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Practical Lighting


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#1 Robert Goodrich

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Posted 25 August 2006 - 01:00 PM

Have a project planned for the Spring that involves shooting inside a space capsule. My plan is to light as much of it practically with back-lighted control panels and work lights.

To prepare I have been watching movies that I know were shot primarily using practical lighting in similar environments, for instance Alien and Das Boot.

Is it your opinion that the filmmakers only used the lights that were installed in the sets and choreographed the action to best take advantage of it, or were supplemental instruments used as well? For instance some sort of small soft box to kick light up into the faces.
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#2 Michael Collier

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Posted 25 August 2006 - 04:54 PM

I have never had a chance to work on a picture that can afford a set peice like that, but if you have the chance you could make the individual modules removable. The pannel clusters usually has something like 6"x6" pannels holding a bunch of switches, lights, gaudges etc. and there are several modules grouped on each wall. You can make those removable to reveal some kenos or a softbox. It seems to me (having never lit a small area like that) that if you only had the gauges and switches light the charecters, you might have a hard time getting good modeling light. It would be too omni-directional and ambient to get any kind of contrast in the faces. That and gaudges are rarely white light from the movies I have seen. red orange and green are typical to the films I have seen in similar locations.

I have seen movies that put small 6" floro tubes along the walls and braces to add another possible light location.
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