Have you ever needed to shoot a little boy’s room as a little girl’s room or vice versa for a production like a commercial that will be used for television and for the web? What are some essential techniques and pieces of gear that you will need? In this movie, author Richard Harrington walks you through how to stage and light a little boy’s room so that it looks like it is a little girl’s room in your commercial.
- So this is a classic example of needing to actually convert one room into something else. What we actually have here is a little boy's room, and we needed to make it feel more like a little girl's room. So we did this with picking up some simple items, we switched over the bedding, that's one of the easiest things to do, we picked up some affordable posters that are very disposable, and to be perfectly honest, I raided my own five year old daughter's stuffed animal collection, and with her help, we picked out animals for the scene. So it's the little things that make the touches, and how you frame the shots.
Also we just changed the color temperature in the room to push the bluer walls more towards a lavender or a purple. So sometimes you have to work with what you have. It was way beyond our budget to actually repaint or completely switch the room over, but we went for the feeling of having the little girl in the scene being female, versus having a little boy cast. We just thought it was a stronger emotional connection between the father and the daughter, and it would be a more tender moment. So, it's gonna work, but sometimes you have to get creative and make the locations you have work, with a few affordable tools.
Because the space was so small, keeping it tightly focused on our subjects really helped pull it all together. This is one of the benefits of using the large DSLR-style sensor, or full-frame sensor on a mirror-less camera. You'll notice that it gives you incredible low-light performance, and the ability for very shallow depth of field. In this case, we have a nice focus on our daughter, and it tells the story that she isn't aware of the problems, but is enjoying spending time with her parents.
This helps create a connection between the two characters, and establishes that they have something to lose. We shot with varying levels of tightness here, and we just wanted to get a small lean-in of the kiss goodnight. The use of shadows on the face also help convey the mood and time of day. We wanted this to feel a little bit on the sad side, while the warm purplish tones create a bit of safety, the starkness of the walls and some of the open space allows for a little bit of tension to be brought into the scene.
What was tricky here though, is that this had to properly cut with the material shot the day before. It was essential that the shot of the mom and the exterior in the hallway fit nicely. As such, we had to take a look at these two shots together, and ensure that they matched up cleanly, both for wardrobe, and for overall lighting. This is why digital playback on-set is such a great feature.
- Meeting the project and team
- Writing the script
- Casting actors
- Scouting for locations
- Creating schedules and budgets
- Shooting scenes
- Retiming footage
- Color grading
- Compressing for delivery