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Old July 2nd, 2008, 11:40 AM   #1
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How Would You Light This...

I was wondering what everyone's thoughts were on lighting the interior of the space displayed in the attached photos (sky in photos was overcast at the time).

What would need to be lit is an oval table with 7 people sitting around it.

We would need to be able to see the view out the windows as well as the people sitting around the table and the contents of the table. The windows are tinted. They are facing South.

Time of day would be about late afternoon until dusk possibly into night.

Most likely being shot with 4 canon XL H1's; 1 on a jib/dolly with curved track, 2 on tripods, and 1 that will be shoulder mounted and continuously moving.

The look will be stylized so there is some creative freedom in the lighting solutions.

Current budget is approximately $3,000 for the equipment/rentals to light this scene.

There is about 48 hours to work in the space before shooting must begin.

Any thoughts?

-Ben
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Last edited by Benjamin Richardson; July 2nd, 2008 at 09:03 PM. Reason: attached photos
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Old July 3rd, 2008, 06:13 PM   #2
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Sorry, but is that the Anaheim Convention Center?
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Old July 3rd, 2008, 08:18 PM   #3
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The pictures are of a hallway in Turning Stone Casino/Resort - in Central New York.
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Old July 3rd, 2008, 09:38 PM   #4
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I saw something similar in the AC Magazine on the Casino Royale set. They had to light about a 8 people around a card table in a fairly large space, but there was no window to contend with.

If it were me, I'd try to build an overhead softbox rig or with a couple sets of Kinos. The trouble will be the daylight color. Will there be time to relight or change tubes? If not, go Tungsten and dim down as it gets darker outside. You'll warm up the lights as the sun goes to sunset.

I'd also put some HMIs through some diffusion out of sight of the tripod mounted cameras. The moving cameras will get them in the shots sometimes, so that would have to be accounted for.

Those are just some random thoughts. I've never lit a scene like this, though I will be doing something similar in a month or two. And I don't have HMIs!

Best of luck, and I am looking forward to hearing replies from people with more experience.
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Old July 4th, 2008, 08:03 AM   #5
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Aw come on... give us something tough to think about why don't ya!

Seriously this isn't going to be easy.

Thank goodness that since it's summer, at least the sun's high and it maybe won't be casting a giant stripe across the room! (maybe?)

And I wouldn't worry so much if the whole gig was during daylight hours, but a transition from fighting daylight outside to providing ALL the ilumination in the room during a long, slow transition is gonna be a little rough.

The best bet to keep the outside daylight usable (particularly if the clouds don't make an appearance) will be pretty robust HMIs. Like 12Ks. But you're going to have to spread their light a LOT if you're going to have them act as bounce keys on that many people around the table.

I'd maybe think about building a couple of table length silks (check out the Rose Brand website for fabric) on lath frames and flying them above, beside and angled down at the table so that you could either shoot the HMI's through them or even bounce the HMIs off of them from the opposite side to provide a key light for the people on each side of table?

It's gonna be bright, but at least with all that spill daylight, everyones' gonna be accustomed to bright!

Then as the sun sets, the HMI illumination is all the remains.

I'd worry with Kino's that you'd need a LOT of them and rigging enough of them to fight that much window could be a real hassle.

I'd want to test it first, so hopefully you know the folks at your local rental house well!

But with $3k, it's probably reasonable. Heck, maybe for that they'd throw them in a 3 ton grip truck with some smaller tungsten stuff and you could stay daylight balanced and use the tungsten to pop up the corners and architectural details with a nice golden glow after the sun goes down?

Just random thoughts. I've never personally had to face this much glass AND a transition from daylight to dark.

I'd sure be interested to hear from someone who HAS had to do this before.

Good luck.
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Old July 7th, 2008, 01:04 PM   #6
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Good News!

Confirmed that the shoot will be between 11am and 6pm (at the latest). No worries on the day to night transition now.

We are thinking of hanging two large bounce cards 8ft by 8 ft opposite the windows - as well as - hanging 4 china lanterns 500watts each daylight balanced directly above the table. Then we would like to put one 150watt tungsten fresnel behind each person sitting at the table.

We are also wondering what good some ND gels on the windows might do.

Any more thoughts?

