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exterior car mount light to bump up the light on driver


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#1 Chris Mirden

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 09:51 PM

As you can see in the frame I tried to open the aperture enough to give some detail to the face of the driver but not too much to blow out the sky - and failed on both counts. The sky is clipped in parts and the driver is far too dark.

I need to stop down about 1 stop for the sky - but I then need to throw some light on the front of the driver.
I don't want to put the light inside the car - that would be easier to do but I have never liked the results when I have seen it done in situations like this, so I'm looking for a light I can mount above the camera which will give enough light to make this shot passable - as long as it's bright enough that the audience doesn't say to themselves "Wow, I can hardly see the driver". Maybe just 2-3 stops. The camera is about 4 feet from the driver. The shot will be filmed when it's overcast.

I've looked at the Rosco Lite panels and that seems like an option but I'm not sure how big a light to get. ALSO I'm new to LED lighting so I'm not sure which brand to buy and I'd like to find the best bang for my buck. In the link below a guy says Nu World lights are exactly the same as Rosco but almost half the price.

Basically - what are my options for a strong LED panel light that is not too expensive??

I can spend up to $500. And ideally I'd like the light to be rectangular and no larger than 9" x 12" .... if that is possible. Maybe it's not for how bright I need it. I can't go too big because I'm filming in a crowded part of Venice without a permit and while about 5 cops saw the car and driver - none had an issue with it - but I don't want to push it by putting too big a light on the rigging.

Thanks!

http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread.php?181382-Rosco-Litepad-pricing-is-a-ripoff!!!!-Read-this-if-you-want-to-save-a-ton-of-cash

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#2 Torben Greve

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 11:57 AM

How about a grad ND filter on the lens and frame for it....?

Have you tested to see how much you can save in post?
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#3 Chris Mirden

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 11:24 PM

How about a grad ND filter on the lens and frame for it....?


It's a good idea. I thought about it. But I have never tired to use a filter like that to fix a bright sky problem before. In this shot I think the filter might show becuase as the car moves down the street a lot of building on the sides enter and leave the shot. I think the grad filter might be really obvious at that point.

Have you tested to see how much you can save in post?


I did put it in Resolve to see what could be done and actually found a fix..... almost. I found if the sky was blown out completely I could bring it down a bit and suddenly the overexposed white turned gray and it just looked like a gray overcast day (it's a good trick to remember). Which would be perfect. I was thinking of reshooting it with the aperture OPEN even more to do that. It would then lighted up the driver and be perfect... but then I found there was another problem. There are a lot of telephone wires that come into the shot too and when the sky is really overexposed they start to disappear [See picture below - top left] so doing that would not work.

I think what I'm going to try to do is move the seat up so the driver is closer to the window. With the wide angle lens I think the "cheat" wont be so notable. I also am going add 2 small $40 LCD light that I have to the sides of the camera. Without and diffusion they are actually very bright. Even outdoors. I'm not sure if they will add much light inside the car in daylight buy I'll try. Also earlier in the day the sun (although it will be behind clouds) will be in front of the driver, instead of at the side - so that might help.
I'll post new pics from the reshoot. Just waiting for another overcast day......


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Edited by Chris Mirden, 30 January 2013 - 11:26 PM.

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#4 jeff woods

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 04:37 PM

What about a silver reflector next to the camera (since it's overcast), and a polarizer for the lens?

-j
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#5 Chris Mirden

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 11:39 PM

a polarizer for the lens?


Yep. There is already a polarizer on the lens in the shots I posted. I have only ever used polarizers for shots like this - when I want to see the driver inside the car. Polariziers have really saved the day a few times. But I really don't have much experiance with them and I'm not sure if they are affecting the sky too.

What about a silver reflector next to the camera (since it's overcast)


I think if the reflector was big enough that would most likely work. But it might get tricky with the car at speed and the "wind" factor at 25mph. If it was sunny and the sun was behind the car, I think a modest sized reflector would do the trick.

I have 2 lights [link below] that are extremely bright. Even outside at 5 feet in daylight you can't look at them. I looked at some Rosco lights that were bigger and about $300 dollars and these are much brighter. I'm going to try them and see how it comes out.

http://www.amazon.co...ils_o01_s00_i00
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