What Makes The Cinematography Of The Expanse So Unique

The Expanse is a television series that has taken the world by storm. Some say its success is due to the cinematography of The Expanse that makes it stand out from other series. Others claim that the well-written plot and characters are what keep people coming back for more. No matter the reason, it’s undeniable that The Expanse is one of the most popular TV series today.

The Expanse has used several techniques to make its cinematography unique, including detailed staged scenes, lighting effects, close shots, camera rotation techniques, and special effects. All of these elements come together to create TV series that is visually stunning and unlike anything else today.

In this blog post, we’ll be taking a closer look at the cinematography of The Expanse. We’ll discuss what makes it so special and how it contributes to the overall success of the series. By the end, you’ll have a better understanding of why The Expanse is one of the best-looking shows on television.

So, without further ado, let’s dive into the world of The Expanse!

Scenes And Character Style In The Expanse: Creating The Visual Style

The Expanse is a critically acclaimed science fiction series. The series has been praised for its strong character development, as well as its rich and detailed worldbuilding. So, we will explore the use of scenes and character style in The Expanse, with a focus on how they contribute to the overall narrative.

The Scenes In The Expanse

the cinematography of the expanse

To create the best possible scenes, the team behind The Expanse went to some actual places that are thematically appropriate to visit. For example, they came to some of the oil shores and saw clearly how people work and how their workspaces are structured. It provides a beautiful and eerie backdrop for most scenes while also serving as a symbol of the exploitation and danger that lurks in the corners of the solar system.

Similarly, they visit some of the 100-year-old places to see the development after a few centuries. It is the perfect way to introduce the characters and establish the setting while also providing a glimpse into the dark history of the asteroid belt.

In addition to choosing locations carefully, the team also works closely with scene designers to create ideal scenes. This involves creating blueprints with references to visual elements and discussing the key themes and ideas that the scene should communicate. Once the scene is designed, it is then tested to see if it works for both the story and the characters.

Ultimately, the goal is to create scenes that are not only visually stunning and thematically relevant but also contribute to the overall narrative in a meaningful way. By using scenes to their full potential, The Expanse is able to create a rich and deeply immersive world that draws viewers in and keeps them coming back for more.

The Character Style

the cinematography of the expanse

Each character in The Expanse has their own distinct style that reflects where they come from and what they do. For example, The people on the Rocinante ship wear helmets that have a character style suited to their profession and personality. These helmets do not blur when talking and still attach a microphone. This way, it is easy to film and capture the characters’ faces and their emotions while they are talking. 

The Belters have a bohemian style which is represented by the cloth styles. This is because they live and work in an environment that is very different from the other characters who come from Earth or Mars. Their style reflects their unique personality and lifestyle. 

The Expanse is a TV series that is known for its amazing cinematography. The characters’ styles play a big part in creating the visually stunning world of The Expanse.

The Cinematography Of The Expanse In The Specific Scenes

The cinematography of The Expanse is one of the most beautiful and intricate aspects of the series. So, we will explore the cinematography in four specific scenes from the TV series.

Scene 1: The Underground Scene

the cinematography of the expanse

The underground scene is a visually stunning setting that uses a variety of visual effects to create a believable and exciting environment. 

First of all, the use of VFX effects in combination with reality helps to create a realistic setting. The Ceres Station is also brought to life with the use of CGI and visual effects. This allows for a more immersive and believable experience for the viewer. 

In addition, they set up some square neon lights at the corners to light up the walls as well as some rotating lights to add the taste of a space station. This helps to create a more mysterious and intriguing atmosphere.

Lastly, the blur technique is used so that the background is not too bright to create a more impactful and immersive experience. Also, this allows for the focus to be on the people and the action taking place in the foreground.

All of these elements come together to create a truly captivating and visually stunning scene.

Scene 2: The Rocinante Ship

the cinematography of the expanse

Every scene in the Rocinante ship is carefully crafted to look amazing. The dark background and various colors of light all help to set the mood and atmosphere for each scene. 

The main technique used in this particular scene is led lights. This allows for different colors and intensities of light to be used to create the desired effect. In this scene, the blue lights are used as the main color of the ship. This creates a very modern and professional atmosphere.

There are also different kinds of lights used throughout the scene. For example, when everyone is wearing their helmets, the white light hits their faces and creates a very neutral effect. To create more realism, when each person is reading notifications, there is a gentle vibration that can be felt. 

