ABC TV at Gore Hill in the Fifties

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RADIO –ACTIVE
THE ABC STAFF JOURNAL
All contributions to be addressed to the Editor, "Radio-Active",
Box 487, G.P.O.,
SYDNEY.
Volume 9 – No.2     Literary contributions are invited     April 26, 1955


 

TELEVISION – HERE WE COME

 

"Truck left, dolly in, tilt up, pan left, ooze out, tongue in, dissolve…." A new square dance call? Not at all. That’s the language a T.V. producer uses as he orders his puppets about in the studio below.

What he was saying was that he wanted the camera to move successively to the left, closer to the scene, swivel upwards, swivel to the left, come back slowly, adjust the boom on which the camera is mounted and change to another scene.

T.V. is taking its jargon from the movies and devising some of its own. Some day, if you work in television, you may end up as a "Vision mixer" or, on the technical side, as a "Camera control unit operator" worrying about your "keystone setting" and the correct use of your "overshoot control".

We who attended the first T.V. school run by the Royal Melbourne Technical College for the ABC, were initiated into some of the technical mysteries of the medium almost before we’d learnt to spell "Iconoscope". (An iconoscope is one of the incredible camera tubes – an old fashioned one – that scans the picture caught by the lens and transfers it with lighting speed and precision in the form of electrical impulses to the video transmitter, whence the impulses travel to your receiver. Don’t worry too much about probing the final mysteries of T.V. camera tubes. Calmly accept the fact that they either work or they don’t. If they don’t you can buy a new one for, say, 900.)

Those of you who, like many of us, have spent lonely hours in a radio studio playing records and talking to yourself will find the change to T.V. something like being snatched from a deserted isle and dropped into Pitt-street on Christmas Eve. The4 T.V. studio crew may number up to thirty or more. It will seldom be less than thirteen. And they won’’t be behind glass. There’ll be a team right there in the studio with you. A Floorman (the Producer’s representative in the studio), Cameraman (two or three of these), Dollymen (to push the camera about), Mike Boom Operators (to push the mike into position) and others as the particular show may require. There’s more teamwork required than in a football XV.

Camera enthusiasts will have a high old time in T.V. They’ll be able to talk wisely of apertures, lens diameters, depth of field, focal length, focal numbers and so on until everyone else is seeing circles of confusion. They’ll also argue over picture quality, a vital part of T.V. production because, it is claimed, the eye is a good deal more sensitive than the ear. Distort a voice slightly on sound radio and only the highly critical notice; but serve up a blurred picture with no contrasting shades and good–bye to your rating in the listener research report. Incidentally, as a viewer, don’t be too quick on the trigger when blaming station engineers when a picture is distorted. A wrongly adjusted receiver can cause all sorts of unpleasant effects. The picture can look too black, it can look washed out, have no definition, be blurred, break up, flick over or turn on its side! Even a passing motor car or cycle with no suppressor on the plugs can put spots on the complexion of your favorite announcer.

 

NEIL HUTCHINSON, DICK HEALY, KAY KINANE and PETER MACGREGOR with the head of the Royal Melbourne Technical College, Mr. Kempson.

Stage producers with an eye for colour will have to adjust themselves to the "grey scale" in television. Array your characters in red and blue and they’ll all appear on the screen in very dark grey. Dress your heroine in light grey and mid-green and both shades will appear the same; yellow and light green won’t get you any contrasts either. In television, we were told, there should be some contrast in the greys but the aim is to have a mid-tine picture, not too dark or too light. And, girls, a tip if you’re going in front of the camera. "Make-up" should be a little darker than the natural skin; about two shades on the grey scale. Got it?

