Forum Thread: Who is your favorite DP?

I think mine would have to be Conrad Hall.  I worked on several projects with him while at USC and not only was he a talented dude, he was a really nice guy as well.  I think his style of shooting has had the most influence on DP today.  Certainly with these new digital cameras with massive latitude, there is room to really experiment and try new things.

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For the same reasons you list Conrad Hall, I think you have to put Gordon Willis in that category of having the most influence upon modern DP's.  We wouldn't have any concept of darkness were it not for Willis' work on Godfather II and other films.  Admittedly, the same can be said about Hall's work on In Cold Blood...

My favorite DP's, in no particular order:

Bob Richardson, Roger Deakins, Gordon Willis, Nestor Almendros, Harris Savides

Rudolph Maté! And I second Almendros; his Rohmer work is particularly great.

So just for the fun of going with a throwback I am going to give it to Jack Cardiff for bringing the art of cinematography into color.  But I can't actually pick a favorite.

Roger Deakins for his incredible ability to light a scene from a piece of paper down to the fc, shows an incredible imagination and creative eye for how something could look. His use of soft light is fantastic yet he still creates mood and drama around it. On top of all that he seems to shoot the best films with the best directors, can't complain there. ;)

Roger Deakins !!!! without a doubt.

John Toll has been a huge inspiration to me. His daytime exteriors are phenomenal(Braveheart, Legends of the Fall).

His work with Cameron Crowe especially Vanilla sky is still some of my favorite til this day. 

Janusz Kaminski, Conrad Hall, Darius Khondji, Roger Deakins, Robert Elswit 

My novice eye loves Emmanuel Lubezki for Children of Men and Y Tu Mama Tambien

Gordon Willis for The Godfather and Conrad Hall for Cool Hand Luke is the reason I went to film school. Other DP's I love + favorite film are Wally Pfister (Dark Knight & Memento), Rob Elswit (Boogie Nights), Bob Richardson (Kill Bill 1 & 2), Christopher Doyle (In the Mood for Love), Lubezki (Sleepy Hollow & Children of Men), Eric Steelberg (500 Days of Summer & Up in the Air), James Wong Howe (The Rose Tattoo).

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