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Old January 26th, 2009, 04:08 PM   #16
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I guess I shoulda saved that .VEG file! :)

Not really an issue, I can do it again, so you can see. Gimme a few minutes, and I'll come pretty close. I am putting my workstations back together tonight, so I am working without a real monitor. Trying to this on a computer monitor with no color reference is brutal.
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Old January 26th, 2009, 05:35 PM   #17
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for an studio interview yes I will use a monitor or a laptop running FCP.

- run and gun I will use the presets and tweak if necessary, Just take a few minutes to match the colors on your EVF/LCD with your output monitor. An EVF screen with your eye up against the eyepiece blocking extraneous light will be more reliable than a flip out lcd.
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Old January 27th, 2009, 12:33 AM   #18
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Perrone Got your VEG file but forgot to mention I only have Vegas 7.

I know you're pretty busy and it's my mistake so if you have time to do it let me know.

Sorry and thanks again!
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Old January 27th, 2009, 12:58 AM   #19
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I guess I will have to do screen shots. I don't have Vegas 7 anywhere.

Ok,

Check the FTP server again. I placed one shot that shows the exposure correction only, one that shows a color correction only, one that shows the combo, and one closeup of the combo.
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Old January 27th, 2009, 11:57 AM   #20
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Wow thanks Perrone,

It's great to see how other people work, here's a stupid question for you, why did you seperate the exposure and the color correction even if they were on the same fx?

And here's another one, people here have been pushing me to work with the color curves fx, for both color correction and exposure, and I'm not doubting them but I tested this fx many times and can't seem to control it enough to get nice results, it's so unprecise (I mean manipulating a curve, instead of numbers) what's your opinion on that? and why didnt you use it?
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Old January 27th, 2009, 12:10 PM   #21
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But to get back to the main subject of this thread (lighting)

Ok so I have to work my white balance on the site and find the right settings in post-production but overall is the lighting method I use acceptable for a presentation type of video (were the subject talks to the camera) or would anyone sugest any changes, keep in mind this is all DIY stuff, so if you propose anything I will probably end up building it myself but that's ok I don't mind if it's really gonna make a difference.
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Old January 27th, 2009, 02:19 PM   #22
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The aesthetics of the lighting are a bit more challenging to be definitive about, now we're getting into conventions, opinions, style, etc.

Per some common TV conventions, you have very flat lighting on her face. A lot of people in TV say "great, you can see everything, no shadows, great lighting". Some people in fashion will say "that's how you light a pretty woman - flat lighting is glamorous".

Some other people will say "so flat, so lacking in dimensionality and depth".

Do you want more dimensionality and sense of depth in your project? The film-y lighting conventions say "yes", but really we're down to artistic/aesthetic choices here.

I'd say that in this scene the 6' wide key is too close to the subject and too low (probably restricted by ceiling height). Too close in that the "wrap" effect of a large source is exagerated - you have as much light on the left side of her face as on the right, with almost no shadows. To low in that the shadows of her nose & etc. are falling almost sideways, not down & sideways.

So I'd shoot with taller ceilings, run that flo light up to about 8', get it further away or mask half of it to make it a smaller source, then check out how the shadows are looking on a monitor. Maybe some fill will be called for, or less masking or closer key, or a reflector for fill. The aim here would be some shadows from her nose and in her eye-sockets, but not deep shadows - there would be detail in the shadows.

It is impossible to evaluate the backlight because of the natural sources in the room. We don't know what's coming off the backlight and what's coming through the windows, but it looks OK in that she is somewhat separated from the background. We don't really see hair highlights, we don't really see rimming light, both of which can also help bring out dimensionality.

In part, I think this is because the backlight is not really placed as you diagrammed, but more to the side. Which, with a large source like this, is further flattening things out. Typically, backlight is created with a more directional source.

Finally, I really don't like the effects of the smart smoother mentioned in your original post. To me it makes her facial contours, especially between her nose and mouth, rather cartoon-ish. Hair detail is very unnatural.

