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Still photography lighting vs. Film/Video lighting


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#1 Jason Becker

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Posted 26 December 2011 - 12:44 AM

Hello everyone,

I would like to learn the basics of cinematography and noticed the thread on recommended books which is sounds great.

Might be a silly question but is there any difference between lighting for still photography as opposed to film/video, ie. when the subject is moving?

I'm asking this because I've read about someone who learned still photography for years but it took him a while to get the lighting right when shooting motion photography. If so, would it be not so useful in terms of lighting, if I took some courses in still photography?

I would appreciate any advice

Thanks very much,
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#2 Cory Zapatka

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 09:33 AM

Hey Jason,

Coming from a photography background, as many people on this forum have, the differences between still photography and video lighting are both very similar and completely different at the same time.

With stills, the amount of light used on a subject can be easily changed to compensate for all of the various settings on the still camera. This includes the camera's ISO, Shutter Speed and Aperture.

With video/film, there are a few more variables which can be limiting, especially when shooting on motion picture stock. Not only do you have to think about camera rating, shutter speed and aperture, but shutter angle as well. Film stocks are slower than digital still camera censors, with 500 being one of the fastest rated films you can shoot on today. With digital still cameras, you can bump up your ISO to 800, 1000 or even 2500 and still get usable results. Therefore, you need much more light needed when working with film.

There are many, many more differences that you should read up on. Obviously, you can't use a strobe, but many of the basic elements of still photography lighting can be utilized with lighting for the moving image.

Read up on different lighting set ups, and if you look through American Cinematographer, they often have great diagrams included with their articles showing the lighting setups for particular shots.
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Broadcast Solutions Inc

rebotnix Technologies

CineTape

Visual Products

Willys Widgets

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

FJS International, LLC

Glidecam

Wooden Camera

Paralinx LLC

CineLab

Technodolly

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Abel Cine

Ritter Battery

Rig Wheels Passport

The Slider