-Ben
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Old July 7th, 2008, 02:39 PM   #7
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I'd get a hold of a local gaffer and have him do a walk through with you. $3k should get you some decent instruments but my biggest concerns is enough light on your talent to contend with the windows, even though they're tinted. That's going to be a HUGE wall of bright light and to ND it down could run you close to 1/4 of your budget. Also, even though it's south, you're going to have light shift throughout the 11am - 6pm so you'll have to consider that as well. Also a concern is properly lighting talent for 4 cameras rolling all in different locations. Unless you're hanging your 150 watt kickers, you're going to be seeing lights / stands in the frame.

What is the scene you're shooting? Lots of ad lib, hence the 4 cams? Logistically, it's a huge task especially with multicam.
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Old July 7th, 2008, 03:29 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Benjamin Richardson View Post
We are thinking of hanging two large bounce cards 8ft by 8 ft opposite the windows - as well as - hanging 4 china lanterns 500watts each daylight balanced directly above the table. Then we would like to put one 150watt tungsten fresnel behind each person sitting at the table.
If those lanterns are 500w before 3/4CTB is added they may not have enough punch. I do like the basic idea... this particular setup would be easy to test with a c-stand, china ball, gel and a camera.

The chinas, of course, are cheap as well as easy to rig, and have the right quality of light. Maybe 8 chinas, or 6... I'd test.

150w fresnels as back lights are sort of entry-level in a low wattage lighting design. They may not do much once you get front-lighting up to levels to compete with the windows. You probably will need more watts here, especially if these also are going with CTB. You can often get away with warmer backlights - less light loss with 1/4 CTB.

Gelling that much window is significant in labor, ladders, is there concrete outside that could support a scissor-lift? Need to figure support and labor into the gel price as well. 2 guys on 16' ladders are not going to get this done in a couple hours. If gelling does pencil out, you can go with the gel that includes the CTO to balance tungsten, every lamp you put inside then has twice the lumens. (**edit** because you no longer need to add CTB to the tungsten fixtures)

I agree with Michael that a local gaffer will make this work within your budget and much more reliably.

Last edited by Seth Bloombaum; July 8th, 2008 at 11:24 AM.
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Old July 7th, 2008, 05:12 PM   #9
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We've done similar set-ups many times. Use 3 large Chimera lanterns or pancakes soft boxes each with a 800w K5600 HMI bare bulbs and arranged in a triangle cluster above the table. You can adjust the skirts to keep the light where you need it. Your budget should be sufficient for the rentals.

http://www.chimeralighting.com/news/...sp?newsID=4665
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Old July 14th, 2008, 11:11 AM   #10
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Thank you everyone for your input.

We will be using 3 large Chimera lanterns each with a 800w K5600 HMI bare bulbs in a triangle cluster above the table - as Nino suggested.

We are NOT applying ND gels to the windows - they are too big.

We had considered using the new Photoflex Constellation3 Fluorescent Light with 3 StarLite CoolStar 150 Fluorescents in 3 Chimera Lanterns. This set-up would provide us with about the same amount of light out-put as the HMI setup but with much less draw off the breakers - which always makes life easier. In the future we may purchase this fluorescent set up for continued use - what do you guys think?

Any and all thoughts appreciated!

Thank you everyone,

-Benjamin

Last edited by Benjamin Richardson; July 14th, 2008 at 02:06 PM. Reason: we will not be using any fresnels
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Old July 17th, 2008, 07:14 AM   #11
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Any thoughts on how best to rig these lights?

-Ben
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Old July 17th, 2008, 09:41 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Benjamin Richardson View Post
Any thoughts on how best to rig these lights?

-Ben
Well......everything until now was easy. This is when an experienced gaffer shines.

Without seeing the place is a little difficult to give suggestions. By looking at those pictures looks like you have a few choices. First, is there some sort of balcony above those columns?

As I would do it, there's a ledger, looks like about 12 feet high on the windows. That could be used to support some truss or some 2" aluminum pipes available at many aluminum industrial suppliers. Run those pipes across to where the columns are on the left and use some heavy duty stands to support the pipes. Hang the lights from those pipes. If those stands would be in the way you can clamp the pipes to the columns. You will need someone who knows about gripping to make the whole thing safe.
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Last edited by Nino Giannotti; July 17th, 2008 at 12:10 PM.
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