Having said all that, I've seen plenty of corporate video lit flat... "information video where the subject talks about a product or a company". To my way of thinking, flat lighting is just another choice, another aesthetic, but you really should know how to light dramatic, how to light flat, and everything in between.
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Old January 27th, 2009, 02:38 PM   #23
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Donald,

I would try to test these lights in a room without windows and see if you can get a good color out of them.

Your image has a lot of colors going on and removing the windows would take a variable out of the mix.

Also, the long tubes are not the best application for a hair/back light.

If you could find some higher CRI tubes, these lights would be best for lighting the greenscreen since they are long and would provide even light over a large area.
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Old January 27th, 2009, 02:44 PM   #24
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You're welcome. But remember, I did that in 10 minutes without the aid of my monitor which is still out of commision until I get everything hooked back up tonight or tomorrow. So that was a quickie.

I separated the exposure correction from the color correction for two reasons:

1. To make it easier for you to see what I did.

2. Because sometimes when I am doing a bunch of work, I like to turn off certain things I've done, and see the before and after. Like working on her skin tone, or bringing down the brightness of the windows behind her (which I didn't do in this quickie). When you separate things, it's much easier to go back and forth without affecting EVERYTHING so you have more control.

Color curves are delightful for making large corrections in video. If you want to adjust the color in different parts of the spectrum. It can be a fine tool. I just don't fine the need to use them. I prefer to work a different way.

There are many, many ways to get what you want out of your photography or cinematography. But they all start with having an idea of what you WANT, and them trying to get it.

I'm going to attach a copy of my practice piece to this message in a minute. Let me know what you think.

-P

Quote:
Originally Posted by Donald Blake View Post
Wow thanks Perrone,

It's great to see how other people work, here's a stupid question for you, why did you seperate the exposure and the color correction even if they were on the same fx?

And here's another one, people here have been pushing me to work with the color curves fx, for both color correction and exposure, and I'm not doubting them but I tested this fx many times and can't seem to control it enough to get nice results, it's so unprecise (I mean manipulating a curve, instead of numbers) what's your opinion on that? and why didnt you use it?
Attached Thumbnails
Fluorescent vs skin tone-before.jpg   Fluorescent vs skin tone-after.jpg  

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Old January 27th, 2009, 06:14 PM   #25
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Wow I'm amazed everytime I post a question here, the quality of the answers I get for free is totally amazing for me (even tho I can't really help anyone like you guys are helping me).

PERRONE, those before and after files are really great, first of all the d.o.f. in that shot is very good, what adapter did you have? you have a nice greenish look in that final shot, normally it's added in post production but I noticed it was already there in the before shot, was that done on purpose? If so how did you adjust the White-balance to get that look? her eyes are really something in the final shot wow! also the overall richness of the shot is great in my opinion. Thanx for the double fx tip, that's a great idea but those it add more render time?

TIM, I'm offering my services to companys who need to make videos on their websites. I don't have a studio or anything so I film on location (mostly offices with windows) so that's why I did a test like that, the difference will be a greenscreen behind the subject or an office decor.

SETH, I completly agree with you,
I guess that will be a choice the client will have to make, I will explain the different types of lighting I can offer (after many tests of course) and maybe make a demo with all of them to show exactly what I mean.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seth Bloombaum View Post
...because the backlight is not really placed as you diagrammed, but more to the side. Which, with a large source like this, is further flattening things out. Typically, backlight is created with a more directional source.
In fact it is exactly like my diagram but like you said it needs to be more directional, that's why I'm working on addind some barndoors/reflectors on each sides of those 2 vertical tubes, if you look closely you can see the light reflection on her left cheek and with barndoors it should be more noticeable, even more on her arms if she's wearing short sleeves. The reason It's vertical is because it's not only her head I'm filming but her whole body, also if she's in front of a lit greenscreen it should cancel the green reflection, what do you think?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seth Bloombaum View Post
...other people will say "so flat, so lacking in dimensionality and depth".
What If I used 4 tubes instead of 6 for the key lighting and maybe put them vertical instead of horizontal and more to the side? I will do more extensive tests on this subject.