It’s comforting to realise that in these dizzy times of H-bombs, space rockets and bubble gum, the old fashioned candle in more or less the basis of lighting in T.V. It happens this way. More often than not you need a good deal of artificial light on the scene to be televised and it’s all worked out and added up from the unit of emission of light, which, as you’ve guessed, is candle power. You might as well know, at the same time, that the unit of quantity of light is the "lumen" and the unit of brightness is the "foot lambert". To make this a little clearer you can carry out a practical experiment right in your home. Light a candle. The light falling on a surface one foot square placed one foot away from the candle is one "lumen". And the intensity over the surface will be one "foot candle". All you need to know now is the number of foot candles required for the particular camera tube you’re using. But as this may make all lighting problems in T.V. appear much too easy, a note of warning. It’s not the amount of light that falls on a subject that counts, it’s the amount of light the subject reflects. So the R.M.T.C. teaches about hard lights, soft lights, diffused lights, base lighting, key lighting, modelling, fills, back lighting and lighting for special effects. Even of broads, strips, floods and spots.

But now let’s look at a less technical side of the course.

Over the last few days we held a workshop when we tried to put into practice some of the things we’d learned in theory. The highlight of the workshop was the production of a magazine programme made up of five separate items. The items included a simple and effective way of telling an aboriginal legend (devised by Kay Kinane assisted by Ron White), a flight to the moon (presented by Ribin Wood and Robert Trumble), farm topics featuring Clarrie Hurst and a prize hen (arranged by Dick Thompson and Graham White), a golf lesson featuring Colin Campbell (arranged by Dick healy and Ray mCDonald), and a comedy spot featuring Kenrick Hudson and telling of the trials of a radio avtor in the ABC’s Showground studio known as the Gold Fish Bowl (for which Ken Watts and Doug McLean were responsible). Continuity production by Peter Mcgregor.

And the highlights? Unquestionably the moment when Ray McDonald beamed at us in close up about to say a few well chosen words at the end of the golf lesson. Unfortunately, instead of Ray being cued to start talking, the sign was given to the narrator (Dr. Munro) who, sticking nobly to his script, said in words of ringing clarity, "Poor little gold fish. How he must hate being stared at!" But Ray just kept on beaming.

PETER MACGREGOR

 

DIRECTOR OF TECHNICAL SERVICES

The newly appointed Director of Technical Services for the ABC, 32-years-old Lloyd Hadfield, has had a brilliant career in the scholastic, television and sporting fields.

A graduate of Sydney University in Science and Engineering (with honours), Mr. Hadfield spent three years in England with E.M.I. engaged in research and development of television, with emphasis on film channels.

Since his return in 1951, Mr. Hadfield has been working on the electronic development associated with guided missiles at Salisbury, South Australia.

During the war he served as a radar officer in the A.I.F.

On the sporting side, Lloyd Hadfield has been South Australian Champion of hammer-throwing for the past three years in the S.A. Amateur Athletics Championships at the University Oval.

However, his main interest is the development of T.V. for which he holds a number of patents.

Mr. Hadfield took up his new appointment on Tuesday, April 12.

RADIO-ACTIVE, April 26, 1955 – Pages 3 and 4


RADIO –ACTIVE
THE ABC STAFF JOURNAL
All contributions to be addressed to the Editor, "Radio-Active",
Box 487, G.P.O.,
SYDNEY.
Volume 9 – No.4     Literary contributions are invited     July 25, 1955


 

Some Impressions of Television

By Neil Hutchison

Just what is involved in TV transmissions when one gets down to practicalities? Neil Hutchison, Director of Drama and Features, who is overseas looking into this question, details BBC procedure in televising a play – and hints at ulcers.

In Britain the progress of television is altering the pattern of daily life. It is difficult to over-emphasise its possibilities, for its impact is so immeasurably greater that that of sound radio that they cannot be spoken of in the same breath.

After talking for some weeks with the BBC Television people, hearing a great number of lectures and doing a little practical work myself, I am left with two dominant impressions. The first is the size of the task ahead of us and the challenge which it presents to all Australian national broadcasters; and the second, that it is going to take Australia by storm.

Four months ago I was saying that television will come slowly. Now I’m not so sure. I believe that Australians will go for television in a big way – just as they go for everything that is new and exciting.

Because I must confine the scope of this article, I shall limit my remarks to my own field – the field of drama. I shall try to tell you how a play comes to be chosen, and of the various stages which lead up to its production.

