2010 April 28th, 20:55
lighting for an interview and a conference
I will be filming 2 events with my HV20 in a couple weeks. The two locations are very different and I need your advice on what kind of lights to get for each one, without spending too much money (I am willing to rent lights for an interview).
1. Interviewing one, possibly two people indoors - I am thinking for this setup either buying 40w fluorescent bulbs or renting a kit from calumet.
2. Filming at a conference - I am completely at a loss with this one, maybe an on-camera video light will be useful for spot lighting, something like this: http://www.jr.com/sima/pe/SMA_SL20LXI/
Thanks so much!
2010 April 28th, 23:03
Hi marissa, and welcome to the forum!
If you only foresee needing the lights for this one job, I think renting is the better option: looking at the Calumet rental catalog, I see you could rent three Lowel Omnis (or two Omnis and a Tota), with stands and umbrellas, for $75 a day. That will give you 1500+ watts to play with (just enough, but hopefully not enough to trip circuit breakers, especially if you can plug at least one of them into a different circuit, i.e., maybe an outlet down the hall or in the next room), and just about everything you'd need (okay, you'll probably want to add some extension cords and sandbags to make sure the stands can't easily be tipped over).
One classic, simple interview lighting scheme is a soft key coming from the front, with a hard 'kicker' coming from behind. If the subject will be looking screen left, I might set up a Tota with a brella to the left of the interviewer, slightly above the subject's eyeline, and put the camera on the interviewer's right. Then use an Omni with no brella, fired from somewhere behind the subject — up high, down low, straight behind, to the side, etc. Just depends on what gives them a nice edgelight/backlight and separates them from the background.
Speaking of background, if at all possible, choose something with a little variation in texture and color, and don't have your subject backed right up against a wall. If there's just nothing else available other than a blank wall, use your other Omni to "paint" something interesting on it: close the barndoors right down to send a slash of light across it diagonally, or borrow a potted plant and set it in front of the light to cast broken shadows.
At least as described, the conference sounds trickier: how big is the group? How big is the room? Will the active participants be clustered in one area, like a panel discussion, or will it be a round-table type event where you're trying to cover the entire room?
With so many variables unaccounted for, it's tough to make good suggestions, but the Tota can give you a broad wash, while the Omnis can adjust from a wide flood to a fairly narrow spot, so at least you have options.
For a round-table type event in a low-ceilinged conference room, I might try to tuck all three lights discreetly in the corners of the room and aim them all near the middle of the ceiling to provide 360° bounced toplight; for a panel seated in a row, I might try raking them with an Omni from either side, and blasting them from behind with the Tota set low enough you don't see it in your shot.
2010 April 28th, 23:44
Eric, thanks so much for your help! I will probably rent the lights, unless I find a better option on ebay. I also read a few posts on this forum about the DIY approach with 200W fluorescent bulbs setup, do you think it's worth a try?
Yes, the conference is tricky partly because I don't know how large this room is, but I will try to find out soon. I know that there will be around 50 people, and there will be one or two speakers on stage. I won't be covering the whole room but ideally would like to get some footage of the audience. I'm also not sure if I will be allowed to install any lights there, that's why I was asking about the LED lights / video lights.