How To: Outdoor Shoots (light control)

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    • #82666

      Hi Guys!

      I am new to this site, and I am a slightly bigginer Videographer.
      I shoot mostly for events and simple documentary work, both indoor.

      Now, ever since I got my own camera (Canon Vixia HF G20) I’ve been shooting outdoor, and I realized it’s brighter outside, which really pumps up the bokeh at lowest aperture, and I reallylike that! However even at lowest db gain it’s still too bright. Is there any other way I can lower the light keeping the really good bokeh? I get that I can pump up the shutter speed, but prefer to have it on 30. (as most would, if I am not wrong)

      Also, can an ND filter help me in my situation? Does it reduce light without reducing bokeh? :\

      I’ll appreciate your tips guys! 😀

    • #211160

      Yes, ND  filters are thew way to go.

    • #211182

           I agree with theonecanoe in that a good ND filter will help lower the light that hits your sensor, if you can use them with your camera.  However, you need to look at your shutter speed.  Usually, your shutter speed should be 1/(2 x your frame rate).  So, if you're shooting at 24 FPS, you should keep your shutter speed as close to 1/48 or 48 as your camera will allow.

    • #211235

      Oh thanks! but will ND filter affect my DOF?

      and @mcrockett thanks, I didn't know that. I usually record in 1080 @30fps

    • #211247

      Nope, ND filter does not affect the depth of field.



      Lowell Niles

      Creative Director, Sunword Studios

    • #211881

      ok…i ll give  you tips for this,

      1.use the smallest aperture your video camera allows up your shutter speed to dim your footage

      3.increase the frame rate in your camera to let less light in

      4.decrease your video camera gain.

      5)deduce the video noise in post with filters

    • #211882


      1.  Raising the f-stop (making the aperture smaller) will decrease the bokeh.  Jomar said he wanted to keep that.

      2.  Raising the shutter speed will lower light intake, but one must be careful.  If you are shooting handheld, any camera movement will be accentuated.  Even if you're on a tripod, any wrong flick of the wrist will be more noticeable.

      3.  Increasing frame rate does not affect light captured.  It only increases the number of images taken of said light during a second.

      4.  Decreasing video gain will only get you so far.  If you've lowered your ISO as far down as it will go, and it's still too bright, then you have to make other adjustments:  Either raise the shutter speed and suffer the consequences as indicated in point number 2, or use an ND filter to decrease the amount of light that enters the lens.

      5.  It's a much better practice to try and get the footage you want in camera, before relying on a post-production process.  A filter for this in post should only be used after you've done everything possible to not have the noise in the first place.

    • #211897

      I have just noted that another submission has pointed out that a neutral-density filter does not affect depth of field. Well, it doesn't in the strictest sense, but given that the use of an ND filter on a  camcorder wth automatic exposure control would cause it to go to a wider aperture to compensate for the light-loss due to what is held back by the filter; for practical purposes the depth of field would have to be less, wouldn't it? 

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