Not only has the use of smartphones changed the way we communicate and disseminate information but also has opened filmmakers to an array of tools made by developers who are interested in supporting the art with applications that aid multiple aspects of the creative process.
Nowadays, you can find hundreds of apps on Apple’s App Store and Google’s Play Store that any filmmaker, whether novice or professional, could make use of for their productions. These include apps that help with script writing and shot planning to even those that can tell you the position of the sun. In fact, YouTube channel YCimaging highlights four essential apps every filmmaker should be using on a daily basis.
The first app on the list is called Sun Seeker. Its basic premise is to give you accurate information regarding the sun’s position previously, in the present, and in the future. Inside of the app, you’re presented with a 3D sphere that marks off the position of the sun.
To add to the functionality, you can even use your smartphone’s camera within the app to set up an almost augmented reality feature that creates a visual outline of the sun’s position in real time based on the camera position. Furthermore, you can use the built-in maps feature to find out how the sun will affect your location. This app is perfect for those scouting for locations and who want to see how the sun will affect the lighting conditions in the current environment.
The second app you should have on your home screen is Light Spectrum Pro. This app’s function is fairly straightforward: it measures the color temperature of the subject you’re pointing at, in addition to showing you a color spectrum at the bottom of the interface to show the distribution of color of your subject. This data is especially useful if you are trying to manually set the white balance and are unsure of the color temperature of your light.
Next on the list is an app called Artemis Prime, which is essentially a director’s viewfinder packed into one app on your smartphone. Like a traditional director’s viewfinder, the software allows you to test out different camera bodies, lenses, focal lengths, and settings so that you can determine the equipment you need before having to set up an entire rig.
You may find yourself using this in your next production as you are able to test out different looks with different equipment configurations before having to camera team to set up and swap gear just to achieve a look you’re searching for.
The final app all filmmakers should have on their smartphones is called Light Meter by Lumulabs. With a simple and easy-to-use interface, Light Meter gives you the information you need to properly expose your shot by adjusting to the settings you input into the app.
For instance, if you are trying to shoot at a particular shutter speed, you can input that data into the app and it will tell you what you will need to set the f-stop and shutter speed of your camera to compensate, ensuring proper exposure in your image.
Apparently, these apps could enhance your workflow significantly by tackling many of the pesky problems you could stumble upon as a videographer every now and then. Of course, there are many other applications that may come in handy on set that are not included in this list, so if you want to share your insight on the topic, feel free to do so by leaving a comment below.