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A friend recently had professional headshots taken by a local still photographer. Despite an hours-long session, however, in the end many of the shots were not useable due to poor or uneven lighting conditions. Lighting is just as important in video productions, and setting up well-lit shots can be a time-consuming process. Here are several things that the aforementioned still photographer did that should be avoided in your next Orlando video production:
Shooting on Location at the Wrong Time
The photographer knew of a remote location, accessible only by boat, which would offer stellar scenery for the shoot. Due to the mid-morning start time of the session, however, it was past 10:00 a.m. before they reached the location. Several of the shots taken in the boat and on the island have dark foregrounds and faces due to the bright sun and stark sky. Although, some of these shots were salvageable in the editing room, for the most part, the two-plus-hour trip was a bust. The photographer should have either insisted on a much earlier start time, to capture some of the best natural lighting, or skipped this location entirely.
Throwing in Too Much Unscripted B-Roll Footage
Hiring a photographer for a lengthy session enabled the friend in this story to capture headshots as well as a myriad of other poses. Between locations, he and the photographer stopped at a small café for a coffee break. While there, the photographer got inspired by the location and asked to take a few shots. In many cases, this type of candid, impulsive behavior can produce the best shots. In this instance, however, the café’s lighting was attractive but also dim. Artsy shots feature the friend sitting at a table with a small lamp to one side. Although the set-up is attractive, the lamp lit his hands and chest but not his face. The resulting photos, although interesting, would not translate well for professional use in print or on screen. In the end, the extra time the two of them spent trying to get shots at the café would have been much better used elsewhere.
No Extra Lighting Equipment
The same problems mentioned above would have occurred for a video production. However, both still and live shoots could benefit from the use of the additional lighting equipment. Having a reflector along for the boat ride would have helped even out the lighting conditions by reflecting light into the space in front of the camera and person posing. For indoor locations, a variety of lighting equipment is a must. Reflectors, filters, lighting rigs, and bulbs of varying intensities can all work together to create optimal lighting conditions.
Not having the right equipment along can eat into production time as you attempt to set up a great shot regardless. In addition, sometimes you may not realize that footage will not work until you review it. If shots are extremely dark, overly shadowed, or uneven from one shot to the next, you may need to book a costly reshoot.
How many times have you considered hiring a single student or freelancing videographer to capture a corporate event? The problem with one-person crews is that they may miss valuable information. It is always helpful to have someone else along to provide feedback. A slightly larger crew will work together to determine the best angles, directions, and lighting for the set-up of each shot. An experienced, professional camera crew will anticipate needs in advance and work quickly to set up new shots without wasting time.
Having great lighting is a must in order to capture usable, dynamic footage. Whether you plan to film your next commercial or film project indoors or outdoors, call our Orlando video production company, NG Production Films. We have over 15 years of expert filmmaking experience, with the right equipment and superior editing skills to make sure every shot works. For more information or a free consultation, call us today at (877) 203-2895.