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Need help on lighting in a hotel room

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Joe CinquinaNeed help on lighting in a hotel room
by on Aug 27, 2005 at 10:25:05 pm

The scene is set at sunrise. A businessman in a hotel room will be waking up and getting out of bed. My question is, what is the best way to light this shot? What setup will set the mood of an interior, dawn scene?

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Mark SuszkoRe: Need help on lighting in a hotel room
by on Aug 28, 2005 at 4:51:10 am

Gritty reality version, or golden fake commercial version?

For sure, you're not going to use the existing lighting except as on-screen motivation for your real lighting, which would tend to be big softlight banks with perhaps a cookie to throw an outside tree branch pattern on the inside wall, and various gels in the red-orange range to warm things up and imply sunrise...

For gritty road warrior reality, flourescents and deliberate counter-white-balancing or adding the bleach-bypass look in post to get that blue-green, anemic feel.

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Thomas LeongRe: Need help on lighting in a hotel room
by on Aug 28, 2005 at 9:07:41 am

I would have thought red-orange warmth is more for sunsets than sunrise.

I'd go for cold, light blue (sky) on the outside/background, and silhouette of the businessman with a hint of detail in the shadows. And I'd probably start the scene with a pan and re-focus from a CU of alarm clock to the actor getting out of bed just to emphasis the time of day, and probably add a sound effect of the alarm clock going off at the start too, fading away from centre of soundstage to one channel, in sync with the pan.

my .02c,
Thomas Leong

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Mark FrazierRe: Need help on lighting in a hotel room
by on Sep 1, 2005 at 8:06:12 pm

If you're implying that the sun is just barely coming over the horizon, I would lean towards the "warm" colors coming through the window. If the sun is over the horizon much, stick with Thomas' suggestion of the "colder" light. Adjust the direction of light coming through the "window" accordingly.

Use just enough ambient room light (very soft) to show any details (alarm clock, shadow side of face, etc.)

This ought to put you up to about six cents.

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