Jump to content


Photo

Int/Ext, same temp?


  • Please log in to reply
6 replies to this topic

#1 David Calson

David Calson
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 269 posts
  • Other
  • Georgia

Posted 25 February 2007 - 12:14 AM

Hi, so here's the scernario:

You're in a studio, you're shooting on tungsten and you have two sources. One is a practical and the other is a tungsten studio light shining through a window replicating daylight. Should the studio light be a slightly cooler temp than the practical? Another words, will people sense something wrong if an interior and exterior are lit with the same color temperature? Thank in advance.

Edited by Blade Borge, 25 February 2007 - 12:16 AM.

  • 0

#2 David Mullen ASC

David Mullen ASC
  • Sustaining Members
  • 19759 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 25 February 2007 - 12:27 AM

Hi, so here's the scernario:

You're in a studio, you're shooting on tungsten and you have two sources. One is a practical and the other is a tungsten studio light shining through a window replicating daylight. Should the studio light be a slightly cooler temp than the practical? Another words, will people sense something wrong if an interior and exterior are lit with the same color temperature? Thank in advance.


In theory, the daylight should be cooler than the tungsten practical in the scene, but in practice, people shooting on soundstages under tungsten illumination often let the two types of light be the same color, although in most daytime situations, the practical should be off anyway to signify that it is day scene and not a night scene.

I've sometimes put a bright bulb in the practical and then dimmed it for a warm effect so that it looks much warmer than the tungsten daylight on stage.

"The Terminal" had the giant airport terminal set lit with HMI's precisely because Kaminsky felt it would look like they were on a stage set if tungsten bulbs in practicals were the same color temp as the daylight.

However, the truth is that our eyes correct for some of the color temp mismatch more than film does (being literal) so I don't think to match our own perception that the difference has to be as extreme as 3200K versus 5500K -- all that matters is that the practical feel warmer than the daylight. But the daylight doesn't have to be full blue or the practical have to be full orange in order to look realistic.
  • 0

#3 Jonathan Bowerbank

Jonathan Bowerbank
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 2815 posts
  • 1st Assistant Camera
  • San Francisco, CA

Posted 25 February 2007 - 01:38 AM

Doesn't hurt if your "daylight" source is a little over exposed or hotter too, leaving your practical as the inferior source of light in the room.
  • 0

#4 Walter Graff

Walter Graff
  • Sustaining Members
  • 1334 posts
  • Other
  • New York City

Posted 25 February 2007 - 11:05 AM

However, the truth is that our eyes correct for some of the color temp mismatch more than film does (being literal) so I don't think to match our own perception that the difference has to be as extreme as 3200K versus 5500K -- all that matters is that the practical feel warmer than the daylight. But the daylight doesn't have to be full blue or the practical have to be full orange in order to look realistic.


I think it is a subjective choice as to what you want. It can depend on your script, or the mood of the piece. I mostly keep such differences when on a stage about 2k different color wise. I do so because on any regular day most all light that comes in a window during the middle of the day is really in the range of 3800-4400k so it's not all that blue or at least not as blue as the magic 5500k number, just a bit cooler as I see it.
  • 0

#5 timHealy

timHealy
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1252 posts
  • Other
  • New York

Posted 25 February 2007 - 11:20 AM

I think when you say daylight through a window one needs to be more specific. Daylight is a mixture of skylight and sunlight. The sun by itself isolated from skylight is very warm and not too far from tungsten. skylight by itself is very cool.

And like Walter mentioned, there is your artistic interpretation of the script. technically speaking, one could use large bounces through a window to simulate soft skylight (HMI's or tungsten with full blue) and then use a pure tungsten light for direct sunlight. It depends on your creative choices and what you are calling white, 3200 or 5500 and then you may choose to color correct something with half or quarter correction instead of full. You may have a story that doesn't require direct sunlight or perhaps only sunlight and no soft daylight coming through.

So many choices available and I din't even mention filtration on the camera.

Of course this is just my own 2 cents.

Best

Tim
  • 0

#6 David Mullen ASC

David Mullen ASC
  • Sustaining Members
  • 19759 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 25 February 2007 - 11:21 AM

The problem I have on the big sets of "Big Love" is that we have so many lights to create daylight surrounding the house set, the backing, and the many windows that look "outside" that I have to think carefully if I need to gel the exterior light coming in because there are too many lights to gel quickly.

Sometimes it has been quicker to just gel the windows to quickly make the view out the windows (and the light coming in) look cooler or warmer, but that also takes some time and gets expensive. This is why I generally just turn off most of the practicals for "day" scenes on the stage.
  • 0

#7 Michael Nash

Michael Nash
  • Sustaining Members
  • 3330 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Pasadena, CA

Posted 25 February 2007 - 05:37 PM

David brings up a good point about the practical reasons (no pun intended) for keeping the same color temp. Sometimes speed on set is more important, so you'll slightly change a creative choice for the sake of time management. That's a big part of a DP's job, after all.

But artistically speaking, controlling color temp can be used expressively just like exposure. There's no single right or wrong way to do it. In reality our eyes do see some difference between daylight and tungsten, although not as much as film. So if you want to create a "naturalistic" look you may want a 1/8 or 1/4 density difference. But creatively, you may choose to reduce or exaggerate that difference.

I used to really like what Brian Reynolds did with color temperature on "NYPD Blue," deliberately mixing green fluorescents, warm tungsten and blue daylight all in the same shot. It helped create a more gritty, chaotic feel to the environment that was appropriate to the show. Not strictly realistic, more hyper-real. Chris Doyle with Wong Kar-Wai comes to mind also.

I also like to mix color temps a bit when shooting smaller formats like 16mm, 2/3" and 1/3" video. You can use color to create separation and depth when depth of field may not work in that favor.
  • 0


FJS International, LLC

Abel Cine

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Ritter Battery

rebotnix Technologies

Metropolis Post

Aerial Filmworks

Opal

Broadcast Solutions Inc

CineTape

Wooden Camera

Visual Products

Glidecam

CineLab

Tai Audio

The Slider

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Technodolly

Willys Widgets

Paralinx LLC

Rig Wheels Passport

Opal

Glidecam

Abel Cine

Rig Wheels Passport

Technodolly

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

rebotnix Technologies

Visual Products

Wooden Camera

Metropolis Post

FJS International, LLC

The Slider

Ritter Battery

CineLab

Broadcast Solutions Inc

CineTape

Willys Widgets

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Paralinx LLC

Tai Audio

Aerial Filmworks