Archive | January, 2012

3 Simple Tips for Filming Without Lights (Interior)

18 Jan

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Welcome back to the final part of my “Tips for Shooting Without Lights” series.

In the previous article, we discussed filming outside and how you can get the most out of the available light… click here to check it out – as with that article, we will mainly be focusing on documentary coverage where there’s no time to setup lights. Documentary training is some of the best training you can have, it teaches you to be quick, resourceful and intelligent about how you utilise your environment and the time you have there. So regardless of what you’re filming, if you can put these guidelines into action, you’ll have added some valuable tools to your… tool box.

Be aware however – you can get some lovely shots by doing things that I recommend avoiding (what surely not?!), but I want to try and suggest how you can light a subject so he/she is clear on screen and your images look clean and professional. So, let’s take a look at shooting interiors. Huzzah!…

Unlike exteriors, for indoors there’s one main rule…

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3 Simple Rules for Filming Without Lights (Exterior)

11 Jan

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I often get asked about lighting techniques for Film and TV. Whether you’re lighting a simple interview for a TV documentary or organising a big lighting set-up for a film or TV drama, I will eventually have articles on here to explain all the techniques you’ll need to employ…

However, for now I want to start with the basics, some of the fundamentals of good lighting.

The first thing I want to talk about is shooting using Available Light. Available light is the ambient light that is exists in any given situation. In other words shooting in available light is when you don’t add any of your own film lights. (“Pretty obvious” I hear you say, “Thanks for that great pearl of wisdom there Chris!“).

So, if there’s enough light around without needing to rig any of your own lights, it should be pretty simple, just pick camera up and start filming right?!… Wrong!

Occasionally I have laps of concentration and end up inadvertently watching Daytime TV (it happens OK?!)… and the number of times I see examples of how not to shoot in available light is unbelievable! Bleached out images of presenters, dark shadows of the camera operator and mic shadows mysteriously drifting in and out of shot, not to mention unintentional lens flares all over the place (remember, this isn’t Star Trek and we’re not shooting Anamorphic!).

So… let’s get to it! Here are my 3 Simple Rules for Shooting With Available Light….

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