Let us suppose that John X, a drama producer, reads a play which captures his imagination. He talks the matter over with his director and tells him that he thinks he can make a good job of it. His director, having read it, agrees, and the text is sent forward to other readers for further opinions. If their reaction is favourable the play is listed for programming.

Sometimes the producer works the other way. The readers recommend a play, the director approves, and a producer is detailed to the assignment.

At least eight weeks before the scheduled time of transmission the play is in the hands of its producer and his secretary assistant. Discussions are then held with the department’s administrative officer and a rough estimate of cost is drawn up. A hideous number of complicated but necessary forms are filled in dealing with detailed costs and requisitions. (A play usually costs between 1,000 and 2,000 stg.). Details of artists’ fees, design of sets, wardrobe and make-up, copyright and any pre-filming requirements

Are duly listed, and a firm estimate is approved. Henceforward if a producer finds himself over-spending in one direction he must make economies in another. In no case may the budget be exceeded without special permission.

After the cast has been engaged, the producer may spend a couple of weeks filming the outside shots that he requires and during this period he also has preliminary discussions with his designer. Eventually sketches or models to scale are made and laid out on a printed ground plan of the studio.

Then the time comes for the technical co-ordination of activities. A meeting attended by the producer and his assistant, the designer, the lighting engineer and the technical operations manager discusses the requirements and examines in detail the camera and sound positions which the producer has marked out on his ground plan.

Three or four weeks before the production date, rehearsals begin. The floor manager, together with the producer and his assistant take the cast through the necessary moves in a rehearsal room, on the floor of which the shape and size of the sets have been carefully marked in chalk. The actors are told the positions of the various cameras and the shots which the producer proposes to take.

After this, a camera script is drawn up, in which detailed instructions are specified for the three or four cameras, and the precise nature of the shots which the producer requires – close up, medium close-up, long shot, medium long shot, etc. As often as not the angle of lens is also indicated. Thus an instruction such as this might find a place: "Shot 12, Cut to Camera 4. Medium close-up. Three shots Sherlock Holmes, Dr. Watson and Professor Moriarty. Pan right with Watson as he moves to table centre."

After the final script (incorporating the camera instructions) has been rolled off, special cards are issued for the use of each cameraman specifying the shots which concern his particular camera and the cues upon which the transmission will be coming over to him.

Meanwhile intensive rehearsing is going ahead in the rehearsal room. "I want you to ‘cheat’ at this point," explains the producer to an actor. "Don’t look at her. We want to see your eyes. Fix your eyes on a point 25 degrees to her left. In that way, we shall see your reaction, and to the viewer it will still seem that you are looking at her." One of the hundred special considerations which the television actor has to keep in mind.

So it goes on until the final week when the camera people begin to take an interest and to study the movements required of them. The sound engineer is brought in and discussions are held about the position of microphone booms, concealed microphones and so on. The vision mixer, too, begins to familiarise himself with the script, for it will be his responsibility to cut or fade from camera to camera on the producer’s instructions at the time of transmission.

Meanwhile the producer’s assistant has been checking the music and sound effects with the effects’ operator, and discussing details of lighting with the lighting engineer. A last look is taken at the formidable list of required properties and the completed wardrobe is duly checked.

Three days to go, and the artists are ready to rehearse in the studio. The producer says his last direct word to them. Once in the studio they will receive their instructions from the floor manager, who is directly responsible to the producer for all that goes on on the floor of the studio. This may shock some "sound" producers, who are (of course) accustomed to approach artists direct, by means of talk-back, but for reasons into which I have no time to go, it is now generally accepted among BBC television producers that the floor manager must be the channel of communication once rehearsals have reached the studio stage. In any case, henceforward the artists will have ceased to be the producer’s main concern. Now it is a question of camera movement, telecine, caption and music integration, and a host of other technical details.

There are usually two days spent in full dress rehearsal in the studio. Here the cameraman are as important as the artists – perhaps more important. There may be several hundred camera shots in one play, and these must all be meticulously rehearsed.

