OUR STORY

The birth of a new kind of film lens

Whitepoint Optics was born while running, in 2016.

Two guys behind the origins of Whitepoint Optics are lens engineer Timo Ala-Talkkari and colorist and post production producer Jussi Myllyniemi. Although both had experience with cinematography, they weren’t introduced through work, but marathon running, which is a long-time hobby of both.

Ala-Talkkari had worked as a Lens Engineer at Zeiss and had an ambition to design lenses that could generate flawless and clear image and capture the world as it is. Myllyniemi approached the matter from a different perspective: as a colorist, his work was to modify the image so that it becomes interesting – not just a realistic depiction of the world, but something more, something beyond realism.

In chats during their running exercises, Ala-Talkkari and Myllyniemi shared the realisation that usually filmmakers are not interested in shooting the world in a realistic way. They rather seek to distort the image to make it expressive and impressive. This gave rise to the idea of creating a new kind of film lens: one that does not seek ice-cold, realistic precision, but instead aims to serve the needs of filmmakers, who want to present their own view and interpretation of the world.

In 2017, it was time to stop running and start making film lenses. Whitepoint Optics was founded with the main focus of supporting cinematographers to tell better stories in cinema, television and commercials. Soon the first lens, the TS70 series, was released to the market. The series uses the same glass that was used in Apollo missions to record the Earth for the first time in human history: Hasselblad glass.

Growing the Team and Creating Tilt & Swing

Soon the team got a new member who had different expertise than Jussi and Timo. Jussi had worked with cinematographer Peter Flinckenberg in various productions – for example Concrete Night (2013), for which Flinckenberg later received the American Society of Cinematographers Spotlight Award and Jussi Award for Best Cinematography (Finland’s premier film industry prize). Flinckenberg had heard about Whitepoint Optics’ lenses and asked them to craft a specific kind of lens for shooting of Come Sunday (2018), a Netflix production.

The result was the prototype of TS70 Tilt & Swing, which became a part of WPO’s standard lens repertoire. Soon Flinckenberg joined Whitepoint Optics as a Lens Development Manager and has used Whitepoint Optics lenses in several of his notable works, for example 1, 2 and 3.

Expansion to Lens Rehousing

Soon it was time to create something new. Our clients liked our lenses that use Hasselblad glass, and started to ask us if we could rehouse other lenses that use Hasselblad glass. We couldn’t say no. In the beginning of 2019, we launched our rehousing service, the first rehousing Leica R, Canon FD and Nikon AI-S – all covering full frame sensors. Since then, the demand for lens rehousing has increased rapidly.

Since 2017, we have grown into a team of over 20 people, all with different backgrounds. Every year we deliver hundreds of lenses to all continents of the world. Our goal stays the same: to deliver a paint brush to the cinematographer.

WHITEPOINT OPTICS IN MEDIA

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    Legendary Cinema Lenses Designed and Produced in Finland

    About

    Whitepoint Optics is part of Whitepoint Production Company based in Helsinki.

    Contact us: [email protected]

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    +358 50 5151110