Cinematographer to Watch: Charlotte Hornsby

New York-based cinematographer Charlotte Hornsby is making a name for herself on the festival circuit, working on titles like Mariama Diallo’s “Master,” a horror picture dealing with racism on a college campus, and Haroula Rose’s “Once.” Upon a River,” a coming-of-age drama about a Native American girl who embarks on an epic journey in search of her mother. In addition to his work on features and shorts, Hornsby lists his roles as director and director of photography. Beyoncé’s September 2015 Vogue cover shoot Among his most notable credits. Throughout his career, Hornsby has experimented with different styles of cinematography and established a distinct style, weaving social commentary into his work.

“Master” marked Horbsby’s second collaboration with Diallo. He previously spoke for “Hair Wolf,” Diallo’s 2018 about the workers of a Black-owned hair salon who fought a white appropriation of Black culture. Horror Story won the Sundance Short Film Jury Award for US Fiction. “Hair Wolf” and “Master” both examine the Black American experience through a frightening lens.

In “Master”, a portrait of a black student haunted by his predominantly white campus and a portrait of a black professor seeking tenure at the college, Hornsby leans into a anamorphic style, And against frightening backgrounds the characters connect with disturbing shots. Hornsby has explained that she was aiming for a “sick feeling” and used zoom shots to create a “supernatural POV” that created the sensation that the film’s protagonists were being watched. He described working with different skintones on the film as “a gift” and emphasized that “what different skin tones offer you from a lighting standpoint. There’s still a lot more we can do.” were able to,” she said. “Black skin tones can reflect and absorb color in a different way than white skin tones, and I think we’ve created a lot of powerful images from the truth of that.”

In films like “Master,” which takes place on a simple-looking college campus, lighting and camerawork are key to setting the mood and setting off the terror. Hornsby’s cinematography evokes restlessness and mystery, creating a twisted sense of reality. In an interview with Credits, She explains that the beginning of “Master” was largely inspired by what? opening sequence The 1968 horror classic “Rosemary’s Baby”. Hornsby shared, the “Master” team wanted the film to “feel like the approach of Ancaster College, like this dark presence visible from this impossibly vantage point, where you see the vast, ominous campus.” From this creepy wide shot, the camera slowly turns to Gail (Regina Hall), a professor moving into her new home.

This scene is repeated when a freshman college student, Jasmine (Zoe Rennie), walks into her dorm room for the first time. Hornsby wanted the viewer to relate the scene with the way the camera compressed on Gale, with the camerawork indicating the presence of a foreboding on these women. The white student body and staff aren’t the only threatening figures on this campus: physical spaces serve as another adversary for black characters.

Hornsby explains that he “talked” [her] Worrying about what it would feel like, almost like the needle in “Sleeping Beauty” that entices her, feels like something there is a spirit there, or already in the room. To accomplish this, he shot through a distorted glass that would create a pattern of shadows at the edge of the room, resulting in an eerie appearance in inanimate space. Hornsby describes how Jasmine is ready to “explore a little more and touch the surface of the wall so that we initially feel uneasy.”

In “Child Wolf” Diallo and Hornsby explore the dangers of astral invasion and the appropriation of black culture. The film, for which Hornsby took home the Best Cinematography in the Short Film category at the Brooklyn Horror Film Festival, follows the workers of a black salon as they approach the film’s synopsis with the intention of “sucking the blood of life out of black culture.” women’s intentions”.

Haunted music follows camera movements, providing tight shots of objects and characters meant to induce claustrophobia. We get a sense that something is coming to these heroes, something they cannot run away from. When danger is imminent, the camera moves closer to the characters and then cuts back and forth between the black protagonist and the white antagonist who is taking away black culture. In moments of ground reality, we view the scene from a more realistic, observational point of view. But when the tension is high, we’re overwhelmed by tight angles—no one knows what might creep into the shot, or what plot twists lie ahead.

Hornsby has a few projects in the pipeline including “Mother’s Milk”, a thriller about a journalist who teams up with his late son’s girlfriend to track down his killers, and “Chantilly Bridge”. , the sequel to Linda Yellen’s 1993 “Chantilly Lace”. A portrait of seven female friends.

see “master” on prime video And check out Hornsby’s body of work on it Website.