Join Eduardo Angel for an in-depth discussion in this video Setting up lights and reflectors, part of Corporate and Documentary Video Lighting.
- From the time we arrive to scout the location to the time we started shooting the light changed dramatically, and we easily lost about two-stops. We obviously couldn't move the sun or the tree so we had to use both to our advantage. The area we were filming was mostly in shade. Our original plan was to add one or two LED lights with a warm color temperature in front of the girls but the lights were not powerful enough to compete with the raw daylight. So, we added the 4x4 whiteboard on the table underneath the camera, and this bounced some sunlight as our fill for both girls.
A silver reflector generally increases the specular highlights and yields a high-contrast image. But in this case, it was just too harsh. We quickly determined that silver would not work for us in this specific situation. A gold reflector produces more fill and that perfectly matched our story. We then placed a 2x2 mirror board in the open field with tons of available light and bounced some of the sunlight onto the soft, gold shiny board. This provided enough punch on our subjects.
When we first turned the shiny board onto our subjects we saw that the forehead of one of the girls was just too bright. So we moved the shiny board closer to her body and this lowered the amount of light. We were getting closer but we had almost a two-stop difference between Brittany's hair, our girl on the left, and Abby's face, our girl on the right. The strategy was to use a double net to lower the exposure on Abby's face and a double single net on Brittany to lower the exposure on her hair.
In the background, we added a battery-powered LED light just to add a bit more depth to the scene. To blur the faces in coursing the background we used a fast 50mm lens that was almost wide open. As the sun was going lower and lower we had to raise our camera and add a lens flag to minimize flare. The last magic trick was to add the full CTO for the sunlight to match the gold reflector slide, effectively recreating the early morning light that we were going after.
Each chapter begins with a strategy session, and includes tips for capitalizing on natural light, repositioning the camera, and getting the final shot. Eduardo closes the course with a wrap-up of the shoots and some final thoughts on shooting video for corporate clients.
- Choosing your location wisely
- Working with natural light
- Picking a camera position
- Lighting the scene