Finally – the night of the transmission. The producer takes his seat in the control gallery. His assistant sits at his elbow. On his right is the vision mixer, who responds to his producer’s instructions as he calls the camera shots. On his left is the technical operations manager. The floor manager, in charge of the studio below, listens for his cueing instructions. The show begins. We may hear the producer say: "Fade up music. Fade up telecine. Superimpose camera 1 (a caption perhaps). Lose camera 1. Superimpose camera 2. Fade telecine and music. Cue artists for laughter. Now camera 3. Hold it – now dolly back for establishing shot." And the play begins.

It is now or never. There are no second chances in television. That is perhaps why the prevailing atmosphere in a television studio – and above all in the control gallery – is always one of tremendous tension. And that, in its turn, is perhaps the cause of what has come to be known as the television ulcer – an all too familiar visitor to the television control gallery!

RADIO-ACTIVE, July 25, 1955 – Pages 3 and 17


RADIO –ACTIVE
THE ABC STAFF JOURNAL
All contributions to be addressed to the Editor, "Radio-Active",
Box 487, G.P.O.,
SYDNEY.
Volume 9 – No.6     Literary contributions are invited     October 14, 1955


WE’RE ON THE WAY

 

It is expected that towards the end of next year the first ABC television programmes will be transmitted in Sydney and Melbourne. Set out below are some of the questions which many staff members have probably been asking recently. In the answers to them you’ll find details of what has been done, and what is planned for the exciting months ahead.

What Types of Programmes will be Presented?

Mainly three types: Firstly, live studio shows; secondly, outside telecasts of sporting fixtures and events of public interest; and thirdly, films of all types. Films include documentaries and feature films made originally for the cinema; films made specially for TV from England, the Continent and the U.S.A., and telerecordings (or kinescopes) of overseas television programmes as broadcast.

Will There be Many of These Films Available to Us?

Yes. We are already dealing in Australia and overseas with numerous Government agencies and film producers and agents as well as overseas TV authorities. Sample films from various sources have already been seen by a number of senior officers. Our first consignment of BBC films and telerecordings is already on the way. There is plenty of variety in the material available, ranging from children’s films to the mystery drama with Hollywood stars; from Continental musicals to outstanding British and American spoken word programmes.

At What Time of the Day Will Our TV Programmes be on the Air?

In the beginning, most of our programmes will be presented at night, but there will be regular daytime features, such as women’s sessions, rural sessions and children’s programmes, also sport on Saturday afternoons, and special features on Sundays in addition to church services.

Will it be Possible to Hire or Buy Films from Overseas, Particularly from Dollar Countries?

Yes. The ABC and commercial licence holders have been given an allocation of overseas currency to buy material from overseas and a proportion of this allotment can be spent in dollar countries.

What Will the Buildings be Like?

In both Sydney and Melbourne we shall have a modern studio building close to the city, containing two medium sized production studios, together with the appropriate ancillary accommodation. The latter will include telerecording and telecine equipment; storage space for films, props and sets; scenery manufacturing workshops; dressing and make-up rooms, etc. In fact, we’ve incorporated in them all the facilities existing in the most modern TV centres overseas. Officers of the Department of Works have drawn up plans and preliminary construction should begin soon.

What’s Happening About Training?

Already about 30 members of the Victorian staff and a few of the N.S.W. staff have completed a TV course at the Melbourne Technical College.

Recently two cameras chains have been ordered and should be delivered soon. On November 21 next we open in Sydney the first of three special familiarisation (elementary) courses – each lasting two weeks – for staff members from N.S.W. and other States. The second and third courses will be held during January and early February, and they will be followed by special "TV Workshops" which will continue until intensive pre-transmission training begins in our permanent TV studios. Twenty students will attend each course, and later on there will be further opportunities for those not selected for these initial schools, but who are keenly interested in TV, to undertake a familiarisation course. Each of these courses will combine lectures with the maximum amount of practical work. The syllabus is being worked out jointly by four of our officers who have recently had TV experience overseas: the Director of Drama and Features, Mr. Neil Hutchinson; the Victorian Supervisor of Youth education, Mr. Frank Watts; the Features Editor, Mr. Mungo McCallum; and the Federal Youth Education Assistant, Miss Kay Kinane.

