent ones I have watched “True Detective” Season 1.

Favourite on set snack?

That's an easy one, pizza shapes

Size envy! Now that's what I call a camera!

Please tell us about your early days.

I grew up in the country town of Murray Bridge where I spent a good part of my youth riding BMX bikes with my friends and watching movies. As there wasn't a great deal to do in the town I found that movies were a good form of escapism. My best mate Dylan and I spent hours upon hours either watching low budget horror films or taking our bikes off some sweet jumps, this I think fueled my early interest in film making. I decided to save up all my money working my casual job at Woolies and bought my first Hi8 video camera. From this I spent a majority of my time filming short films with my brother and friends, as well as many hours of BMX bike footage, usually accompanied with a rocking Limp Bizkit soundtrack.

MAPS mates on Rainshadow

How did you get into the industry?

After dropping out of my Psychology course at Uni, I decided instead to enrol in the M.A.P.S. film course as film making sounded way easier and cooler. The course was fantastic and I made some fantastic friends, some of whom I still work with to this day. One of the fantastic things about the course was the compulsory work experience, through this I did a bunch of Production assistant and runner jobs for local production company Kojo.

At around this point a work experience opportunity came up to do video split/camera attachment on the feature film “Hey, Hey, It's Esther Blueburger”. It was a 6 week shoot on 35mm, shot by Anna Howard ACS and starring Toni Collette. It was a tough 6 weeks as I had never worked on something as intense or with as much gear and crew, but I stuck it out and learnt a hell of a lot, it was truly a baptism of fire. It was here where I met El Presidente Ernie Clark ACS who shot 2nd unit as well as Gaffer Graeme Shelton.

Dave all tied up on Rainshadow

After Blueburger was finished Graeme was kind enough to offer me a position as 4th Electrics in the lighting department on ABC mini series “Rainshadow” starring Rachel Ward. I was also once again working with Ernie Clark ACS who shot & directed 2nd unit as well as operating B camera. The experience like Blueburger was baptism of fire and a large learning curve. After this I scored gigs in the lighting department on the features: “Beautiful”, “The Boys are Back”, “Red Dog” and some additional days on “Mcleod's Daughters”.

When “The Boys are Back” was wrapped I found that there wasn't heaps of work around and wanted to get some commercial work. At this point I started to assist DoP Pete Hall on several TVC's and this in turn led to me being offered a job at local camera rental house Picture Hire Australia, which I still work at to this day.

Dave on Traffic Control on Rainshadow

Picture Hire was a fantastic way for me to have a steady paycheck but also keep up to date with technology. It also allowed me the freedom to go out on jobs assisting and shooting to keep my skills sharp. At one point the business changed hands and the new owner Dai Cookes took over. Dai came from more of a broadcast background and this meant I learnt a whole new set of skills which have helped me slip into all sorts of different shooting situations. I also learnt that it was acceptable to wear Hawaiian shirts to work, as Dai demonstrated on a regular basis.

Dave operating an ARRI Alexa

Besides working with El Presidente what is your fondest working memory?

I think from a shooting point of view it would have to be a corporate I did last year for a farming company promoting it's latest cattle feed (sounds fascinating I know!) Dai and myself travelled to several parts of Australia filming farming properties, and interviewing the farmers using the feed. I was on main camera using the Arri Alexa and Dai shot all the drone footage and occasionally pulled sound.

From an assisting point of view it would have to be the few days I spent on the set of “The Water Diviner”. The film was shot by the legendary Andrew Lesnie ACS ASC and was directed by and starred Russell Crowe. They were both such gracious and lovely people, and was great to see how a person like Andrew not only cared so much for images he created but the crew around him. Experiences like these are truly once in a lifetime and I feel very fortunate to work in an industry where I have the opportunity to participate.

What have you been up to lately?

I continue to both shoot and assist, as well as keep busy at Picture Hire where I continually meet new people, both established and upcoming. My more recent bigger gigs include DoP on Beyond Bank and Adelaide Film Festival TVC's which were directed by Nick Matthews ACS. As well as a series of new look LeCornu TVC's.

David why did you decide to join the ACS committee?

Well.....I was walking down the street and an unmarked van pulled up and....... No in all seriousness I thought joining the committee was a good way for me to be further involved in our great craft, as well as the belief that it's important to give back to future upcoming young punks like myself.

Well the committee are so pleased we drove that unmarked van and....... the rest they say is history.

David has been a great contributor to the ACS and recently operated the main camera at the ACS National Awards, The Meet the Nominees seminar & the "How they Shot That" session with industry legends John Seale ACS ACS, David Burr ACS and special guest Peter James ACS ASC. So from the committee, the branch and me personally a big THANK YOU. Oh and thanks also to Dai Cookes and Picture Hire for supplying the gear.

Dave shoots on a low loader

Above OZ

Dai Cookes, Above OZ, Managing Director

A local start-up is leading the drone movement though the launch of Above Oz, a Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) certified Drone Pilot Training Program.

A concept by award winning cameraman Dai Cookes, Above Oz offers students the opportunity to become fully, CASA approved drone pilots, gaining basic knowledge of aerodynamics, navigation and chart reading, aeronautical radio operation, safety and much more. Above Oz professional drone pilots become members of the aviation community, trained in many of the skills that pilots of manned aircraft have.

Dai Cookes has been in the media industry for almost 30 years. His passion for cinematography, and a constant demand for aerial shots from clients, led him to investigate drone photography as a means to achieve those ‘career making shots’ he could only dream of before.

As Dai explains, “About two years ago I started to become interested in the concept of drone photography. Back then there weren’t many operators and training was difficult to find.”