Another great technique used in this scene is when Alex (Cas Anvar) climbs the stairs and slips, he is actually held by ropes, and the cameramen rotate the camera by using a three-axis lambda. This allows for the realistic effect of him flying through the air. When there are scenes that look like they are in zero gravity, the cameraman rotates the camera gently to create this effect. 

All of these techniques come together to create an amazing and realistic scene that looks like it is true in space.

Scene 3: The Riot Outside The UN

the cinematography of the expanse

When planning the cinematography of a scene, it is important to consider all the elements that will be included to create the most effective and polished product possible. In the scene where the UN is attacked by a mob of people, it was important to make the crowd look as large as possible. This was accomplished by getting as close to the people as possible with the camera. 

Additionally, natural light was used to create a more beautiful and ethereal look. Two cameras were used for the main actor while one camera focused on the crowd. This allowed for different angles and perspectives to be captured. The camera focus on the crowd was done in a documentary style to make it appear more realistic. 

Lastly, footage of Earth was included in order to remind viewers of the beauty of our planet and to suggest the possibility of humanity’s future. This helped to add depth and meaning to the scene. By considering all of these elements, the cinematography of this scene was able to capture the emotion and action of the moment effectively.

Scene 4: Lucia Falling In Space

the cinematography of the expanse

When Lucia (Rosa Gilmore) falls into space in the fourth season, episode 9 of The Expanse, there are many small scenes at that moment. 

First of all, when Lucia just falls, people use the DG for her in this scene. However, then, as for the camera shot of Rossie during the fall, this is the real scene. They use rotating lights for this scene in order to keep the same color for every segment and make sure that the sun is always in one position. 

In the next small scene, Lucia will now stand in the middle, and the camera will rotate around her. The order of staging this scene is planet, space, planet, space alternately. They also used lights to represent the sun and planets so they could be reflected on her helmet.

Finally, when Naomi (Dominique Tipper) holds Rossie’s hand, the camera is attached to Naomi, and they rotate on a green background with a rope. This scene just shows how much people care about each other and also the great cinematography of The Expanse.

There are just four of the many amazing and well-thought-out scenes in The Expanse. Each one is different and unique in its own way, but all of them are equally important in contributing to the overall story. The cinematography is one of the many elements that make this show so great. It is clear that a lot of thought and planning goes into each and every frame. The result is a visually stunning and captivating show that is a joy to watch.

How To Get The Best Cinematography In For Films Or Videos

Filming is an important process in the world of cinema. It is the means by which motion pictures are recorded and captured on film stock. In order to get the perfect results, it is important to remember all the things below.


the cinematography of the expanse

Pre-planning is key in getting the perfect results. It is important to have a clear idea of what you want before you even start filming. This means choreographing the scenes and mapping out each shot. Make sure to leave room for improvisation, but having a plan will help ensure that you get the results you want.

Get The Right Equipment

Filmmaking is an art that takes a lot of practice and the right tools to perfect. You need to have the right equipment if you want to get great results every time. So, we will discuss some of the most important pieces of equipment that you need in order to make professional-grade films.

  • Camera: First and foremost, you need a good camera. This is the most important tool in your arsenal, and it will be the foundation of everything else that you do. There are many different types of cameras out there, so you need to find one that suits your needs and budget. You also need to make sure that you get a camera with good optics, as this will make a big difference in the quality of your final product.
  • Lens: Next, you need to get some good lenses. These will help you capture different types of shots, and they can also be used to create special effects. There are many different types of lenses out there, so you need to find ones that suit your camera and your budget.
  • Tripod: You also need to get a tripod. This is an important piece of equipment, as it will help you keep your camera steady while you are filming. There are many different types of tripods out there, so you need to find one that suits your needs and budget.

If you have the right equipment, you will be able to get great results every time you film. However, if you do not have the right equipment, you will not be able to get the results that you want. So, make sure that you invest in the right equipment before you start filming.

the cinematography of the expanse

Lighting Is Everything

Lighting is the most important aspect of cinematography. It can make or break a scene, and it can be the difference between an amateurish production and a professional one. In order to get the perfect results in every filming process, you need to understand how lighting works and how to use it effectively.

There are three basic elements of lighting: source, intensity, and direction. The source is the light itself, whether it’s natural or artificial. The intensity is the brightness of the light, and the direction is the angle at which the light hits the subject. These three elements can be used to create different effects, depending on what you’re trying to achieve.

For example, if you’re trying to create a moody atmosphere, you would want to use a low-intensity light source from a high angle. This would cast long shadows and create a sense of foreboding. Alternatively, if you’re trying to create a warm and inviting atmosphere, you would want to use a high-intensity light source from a low angle. This would fill the scene with light and create a sense of comfort.

