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Lighting...for beginners


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#1 Paul Sifakis

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Posted 22 July 2006 - 03:10 PM

Hi there,
Well, call me stupid, but since I never had a proper Cinematography teacher at the Univesity,
I would appreciate a brief listing of lighting equipment for low (very low indeed) budget (digital) films.
Am I asking too much? Well, just a brief list, somewhere to begin. The thing is I read the American Cinematographer magazine for over a year and I have some difficulties with the technical terms about lighting equipment. So if anyone could help I would be really grateful
(By the way I'm from Greece, I hope my English won't shock you that much)
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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 22 July 2006 - 05:27 PM

If your budget is really low for a feature project or short, your lighting package would be carefully put together based on the specific needs of each scene and location, rather than a general package that covers a wide variety of circumstances.

But in general, most people first start with homemade lights, hardware store lights, lights in reflector dishes, Chinese Lanterns, fluorescent work lights, etc. Then they probably move up to a basic lighting kit like those made by Lowell or Arri, something with a few 650w open-faced units, let's say. Or at least get one or two such lights individually, used probably.
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#3 Robert Hughes

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Posted 22 July 2006 - 06:01 PM

You've read American Cinematographer magazine for a year. That's nice, but remember that any magazine is just a series of advertisements strung together with enough filler between ads to keep you buying the paper. With that same year of time you could have read two dozen books on cinematography and lighting and come to this forum with enough background to know all those technical terms that are bandied about here. So get cracking!
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#4 Chayse Irvin

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Posted 22 July 2006 - 08:31 PM

If your budget is really low for a feature project or short, your lighting package would be carefully put together based on the specific needs of each scene and location, rather than a general package that covers a wide variety of circumstances.

But in general, most people first start with homemade lights, hardware store lights, lights in reflector dishes, Chinese Lanterns, fluorescent work lights, etc. Then they probably move up to a basic lighting kit like those made by Lowell or Arri, something with a few 650w open-faced units, let's say. Or at least get one or two such lights individually, used probably.


Thats exactly what I was working when I was getting started. Making our own lighting packages out of nothing for our projects was a very good learning experience.
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#5 Chris Pritzlaff

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Posted 23 July 2006 - 02:08 AM

Look into reading the Set Lighting Technician's Handbook by Harry Box. I highly recomend it and will give you the basic understanding to follow what is being disucssed here on the forrum and in the ASC magazine, as well as help you understand basic lighting techniques.

here is the link to the book
http://www.amazon.co...2983342?ie=UTF8
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#6 Tom Bays

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 07:57 AM

Here is a helpful link.
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#7 freddie bonfanti

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 08:10 AM

china balls, i cant get enough of them...amazing on close ups and very cheap...
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#8 Bernhard Zitz

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 08:30 AM

as a stand for chinaballs big microphonestands with a long boom work well (if the shot isn't to wide...)
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Ritter Battery

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rebotnix Technologies

Abel Cine

Metropolis Post

CineTape

FJS International, LLC

Glidecam

Tai Audio

Visual Products

The Slider

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Gamma Ray Digital Inc