Jump to content
Mike Kozlenko

Principles to apply when you don't have much lighting control?

Recommended Posts

So I'm shooting a run n' gun little spot for a chain of gyms. Super guerrilla style with not much crew. Attached some photos of what I'm dealing with. I can turn off the overhead fluorescents if I want to but it might make the gym too dark, which I probably won't be able to get away with for every scene. Wont be able to swap out the fluorescents either. I want to get 2-3 very slight variations in looks. Some of the fixtures I have available:

 

2 Quasar-fitted Kino Fixtures (6 q tubes each)

8 Quasar T-8 tubes

1 Dracast Fresnel 2000 (2k equivalent)

1 Aputure 300d with fresnel attachment or softbox attachment(close to 2k equivalent)

A few smaller LED & tungsten sources

Various floppies & diffusions

 

 

I'm wondering what you guys think I can do to make the most of this shooting scenario. Just trying to maximize perceived production value in an environment that might not be inherently super cinematic. Here are a couple of thoughts I have:

 

-Have a raw, energetic handheld camera, staying around 50mm. Try to have interesting compositions, shooting thru things, having objects pretty dirty in frame

 

-For general shooting around the space, which will be 50% of the shoot, I feel like my go-to will be driving around a Kino or Softbox on a roller with a 1/4 plus green or whatever I need to get close to the color temp of the fluorescent lighting, very dim, just to get some light into the eyes from the far-side and create a little bit of shape on the face. Add 1-2 floppies on the near side as well

 

-For a slightly different look, turning off fluorescent lights and placing subjects by window, and then splashing a background wall with a slash of hard light OR taping a couple quasars to the wall to act as practicals in the background

 

-For another scene, placing a fresnel with Full CTS as a strong backlight, add a bit of haze, 4x4 beadboard from the front, and try to create the look of morning sunlight streaming in thru a window. Shooting very tight shots since there's such limited lighting power

 

*Shooting on a Red Scarlet-W 5k

 

Any other principles you guys think I can apply to make this look as intentional as possible and less like a shitty-looking doc? Any tips are greatly appreciated

 

 

post-75833-0-90971800-1544481803_thumb.jpg

post-75833-0-99700700-1544481814_thumb.jpg

post-75833-0-08016700-1544481980_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Toplight is always the killer in these scenes because it robs objects of their shape amd gives people death eyes. people I know who shoot supermarkets (same fluorescent problem) put flags over the head of the talent and light them as if the fluorescents were just a really dim fill.

Or for hero shots kill the fluorescents and only light the section of the background that the camera sees.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mike .. I shot a video for the anytime fitness chain last year ..in Tokyo .. as a small part of a shoot they were doing all around the world.. at their franchise gyms.. I share your pain.. and yes your location is a pretty tough one.. worse than I had to deal with..

First up I would say the most important think is the brief your client gave you.. what is the look they want.. you can shoot it beautifully in a dark moody way, all close up and slo mo... but I can almost guarantee the client won't like it.. beware switching off the over heads unless you have big arse lights to re create daylight.. they nearly always want bright.. they want at least a few wide shots and they will want to see all the expensive machines.. I could well be wrong ,maybe they want dark/moody..but I would really make sure your clients expectations are firmly footed in reality ..the purpose of the video is to get customers in the door rather than footage for our showreels :).. unfortunately!!.. so I would really make sure they know exactly the limitations of the location ,control you have over the people there.. eg I wouldn't just rely on the paying punters .. have a few "models" that look good and you have control over and will be there all day..and will sign a release form !..

 

In summary..really nail down your clients expectations.. and how they want it to look..make them aware of the limitations if their expectations are not obtainable .. we always want dark and moody.. clients always want flat bright and smiley .. :) their purpose is solely to get customers in the door..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

... I'm wondering what you guys think I can do to make the most of this shooting scenario. Just trying to maximize perceived production value in an environment that might not be inherently super cinematic.... Any ... principles you guys think I can apply to make this look as intentional as possible and less like a shitty-looking doc? Any tips are greatly appreciated

 

How I approach such situations is to identify the one element I can’t change and then tailor the look and style of the shot to it. For example, on this location the one thing you have no control over is the high contrast created by the sun streaming in the open roll-up doors. Typically they blow out and look awful. Since you can’t net those doors, the way to deal with them is to go for a stylized look. If you white balance your camera under a tungsten light with full CTO on it, the daylight coming through those doors will turn a deep blue. If you then light your talent with tungsten lights with full CTO, you get a very appealing look where the foreground is under white light, while the deep background is bathed in blue.

 

Guy Holt, ScreenLight & Grip, Lighting Rental and Sales in Boston

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.



  • Wooden Camera



    Paralinx LLC



    Broadcast Solutions Inc



    FJS International



    Rig Wheels Passport



    Serious Gear



    CineLab



    G-Force Grips



    Tai Audio



    Gamma Ray Digital Inc



    Abel Cine



    Metropolis Post



    Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS



    Visual Products



    Glidecam



    Ritter Battery



    New Pro Video - New and Used Equipment



    Just Cinema Gear


×
×
  • Create New...