Dai is certified through CASA and also offers drone photography through his successful professional camera rental business, Picture Hire Australia, with credits including television commercials for VW and National Australia Bank, and the TV series “Back Roads” for ABC.

However, Dai is quick to point out that photography is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the drone’s potential.

“Drones have exploded onto the scene! The scope for their application in modern industries is endless, we’re seeing them used in mining, agriculture, telecommunications and real estate to name only a few industries. We recognised the opportunity to provide professional, accessible training that would arm drone pilots with the relevant skills and certification to get them started in a new and exciting, emerging industry,” said Dai.

The Above OZ Team

Above Oz has won a contract to supply training and supervise UAV activities at UniSA across a range of educational and scientific areas. Recent graduate of the program, David Bruce of Uni SA commented, “As a geospatial scientist, the potential of drone use in our industry is extremely exciting and is simply ‘exploding’. The fact that we can access top training facilities with advice from practising professionals right here in SA is just fantastic.”

Currently professional pilots must be licensed through CASA, however there are no training facilities in South Australia. This has led to many unlicensed ‘cowboy’ operators in SA.

Dai continues, “Unlicensed operators are a potential threat to public safety, a problem Above Oz hopes to alleviate.”

“We’re excited about what this could mean for the future of SA and we’re looking forward to being a part of a brand new industry, and seeing the development of new technologies and employment in jobs that don’t even exist yet,” said Dai.

For more information on Above Oz, please visit

Psycholites keeps Australian clients well lit with Zylight

Camlight Productions shooting a news promo at Adelaide Oval uses the Zylight F8-100 LED

Ian Linton from Psycholites in Adelaide says “The F8 has been a great asset on location for its battery operation, where time is of the essence in this busy world of run-and-gun. The output is phenomenal with the eight-inch lens and excellent colour. They have been rented by gaffers, photographers, and DOPs who have found them to be excellent in performance. We can’t wait to see more than double the output with the upcoming F8-200.”

Through Camlight Productions – a high-end photography, cinematography, and lighting company founded in 2003 by Chris Herzfeld who shoots news promos for Channel 7 in Adelaide, often in the middle of a stadium without access to generators or even lighting stands. Chris needs reliable lights that can operate on batteries, are quick to setup and powerful enough to work in harsh sunlight.

“The Zylight F8 fulfills all of those requirements. It’s a brilliant, versatile light,” he explained. “We don’t get a lot of setup or shoot time, as the presenters are normally very busy and can only spare a minimum of time. I usually work with a very small crew, so we don’t have the manpower or time to set big scrims to block the light.”

Herzfeld requires a lighting solution that lights talent, overcomes harsh shadows, and allows good exposure in the foreground and background without looking “too obviously” lit. “I’ve found the Zylight to be the perfect solution, in particular if we have a Steadicam,” he noted. “The Zylight is portable enough to be handheld to track with the Steadicam, yet still powerful enough to put a sparkle in the talent’s eyes.”

Isaac Walgos shot a fashion TVC using Zylight F8-100 LED

Director of photography Isaac Walgos recently used the battery-powered F8-100 as part of a small lighting kit on a fashion shoot, and it became the “go to” light on location. With a tight shooting schedule, the director needed close-ups of all the outfits at different locations.

“The Zylight was an incredible small light to have on set. We used the dimmer to highlight the detail in the fabrics of the clothes we wanted to see,” Walgos said. “The production team was very happy with the final images and the speed in which we could set them up. I was impressed with the output of the light and the quality in terms of colour.”

Talk to Ian at Psycholites if you want to know more about Zylights.

Thanks to all the ACS - SAFC 2016 Southern Light Expo Exhibitors

Upcoming dates

May 9 Committee Meeting

May 31 Invoice Membership renewals

June 6 Committee Meeting

June 30 Membership Fees Due

July 4 Committee Meeting

August 15 AGM

September 5 Committee Meeting

October 3 Committee Meeting

October 29 Annual SA/WA ACS Awards for Cinematography to be held in Perth for only the 2nd time, simultaneous awards dinner & live streaming in The Torrens Room @ Hackney Hotel Adelaide

November 7 Committee Meeting

December 5 Committee Meeting

December 12 Christmas Drinks

ACS online shop open

Visit our online ACS shop so you can buy all the ACS merchandise you could ever want. Check it out at

You can order back issues of AC mag, copies of Shadowcatchers, replacement plaques (as long as you've won them!), ACS branded Hoodies, Spray Jackets, Ladies & Mens Tees - cool new design or the original, Caps & Beanies, Mugs, Pens or Notebooks.

Click to go to the ACS OnLine Shop »

ACS CineKids

You might know someone who may want to be an ACS CineKid, if so encourage them to join our newest membership category. - ACS CineKids - has been created to encourage and foster interested kids up to the age of 15 years to participate and take an active hands-on approach to Cinematography.

An ACS CineKids Member is a young person, 15 years or under, who has a passion for cameras and filmmaking. ACS CineKids will receive a Welcome Pack with a membership certificate, membership card, note pad and pen, access to our E news both National & State, and various screenings and workshops, along with mentoring from our ACS cinematographers.

To find out more and how to join ACS CineKids click on the following link:

Click to access the CineKids membership application form »

ACS SA Branch Facebook page

The ACS SA branch has its own Facebook page.

We will use this page to advertise upcoming events, as well as create photo albums of Awards and Trade Nights.

To become a fan, go to the link below and click the 'like' button.

Click to link to SA Facebook page »

ACS Facebook posts

We have rampied up our Facebook posts so no matter what you're up to regarding filming why not let us know.

Go on, click this FB link now and tell us what your doing. »


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