Re: how much of what we see is black?

From: Steve Polta (email suppressed)
Date: Tue Oct 30 2007 - 10:19:09 PDT

Years ago--around 1990 actually--I read a musing piece
in the Chicago Reader on this subject. It wondered why
we do not remember the black parts and only remember
the pictures. (I understand that there are
physiological/psychological reasons for this but it's
interesting to think about.) At an impressionable age,
this article made a huge impression on me; I thought
about it for years and always intended to make a film
based on this (later on, I saw the films of Rose
Lowder and saw almost precisely what I'd imagined). I
always have wondered if Fred Camper wrote this

Scott Stark's website Flicker sez it nicely:
"Sometimes what's most interesting is what you can't
see. It's what happens in the gaps between images, in
the moments between moments." (

Some have suggested that the black spaces allow for
micro-daydreams, and that this is important to the
cinematic experience.

steve polta

--- Fred Camper <email suppressed> wrote:

> For most 8mm and 16mm projectors that I'm familiar
> with, the answer is
> 50 per cent.
> What often varies is how many blades the shutter
> has, and hence how many
> times during the viewing of a single frame the image
> goes to black. Two
> and three bladed shutters are common for reduced
> flicker. The old Bolex
> 8mms that would do 5 fps had nine-bladed shutters,
> for relatively
> flickerless 5 fps projection.
> You can often determine this by viewing the shutter
> optically, or by
> advancing it with an inching knob while looking into
> the gate.
> Fred Camper
> Chicago
> For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at
> <email suppressed>.

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For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.