How Will Students be Chosen for These First Training Courses?

From the applications received from staff members earlier this year, all of which have been carefully considered by appropriate senior officers. Those who have attended the Melbourne course will not be eligible to attend these initial courses in Sydney, but some of them will be selected for the "TV Workshops" later on.

Will There be Opportunities for Training in O.B.’s?

Yes. O.B. units have been ordered for Sydney and Melbourne and are expected early next year. Use will be made of these units to train potential producers, commentators, cameramen and technicians.

RADIO-ACTIVE, October 14, 1955 – Pages 3 and 19


RADIO –ACTIVE
THE ABC STAFF JOURNAL
All contributions to be addressed to the Editor, "Radio-Active",
Box 487, G.P.O.,
SYDNEY.
Volume 9 – No.7     Literary contributions are invited     November 23, 1955


As stated in our last number, "we’re on the way": and all members of the staff will now have some idea of the progress which has been made toward TV. Obviously, there’s a long road ahead; but the excitement of being on the move is infecting everybody, and enthusiasts on all hands are looking forward to playing some active part in the introduction of the new medium.

Already staff training in TV has begun in earnest; as we go to press. Introductory Course No.1 is in progress in Sydney. We hope to have something to say about this next month. The three full-time instructors are Frank Watts (Victoria), Kay Kinane and Mungo MacCullum (Sydney), all of whom have had recent TV experience in Great Britain and America. They will be assisted by Neil Hutchison and other instructors from within and without the service who have specialised knowledge of TV.

RADIO-ACTIVE will keep abreast of developments, and serve as a source of general information – and, it is hoped, as a clearing-house for ideas. The article published last month was necessarily brief, and there must be many more questions in the minds of staff members. If such questions are sent to RADIO-ACTIVE, an attempt will be made – within reason – to obtain and publish the answers.

THE EDITOR

 

RADIO-ACTIVE, November 23, 1955 – Page 1

TV JARGON LIST
We publish here the first section of the ABC’s official Jargon List. Different countries have different terms for some TV operations and equipment; and this list is an attempt to standardise vocabulary in ABC TV, so that everyone will know what everyone else is talking about!

The list is being given its first practical use at the TV School now in progress at St. Peter’s Hall, Sydney. It will almost certainly be lengthened. RADIO-ACTIVE will publish the rest of the list, section by section, in successive issues.

Section A: Camera Operations
Pan left/right Swivel left and right
Tilt up/down
Dolly in/out Move in and out
Truck right/left Move right and left
Tongue up/down Elevate/lower camera arm
Tighter shot Move in or change lens
Looser shot Move out or change lens
Hold Order to cameraman
Ready Order to cameraman
Big close-up ("big head") B.C.U.
Close-up - C.U. Head shot
Medium close-up - M.C.U. Shoulder shot
Close medium shot - C.M.S. Chest shot
Medium shot - M.S. Hip shot
Medium long shot - M.L.S. Knee shot
Long shot - L.S. Full length
Vista (rare in studio) V.L.S.
One-shot One person, etc.
Two-shot
Three shot, etc.
Looming Talent looms in movement too much
Fall-away Opposite of looming
Burn in (or) stick When image burns or sticks on camera tube due to immobility
C. Centre
L. Left
R. Right
Headroom More space above head
Footroom More foreground
Cut Instantaneous switching between cameras
"Cut to (1), (2), etc." Order used for above
Dissolve Fading one camera to another, images overlapping
Fade to black/in Fade picture out to black, then fade in a picture
Black Blank screen
Flare Diffusion or flaring of light areas due to too much white
Halo Dark halo round white object or vice versa due to too much white or black
Kill Stop in quickly
De-focus Go out of focus
Super Superimpose one picture on another, e.g. a caption on a scene
Favour (1), (2), etc. Favour, in superimposition, the picture from camera (1) or (2), etc., e.g., give it more strength
Frame up Order to cameraman to get required picture
Reaction shot Shot of talent reaction
In shot In the picture
RADIO-ACTIVE, November 23, 1955 – Page 5