The key to using lighting effectively is to experiment and find what works best for each individual scene. There are no hard and fast rules, so it’s important to play around and see what looks good. With a little practice, you’ll be able to create any atmosphere you want.

Character Styles

The way you dress your characters can say a lot about them. The clothes they wear, the way they style their hair, and the accessories they choose can all give clues about their personality and background.

the cinematography of the expanse

For example, if you’re creating a character intended to be sophisticated and upper-class, you would dress them in expensive-looking clothes and have them wear their hair in a neat and tidy style. Alternatively, if you’re creating a character intended to be rough and tough, you would dress them in more casual clothes and have them wear their hair in a wilder style.

The key to dressing your characters effectively is to make sure that their appearance matches their personality. If you’re not sure what a character’s personality is, take some time to develop it before you start dressing them. Once you know who they are, it will be much easier to pick the right clothes for them.

Sound Design

The sound design of a film is just as important as the visual elements. The right sound can make a scene tenser, more exciting, or more emotional. The wrong sound can ruin a scene and make it less effective.

There are two aspects to sound design: music and sound effects. The music is used to create an overall atmosphere, while the sound effects are used to add realism to the film.

The key to using music effectively is to choose the right pieces for each scene. The music should match the mood of the scene and enhance the story you’re trying to tell. The sound effects should be used sparingly, as too many can be distracting.

When it comes to sound design, it’s important to experiment and find what works best for your film. There are no hard and fast rules, so it’s important to play around and see what sounds good. With a little practice, you’ll be able to create any atmosphere you want.

the cinematography of the expanse

Cinematography is an important aspect of filmmaking that can make or break a movie. In order to create the perfect film, it’s important to understand how lighting, character styles, and sound design work. With a little practice, you’ll be able to create any atmosphere you want.


Q: What Camera was The Expanse shot on?

A: The Expanse ARRI ALEXA Minis camera. These little guys shoot at 23fps and can capture high-resolution footage with ProRes 4444 UHD 16:9 aspect ratios for later use in editing or post-production processes.

Wooden Camera Unified Accessory Kit (Pro, 19mm) Compatible with ARRI Alexa Mini Camera, Professional Support Package
  • ARRI Alexa Mini Support Package: The Unified Accessory Kit (Pro, 19mm) uses the Unified Baseplate System and allows you to have everything you need in one place. It includes a Unified Cage (Alexa Mini + LW), 2x 19mm Rod (15"), NATO Handle Plus v2 Kit, UVF Mount (Alexa Mini, No Clamp), Unified Bridgeplate (19mm), 2060 Dovetail (12"), Rod Clamp (19mm) and Battery Slide

Q: Who did VFX for The Expanse?

A: Finally, the makers of THE EXPANSE have released their first trailer for season four. The VFX in this video is done by Rocket Science VFX Spin-Vfx KrowmaNders & marZ.

Q: Is The Expanse CGI?

A: The VFX for The Expanse is so detailed that you can track every single animation away in blue screen shots. “The first two seasons alone comprise 23 episodes with over 4,600 stunning visual effects,” according to robertmunroe6.” almost all were finalized using cineSync video review– there’s way more of it than what meets the eye.

Q: How does the cinematography reflect the story and characters?

A: The cinematography in The Expanse reflects the story and characters in many ways. For example, the use of darkness and light creates a sense of tension and unease, while the use of close-ups adds to the feeling of claustrophobia. 

In addition, the cinematography is often used to reflect the emotions of the characters, for example, when the camera is used to capture the anger in their eyes. Overall, the cinematography of The Expanse is highly effective in conveying the story and characters to the audience.

Q: What are some of the challenges in filming a space epic?

A: Some of the challenges in filming a space epic are the vast emptiness of space and creating believable sets and landscapes. In order to create the illusion of an infinite universe, filmmakers have to rely on visual effects and clever camera work. 

Another challenge is keeping the cast and crew comfortable in extreme conditions; filming with helmets and space suits can be very hot and claustrophobic. Finally, there is the challenge of filming in zero gravity, which requires special rigging and cameras.


The Expanse has been widely praised for its cinematic visuals and stunning set design. The series’ creators have gone to great lengths to ensure that the show looks as realistic as possible, and it definitely shows in the final product. If you’re a fan of science fiction or space opera, then this show is definitely worth checking out. Even if you’re not, the cinematography of The Expanse is worth the watch. Thank you for reading!

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