Southern Methodist University – Spring Term 2007
117 Umphrey Lee, Mondays 9:00-11:50am
Robert Flowers, Instructor
High-Key – Bright light, no shadows. Few areas of underexposure
Low-Key – Shadows
Hard – unfiltered, direct, hard shadows
Soft – Bounced, filtered, diffused, gelled
Angle – height of light suggests mood
Color – Tungsten 3200 vs. HMI (daylight) 5600
Shadows – caused by distance from subject. Shadows are UNDEREXPOSURE.
3 – Point Lighting
Key light – main light source (e.g. the Sun)
Fill light – Fills in shadows created by key light
Back light – Separates background from actors (adds 3-D) (probably omitted in low key)
Kicker – Low to floor opposite the Key light
Eye light – usually mounted on camera
Set lights – illuminates walls and furniture
Practical – lamps that are part of the scene
Effect light – special effect
Incandescent (Tungsten 3200) Quartz bulbs
Arc or HMI or Xenons (Daylight 5600) 1000 – 20,000 watts
Fresnels – lens, bulb and reflector moves, lens is stationary. Most common.
e.g. Jr., Baby, Baby Baby, Baby Jr.
Fresnels typically range from 50 – 20,000 watts
Open Lights or Open Face – no lens, bulbs are exposed. E.g. Scoops or Soft-lights
PARs – sealed beams, look like car headlights, sometimes have replaceable lenses
Fluorescents – do not flicker
Lightbulbs – household brands are generally around 2400 to 2800 degrees
Photofloods – ECA 250 watts, ECT 500 watts both are 3200 degrees
Buy at Wolf Camera, etc.
Manufacturers: Mole Richardson, Lowell, ARRI (Arriflex), LTM, Dedo-light, Kino-Flo
LIGHTING TIPS TO REMEMBER:
1. Use leather gloves to avoid burnt fingers
2. Use different circuits (check breaker Box) for each light if possible.
3. Turn off all unnecessary electric devices e.g. TV, household lights, stereo, refrigerator, air conditioner, heater.
4. Never leave any switched-on light unintended.
5. Make sure light stands are set-up correctly e.g. locked in position and standing flat
6. Let lights “warm-up’ for at least 5 minutes, so they can attain the correct color temperature.
7. Keep extension cords (use heavy cage) out of the way
8. Using Photo Floods in an ordinary lamb will eventually melt the power cord and become a serious hazard.
9. Use grip-clips, metal clamps, clothes pins to attach gels, diffusion to barn-door
10. Overloading a circuit will “flip” a circuit breaker
Gaffer or Chief Lighting Technician: coordinates the lighting on set
Best Boy: gaffers assistant
Key Grip: The boss
Grip: handle all of the equipment not directly attached to the lights