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3 Quarter Baclklight


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#1 Adam Wallach

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Posted 31 August 2007 - 03:05 PM

What is the proper way to meter a 3-quarter backlight, either if it?s the sun or key light? Is it the same way as metering a light from the side; position the meter halfway between the camera and light? Or do I want to treat it like a backlight situation and meter the face and underexpose it a bit. (I'm not referring to how to silhouette)

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#2 Jon Kukla

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Posted 31 August 2007 - 04:55 PM

I generally don't *meter* the backlight per se, but just set it by eye. (If you're outside, you either have to set the fill by eye and then meter that or send the sun through some material first.) If you're shooting video, you might want to check your zebras to stop down enough to avoid blown highlights, but film should handle fine.
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#3 Delorme Jean-Marie

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Posted 31 August 2007 - 05:15 PM

adam
position your meter where the light hit the talent, half way don't interest you, you want to know the light level where the actor and as it's moving actors where he is gonna be.
metering the back light will tell you the cotrast of your image between high lights and shadows.
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#4 Jonathan Bowerbank

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Posted 31 August 2007 - 06:09 PM

Measuring incidental, have your sphere pointed towards the light source to meter it.

You've probably noticed though that when your backlight is the same as your key it appears way hotter because the light is practically glaring off your actor and directly at the lens. In most situations, I like to have the backlight 1 to 2 stops under key so it's more subtle. Having a spot meter will give you a more accurate reading of the backlight, but it's also good to learn what incidental readings mean what in those situations.

When shooting video, it helps to place some diffusion on that light as well.
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