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Author Topic: studio lighting  (Read 3430 times)

Dan Glass

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Re: studio lighting
« Reply #10 on: February 08, 2008, 07:38:46 am »

With a small studio space I would also recommend using a fluorescent fixture that was designed for television (they do make dimmable ones).  Kino Flo does make a great fixture but I find it more useful when I need to light a large area.  For your application I would use a fixture from the company brightline (www.brightlines.com).  They have fixtures smaller then the Kino Flo but still maintain the punch you will need without sacrificing control.  I have used a few of their fixtures over the years and they offer the most options when it comes to beam angles and intensity.  I recently purchased 20 new ones to use in my studios.  As far as dimming is concerned I will have to disagree with the theory that dimming is not needed in a studio.  Every time someone walks in front of the camera the lighting will need to be adjusted.  Intensity levels will change based on skin tone, clothing, scenery and other things.  Someone with dark skin in a dark suit will need different lighting from someone with light skin in a light suit.  Yes you could make changes using scrims and diffusion but in a studio/television enviorment you do not always have the time or opportunity.  It is a life saver when you can make that adjustment to save the look of a show without having to make everyone wait.  I work at the largest studio on the East coast (around 50,000 square feet)and currently have over 2500 studio fixtures and 100 intelligent fixtures and every fixture is plugged into a dimmer or is dimmable on its own.  I would suggest that you look online and find a used AMX board and keep the dimming or else find a small DMX console and buy a DMX to AMX converter. You have a small studio so I would think you would want all of the flexibility you can get.
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Dan Glass

E. Lee Dickinson

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Re: studio lighting
« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2008, 09:35:17 am »

Hi Dan, thanks for your expertise on the subject. I'm a theatrical-background lighting guy, so dimming to me has always been an invaluable tool. However, I've been told over and over again by TV crews "You have to run them at full or else they are too amber."

I'm well aware of amber shift, and use it to my benefit in theatrical design, but it seems to be a real killer for video cameras. My company does a lot of video, and we always just white balance to the lighting with no problems. The TV crews seem to always have a problem, though.

What gives, and what's the solution besides having to put in different color correction every time you make an intensity adjustment?

I really should get some books on lighting for film and video. In the meantime, I'd appreciate any little snippets of wisdom you con offer.
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E. Lee Dickinson
Advanced Visual Production Inc.
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Jeff Strachan

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Re: studio lighting
« Reply #12 on: February 08, 2008, 11:26:26 am »

All we have ever done in the past is white balance anytime the lights are changed. In the few instances where we did some small amount of theatrical effects (me bee-bopping to the music of the live band while throwing the sliders around for the colored lights and fixed spotlights) we would put all fill and key lights to the amount of light we thought of as default (such as between songs), kept all colors off and white balanced.  It always worked out fine even in the one instance of taking all but the back lights down to a very low level and bringing up a fixed spotlight on a drum solo.

But if halogens should be at max to have proper white light then I could replace the bulbs presently in use for lower wattage and get the same effect as dimming, and no amber shift if I just plug them into a wall outlet(yes they are 120V lights) The studio has several separate ccts so this should not be a problem and diffusion could be used to smooth out the light.

If head office ever gets around to sending flouresent lamps all the better. But in the mean time its up to me to make what we have work.
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Dan Glass

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Re: studio lighting
« Reply #13 on: February 08, 2008, 02:46:16 pm »

E. Lee,
As long as you keep your lighting levels even then the camera can white balance to anything, unless of course you are adding some colors on top of that.  I have always run into the crews that complain because they are not used to dimmed lights.  The theory of running the lights at full only really works of all of the lights are the same.  Look at all the lamps we (the industry) are using today.  Allot of them are rated as having a 3200 Kelvin temperature rating but hardly any of them really do and the longer you use them the more they change.  Don't get me wrong, if you can run the lights at full then by all means go ahead but in my world when I have a light colored wall next to a dark wall I need that dimming control.  Keep in mind though that you can dim to far.  Certainly if you have two exact fixtures and one is at full and the other is at half then you will have a difference that will take that nice image you were going for and smash it into the ground.  Mix uo the fixtures when you can.  If you need to run fixtures at different levels that use different lamps, if a 2K is to bright switch it to a 1K lamps and vice versa.  When you have the time set up a simple three point lighting scene and play with it, throw out the rule book and see what you can create, have fun with it.  Hey I am just one guy and this is just my opinion.
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Dan Glass

Dan Mills

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Re: studio lighting
« Reply #14 on: February 12, 2008, 06:22:11 pm »

Shutter for size, zoom for brightness and dim for colour temperature.

For telly, you control the brightness by adjusting the focus, you shutter to control the area and dimmers are only really used to control CT.
As others have said, while having a few dimmers is handy for specials, florescent is the way forward for studio as opposed to theatre.  

It is a whole different approach to lighting from the theatre world.

Regards, Dan.
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