Jump to content


Photo

Advice on lighting this room


  • Please log in to reply
19 replies to this topic

#1 John Byrne

John Byrne
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 19 posts
  • Student

Posted 01 February 2012 - 04:25 PM

Obviously not looking for people to do my homework here or anything, but more looking towards some advice as this will be my first 'proper' shoot.

I've attached the room layout. Extremely rough I know, apologies. Looking to light the room as if it was a nightime scene - television is on etc, and a couple of lamps. In terms of lighting I have the following to choose from:

Arri 2 K Blonde
Arri 800W Redhead
Arri 1 K Fresnel
650W Fresnel
Bambino Portable Lighting Kit (incl 3 X Fresnel 500W with stands and case)
ARRI Portable Lighting Kit (incl 3 X 300W or 3 X 500W Fresnels with stands and case)
Kino Flo (portable softlight interview kit
including 2 X 4 bank 2ft (tungsten)
stands & case)

There's going to be wide, medium and close-ups. Also looking to have the shadows hit against the wall behind where people will be sitting. I think it's going to be hard trying to replicate the light coming from the tv, what do you guys think?
  • 0

#2 John Byrne

John Byrne
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 19 posts
  • Student

Posted 01 February 2012 - 04:30 PM

Oh and it's going to be shot on a 5D MKII if that's of any use!
  • 0

#3 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7118 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 01 February 2012 - 05:00 PM

John;
why don't you start with your first ideas/plans and we can then see what you're thinking and where we might be best able to help.
  • 0

#4 Iain Trimble

Iain Trimble

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 3 posts
  • Student
  • Lawrence, Kansas

Posted 01 February 2012 - 05:06 PM

Are there any windows in the room? You might bounce some light in with an HMI for moonlight. Put some 60w or 100w bulbs in the lamps and crank the brightness and contrast up on the T.V to get some extra light out of it. That is if you wont be seeing it. Have any china balls?
  • 0

#5 John Byrne

John Byrne
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 19 posts
  • Student

Posted 01 February 2012 - 05:34 PM

Are there any windows in the room? You might bounce some light in with an HMI for moonlight. Put some 60w or 100w bulbs in the lamps and crank the brightness and contrast up on the T.V to get some extra light out of it. That is if you wont be seeing it. Have any china balls?


The room that's in line to be used doesn't have any windows (the room that I'd personally pick has two massive windows). Wide shot won't include the tv, maybe a hint of it, but mainly focusing on the seating area. There will be some OTS shots which will have the tv entirely in shot - guessing I need to pick up some gels to cover the tv (Adrian was saying it's roughly 6k on the kelvin scale so if I'm using tungsten lights (Arri + lamps) then I'll just put some CTO over the tv?). Don't have any china balls, nope, recommend?

Adrian - Initially I was thinking of bouncing a light (or two) off the ceiling but then it occurred to me that this would look nothing like a nighttime scene - why are they being lit from above etc. So the lamps were thrown in to add a little bit of light to each side but still, the tv is not going to provide enough illumination to light people sitting on the couch/recliner. Problem is mainly with the wide/establishing shot and trying to hide the lights but still light the subjects somewhat.

Here's an example of something similar-ish to what I'm aiming for, probably a bit darker though.

Posted Image

Edited by John Byrne, 01 February 2012 - 05:34 PM.

  • 0

#6 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7118 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 01 February 2012 - 05:47 PM

I'd use a 300 for the TV gag (maybe the 650), and punch up the lamps with the 800 and 1K as a cross key. Keep it Simple; and as you get closer just scoot the lights in and scrim them down.

You could also add in an overall overhead soft light from the Kinos; but personally I never really like doing that.


Were it me, and without seeing the room in person, I might be tempted just to reglobe the lamps and see if that gets me where I need to be. If they don't; i'd start scooting in some lights to bring up areas of the frame I need. One of the biggest problems we have is often over-lighting-- we got the gear and feel we need to use it all-- but you don't most of the time.

If it's not working, try turning off a light first, before adding in another (especially for a night scene).
  • 0

#7 Evan Kimball

Evan Kimball
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 13 posts
  • Gaffer

Posted 02 February 2012 - 01:11 AM

What's the mood? For fake tv just put any tungsten light on a dimmer and throw a color gel on it and just go nuts.
  • 0

#8 John Byrne

John Byrne
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 19 posts
  • Student

Posted 02 February 2012 - 07:48 AM

Thanks Adrian - going to do a couple of trial runs in the other room (as in, the second option) and see how that goes. Read some Blain Browne material there and he was saying to use dimmers on the lamps (once again, don't have dimmers for these!) otherwise you're looking at having a properly exposed lamp/light but an underexposed subject or a 'correctly' exposed subject but a blown out lamp. So I'm thinking it'll be hard to pull off without being able to actually dim the lamps :/

Evan - the rental company that has those lights says they don't come with a dimmer unfortunately. The said I can bring them down with some trace paper but that's not much help. They also said that they have the kino flo kit which has 4 tubes in each of the 2 banks, and each tube has its own individual switch so in a way it can be dimmed. Btw, the mood is pretty dark/depressing/gloomy!



Appreciate any advice, thanks!
  • 0

#9 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7118 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 02 February 2012 - 07:54 AM

You can also just swap out the bulbs in the lamps instead of dimmimg them (which warms them up anyway). Also there is Streaks and Tips.
  • 0

#10 John Byrne

John Byrne
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 19 posts
  • Student

Posted 02 February 2012 - 09:10 AM

First I've heard about Streaks and Tips, I'll check it out.

