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How to light this?


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#1 Tiago Pimentel

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 05:24 PM

Hi guys,

 

I was wondering if anyone could help me break the lighting scheme on this still:

 

150515_TV_MadMen_BestImages_smoke.jpg.CR

 

It looks like there's a fresnel behind the practical, side lighting the male actor. There's obviously a rim light on the actress as well and a backlight daylight balanced to separate the background. I can't really tell if there's anything else in the room. The wall seems to have a nice round and diffused lighting that falls off in the door, but can't point my finger where it's coming from. 

 

Can anyone help?

 

Thanks!


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#2 Stuart Brereton

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 06:30 PM

In addition to the sources you've mentioned, I'd say that there is a soft blueish top/backlight coming from top right, lighting the bed. There's also a cool key on her face.  I think there is also a low level tungsten fill on his face, just helping the edge light to wrap a bit more.


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#3 Tiago Pimentel

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Posted 18 August 2017 - 05:02 PM

Thanks Stuart. Two questions, if I may:

 

1 - That vignette that seems to follow the light of the lamp, do you think it's the light setup or is it post production grading?

 

2 - I was trying to replicate this same lighting, but with just 4 lights, which is what I have available to work with. I have 4x 1k tungsten fresnels, scrims, bounces, silks, flags, etc. From what I can count, there are 5 or 6 different lights in this picture. Could you help me figure out how can I get a decent aproximation with 4 lights?

 

Thanks!


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#4 Stuart Brereton

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Posted 18 August 2017 - 09:15 PM

Okay, you'd need one lamp for the soft blue ambience over the bed. If you lose the edge on him, and just use a soft fill on his face, that's two. The backlight on her could also double as a soft key, it it's bounced back onto her face from outside the door (which may be the case in the still), so that's three, The moonlight in the hallway makes four.

 

Bear in mind that some of these sources are very low level, and so 1kw lamps will almost certainly be too much. If I was lighting this, I'd maybe use a single 2ft daylight kino tube as the toplight, a standard edison light bulb on a dimmer as the fill on his face, a 650w fresnel as her backlight/bounce key, and another daylight kino for the ambience in the hallway. The shot appears to have quite deep focus, but you really don't need much light to achieve that with today's cameras.


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#5 Michael Rodin

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Posted 19 August 2017 - 02:46 AM

That soft sidelight on the actress is coming from a hallway. Could be a small diff frame pretty far away (see how the doorjamb is flagging off his room). The could be also a low level overall soft fill in his room.

 

PS, It's quite a stylized take on a night INT. To do it in a realist manner, you'll need some more spotlights, mainly to create a "sphere" of light around the practical. You'd wrap ND gel inside the lampshade and put a brighter bulb there. Then add a toplight over the practical, then his key... You'd also light up the floor in front of the doorway.


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#6 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 19 August 2017 - 03:59 AM

Its Madmen isnt it.. so quite stylized look..  the women (wife) has quite a strong shadow under her right arm doesn't she ? .. wouldn't that mean some light source hitting her from left of frame..I dont see how that can be coming from the hall way.. as she's leaning more than half into the room, and her right side is pretty bright ... could be wrong..


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#7 Tiago Pimentel

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Posted 19 August 2017 - 05:18 AM

Hi, yes it's from the tv show Madmen. There are too many light sources, now that I really looked. There's one I didn't see initially which is a blue backlight on Don's head. This could also be the light that's giving the cool blue on the bed. Anyway, here's what I was thinking I could get with my 4 1k Arri fresnels. What do you guys think?

 

- 1k tungsten fresnel on right of the frame (no diffusion nor gels) edging the male actor;

- 1k tungsten fresnel on the right side of the camera with a full scrim to take it down, going through a big diffusor with grid as fill light. It could also have a blue gel on the bottom, bellow the diffusor to get the blue on the bed;

- 1k tungsten fresnel on the left side, with a full scrim, going through unbleached muslin and then flagged very tightly with two black flags to light the actress;

- 1k tungsten fresnel in the hall for hair light (with CTB or without?) on the actress.

 

This leaves me without the blue light to get some light on the background, but... I could get a 100w bulb and put it inside a china ball and use it as fill light for the actor and use the 1k Arri to light the hall.

 

What do you guys think?

 

Thanks


Edited by Tiago Pimentel, 19 August 2017 - 05:19 AM.

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#8 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 19 August 2017 - 05:28 AM

Is it a location you can shoot the scene in day light.. set your camera to 3200 or 4300... and have some day light spill as "blue" moon light..


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#9 Michael Rodin

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Posted 19 August 2017 - 08:22 AM

Its Madmen isnt it.. so quite stylized look..  the women (wife) has quite a strong shadow under her right arm doesn't she ? .. wouldn't that mean some light source hitting her from left of frame..I dont see how that can be coming from the hall way.. as she's leaning more than half into the room, and her right side is pretty bright ... could be wrong..

Isn't it obvious it's coming from the left? There seems to be a hallway going across the wall with the doorway (and stairs in BG, looks like that on a small screen)... or how do I call that thing in English? The frame, or kino, would be quite far down the hallway (corridor? aisle?) She couldn't be lit from his room as the door which opens inside would flag it off.

 

I haven't seen the show, but this is a stylized approach to lighting, which's neither good nor bad, it just works here. The practical is basically only keying the actor and creating a faint shadow on the wall.

If they intended to make a realistic night INT, they'd have created a "sphere" of light around the lamp with a fast falloff. It'd provide a rather strong top/rim light for the kid, light up the table and fall off on walls. It would overpower the ambience like in an actual interior, just to a lesser degree so that the stock/camera sees shadow texture and color.

But here the space around the lamp is toned down in contrast, I suppose, so the bright/contrasty right part of the set doesn't drive the eye away from the actress.


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#10 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 19 August 2017 - 09:00 AM

I think we are talking about the same thing .. maybe rights and lefts getting muddled up.. I dont usually light anything as elaborate as this.. I just see this quite strong shadow of her right arm.. on her dress..so yes I was guessing there must be something from left of frame.. 

 

It was a great series.. famous for its lighting and general look.. great detail to period features.. I think David Mullens, of this Manor.. shot an episode too.. 


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