Lights are the most expensive part of the video lighting equipment you need to make a video, which also includes a camera, audio and tripod. Lighting can have a very powerful effect on the look and feel of the completed video, so it is important that you get it right. When lighting is used correctly, it creates mood and provides depth to the subject. Just read through these tips from our St. Kilda video experts.
To begin filming, you need to make sure that all external lighting is switched off. You want to be in control of the amount and type of lighting that is used throughout the filming of your video.
To have a video well lit, you will need to use three lights. They are the key light, the fill light and the backlight.
The first, the most powerful light is the key light. This should be placed above the subject; it is the surrogate sun when you are filming inside. Because it is so powerful, however, it will cast shadows over a person’s face, creating a shadow under the nose and making dark circles beneath their eyes. The key light should be positioned high and just behind the camera where it will have a strong lighting effect.
The second video lighting equipment is the fill light. It sits at the same level as the camera and behind the camera. These lights are softer than the key light and will remove some of the shadows which have been created by the key light. The fill light may be fluorescent lights, with some of the bulbs removed to make the light softer. There will be fire retardant material covering the light box to diffuse the light. The effect these lights have is to add character and depth to the subject’s face.
The final component to your lighting set up is the backlight. This light usually sits above and behind the subject. It is best to place this light behind the backdrop. These add a professional look to your video by highlighting the bone structure of your subject’s face and giving depth to its shape. The backlight adds a subtle glow, like a halo, around the subject and separates them from the background. It calls the viewer’s attention to the subject and diverts him away from the background. Soft LED lights can be used to great effect as backlights.
It is important to play around with your lighting set up, because very small variations in the position of the lights or their intensity can have a big effect on the mood and feeling of the video. Your environment will dictate the strength of the lights you need.
Lighting creates emotion in the viewer, so it needs to be considered carefully. By the judicious positioning of lights you can accentuate those elements that you want emphasized and keep the focus on the message you wish to convey. Over time you will develop a feel for it and work out a satisfactory arrangement of video lighting equipment which will convey the impression you want to create.
There is more to video making than lighting. Click here if you need help with any other aspects of video from our St. Kilda video experts or contact the Melbourne Video Production team and we will gladly offer you our time tested tips which will enable you to improve your video skills.