In this week’s episode, we continue with our Lighting for Video Series. If you haven’t already, check out Lighting for Video (Part 1) where I break down the meanings of Color Temperature, Color Quality, and Histograms.
Lighting News! (1:05)
This week in Lighting news there were a couple of announcements from the Trade Show, PLASA, happening in Europe. Our friends from Obsidian have announced a NX2 Console and NX Wing.
The difference from the previous model is that it’s much more powerful. It’s been upgraded without increasing the price.
Another announcement was a New LED Designed, TwinkLED. Elation shared a Facebook video to show off the new features of the Fixture.
What caught my attention about these is that they are regular wash fixtures but they have little LEDs that shoot across the light. It creates a nice White twinkle effect.
Main Segment (5:12)
If you’ve worked with Video in the past you may have noticed a lot of variations. When it comes to working with cameras it’s the least forgiving piece of equipment when it comes to Lighting.
The McCandless Method
Stanley McCandless was a theater educator and wrote a book about Theater Lighting back in 1930’s. This created the very popular McCandless Method.
This is a very popular way to light the stage for a theater. This method states to take 2 Lights for any given Acting area on stage. One light off the Center 45 Degrees off the right and one light off the Center 45 Degrees to the Left.
Then, you use a light blue or orange gel for each of your 2 lights. This creates a daylight or evening/night effect to the stage, depending on how you mix them.
While the color may not apply outside of a theater stage the concept of two front lights applies to what we do today in lighting.
Making Your Lights Even
In our previous episode: Lighting for Video (Part 1) we discussed the importance of Color and creating an even wash of light on stage.
We want to follow what McCandless says about setting up 2 lights for every zone on stage. Ideally, we would like to add the 3rd light to focus on the person at about head height because this is where the audience will be focusing.
If possible, setting up a couple of overhead and backlights would be beneficial for lighting up the rest of the stage.
What if you have multiple zones onstage to work with? In person and on video the transition areas, the spaces in between will be obvious. So how do you soften the transition?
You want to soften the light to help the transition areas. Using a softer color gel such as the Rosco 119 or just a softer source light. A few episodes back we discussed different types of lights and when to use them, be sure to check these out.
Depending on the type of lights you are working with you may have some shading in between the areas. Your job as the lighting person is to make the light as even as possible.
The Balance of Different Elements
There will be moments if you haven’t experienced it already where the lighting on stage looks awful on Camera. Our eyes are very good at handling different variations in brightness and deeply saturated colors. Cameras, even good ones, are not able to handle the different variations as our eyes do.
The key is finding a balance between how it looks in person and making it look good on camera.
Inside of Learn Stage Lighting Labs, I have created a Full Action Plan just for “Lighting for Video”. If you would like to learn more on how to do this be sure to check it out!
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