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Daylight Look for Tungsten Film


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#1 Eric Hora

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Posted 30 December 2006 - 04:07 PM

Hello everyone,
This is my first post on this site and I would like to thank everyone for all of their wonderful tips. I am a recent graduate of film school and I am shooting a 20 minute super 16 short in mid january that takes place in a school and I have a few questions regarding it. The director is asking for a "cool, blue-ish" look in the hallways of the school. I am shooting mostly Vision 2 500T (250D for exteriors) and I think that I should light the hallways with tungsten units and cool it off in post, rather than have blue gelled sources. Is that the way most of you would approach it? I am nervous to light the hallways with CTB on my sources and then be stuck with it on the negative. Is cooling it off in post the best option?

In regards to lighting the hallways, I am shooting 500T because we need the extra stop and am leaning towards lighting the hallways with china balls hung high with 500 watt ECT bulbs inside and skirted to point down. I will also have 1k's with 216 placed to create edges when necessary. I want the hallways to look almost like every high school movie (dazed and confused, clueless, election, etc...) in that it is mainly soft,ambient, shadlowless sources. I may also use the existing sources in the hallways (fluorescents) by minus green-ing them and placing the china balls in between each one. Has anyone lit a hallway like this and can you offer any advice on good ways of achieving this look?

I appreciate any of your advice and happy holidays to everyone!
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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 30 December 2006 - 07:38 PM

There are sort of two ways to approach the cool look. One is to make all the lighting cool in tone (whether on the set or in post overall) and the other is to have cool background lighting, cool edge lights, accents, backlights, whatever, but have something closer to white on the faces, a mixed color temp look.

There are many ways to light corridoors although the problem is being able to hide any non-practical lights in the background as you move down a hallway and see the far end in the shot.

Yes, you could cool off the tungsten-lit hallway in post, but does that mean you are correcting all the windows and daylight areas with Full CTO gel to match?
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#3 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 30 December 2006 - 08:20 PM

There are many ways to light corridoors although the problem is being able to hide any non-practical lights in the background as you move down a hallway and see the far end in the shot.

Yeah, the problem with the china ball idea is that they may hang too low, cutting into the top of your frame. The skirts make it worse, so you'll likely have to choose between flagging the china ball enough or having it visible in the shot. Depends on how high the ceilings are and how long the corridor is. Sticking to longer focal lengths may help.

Do the fluorescent practicals stick out of the ceiling on some kind of beam, or are they recessed into the ceiling? If the former, you may be able to Mayfer clamp some Dedos or inkies up there and hide them behind the beams. Maybe point them up for bounce? Or, you could replace the existing fluoro bulbs with Kinos (daylight Kinos if you want the mixed color temp look). Not sure if they'd work in those fixtures though.

As far as getting stuck with a blue-tinted image on the negative, don't worry about it. As long as the frame is blue overall (no mixed color temps), it can be timed out. If you're going to do that, then you might as well light everything tungsten-balanced and maximize your footcandles. I like David's suggestion of gelling backgrounds but lighting the faces neutral - it's the ballsier way to go. Of course, then you'd be stuck with that look.

Edited by Satsuki Murashige, 30 December 2006 - 08:22 PM.

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#4 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 30 December 2006 - 10:21 PM

Sometimes you can get the art department to build some fake header beams at regular intervals in the hallway to hide lights behind.
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#5 Jim Feldspar

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Posted 30 December 2006 - 11:29 PM

Hello everyone,
This is my first post on this site and I would like to thank everyone for all of their wonderful tips. I am a recent graduate of film school and I am shooting a 20 minute super 16 short in mid january that takes place in a school and I have a few questions regarding it. The director is asking for a "cool, blue-ish" look in the hallways of the school. I am shooting mostly Vision 2 500T (250D for exteriors) and I think that I should light the hallways with tungsten units and cool it off in post, rather than have blue gelled sources. Is that the way most of you would approach it? I am nervous to light the hallways with CTB on my sources and then be stuck with it on the negative. Is cooling it off in post the best option?

In regards to lighting the hallways, I am shooting 500T because we need the extra stop and am leaning towards lighting the hallways with china balls hung high with 500 watt ECT bulbs inside and skirted to point down. I will also have 1k's with 216 placed to create edges when necessary. I want the hallways to look almost like every high school movie (dazed and confused, clueless, election, etc...) in that it is mainly soft,ambient, shadlowless sources. I may also use the existing sources in the hallways (fluorescents) by minus green-ing them and placing the china balls in between each one. Has anyone lit a hallway like this and can you offer any advice on good ways of achieving this look?

I appreciate any of your advice and happy holidays to everyone!


" china balls hung high with 500 watt ECT bulbs" In my guide to the Chinese lanterns
sold by a local company that sells and rents to t.v., stage and films, their biggest
lantern is 36" and is rated for 150w. Certainly people go above ratings all the time
(usually centering the bigger bulb to keep it away from the paper and watching it closely)
but a 36" lantern is going to be hard to hide in a wide shot and you wouldn't stuff a
500w bulb into a 12" or 18" lantern would you?

Or, are there Chinese lanterns made of "tough" material?
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#6 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 31 December 2006 - 01:32 AM

I've used porcelain (not plastic) sockets w/ 500w bulbs in even the smaller lanterns -- you just have to turn them off between shots and make sure the bulb does not swing over to touch the paper.

But there are Chimera-type lanterns using fabrics instead of paper.
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#7 Jim Feldspar

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Posted 31 December 2006 - 11:43 AM

I've used porcelain (not plastic) sockets w/ 500w bulbs in even the smaller lanterns -- you just have to turn them off between shots and make sure the bulb does not swing over to touch the paper.

But there are Chimera-type lanterns using fabrics instead of paper.


Thanks. I always use porcelain sockets too for the larger bulbs; they're fairly cheap and rated
up to 600w but I haven't used a 500w bub yet on a shoot. Bought a couple because I thought that I
was going to but ended up using the 250w bulbs. Stil watched them closely though and made out
okay.

The company that I mentioned, Barbizon, is fairly big so I'll have to ask them about the Chimera-
type lanterns with fabric. I didn't know about them.
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Metropolis Post

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Broadcast Solutions Inc

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Abel Cine

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Aerial Filmworks

The Slider

Visual Products

CineTape

Paralinx LLC

Ritter Battery

rebotnix Technologies