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IWYM - A few frame grabs

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  • 4 months later...

This shot was very simply lit, but it had me scratching my head for a while. The dirt track behind the car stretched back about 200 yards, and I knew that the director wanted to look straight up the road from this angle. I also knew that there was no way I could light 200 yards at night with the resources I had. As I was standing there pondering the shot at lunchtime, one of the transpo guys drove a stakebed out, kicking up a huge cloud of dust, which was backlit by the sun at that point during the day. I realized that I didn't need to light the whole length of the track, and that the dust would obscure where the car came from.


I placed an M18 up on a high stand, about 75 yards back, hidden behind the bushes on camera left. It was at full flood to cover as much area as possible. As the car approached camera, first we just saw its headlamps, then, as it passed by the M18, the car was silhouetted against the backlit dust that it kicked up. As it came to a halt and the driver stepped out, he moved into a pool of light which was created by bouncing a Jo-Leko off an 8x8' Ultrabounce that was also off to camera left, opposite the garage door.


On the first take, we had one of the art department crew stir up some dust with a brush, so that there was some texture in the air before the truck came through. On later takes, there was already enough hanging in the air.


We were probably shooting somewhere between t2 and t2.8 @800ISO. That frame is taken straight from dailies, without any color correction.

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It always amazes me how the best solutions are often the simplest, in this case allowing the truck to silhouette against the dust 'layers' the frame beautifully. Also like the soft light in foreground versus the harder light in BG. Great stuff. What white balance settings do you use for moonlight? Any gels on lights?

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We were white balanced at 3200k. We were shooting on Sony F55s so I only had 3 color temperatures to choose from. I'm not a huge fan of 'blue' moonlight, so I often desaturate the blue channel in post to make it a little more subtle. When shooting with other cameras where I can adjust the white balance, I sometimes use 3800k, so that the moonlight effect is a little more neutral in color.


I don't remember using any gels, although it's possible that there was some Opal on the M18 to help spread it a little more.

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  • 4 weeks later...

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