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#1 Michael Coleman

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Posted 06 May 2005 - 07:59 AM

Hello all,

I just took over the videography position at my company, fresh out of the university mold. Therefore I'm coming here with a lack of experience (heh heh). My predecessor knew less than I did apparently, and it's up to me to re-equip the company with new gear. The two miniDV cams are still in perfect shape, so my question lies with lighting.

The recordings go from miniDV to Final Cut Pro, which could handle all color correction needed, but I'd rather not rely on the "fix it in post" mentality. I'd like to have good lighting so I don't HAVE to do it in post.

The videos are nothing fancy. Cut and dry "how-to" videos that need nothing inventive and artistic.

Their studio room has darkened blinds over the windows which thankfully drown out daylight. Room has about 15' x 18' workable space with an 8' ceiling (standard office panels, no lighting rig) and recordings are normally shot on the 15' wall. Flourescent lights throughout the building (the hum in the wireless mic is rediculous when I turn the room's lights on).

They have two large softbox lights already, but on a 15' wall it makes for little room to work if I try to put one in the corner for backlight. The ceiling panels are that off-white and doesn't bounce light off very well and the walls are a blue color much like the frames of this forum. With the full softbox (including the light dampening scrim) the lights can't get close enough to illuminate the talent. Without the scrim there's harsh shadows all over the place.

They don't like spending a lot on new gear (they love e-bay around here..... sigh) so can anyone suggest a brand, style, wattage of lights? I was looking at some low watt fresnel lights that I could scrim and barndoor so i actually have a 3-point lighting system again. What about PAR lights? open-faced? They want some soft, bright light without shadows. Any suggestions?

Eager to see your responses and thanks in advance,
Mike
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#2 drew_town

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Posted 06 May 2005 - 11:37 AM

Look into some Arri or LTM Pepper fresnels. They come in a variety of wattages. You can also purchase a Chimera softbox for them, too. Quartz lights like Totas are good for lighting a background. Lowel Pro lights are really cheap and make good backlights. Softlights like the Altman Softlight and Softlight Jr. are good for lighting a large area too.
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#3 Tim Tyler

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Posted 06 May 2005 - 11:49 AM

What's your budget?

If you can afford KinoFlo's spend it all on 3200 degree Kino's and some nets.

If Kino's are too expensive, try to find the $$ for a cheaper flourescent system. Flo's will never get hot, which is something you'll appreciate with the low ceilings and relatively small studio space.

Flo light output falls off quickly and will keep you from having shadows on your walls.

The color temp of Kino's will give you great light, but a lesser brand will have a less accurate color that you'll probably want to tweak in post.

You might want a few small inkie fresnels too, in the 100w - 300w range.
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#4 Rolfe Klement

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Posted 06 May 2005 - 12:48 PM

mole do some good deals on their flo range BIAX - I had a four light and it was great - the only issue and it applies to all Flos - is the housing needs TLC

Dedo are great but quite expensive

Maybe do the whole studio tungsten , repaint, get some neg fill and some cheap and good tungsten through diffusion - with hard back light I shot this with 8 par cans and a shower curtain :-)

old post

thanks

R
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#5 Stephen Williams

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Posted 06 May 2005 - 01:20 PM

Dedo are great but quite expensive


old post

thanks

R

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Hi,

Dedo's are fantastic, the bulbs last a very long time and very cheep. IMHO the running cost of Dedo's is so low that they pay for themselves in 2 years.
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#6 Rik Andino

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Posted 06 May 2005 - 01:32 PM

I would avoid PARs if you're looking for soft top light.
They're good but can be very strong and create a narrow beam.

Like Tim recommended KinoFlos are very good...
Or any other type of flourescent light made for Film Production.
However they can be a bit costly....

If you're looking to hang lights on a grid, Altmans might be your best bet.
But I would also recommend a few LTM peppers or some inkies.
I would recommend Arri Lights but they're a bit costly.

Lowel of course is makes good and affordable lights...
Although they're better suited for Location shoots and not studio work.
But you can consider getting some Lowel Softboxes
A DP-light kit or and Omni Kit.

Also you might consider getting a few Chinese paper lanterns
You hang around the studio for a soft fill.

Research some of the brands we recommend...
If you can go to a store that sells motion picture lights and test them out...
See which one you like and which you don't like.


Good Luck
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#7 Michael Coleman

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Posted 09 May 2005 - 07:13 AM

Hello again,

Thanks for the speedy replies, everyone. I'll be getting 2 kinos for a start and see how well they mix with the two softboxes they have here already. And I'll look into a repaint of that room too. Any suggestions on a color? The lighter it is, the warmer the room, right?



Thanks again,
Mike
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#8 Tim Tyler

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Posted 09 May 2005 - 11:41 AM

And I'll look into a repaint of that room too.  Any suggestions on a color?


I recommend painting it white, and then covering at least one of the walls with a black curtain or duvateen. If you think light spill will be a problem, paint the room black and have a wall-size white curtain.
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#9 Mario Jimenez

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Posted 10 May 2005 - 03:36 PM

well, for starters, methinks that you could on the cheap side, build your own fluorescent systems from electronic ballasts (with kino tubes, for color correction)2 footers, 4 footers, even 10 banks, plus, some 8 or more 50 watt pars(like the ones that they use in clothing stores, the ones embedded in the ceilings?) that you can put in little cans that have yokes and even gel holders!!!!

that will give you very much movility and quantity of lights that you can use, look also into par cans and the such, even garden 500w flood lights, you can always make doors for them and though they r not so controllable in a little studio they will have the punch you r looking for, yes, china lights, and change the existing fluor ballasts for FF electronic ones, and get them color corrected tubes.

also it would be a good idea to eliminate the office suspended ceiling so that you will have room to work on, just on the "studio" area, and leave the alumminum rigging to hang stuff from, or change it to sturdier aluminum pipes or something, hahaha, isnt it fun to make things??!!!

forget bout "film" lights nowadays you can for small things get same/better stuff without the brand name, unless they are arri PAR HMIs...

only get a good electrical distro system, one really thought out
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Opal

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CineLab

Abel Cine

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Wooden Camera

Aerial Filmworks

Ritter Battery

The Slider