Gus Van Sant shared his six rules of moviemaking with Moviemaker Magazine recently.
Rule No. 6 on Photography is my favorite:
Don’t get cuckoo with the lights; you don’t really need them anymore. Film stocks today can handle wildly different color temperatures and low light levels. Keep the pace lively. Don’t waste too much time making the shot look perfect, moving objects on surfaces, playing with the blocking—just shoot it. Don’t over-think. Get a really good director of photography, but don’t fight with him. He has the same control over you that you have over the actors, so he can make you cry.
The remaining five rules are:
1. Be strong. Confident. Get enough sleep. And relax.
2. Stand up for your ideas. Be direct, as in being a director. Take it easy, but don’t let them tell you how to make your movie.
3. Take control of the budget. Go through the budget line by line, and decide if the items in there are things that you really need—or need more of.
4. Make the directions clear and simple for your actors.
5. Take liberties with the script. It's not written in stone.
For more details, check out this Moviemaker Magazine's article.