Prof. Gustavo Mercado’s book published

gustavo mercado

Prof. Gustavo Mercado’s second book in The Filmmaker’s Eye series, The Filmmaker’s Eye – The Language of the Lens: The Power of Lenses and the Expressive Cinematic Image, was just published by Focal Press/Routledge.

About the book: 

The Filmmaker's Eye - Gustavo Mercardo's book cover

The Language of the Lens explores the expressive power of the camera lens and the storytelling contributions that this critical tool can make to a film project. This book offers a unique approach to learning how lenses can produce aesthetically and narratively compelling images in movies, through a close examination of the various ways lens techniques control the look of space, movement, focus, flares, distortion, and the “optical personality” of a story’s visual landscape. Like The Filmmaker’s EyeThe Language of the Lens combines precise technical instruction with narrative analysis and cinematic aesthetics considerations.

Loaded with vivid examples from commercial, independent, and world cinema, The Language of the Lens presents dozens of insightful case studies examining their conceptual, narrative, and technical approaches to reveal how master filmmakers have harnessed the power of lenses to express the entire range of emotions, themes, tone, atmosphere, subtexts, moods, and abstract concepts. 

The Language of the Lens provides filmmakers, at any level or experience, with a wealth of knowledge to unleash the full expressive power of any lens at their disposal, whether they are shooting with state-of-the-art cinema lenses or a smartphone, and everything in between. Prof. Mercado’s first book, The Filmmaker’s Eye: Learning and Breaking the Rules of Cinematic Composition, has been translated into French, Spanish, Chinese, Polish, Turkish, Portuguese, Japanese, and Korean, and is used by film programs at colleges and universities worldwide. 

Quotes about the book:

The Language of the Lens is a truly illuminating book, inspiring for emerging filmmakers as well as veteran directors and cinematographers. Mr. Mercado elevates our understanding of the expressive power of artistic lensing and the incredible force of creative filmmaking.” 

– John Inwood, Emmy nominated cinematographer of Scrubs and The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt 

The Language of the Lens combines beautiful visual examples from a wide range of films to explain the aesthetic and emotional connotations of lens language. Understanding the technical and creative aspects of the lens is essential for cinematographers and directors to punctuate the thematic essence of the scene. A very useful visual reference, this book is a must read for any aspiring filmmaker.”

– Jacqueline B. Frost, author of Cinematography for Directors and Professor, California State University, Fullerton