Posted 07 February 2008 - 11:01 AM
It depends a great deal on the Director, the DP, and the project.
One one end, I've worked with camera men that were almost totally involved with lighting and wanted (expected) me to set the shot with the director.
I've worked with camera men and directors that were involved with lighting and actors so they wanted me to design the shot myself.
On the flip side, I've worked with dp's and directors that all but operated the shot for me, "pan left, tilt up a bit, let them grow on you here, then pull back, now tilt down to the feet, et, et, et".
From the camera man and director's perspective, it depends on how good your operator is. A top of the line operator with years of experience and a great eye might just have better ideas about the shot than you do. It would be counter productive for the final product to micro manage the shot too much as you would likley end up with a less quality shot than if you had left it up to your operator.
This is one reason that many camera men use the same operator on all their jobs, they get into a system of who does what and the process becomes more organic, more efficiant and generally works better.