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David Dominguez

Lighting room with giant window

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Hello,

I'm on a shoot that will requires a lighting setup with a giant bay window.  I would love to light it as minimal as possible. How would you guys light this to get a natural looking image that has a bit of mood to it.

The Pingpong table will be flipped 90 degrees so the 2 characters playing will be shot profile side for this angle. This window does not get any direct light throughout the day. 

Here is the room:

https://imgur.com/a/tH4HXCr

 

thanks in advance!

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This is quite a tough one.  There is almost no place to hide a light outside the window.  And because of the curve of the wall, no easy way to rig any light above the window.  And, just for a fill light, almost any position will show the reflection of the light in at least one of the windows.

About the only thing out of frame might be to bounce a light off the ceiling.  And for that, if it's bright enough, may require at least a small HMI light and some rigging...

At best, don't shoot towards the window at a time of day when sun will be shining on the house opposite, which is seen through the window.

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2 hours ago, David Dominguez said:

Hello,

I'm on a shoot that will requires a lighting setup with a giant bay window.  I would love to light it as minimal as possible. How would you guys light this to get a natural looking image that has a bit of mood to it.

The Pingpong table will be flipped 90 degrees so the 2 characters playing will be shot profile side for this angle. This window does not get any direct light throughout the day. 

Here is the room:

https://imgur.com/a/tH4HXCr

 

thanks in advance!

That is AN AMAZING LOCATION!!!!!

And you say that it doesn't have any direct light during the day? Even better!!

We don't know how many shots you're going to have or how long you will be there but if you are planning on getting a wide shot looking towards the window and then some close ups with the window side lighting the characters I would do the following: 

1) Plan the shoot so I would shoot the profile shoot when the light is best for that shot and I would silhouette the characters.

2) I would, literally shoot with natural light but I would put a large negative frame behind the camera for the profile wide shot to create more contrast and I'd ask the art department to put some net curtains in the windows. 
3) If I were to shoot close ups of the characters on a 90º ish angle I would place a frame with a light diffusion the closest I could to the actor to soften the window light even further; and I would place a big frame with a single or double net silk on the opposite side to create some contrast.

Now, if I had to light that I could do it in a couple of ways:

1) I'd rig a couple of polyboards above the windows and I'd bounce a couple of 4Ks off them (it seems like there is a bit of distance from the ground to the window and they are quite tall). I would try to lose the upper part of the windows (those little windows on top of the normal windows). I'd still ask for net curtains for the windows. 

2) OR I could cover the windows with diffusion, like grid cloth and I'd direct two 6Ks from very far away towards the windows (ideally it would be an 18K or a M90 but 2 x 6Ks are super good and they will cover all the windows very well)
Those 6Ks would have frames in front of them to soften them before they hit the windows. 
With this 2nd approach you could have something like the following images (although they are pretty bright as this was from a Christmas commercial)

homestoreinsta-1024x1024.jpg

Grading002.thumb.jpg.061a70050df460128591db8b71813d6e.jpg

Or like the following one:

trivino002.jpg.a5bf0383fd9fd51f04bb6efa9c90be20.jpg

Hope it helped a bit!

 

 

Edited by Miguel Angel
Put more images.

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If you want it moody, I guess the first question is, do you even need to light the wide? With an Alexa and a Low Con filter, it I think it would look pretty good as is.

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Silver cards rigged on window side just outside of frame, with joleko or similar cut into them from across the room can help edge the subjects.

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seems like the lighting ratio inside to outside isn't bad, although I'm guessing that is a cloudy day? on a sunny day it could be an issue if the background outside gets direct sun.

 I think light sheers on the windows would be good. I'd try to keep the top windows in frame if it isn't too wide a shot because they look nice.

I'd consider a wall spreader across the room halfway between the windows and the ping pong table and then rigging something like a few Litmat4's w/ eggcrates or maybe skypanel's w/ chimera + Eggcrate on them to carry the window light further into the room and edge the talent a little.

I think Miguels Idea with the polyboard and the 4k's or even something smaller like M18's or JoLeko's could work. But it might wash out the whole room? With the wall spreader and Skypanel's w/ Chimera + eggcrate you get more control

 

EDIT:

Shinny/silver board with JoLeko's might do a similar thing but be much easier to rig as per Joesph's Idea. I'd use two of them. The key is to get a board that will reflect but also scatter the light to soften it. so you get a controlled soft light.

Edited by Albion Hockney

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Simple. If you shoot away from the windows and into the wall as background, just augment. Maybe use nothing but neg, maybe use a bit of artificial to help the daylight feel along. Sidelight, motivate from window.

Shoot into the window as background and now it needs a little more attention. Depending on stylistically what you want (is it OK play characters as compete silhouettes?), then you need to make choices. What I do in this scenario most of the time (when I can't play silhouettes), is that I pretend that the light hit a wall/floor somewhere. And based on where that hit, that's my bounce/key light on face. It can be a floor bounce (very likely), or a wall bounce. Works great from that motivated standpoint, and you'll have a natural looking scene.

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I'd shoot the wide in semi silhouette, exposing more for the window than for the room. Then for coverage across the table, bring in something soft and low intensity to help wrap the window light more.

If the scene is long enough that you're worried about changing light levels outside, you could hang sheers over the windows and light in a back cross arrangement from both sides of the window, but backed up enough to be out of view.

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14 hours ago, Adam Frisch FSF said:

Simple. If you shoot away from the windows and into the wall as background, just augment. Maybe use nothing but neg, maybe use a bit of artificial to help the daylight feel along. Sidelight, motivate from window.

Shoot into the window as background and now it needs a little more attention. Depending on stylistically what you want (is it OK play characters as compete silhouettes?), then you need to make choices. What I do in this scenario most of the time (when I can't play silhouettes), is that I pretend that the light hit a wall/floor somewhere. And based on where that hit, that's my bounce/key light on face. It can be a floor bounce (very likely), or a wall bounce. Works great from that motivated standpoint, and you'll have a natural looking scene.

Hey Adam, just out of curiosity for a wide two shot toward the windows how would you put that into practice?

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