Jump to content


Photo

hard/atmospheric light style? Am I allowed?


  • Please log in to reply
5 replies to this topic

#1 Joseph Nunez

Joseph Nunez
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 11 posts
  • Other

Posted 13 August 2011 - 06:02 PM

Ive always had an interest in expressionistic/stylilzed lighting, and found myself prefering the boldness of hard light while practicing setups (I'm a total beginner).

Now, I found an textbook that outlines a technique for what the author refers to as an atmospheric (rather than a motivated) approach, where (largely unmotivated) pools of hard light are used to selectively light areas of the set. I am noticing the style in my favorite 70's movies, and most notably in Pulp Fiction. I love this look, and am wondering if it would be a waste of time to pursue; I know audiences today respond best to softer more apparently natural light. Am i just going to circle back after practicing this technique, and realize that noone "buys" this look anymore?
  • 0

#2 Joseph Nunez

Joseph Nunez
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 11 posts
  • Other

Posted 13 August 2011 - 06:19 PM

some pics....

Attached Images

  • pulp-fiction-arqette-stolz.jpg
  • pulp-fiction-marsellus-&-butch.jpg

  • 0

#3 David Mullen ASC

David Mullen ASC
  • Sustaining Members
  • 20074 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 13 August 2011 - 08:00 PM

Hard light is great sometimes, if you can do it well. Trouble is that if you do it badly, it looks cheap, if you do it well, it looks classy. It's a fine line and to some degree, production design is also a factor because all of that hard light is going to make everything pop out more -- cheap make-up, bad colors, badly constructed and painted sets, etc.

But I think everyone should master hard lighting as a part of basic cinematographer skills, whether one uses it or not.

Some hard-lit frames that happen to be on my computer right now:

Posted Image

Posted Image

Posted Image

Posted Image

Posted Image

Posted Image
  • 0

#4 Marcus Joseph

Marcus Joseph
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 404 posts
  • Other
  • Sydney, Australia

Posted 18 August 2011 - 10:47 AM

David, wasn't hard light the preferred way to light in the b/w days to get that hard contrast and separation in particular?

I can see how it works in Black Narcissus very well though, do you have any great examples of modern usage?
  • 0

#5 Joseph Nunez

Joseph Nunez
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 11 posts
  • Other

Posted 18 August 2011 - 10:49 PM

Thanks immensely, David. I've been studying the work of Andrzej Sekula and am quite excited about it. Check out his work if you want to see modern examples, Marcus - here's a frame from "Vacancy" from 2007:

Attached Images

  • VAC002.jpg

  • 0

#6 Marcus Joseph

Marcus Joseph
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 404 posts
  • Other
  • Sydney, Australia

Posted 19 August 2011 - 01:12 AM

That is nice, I should check that movie out. Another reason I've thought of to use hard lighting would be when it's crucial to control the light, specifically when shooting limbo, but it can indeed cheapen the look if not done right.
  • 0


rebotnix Technologies

Visual Products

Willys Widgets

The Slider

CineTape

Ritter Battery

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Abel Cine

CineLab

Paralinx LLC

FJS International, LLC

Rig Wheels Passport

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Technodolly

New Pro Video - New and Used Equipment

Tai Audio

Metropolis Post

Aerial Filmworks

Glidecam

Wooden Camera

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Paralinx LLC

Broadcast Solutions Inc

CineLab

Metropolis Post

Aerial Filmworks

Willys Widgets

The Slider

Technodolly

Glidecam

Wooden Camera

FJS International, LLC

Rig Wheels Passport

Visual Products

New Pro Video - New and Used Equipment

CineTape

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Tai Audio

Abel Cine

Ritter Battery

rebotnix Technologies