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Shooting for the beach

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Tomadonna
Shooting for the beach
on Jul 17, 2005 at 11:37:59 pm

I'd like your advise on lighting options for shooting a music video on the beach.
This will be shot at daylight at about mid-day (broad light) and I wanted to know if I should bring any special lighting with me to shoot it.
Keep in mind it is a tight budget video but I'd like to know if there are any essentials...

Thanks in advance!

Tom


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tony salgado
Re: Shooting for the beach
on Jul 18, 2005 at 12:18:35 am


Well for starters .....


Regardless if you are shooting on film or video you need to shoot with HMI's such as 6K, 12K and 18K's in addition to reflectors, silks etc. All this would be able on a full equipped grip and lighting truck.


Shooting in the middle of the day is about the worst time to shoot if you intend to deal with a tough contrast range.


What were you budgeting for (2) reflector, a lowel DP kit with (4) 1k's, small station wagon for the two C-stands and one sandbag?



Tony Salgado


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john sharaf
Re: Shooting for the beach
on Jul 18, 2005 at 12:35:21 am

Tom,

Tony is absolutely correct. There is no simple way to light a scene at the beach at midday, except to go au natural, which unfortunately is usually not very becoming because of hard overhead sun light creating deep shaddows in the actors' eye sockets. If anything orginize your shoot to work in the morning and late in the afternoon to take advantage of the lower angle of the sun.

As he mentions, if price were not the ultimate consideration, a grip and lighting crew would have the benefit of a large grip truck package ( which only rents for $350-500, but you'll need insurance and a qualified driver), which usually carries a 20x20' overhead silk. This gear effectively takes the "curse" off the direct sunlight, but in doing so also lowers the exposure under it, so additional key lighting is required by large HMI sources (don't forget the generator and cable) or large white, silver or gold reflectors. All of this gear requires an adequate sized crew of competent, skilled and experienced operators if only for safety reasons.

Most beaches are public property, so a location permit is almost always required and this opens up another kettle of worms with insurance, police and fire jurisdictions.

The most bang for the buck can be found in 4x4' reflectors, but even these will require some kind of truck (pickup is ok) to transport the wooden box they live in, the stands and heavy sandbags to keep them from flying away. The next best alternative is a grip truck owner operator. I don't know where you live, but check the yellow pages or try mandy.com for referrals.


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David Jones
Re: Shooting for the beach
on Jul 18, 2005 at 4:31:36 pm

Seems like this is the norm now, everyone wants to shoot a music video with... tight budget, very very limited budget or no budget.

If you can't afford a grip truck & HMI light pkg.
Then large overhead butterfly silks & reflectors, and don't shoot at mid-day.


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Tomadonna
Re: Shooting for the beach
on Jul 18, 2005 at 4:46:40 pm

Hi guys, thanks for all your advises!

When you talk about not shooting at mid-day, which hours are you referring to? When is the best time to shoot?

Thanks again,

Tom


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Mark Frazier
Re: Shooting for the beach
on Jul 26, 2005 at 9:48:23 pm

Tom,

Just after sunrise and just before sunset, you will have your sunlight coming in at a very shallow angle, but your color balance will also be a bit more amber. Depending on cloud conditions, relationship of sun to subject, the look you want, etc., those half-hour to 45-minute segments may or may not be good for you.

If you don't have the budget to override strong shadows, you may want to plan a long meal/planning break for when the sun gets almost directly overhead (10:30-11:00) and plan to continue shooting a few hours later.

Whether you choose to shoot in the morning or afternoon hours may also depend on the relationship of coastline and sun, and if you plan on having the water behind them at all times, etc. etc. etc.

Good luck!
Mark


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Bob Cole
Re: Shooting for the beach
on Jul 28, 2005 at 11:08:16 am

In winter, depending on how far north you are, the sun won't be as directly overhead even at noon.


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Blub
Re: Shooting for the beach
by
on Aug 9, 2005 at 3:38:23 am

You might think I am nuts when I mention this but here goes, its what the pros do and I don


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Leo Ticheli
Re: Shooting for the beach
on Aug 9, 2005 at 1:15:14 pm

I disagree with almost everything you wrote. Weak and strong photons?

Professional video cameras with 2/3" imagers have 2.5 times the depth of field of a film camera at any give stop, so a setting of 4.5 on the lens results in rather profound depth of field, not narrow as you suggest. Even 2.8 is very, very deep. To limit depth of field, one must shoot wide open, using the ND filters to control exposure.

When shooting with the far more common 1/3" chip cameras, the depth of field problem is far more difficult to overcome; again, shooting wide open is an absolute must.

There are many ways to control excessive contrast; the aperture setting on the lens is not among them. Choosing the most advantageous time of day and available lighting conditions is certainly the easiest.

Best regards,
Leo

Director/Cinematographer
Southeast USA



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Blub
Re: Shooting for the beach
by
on Aug 9, 2005 at 3:54:39 pm

I don


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