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Flickering/Pulsing Overhead Light Effect

Hannah Getz

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I have a short coming up where I'll be shooting in a subway car standing set. I need to accomplish two things: a chase for the lights within the subway tunnel and a flicker of the overhead practicals. For the flicker I'd like to see the practicals themselves. Unfortunately I have yet to scout the set as production is a mess. This is a really low budget shoot so I need to figure out something crafty. My immediate thought for the practicals was to replace the existing units with Quasar or Astera tubes (especially since the Astera can be used wirelessly). The chase and the flicker will occur in the same scene.


Any advice/ideas is greatly appreciated!

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  • 2 weeks later...

I sparked on a short a few weeks ago where we were filming on a tube carriage. We used 8 Astera's and a S60. Make sure on the recce you check where the practicles go, we had massive issues fitting the Astera tubes into the housing (it was an old Victoria Line train).

The scene was basically a moving train that comes to a screeching hault when the main character enters Limbo.

We had two Asteras rigged outside the train above the window at 3200k on a low random flicker as well as the S60 downstage left on Process mode which added big flashing passes through the windows.

The rest of the astras were inside where we could flicker them to how we wanted, the astera app allows you to have a flicker-when-held tile, so we had 2 or 3 tiles of different flicker speeds which the director wanted to que to us as the scene got more and more frantic. They also allow you to independantly dim out of shot lights to add a bit of contrast on the tighter coverage.

Light reflects everywhere in these carriages, so make sure to have a 12x blackout inside to cover up to where camera is going.

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