FEMO Equation
FEMO is a checklist. Its purpose it to check that you are indeed creating a more cinematic frame. It’s a reminder that we are working with film, a medium that is about time and hence motion; that the film frame is a key hole (not a picture frame), that it allows to show things in from an unprecedented vintage point.

FEMO equation does not claim to be a visual design concept and is not meant to spare the filmmaker from the need to do thorough visual research to find the perfect visual key to their idea. But it’s useful for the chaos of production especially if the cinematographer is the director herself or is not very experienced.

Cinematographer's Checklist
F (Frame within Frame) is an old photography principle. In film it attracts attention to the perspective, to the relationship between subject and context and graphically reinforces the depth.

E stands for go for Extremes, meaning shoot Extreme Close up or Extreme Long shots. Medium shots are very unnatural, and yet they are favorite in students’ films. In life we either see people in LS or ELS or in CU or ECU. It also reminds us of a film’s ability to do that, to look deeper into human eyes, to step back and see the “bigger picture:” human beings in the environment that’s friendly, hostile, aloof.

M is for motion. Something has to move in a film frame: character, leaves in the wind, eye lashes or the camera itself. It’s better to shoot the dialogue while people are walking or doing other things than when they are sitting on the couch. It’s not theater or TV.

O means shoot through obstruction (leaves, gates, passers by). This speaks to a voyeur inside all of us. It is just more intriguing and interesting when the image is not served to you naked on a plate but you have to work a bit to see it, plus it again reinforces the depth of the film frame and the motion.