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Need Blue Screen help!


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#1 Andy Fortenbacher

Andy Fortenbacher

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 01:13 AM

I am currently in preproduction for a short 16mm film. We are looking at doing several scenes with the aid of blue screen. I am looking for advice on two particular things. First, when using blue screen outside, what is the best way to light the screen? Should we use diffused (artificial) light , or just use let the sun do all of the work? We also have a scene where we will be suspending someone from a harness (for a falling sequence.) The blue screen will be hung above the suspension riging. This image will be added to a night exterior scene, where a person has fallen out of an apartement complex window. My concern is lighting the person so it looks realistic as they fall . Should I have them fall through a pool of light (resembling the ambient light from street light,) while having the rest of the vertical fall darker? Or should I have them lit evenly the entire way? How bright should we light the blue screen for that shot? Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thanks. -Andy
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#2 Kristy Tully

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 02:42 PM

I have used large greenscreens outside and found that by hanging the greenscreen so that the sun is behind it,(and the screen is in shadow) the screen is completely even and we can light the people infront of it without having to compete with direct sunlight.
As for how to light the subject, I usually look at the plate, or if the plate isn't shot yet, I go to where it will be shot and come up with a plan to light them so it will look real when it is added to the plate. I usually make sure the subject is at least a little brighter than the greenscreen, but also lit with light that will match the plate. ( It might mean making one side brighter than the other side, or having them fall through pools of light as you suggested.)
If I ever have questions about what will make it easy or hard to pull the mat, I call the person who will be pulling the mat and ask how I can make it easier for them. I have found that I get different answers depending on the person and the tools they have available to them. It varies from having the screen at exposure, to having the screen 1 stop below exposure, to having the screen 20% below exposure. Some will tell you a little green spill on shiny shoes is ok, some will say no way. It will give you an idea of how much to sweat on set if time is becoming a problem. ( I always try to make it perfect, but when time becomes a problem it's nice to know what you can get away with).


I am currently in preproduction for a short 16mm film. We are looking at doing several scenes with the aid of blue screen. I am looking for advice on two particular things. First, when using blue screen outside, what is the best way to light the screen? Should we use diffused (artificial) light , or just use let the sun do all of the work? We also have a scene where we will be suspending someone from a harness (for a falling sequence.) The blue screen will be hung above the suspension riging. This image will be added to a night exterior scene, where a person has fallen out of an apartement complex window. My concern is lighting the person so it looks realistic as they fall . Should I have them fall through a pool of light (resembling the ambient light from street light,) while having the rest of the vertical fall darker? Or should I have them lit evenly the entire way? How bright should we light the blue screen for that shot? Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thanks. -Andy


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Wooden Camera

Willys Widgets

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