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View Full Version : How anal are you with your lighting



jambredz
12-23-2013, 10:30 PM
So i think i was a bit anal about my lighting in the past and particularly about where i want my shadows cast especially. But more recently I've loosened up and let things fall where they may (clearly in context). I love the little surprises this reveals... Sometimes the light would fall on a subject or talent in such an unexpected way or how the talent passes through the light which wasnt expected ect... it makes me feel giddy just thinking about it. So how anal are you guys... Do things HAVE to go as planned and you expect the results or do you wing it alot. Granted i have the blessing and curse of being director and dp on about 50 percent of stuff i do but even so my directors usually arent as demanding and leave alot up to me. Also i would say this more on a music vid and narrative basis and less on the commercial side. (curse you high paying, rigid, headbashing causing, red tape abundant commercials)

nickjbedford
12-23-2013, 10:49 PM
Hmm. Considering I rarely have any lighting to work with when I film stuff, I tend to be quite lenient ;)

Where I do get anal is in my photography, as I usually do have a lot of control, especially when completely lighting my portraits. In other words, I'll get it right in camera so the only post processing I do is some light retouching on the subject and the overall colour.

I would love to be given a lighting truck and crew to work with though, but I would probably want to go to film school first as I have no experience beyond a couple tungsten lights with basic mods.

That being said, I tend to let moments happen if they do, especially when mixing or shooting ambient light.

John Brawley
12-24-2013, 05:28 AM
I LOVE happy accidents.

I think if you want naturalistic lighting, then you have to embrace some randomness in your work. My current *thing* is to get small mirrors, or other reflective surfaces and "pain" highlights into my shots. I also have been using roofing insulation. A trip to the hardware store is great for finding new reflective materials, and then bouncing them into my shots.

The move pretty quickly with the sun of course and they're a PITA to maintain, but I just love how you can get totally random things this way.

jb

jambredz
12-24-2013, 07:32 AM
What's a "pain" highlight JB?

Matthew Bennett
12-24-2013, 09:23 AM
What's a "pain" highlight JB?

JB probably means 'pan' (?) - unless the 'pain' is a form of cinematography self flagellation… mysterious

Good ideas though

robmneilson
12-24-2013, 10:09 AM
If I have all the time in the world I get anal as all hell. If I don't have enough time I usually end up lighting the scene, and then turning off one or two lights and going with it.

Frank Glencairn
12-24-2013, 11:24 AM
Actually I'm super anal with my lighting.

Having said that, not all the time I shoot, I have the budget to get all the lights I want.
So I have to make the best out of what's there, and as John said, in this situation, happy accidents often happen when you shoot that way, and I like that.
Also reflectors (or even a tablecloth) goes a long way.

I have a little kit out of 3 FloLights (2x55W each) that I take everywhere.
It's not ideal, but if I have to, I can light almost everything with it (and some reflectors) to some decent degree.

pharpsied
12-24-2013, 11:26 AM
I'm super anal about metering and recording the setup so I can repeat it and match it, but I am a lot more easy going with the actual setup. I'm of the school of matching and augmenting the light already there and sculpting stuff like Lubeski and ancient Sumerian god of lighting, Deakins.

John Brawley
12-25-2013, 02:19 AM
JB probably means 'pan' (?) - unless the 'pain' is a form of cinematography self flagellation… mysterious

Good ideas though



Ha.

I actually meant "Paint" a few highlights in.....

jb

007
12-25-2013, 10:35 AM
ANAL LIGHTING ? What the hell is it :confused
:

jambredz
12-25-2013, 11:11 AM
ANAL LIGHTING ? What the hell is it :confused
:

LOL...if you are indeed confused (because of language barriers) It only means overly meticulous or overly particular in how things have to be lit. It has to be lit only that way without room for other exploration or as JB calls it "happy accidents" to happen.

007
12-25-2013, 12:49 PM
Thanks. got it :) so what does ANAL mean then, is it an abbreviation of somekind ?

John Brawley
12-25-2013, 05:31 PM
Thanks. got it :) so what does ANAL mean then, is it an abbreviation of somekind ?

I think it comes from the psychoanalysis spin on the word, from someone who is meticulous and pedantic. They talk about being "anal retentive" or an "anal character"

I think it's also a clear stage in a childs development when they learn to use the toilet.

Weird that anal is in psychoANALysis

jb

iammuc
12-26-2013, 01:47 AM
ANAL LIGHTING ? What the hell is it :confused
:

It is, at some point in ones carreer, where you find yourself shooting an anus and require some form of lighting to make it magical.

but yeah, as JB puts it I think it comes from the saying being "anal retentive", not open to ideas or foreign objects =)

John Brawley
12-26-2013, 01:55 AM
Isnt that what DPs do ? Make the light shine put of peoples areses ? ;-)

JB

007
12-26-2013, 03:45 AM
haha:D

007
12-26-2013, 03:46 AM
even more :confused:

misterkofa
12-27-2013, 09:46 AM
At first... cause you learn to light good, but I found myself "overlighting" a scene, trying to kill shadows. Now it's back to the basics. Giving the camera enough to see but keeping it as natural as possible. Most of my work has a dark feel to it so usually it's only a bounce or flags outdoors or 2 kinos or soft boxes indoors.