When you say swap out you mean just have bulb in there but just not turned on?
  • 0

#11 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7118 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 02 February 2012 - 09:16 AM

No I mean o to home depot and pic up a 25 watt or a 40 watt bulb as opposed to what's in the lamp already. It's pretty common. I normally carry

25
40
60
75
100
150
200
300

all in medium base bulbs and in both frosted and clear varieties. The go tos, normally are 100 and 60 watt, though; but there's nothing wrong with putting a 25 watt bulb into a side table lamp or whatever to dim it down.

Streaks and tips is spray on hair coloring; you can get the black and spry it on the bulb and it's like black wrap, but you take down the amount of light coming off of a lamp proper.
  • 0

#12 John Byrne

John Byrne
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 19 posts
  • Student

Posted 16 February 2012 - 07:15 AM

Thanks Adrian, picked up a couple of 25w bulbs for two side lamps.

Problem with the room and we've been left with the room attached to work with. Far smaller than what was desired but that's we've got now. I was thinking of using the Arri 300w (x3) since the room is so small and that I'm trying to create a night time living room environment - what do you guys think?

Attached Images

  • room.jpg

Edited by John Byrne, 16 February 2012 - 07:19 AM.

  • 0

#13 Rob White

Rob White
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 24 posts
  • Electrician
  • London

Posted 17 February 2012 - 06:00 AM

The first thing I would recommend doing with that new location is to get some bolton and floppies to cover up all the white floors, ceilings and walls that aren't in shot to cut down on any light bouncing back. Otherwise the second you turn a light on it will bounce everywhere and look very flat!

Maybe you could stick with the idea of using the 300s and play them as 3/4 back light/sidelights to keep the contrast up and make it a bit moodier.

Let us know how you get on!
  • 0

#14 John Byrne

John Byrne
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 19 posts
  • Student

Posted 17 February 2012 - 08:44 AM

Thanks Rob. Too late to pick up any supplies unfortunately (duvetyne is hard to find where I am anyway!) so I'm just going to have to go with what we have. Not at all crazy about the white walls :(
  • 1

#15 John Byrne

John Byrne
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 19 posts
  • Student

Posted 18 February 2012 - 03:03 PM

Here's an updated pic of the setup - apologies for the poor quality shot but it gives you an idea. Also, the black material on the floor obviously needs fixing.

I've got two lights set up behind the tv (to the left and right of it), both 500w with the barn doors quite narrow. Still looks a good bit off and not quite like a night scene - what do you think? Not sure what else I can do with this - the room is so small that it's impossible to cross light!

Appreciate any feedback, shoot is in a couple of days so the sooner the more appreciated!

Attached Images

  • room3.jpg

  • 0

#16 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7118 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 18 February 2012 - 09:16 PM

I'd say that to sell it as a night scene you need to make it look as though the primary lighting is coming from the lamps in the room. Personally, I think the white walls are also kind of killing you.
  • 0

#17 Logan Thomas Triplett

Logan Thomas Triplett

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 8 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, CA

Posted 19 February 2012 - 01:57 PM

Although this topic is about lighting, I want to step back and comment on something else which I find to be equally as crucial when I am lighting a small space: production design. Maybe talk with whoever is doing production design and come up with a better solution for the walls. I've found when trying to make a small space with lighter shaded walls sell for night, I often need to figure out a better solution for "filling the space." This is just my opinion, but I find that the more I can dress a scene with white walls (if painting is not an option), the more I can get away with in terms of lighting. As a cinematographer, I have always felt that "good" lighting is always a marriage between lights and great production design. See what you can integrate within the set. once again this is just my take on it, and I'm sure a lot of you have a different approach. good luck shooting!
  • 0

#18 John Byrne

John Byrne
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 19 posts
  • Student

Posted 19 February 2012 - 05:45 PM

Thanks guys.

Yeah the white walls are killing it big time. So little space though that we've got no other option. And we don't have anything to cover the walls (using what we have to cover the tiles on the floor!). Gotta love low-budget filmmaking, eh? :)

Adrian - can't get in from the sides as the width you see in the picture is actually the width of the room. Can't get in at the sides :/
  • 0

#19 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7118 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 19 February 2012 - 05:56 PM

Try re-globing the fixtures with brighter bulbs, or tone down the brightness of your TV. You wanna try to work the illumination so that the "main" source lighting them is from the lamps, and then falling off into darkness, and another slight splash of light from the TV; but slight. The key to selling it is by populating your frame with darkness.
  • 0

#20 John Byrne

John Byrne
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 19 posts
  • Student

Posted 26 February 2012 - 11:18 AM

We weren't able to get the light coming from the sides, so opted instead to go frontal (behind the tv). Personally I wouldn't have gone this way but in the end it wasn't my call. I haven't seen the finished product yet but there were far too many lights on in the room (3x500w - no dimmers, two spotlights and two 25w lamps). I was hoping to get it far darker and much more interesting to the eye.
  • 0


Abel Cine

CineTape

Rig Wheels Passport

The Slider

Opal

Ritter Battery

Aerial Filmworks

Wooden Camera

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Paralinx LLC

Glidecam

Tai Audio

Technodolly

Willys Widgets

Visual Products

CineLab

Metropolis Post

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

rebotnix Technologies

FJS International, LLC

rebotnix Technologies

Ritter Battery

Rig Wheels Passport

FJS International, LLC

Opal

Willys Widgets

Abel Cine

Paralinx LLC

Visual Products

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Aerial Filmworks

CineTape

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

CineLab

Technodolly

The Slider

Metropolis Post

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Glidecam

Tai Audio

Wooden Camera