What is a Cinematographer?

Cinematographer Job Description

It is the responsibility of cinematographers to use camera and lighting equipment to create the desired visual mood or feel of a film or video production.


Standard and high definition video and film are used as original mediums for various sorts of productions, such as: documentaries, national commercials, feature films, movies of the week and television series productions.


Cinematographers use lens selection, lighting, filtration, focus and exposure to creative a specific look or feel for a production.



Cinematographer Job Duties

• Attend production meetings and collaborate with directors and other crew members regarding camera, lighting and associated needs

• Delegate work to a team of assistants

• Prepare and administer related budgets

• Oversee the transfer process in which film negatives are digitally transformed to video images for the purpose of computer editing

• Control and create the photographic or electronic images for every second of film or video footage

• Responsible for the selection of camera type, lighting equipment, filters, lenses and other related equipment



Scholarships for Becoming a Cinematographer

The Applicable Majors section below shows fields of study relevant to a career as a Cinematographer. You can search for scholarships matched to those fields of study on our Fine Arts Scholarships and Film Studies Scholarships pages.


Success Tip: Be sure to apply for any scholarships that you even barely qualify for, as there are millions of dollars of scholarships that go unused every year due to a lack of applicants!



Applicable Majors

Studying one of the university majors listed below is an excellent starting point for becoming a Cinematographer. Click on the links to find out what else you can do with these majors!


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