 


RADIO –ACTIVE
THE ABC STAFF JOURNAL
All contributions to be addressed to the Editor, "Radio-Active",
Box 487, G.P.O.,
SYDNEY.
Volume 9 – No.8     Literary contributions are invited    December 21, 1955


TEN DAYS TV

By ONE WHO SERVED

"Ten days CB" was the army’s idea of slavery; now, eighteen ABC bodies and two from the PMG’s Department think that perhaps "Ten days TV" is a pretty close parallel – except that they liked it. Ten days of talks, assignments, discussions – blazing sunshine outside and blazing lights in the studio – sweating engineers and technicians trying to get new equipment to work – and equally exhausted but enthusiastic students trying to get equally new exercises to mean something: that’s some kind of picture of the First Introductory TV Course held by the ABC in studio 228 in Sydney, from November 21 to December 2.

The aim of the Introductory Courses is to give selected staff members who have applied for TV training a brief experience of the medium, and sufficient background to enable more advanced training to be undertaken next year. Most of those present at the First Course were from New South Wales; but there will be increased representation from the other States in the next and following courses. There will also be representatives of the PMG’s Department, the Meteorological Bureau, the Broadcasting Control Board and the N.S.W. and Victorian Police Forces.

The course was open by the G.M. who not only got things moving immediately, but also stayed to answer a barrage of questions on all aspects of the ABC’s plans for TV – when it is hoped to start transmissions, studio and OB equipment, staffing, programmes and so on. From then on there wasn’t a spare moment – in or out of official hours. Some displayed unexpected talent as handymen, others found the talk in TV a vastly different proposition from what it is on sound. OB teams scoured the city in search of copy, which turned up in theatres and boys’ clubs, cargo ships and swimming pools. Surprised police were questioned about parking facilities for OB vans, and startled property owners tried to cope with requests for microwave dishes to be erected on their buildings.

As much as possible, straight talk was interspersed with practical activities, and there was interested discussion on TV for special groups: for women, children and the man-on-the-land. Problems relating to the camera, lenses, film and lighting were handled by the ABC’s technical staff who, with the assistance of two Melbourne PMG officers, Bob Forster and Leo Fowler, earned the gratitude of all by their endeavors to get the one camera into action and keep it there. Stan Hawes and his colleagues in the Film Division of the Department of the Interior explained the intricacies of film shooting and editing, and Harry Pringle spent an afternoon discussing the techniques of light entertainment production.

The greater part of the instruction was handled by Kay Kinane, Neil Hutchinson, Mungo MacCallum and Frank Watts. After passing on the basic information they have gathered overseas on the nature of TV and the tasks facing producers, on OB’s and talks, magazine and unscripted programmes, drama and features, they formulated series of exercises which gradually led the students to the point where they were able to plan and produce their own programmes. Probably the outstanding feature of the Course was the active enthusiasm of those taking part – all of whom are now making plans to continue study and exercises until workshop training begins.

But all agreed that the producer was right who, after his first experience in control, staggered out murmuring "But it all seems so easy when you read about it….."

RADIO-ACTIVE, December 21, 1955 – Page 4

SYDNEY’S FIRST ABC TV SHOW

The Sydney TV camera went into action for the first time on the evening of Wednesday, November 23, in studio 228, when the Sydney TV Discussion Group presented a live magazine programme to an audience of senior officers and TV School members. The Group has been meeting weekly since the Melbourne schools ended early this year.

It was a highly varied programme. Individual members of the group were responsible for planning the various sections, and the programme was wielded together by Peter MacGregor, who proved a very energetic compere.

