Meet the inventor of the digital camera, Steven Sasson

In the run up to the Documentary Summit 2011, we have been showing a ‘Doc Of The Day’ every day on the official site ( The doc today is a fantastic short about the creator of the digital camera, Steven Sasson – at three minutes long, it’s a must watch for anyone who works with cameras. Can you believe that he recorded his images to an old skool audio cassette tape?!

If you want to come to the Doc summit this weekend, there are still places. You can sign up below (use code CHRISJONES to get nearly 50% off ticket price – £69.99)

That’s two whole days training with over a dozed top doc industry experts. Full speaker list here…

See you there!PS – if you like the doc, David Friedman, the film maker, has a whole pile of others on his site at

Onwards and upwards!

Chris Jones, Film Maker and Author


4 Responses to Meet the inventor of the digital camera, Steven Sasson

  1. David December 2, 2011 at 4:19 pm #

    Hey, Chris. I just noticed you embedded this on your site, so I thought I’d share a little info for your readers since this was a fairly guerrilla production. The crew was me and one assistant. We shot the video with just one light in a softbox as a key light, using ambient room light as the fill.

    For the still shots of him, I used two lights. They were Broncolor strobes. For the video I actually just used the modeling light from one of those strobes. I turned it all the way up, and set back far enough that the light’s fan wouldn’t be picked up by the mic.

    Both still and video were shot with the same 5DmkII. He’s mic’d with a Sennheiser lav, and the audio was recorded by the camera (although I now typically record dual system audio).

    The most important component was a smart and interesting subject who was generous with his time.

    It was shot on location at Kodak in Rochester, NY in an available conference room. We tried to shoot in a way that didn’t make it look conference-room-like.

    Some B roll (closeups of the other Kodak cameras) was shot in the room after the subject left, while we were packing up. Some B roll (all the shots with the iPhone in it) and one still image (the film canisters) were shot much later during editing when I realized I needed some more footage for interest.

    Editing was done in FCP 6.


    • Chris December 2, 2011 at 4:32 pm #

      Wow thanks David for sharing. Really great work.

  2. Owen A Smith GTC Director of Photography December 3, 2011 at 11:41 am #

    Where would we all be without Ernest Nussbaum and the Digital Camera ?

  3. Owen A Smith GTC Director of Photography December 3, 2011 at 11:44 am #

    Where would we all be without Steven Sasson and the Digital Camera ?

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