Video lighting considerations aren't to be taken lightly when bride Snow White's gown shows up black, that bratty ring bearer seems to possess a halo, and Aunt Violet's visage looks...well, violet. Focus you reading light, videomaker.
It's perhaps both the most important and the most exasperationg factor a videomaker must contend with. There's always too much or too little, it's in the wrong place, or of the wrong color. Light is rarely just right.
Professionals solve such problems by placing lots of lights in lots of cunning places. Some daylight location scenes are even shot at night using artificial light. I recall the first itme I watched a location shoot, many years ago. Here were these enormous great lights blazing away-in full daylight.
A good deal can be done without resorting to extra, artificial light. The low-budget videomaker can begin by utilizing a fundamental law of optics: the angle of reflection is equal to the angle of incidence.
While the sun is our single source of natural light, plenty of reflected light can usually be found shining about. reflected light bounces form walls, sidwalks, cars, even grass. It softens shadows and illuminates detail that would otherwise be lost in darkness.
How's that? Let's go out in a picnic to see.
Picnic tables are indeally placed under trees, in the shade. Sitting in the hot sun can cause curly sandwiches and limp picnickers. Life can be dark under those trees, through-too dark for proper videotaping. Thus we must resort to a simple subterfuge or two.
For facial closeups, convice an accomplice to position a plain white paper plate to cast some extra light. Don't hold too close or your subjects will look like victoms of food poisoning. And use a clean plate-ketchup can cast a red sheen onto people.
Start Your FREE Trial Plus Membership To View This Article
Why Become a Plus Member?
As a Plus Member, you'll enjoy:
- Exclusive access to 1,000s of articles, tips, and videos
- Unlimited access to Videomaker Tips & Tricks video series
- Special contests and monthly drawings
- Members only eLetters
- Early online access to the current issue of Videomaker Magazine
- Members only discounts on Videomaker merchandise and more
- Priority status at Videomaker events
- The Expert Hotline: direct email access to our editors. Get answers to questions about any video subject