Videomaker – Learn video production and editing, camera reviews › Forums › Technique › Miscellaneous Techniques › shooting in red light
March 3, 2009 at 7:35 PM #37492asadovnikovParticipant
I use Sony FX1000 to shoot theatrical clip wherescene is illuminated by incadescent lamps with red gel filter (the net effect is similar to photo dark-room). Apparently, camera is got confused, it screws up white balance and result is awful: contrast is absent and faces are blistering with bright magenta-violet spots.Changing white balance set to “indoor”(i.e. incadescent) does not help. Camera does not ask for ND filter, so the average brightness is O.K. Interestingly, my old Sony VX2100 produces better results with auto white balance. Any suggestions would be highly appreciated.
March 4, 2009 at 9:17 PM #166144composite1Member
Whenever you shoot in ‘colored’ light you have to do a standard white balance in white light prior to shooting. When you white balance in the colored light your telling the camera that this color of light is ‘white’ and the CCD chips will adjust by getting the colors as close to ‘normal’ as it can. Of course this will completely throw your colors off. When you white balance in white light you’ll establish normal color ranges so when the red lights come on, they’ll be red and everything else color wise will correspond. You’ll have to reexpose for the red light, but red will be ‘red’. Avoid using auto white balance like the plague unless you’re transitioning from indoors to outdoors or vice versa with a moving subject. If you are not transitioning from extreme lighting conditions while moving, there’s no reason why you can’t do a good manual white balance. Now, if you are purposely trying to distort the colors in a scene, white balancing off of a colored light is a practical quick solution (adjusting your color balance in camera is better if the option is available.) Also, ND filters only limit the amount of light coming in through the lens. The amount of influence they have on color correction wouldn’t help your situation at all.
March 5, 2009 at 1:21 AM #166145D0nParticipant
take red gels off your lights find something (construction paper)in a “Hunter” or dark green.
take a custom white balance off it. try shooting….or leave the lights ungelled, set whitebalance to indoor, and add a red filter over your lens.
to simply gel a lightsource with red gels presents on little problem for many digital cameras, especially video cameras…they are sensitve ti infra red, and red hot lights are gonna be difficult.
you may be best to shoot in normal light and tint it red in post….
March 5, 2009 at 5:36 PM #166146asadovnikovParticipant
Please clarify: do you suggest to take custom WB illuminating dark green paper with regular incadescent lamp? Why this will work?
I already found that “…faces are blistering with bright magenta-violet spots” becasue there is big dark spot in the center (not-illuminated face), camera increases its brightness and overexposes illuminated faces in the background. Our “still” photographer has the same problem butcorrected it in PhotoShop. I corrected this using ND filter with fixed gain. By the way, contrast is also poor in still pictures (taken using NIKON d700 without flash). So, I do not think I canimprove it.
Other suggestions will not work – this is real theatrical production and the scene must be illuminated with red light.
March 6, 2009 at 2:09 AM #166147D0nParticipant
I misunderstood, we need to be clear when asking the questions, more info helps.
with stage lighting , you need to set your color balance manually (to the color temp of your stage lights before you gel the lights), then set your exposure manually, after you gel the lights.
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