For weeks before the show the group worked with floor plans of St. Peter’s Hall, with Bretz plotters marking out lens angles and camera movements. Members could be seen, too, stalking round the lunch room at Market Street each Thursday evening, with Bretz boxes to their right eyes. Even with the limitation of one camera, and very little live rehearsal, a very interesting evening’s entertainment resulted. The audience first saw the camera pan all round the set, framing different members of the group at work. It came to rest on Owen Weingott, who gave a demonstration of TV makeup. Ida Jenkins then introduced a psycho-drama, with professionals acting out a mother-in-law problem, which Dr. McGeorge discussed. Miss Roy, a charming, flower-haloed, sari-costumed Indian dancer, accompanied by turbaned musicians, danced a welcome to the TV audience. That item was owed to Rick Aspinall, who made many friends on his recent trip across the Asian Continent. Bruce Webber commented on the weather, with two-week old maps that luckily fitted remarkably well with the current temperature and rainfall.

Then the G.M. was led before the lights and interviewed by Dick Healy about the progress of ABC TV plans.

The audience seemed thoroughly to enjoy the show, which went very smoothly. It was a credit to the co-operative effort of the group and showed what can be done by thorough planning outside the studio.

Kay Kinane produced the show, and Betty Parsons floor-managed: the rest of the group of ten were all diving around like busy ants, changing lights, moving furniture, adding and subtracting props, or kicking cables out of the way. Dick Healy had the heavy job of trundling the camera dolly. Wait till you have to do that among the hills and dales of a floor like that in Sydney Studio 228!

At the first TV School in Sydney. (From L.): Leo Fowler, Mungo MacCallum, Colin Stockbridge, Beverley Gledhill, Kay Kinane, Frank Watts and John Laker.

Photo :"Sydney Morning Herald"

RADIO-ACTIVE, December 21, 1955 – Page 5

 

TV JARGON LIST

We publish here further sections of the ABC’s official Jargon List.

Section B: The Camera

Types of mounting
Tripod Light, portable
Pedestal Heavy, dollies well
Crane Can be elevated and trucked in given position
W.A. Wide Angle Lens shows wide picture
N.A. Narrow angle Lens showing narrow picture close-up
L.F. Long Focus Lens bringing distant view close
Zoom Lens which can change size on air, making picture zoom in to viewer. Used on O.B.’s
Cropping Cutting outside edges of picture (Telerecording does this)
Contrast Range Comparison in grey scale of objects in shot
Framing Centering composition
Studio Lenses
39mm
2 inch
3 inch
5 inch
8 inch
O.B. Lenses
As above plus
12 inch
17 inch
24 inch
Zoom

 

Section C: Lighting
Main or fill light General lighting of area
Key light Light on specific aspect
Back light To add perspective
Top light Light mounted above set
Eye light Light mounted on front of camera to highlight face features
Spot Used to light specific areas
Baby spot Ditto
Scoop Wide reflected lights for set lighting
Barn doors Used on spots to define lighted areas, or shade light from camera
Flood Very broad spot light

 

Section D: Design
Set Enclosed space for action
Flats Covered frames for sets
Screens Mobile frames
Drapes Curtains
Cyclorama Flat blue or grey drape, width or more studio
Props Any property used
Practical A real property e.g. real dog
Visuals (can be animated) Any object demonstrated (Can be three dimensional)
Graphics (can be animated) Any drawn, two-dimensional visual
Slides: opaque/transparent Used in still projector
Caption Any title card
Flip-cards Titles in sequence on cards on a ringed holder
Tiltcard Vertical strip of graphics, down which the camera can tilt
Pull A moving part of a card pulled by hand
Roller Visuals on continuous strip worked over two rollers – horizontally or vertically
Prompt card
Loop film A loop of film for continuous repetitive action
Timing cards Flip cards showing passing of last few minutes of programme
Aspect ratio 4 x 3 ratio essential for all slides, etc
Studio plan Plan of studio 1" to 1’ scale
Grid Pattern of lighting grid in ceiling
Floor plan : scribble/rough plan/scale plan Stages of designer’s plan
Mock-up Imitation set
Taped-up set Set outline marked on floor in adhesive tape
RADIO-ACTIVE, December 21, 1955 – Pages 12 & 13