Into the Autumn

Oct 1, 2017

IMAGO Awards 2017

Almost 100 feature films, TV dramas and documentaries from all corners of the world have so far been nominated by IMAGO´s member societies for consideration by the IMAGO Award juries. The IMAGO juries will start their work in September, and will have their final nominations for the IMAGO International Award For Cinematography ready in good time for the big day of celebrations on October 28th, where more than 250 cinematographers, partners and film colleagues will gather in Helsinki, Finland, to celebrate not only the art of international cinematography, but also IMAGO´s 25th Anniversary.

After the Awards gala and ceremony, there will be drinks and dinner, and the party will hopefully go on all night.

IMAGO thanks our important sponsor partners, without whom we would not have been able to arrange these important awards. So far, ARRI, RED, Panasonic, Sony, Drylab, TVTools Finland and more are amongst the important partners in this grand, black tie event.

Absolutely essential for IMAGO, and for the success of our celebration, is the great assistance, work and planning being done by the Finnish Society Of Cinematographers (FSC) and their President Tahvo Hirvonen FSC, and the IMAGO Awards Committee, headed by Ron Johanson ACS and Tony Costa AIP.

The IMAGO Awards Venue

The IMAGO Awards and celebration will take place at the Hanaholmen Hotel and Conference Center in Helsinki, located on a beautiful half-island just outside the centre of Helsinki. It is a newly-renovated building – with swimming pool, restaurants, cinema and good space for our partners to present themselves – and is perfect for the IMAGO Awards and celebrations.

More information about the IMAGO International Awards for Cinematography can be found here:

Beside the sea… the Hanaholmen Hotel & Conference Center Photo: Hanaholmen/Robert Lindström

The IMAGO/FNF Oslo Digital Cinema Conference

IMAGO´s Conference on new digital production methods, focussing on new equipment and software, was arranged on September 8th to 10th at the Norwegian Film Institute in Oslo.

More than 200 cinematographers and experts from around the world gathered to exchange experiences, to learn and to discuss. The IMAGO Oslo Digital Cinema Conference is regarded as one of the most useful of its kind globally, and this year’s conference was an undoubted success.

Most major camera manufacturers were there and informed the participants about their latest developments, their thoughts for the future, and received feedback from cinematographers’ experiences. One of the main topics this year was ACES in post production, and Alex Forsythe, one of the central technical designers of ACES, attended to discuss practical experiences, and to receive feedback from ACES users.

Other topics included the challenges of Virtual Reality, VFX, HDR, new LED cinema screens, future-generation imaging, new recording techniques, high-sensitivity cameras and the future impact of 8K Sensors. There were lectures on lenses for big format cameras, in addition to masterclasses with acclaimed international cinematographers. More details will come in the next edition.

Let the pictures do the singing… the Opera Nova in Bydgoszcz

Camerimage 2017

Camerimage celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2017, and will take place from 11th to 18th of November in Bydgoszcz, Poland. During the 25 years it has existed, few other arrangements have succeeded so much in international focus on cinematography as Camerimage. The great and important job for all cinematographers done by the festival director Marek Żydowicz and his great team, led by Kazik Suwala, is vastly impressive.

IMAGO will arrange several conferences at Camerimage this year, among those are masterclasses and a new conference on gender and diversity. The work to inspire more women to choose cinematography as their profession is important to IMAGO, and to all international cinematographers, and this work will continue as one of IMAGO´s priorities.

Photo Exhibition at Camerimage: “IMAGO 25 years – 50 photographs”

With Camerimage and IMAGO celebrating our 25th anniversaries this year, IMAGO wishes to focus on the visual eyes of its cinematographer members around the world during Camerimage. Creating images is the art and profession of cinematographers. Many cinematographers are also creators of great still images, and we believe the public will take interest in seeing how cinematographers work with visual artistry in composition, motifs, contrast, colour or black & white, when it comes to still images.

The exhibition is a co-operation between the ASC and IMAGO, where a great selection of photographs from both ASC and IMAGO members will be exhibited. After the exhibition at Camerimage, the photographs from IMAGO members will be auctioned, and the income will be donated to a Polish children´s charity.

Glass act… Leica-CW Sonderoptic’s factory and offices in Wetzlar, Germany

IMAGO visit to Leica – CW Sonderoptic

By Louis Philippe Capelle SBC, IMAGO General Secretary

Together with senior optical technician Olivier Tordeurs, I visited Leica-CW Sonderoptic to follow the maintenance workshop around the Summicron and Summilux lenses.

It was a good opportunity to visit the factory in Wetzlar, discover the manufacturing process of these famous tools, meet with managing director, Gerhard Baier, and his team, and to discuss more about the joint activities between CW Sonderoptic and IMAGO.

Wetzlar is located about 80km north of Frankfurt, surrounded by green hills and forests. The centre of the city is well-preserved, with 400-year-old houses, and not too badly destroyed during the war.

Leica-CW Sonderoptic has exquisitely designed buildings – one has the shape of a lens, the other of binoculars – in the middle of a kind of Zen garden, and more new buildings are under construction, including a new CW Sonderoptic factory, administrative building and a 130-room hotel. “We hold many events here, and the availability of rooms in Wetzlar is not enough. So better have our own hotel for customers and visitors,” said Gerhard.

In the Leica shop on the premises you can, of course, find everything, including the most expensive lenses and stills cameras. It’s the place where you need a Platinum + credit card, and busloads of Japanese and Chinese tourists stop-by for what seems to them a real pilgrimage.

Whilst Olivier was starting his workshop together with colleagues from Video Europe and Vantage, I did the VIP owner’s tour with Gerhard, and we went through the process of assembling and controlling the different lenses: Thalia, Summilux and Summicron.

We were lucky to see the new Thalia 180mm on the projector bench. I very often analyse lenses on a projector, and although I am not a real optical specialist, I notice immediately what makes the qualities or flaws of a lens. Switching from Thalia 180mm to Summilux 135 there were only very minor differences in definition and contrast. Of course, the Summilux is almost three stops more luminous.

Svethomir from Leica and Daniela Kesselem, newly arrived at CW, showed me around the factory. Daniela is an optical engineer and product manager. Svethomir gave us an extensive behind-the-scenes tour of the factory, where they polish the lenses and assemble the still cameras. He explained how difficult it is to be within the tolerances with the aspherical elements of the Summilux. There are several throw-away boxes with unsatisfactory pieces of glass.

Success came quickly for this range, as more than 200 sets of Summilux have been sold around the world. The latest batch of Thalia lenses for large format sensors is already sold out for this year’s production. We talked about the further developments, the future, and about going Anamorphic or not. As you might guess, what is said behind Leica’s walls remains there.

Thanks to Daniela, Gerhard, Rainer, Seth and all the other people we met and who shared a little bit of their time with us.

For more information about IMAGO; please visit

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