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Lighting Interior & Exterior through Window


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#1 Rick Simon

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 05:26 PM

I am producing a student film, and was hoping to get some opinions about lighting for one of our pivotal scenes. We have an exterior confrontation that is seen from the POV of someone inside a store through the glass window. The director wants one long take, handheld, racking focus approx. 50' between the interior and exterior through the glass during the day, then following the character as they exit the store to join the ext. confrontation.

I have a huge number of concerns, the most obvious is being able to light the int and ext so that everything is not completely blown out. Additionally, all locations I have seen so far have tinted windows, which should take the ext down a few stops. (Not to mention flare issues)

How would you light this? Light up the interior, try and diffuse the sun, shoot it at night and HMI outside, or just rewrite it to be less complicated?
I think it could be told just as effectively with some rewrites and our 1st AC would be a lot happier. I'm all for awesome cine, but we have to take this scene in a day.

Just looking to get some outside advice. Thanks!
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#2 Mike Lary

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Posted 08 October 2012 - 12:34 AM

I am producing a student film, and was hoping to get some opinions about lighting for one of our pivotal scenes. We have an exterior confrontation that is seen from the POV of someone inside a store through the glass window. The director wants one long take, handheld, racking focus approx. 50' between the interior and exterior through the glass during the day, then following the character as they exit the store to join the ext. confrontation.

I have a huge number of concerns, the most obvious is being able to light the int and ext so that everything is not completely blown out. Additionally, all locations I have seen so far have tinted windows, which should take the ext down a few stops. (Not to mention flare issues)

How would you light this? Light up the interior, try and diffuse the sun, shoot it at night and HMI outside, or just rewrite it to be less complicated?
I think it could be told just as effectively with some rewrites and our 1st AC would be a lot happier. I'm all for awesome cine, but we have to take this scene in a day.

Just looking to get some outside advice. Thanks!


Weather permitting, I would shoot on an overcast day and light the interior to balance, but that's if I had the luxury of time. Another option would be rewriting the scene. You could cut from a POV through the window to a reverse of the character exiting the building, backing up with him/her, then let the character cross camera and come behind with a fluid motion and follow. This could incorporate an iris rack if needed.

Edited by Mike Lary, 08 October 2012 - 12:35 AM.

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New Pro Video - New and Used Equipment

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Metropolis Post

FJS International, LLC

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The Slider

Paralinx LLC

Wooden Camera

Willys Widgets

Rig Wheels Passport

Aerial Filmworks

Tai Audio

CineLab