18 July, 2016

4 Different Kinds of Light and 4 Ideas to Consider When Using Them

Lighting is hard. Here are two videos to teach you all about it.


The first video is from Sareesh Sudhakaran of wolfcrow. He shows us the difference between four different types of light: hard, soft, specular, and diffused.



His explanations are pretty simple. And he helpfully portrays the special qualities of each kind of lighting and how to get each one using different techniques.


Your film needs a particular kind of lighting to set the correct mood and emotion. Consider some of your favorite films and next time you watch them, take note of the kind of lighting that is used in them, using the terms from Sudhakaran. The main takeaway from this video is that there are different types of lighting that achieve different things. Play around to find what's best for your project.


The second video I wanted to share focuses on some tips and things to consider when figuring out what kind of lighting you want. It is from DSLRguide and it takes you through some of the lighting setup you may need to go through as well.



In the video, four lighting techniques are discussed. Firstly, use available light. You don't need to go that far out of your way to find what you need. Secondly, think about motivated light. You lighting choices should serve a purpose. It isn't always about simply using what is easy. That may be a good place to start, but then you may want to consider what makes your story better or how you can convey your message more clearly. The third concept is hidden light. This may mean raising a light to get it out of your shot or it may mean you figuring out how to hide a light in a much more creative manner. This can require a lot of brainpower, but it is a skill you can develop with practice. Lastly, experiment with your light. Do something different. You may be surprised with the results sometimes. Don't focus just on lighting the subject you need lit. Experiment with where you want its shadows. Switch it up. Don't be predictable.


And I am adding a final technique, which is to have fun. That shouldn't be too hard because in my opinion, every step of the process is fun. If you aren't having fun, why are you doing it? Sure, it can be frustrating and it can drive you crazy, but take a step back, take a deep breath, and remember that there is a movie called 'Disaster Movie' (2008) that has a 1% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Your film can't be worse than that. It has the word 'disaster' in the title. They knew it was going to be bad.


Post by Katrina Faust

Riverview Studios

award winning digital video production facility

located in Bordentown, New Jersey