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Advice for shooting painted backgrounds outside


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#1 Melissa Vilardo

Melissa Vilardo

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Posted 27 January 2009 - 11:14 PM

My first time posting...so hi everybody!

Anyway, where to start. I'm shooting a short in a few weeks on miniDV (top quality, I know). The story revolves around two 30 somethings at a bus stop. Now, normally this would be a straight outdoor-lighting setup but the kicker is that we are filming in the writer/producer's backyard against painted backdrops. Here are some pictures:

http://www.facebook....mp;id=727082781

http://www.facebook....mp;id=727082781

In case you haven't figured it out already, the story's a bit surreal (but it was born out of our desire to control our surroundings rather than shoot at a real bus stop) so the script doesn't necessarily call for a complete other-worldly feel. However, all action (besides the actors) will be done by cardboard/paper cutouts (birds flying by, bus arriving).

I think I'm getting off topic. I've never lit flats before (especially outside) and was curious if there was a generally agreed-upon way to light them. I'm planning on using natural light for the actors (shiny boards, white foam core, etc.) as well as some tungsten Arris for backlights (we're on a really tight budget - well, actually, there's no budget, so we're using what we can find/borrow). I would rely on natural light for the flats but I'm worried the colors might not pop as much as the actors.

Any ideas?

Oh, and before anyone asks, I am planning on renting a 12x silk to control shadows from the grapefruit tree/back of the house.
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Visual Products

Willys Widgets

New Pro Video - New and Used Equipment

Technodolly

Abel Cine

Aerial Filmworks

Wooden Camera

rebotnix Technologies

Glidecam

FJS International, LLC

Ritter Battery

Paralinx LLC

CineLab

Rig Wheels Passport