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Ideas wanted for a subwaytunnel


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#1 Daan Werdefroy

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 12:38 PM

I have a short feature coming up and it will take place in abandoned subwaytunnels.

The thing is though, I always light according to what sources would be available in real life (for example: A small lamp hanging from the ceiling or cracks in the ceiling would give me the excuse for lighting the situation).

Problem here is that, according to the story, the charachters have never seen daylight and they're hobos. So they don't have any electricity, lamps or daylight down there.
Right now, i'm struggeling to imagine/light a pitch dark tunnel in my mind...
Does anyone have any suggestions or examples?


In short: How does one light the dark without it looking like light?


Thanks in advance everyone
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#2 Freya Black

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 12:58 PM

I have a short feature coming up and it will take place in abandoned subwaytunnels.

The thing is though, I always light according to what sources would be available in real life (for example: A small lamp hanging from the ceiling or cracks in the ceiling would give me the excuse for lighting the situation).

Problem here is that, according to the story, the charachters have never seen daylight and they're hobos. So they don't have any electricity, lamps or daylight down there.
Right now, i'm struggeling to imagine/light a pitch dark tunnel in my mind...
Does anyone have any suggestions or examples?


In short: How does one light the dark without it looking like light?


Thanks in advance everyone


Seems like theres some serious problems with this plot line.
Maybe it could be a radio series? ;)

One of the major problems you will run into is that if they have never experienced light of any kind then they won't have developed the ability to see.

I would suggest they need to have some kind of firelight thing going on. Perhaps they learn to make candles too out of the fats from dead animals. I assume they must be eating dead animals or fish, as there won't be any plants without any light.

They are also going to have some serious vitamin deficincy problems of course.

love

Freya
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#3 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 01:10 PM

Firelight and some, perhaps, kerosene lanterns. Failing that just build up a base ambience. Could also, if you wanted to have a "live" tunnel, have some cobalt blue "sparks" flashing here and again somewhere. A good film to look into for inspiration would be "Dark Days." Pretty interesting little doco.
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#4 timHealy

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Posted 12 May 2010 - 10:02 PM

How does one light the dark without it looking like light?


well that's the real trick isn't it?

You have to try and see what works for you, your story and your set.

Technically you need enough light for an exposure. Dark doesn't mean no lights. It just means you have to choose where you put light and where you don't. You can try large soft and diffuse overheads for a base exposure and use other lights for enhancing. You can add color for mood, say some sort of bluish look, cutters and cookies to take light away from certain areas while leaving it in key places. In your deep background you can put household bulbs on grip stands so they are points of light out of focus. You can use rim lights on your actors and no or little fill light.

and I would suggest you watch a movie or two like The Third Man. Plenty of dark dank tunnel work. And it's a classic to boot.

Edited by timHealy, 12 May 2010 - 10:03 PM.

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