Chicago DP: Robert Patrick Stern

Posted by admin


Only Thunder


Director of Photography


Robert Patrick Stern

A “Director of Photography” is the chief over all camera crews working on a film, and responsible for achieving artistic and technical decisions related to the image.

Hi everyone and thanks for joining us here at Exposing the Crew: A Place for Chicago-made Short Films!

This week’s ETC HIGHLIGHT is Only Thunder.   

“A valuable Director of Photography has the talent to paint with both light and shadows. This film reflects that talent.” (Justin Jackola, Director at JJack Productions)

Only Thunder is a short film about a mysterious woman who confronts a small town sheriff with a 7 year old secret.

The Director of Photography is in charge of the achieving the artistic and technical look to a film. The role of the DP is one of the major creative roles, providing the film with its unique visual identity.  The visual creativity seen in this film is this week’s ETC EXPOSED crew member, Robert Patrick Stern.

In order to create the desired look, Robert worked closely with the Director to determine the visual style of the film.  After this was decided, they created an equipment list and tested to verify if the results will fit the Director’s vision for the film.

The DP works with the Gaffer and all other camera crew each day to set up for the scenes that will be shot.  Robert’s role was critical in helping decide exact movements of both the actors and the cameras.

When the day is complete, the DP often prepares for the following day, and checks that all requirements are ready to go.

You can learn more about Robert Patrick Stern at

Thank you for watching this week’s “EXPOSED” short film, and reading our new blog Exposing the Crew: A Place for Chicago-made Short Films!

See you next Tuesday!