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horribly confused

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Lisa Koza
horribly confused
on Feb 21, 2008 at 3:57:40 pm

Hi there, I spent all day long yesterday reading this forum. I am looking to make my first lighting purchase. I will need lights for Interviews along the way, and then other sporadic on-location spots. In other words, I need flexibility. I have experience with an Arri kit from school, but of course am not looking at this time to spend that kind of money. I was thinking of getting a Photoflex or Lowel Rifa box to start with (next week I have to film at a health care facility, at a front desk, I'm using a GL2 to shoot with). But then I just got off the phone with B&H, where I have bought all my stuff so far, and the sales guy suggested I go for this
Impact VA903 Fluorescent Cool Light Two Fixture Kit. I'm kinda surprised he'd suggest Fluorescent lighting! I also don't understand, and this is because I need to read more obviously, but why he'd suggest turning off the overhead lighting, which is also fluorescent, when using these suggested lights. I guess these are Day Light balanced, and the inside lights aren't? Sorry for my ignorance, but hey, this is how ya learn!

Anyway, my budget, yes, I'd like to be around $500 if only to just purchase something initially that'll help with my shoot next week at the healthcare place, not the full interview set up, I can wait to add pieces.

Thank you so much for any help!


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Leo Ticheli
Re: horribly confused
on Feb 21, 2008 at 4:13:23 pm

Yours is a question frequently asked, how does one replace a lighting & grip truck full of professional fixtures that will serve for a variety of different situations with a budget so small it wouldn't cover lunch on a major shoot.

Fortunately, there are a couple of answers that might be helpful.

Option 1: Buy the largest Kino Flo fixture you can find on the used market. Fill it with daylight balanced tubes and use it either as a key light for interview type setups or to just provide as much direction of the light as possible.

With a small output fixture you don't have the punch to really light the whole scene, so you are just supplementing the existing practical lighting.

Try to find a that used Kino Flo with as large an aperture as possible to make it as soft a key as you can.

Add fixtures as your budget allows.

Option 2: Rent as needed.

Unfortunately, many people reject these options and purchase a tungsten kit of some kind because it has many fixtures at a very low price. These are junk; too low level to really be of use and guaranteed to fall apart, or worse.

Make smart, long-term investments in your lighting package; you'll be glad you did.

Good shooting,


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Lisa Koza
Re: horribly confused
on Feb 23, 2008 at 5:43:19 pm

Hi Leo, just wanted to thank you for your advice. I think I might rent for this particular shoot, and then learn more about what exactly I need in the long run! :-)


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Dennis Size
Re: horribly confused
on Feb 23, 2008 at 10:32:13 pm

LEO..... Once more you plainly, and to the point -- so that anyone can understand -- give the best advice in the FORUM.

Dennis Size

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Bob Cole
find a grip
on Feb 24, 2008 at 1:27:33 pm

[Leo Ticheli] "Option 2: Rent as needed."

A related suggestion:

Many grips have a few good pieces of lighting equipment. So you may want to network locally and find a good grip who will bring along some of his/her own gear as a package deal.

You'll get an extra hand (which is good for esthetics AND safety in a semi-public environment) + you'll get the instruments that you need + you'll see the little tricks of how those instruments are used.

Buying used is a great idea, but with your deadline you don't have the time. Also, if you buy, you will need to buy extra bulbs "just in case" (and they can really add up).

Good luck!

Bob C

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