By the way I took that "smart smoother" fx out, I agree with you.
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Old January 27th, 2009, 06:43 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donald Blake View Post
...The reason (the backlight is) vertical is because it's not only her head I'm filming but her whole body, also if she's in front of a lit greenscreen it should cancel the green reflection, what do you think?...
The theory is sound... in practice, trial and error in front of the screen and screen lighting is going to tell the story. The existing back light is more of a sider; usually this has application, but doesn't really help to pop your subject out from the green bg. You will need more of a backlight, or several. Possibly your vertical fixture will work, I've never tried something like that. Moving it to a more traditional backlight position may produce more rim light, or maybe not, I dunno'. But that's what you're looking for to pop out from the background is more rim light.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Donald Blake View Post
...What If I used 4 tubes instead of 6 for the key lighting and maybe put them vertical instead of horizontal and more to the side? I will do more extensive tests on this subject...
48" tubes need to be further away for more modeling and dimensionality. At such short distances, going vertical will produce other problems.

4 tubes won't make the source less wide - either further away, or mask some width, or accept flatter lighting (which isn't neccessarily bad).
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Old January 27th, 2009, 08:57 PM   #27
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Firstly, this is not my image. I never intended to post it, just use it for practice with color grading. I use it to work my skills with the color wheels, curves, and other tools. I was wondering if you would notice the different things I did. I am glad you picked up on the eyes.

The green tone in the original photo is because this is a shot from a Viper. The same kind of camera used to film Benjamin Button. The RAW images coming off the camera have that green tone naturally. So the first job is to get the image back to neutral before doing anything else. So what did I do?

1. Correct green tone to neutral.

2. Correct exposure by fixing contrast, and stretching the contrast a bit further than I would for use on TV. I set it up like I might do for film.

3. Set the mood to late afternoon. I usually do this in the highlights, but it has to be subtle.

4. Adjust the mid-tones to get the skin coloration correct.

5. Adjust the dark tones to compliment what you do with the highlights. I often go subtly the opposite way with the darker tones as it gives the highlights a bit more pop. Cool tip I picked up from the guys who graded "The Other Boleyn Girl".

6. I changed her eyes. Her eyes are actually gray. Against the overall green hues in the photo, I felt it would be awesome to give a girl with freckles, blue eyes. They came out really well. I zoomed in pretty tight to make sure the mask was good when doing the color replacement, and it came out pretty nicely.

7. Added "light rays" just a subtle effect to place some warm afternoon light off to the left side of the shot where it would have naturally fallen when this was taken.

8. Darkened the foilage behind her in spots to get her face to pop off the background a bit more.

9. Ordinarily, I would have added just a bit of black frost, but since I was working in Vegas 8.1, I didn't have the plug-ins, so I just left it alone.

And you see the finished result. Total time to get the look, maybe 30-45 minutes.

As to your question, I don't know that it adds more render time but it might. But when I do this kind of work, I'm never in a hurry. Getting a rich palate of colors really add so much to watching video or film, I think it's worth the wait. And ALWAYS grade in 10-bit codecs or better if you have them. I also work in Vegas's 32 bit float mode because I can be a lot more precise. And when I render out, things look the way I expect them to.

-P

Quote:
Originally Posted by Donald Blake View Post
PERRONE, those before and after files are really great, first of all the d.o.f. in that shot is very good, what adapter did you have? you have a nice greenish look in that final shot, normally it's added in post production but I noticed it was already there in the before shot, was that done on purpose? If so how did you adjust the White-balance to get that look? her eyes are really something in the final shot wow! also the overall richness of the shot is great in my opinion. Thanx for the double fx tip, that's a great idea but those it add more render time?
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Old January 29th, 2009, 08:19 AM   #28
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Ok here's another test with yet another question, can I mix colors temperature? 6500k and 4000k in this case take a look at the JPGs. I wanted a little more depth in the subject's face like Seth talked about.

Wow Perrone thanks for the details, would you've done masking (eyes) like this if it were a film clip instead of a still?
Attached Thumbnails
Fluorescent vs skin tone-image10-ruff.jpg   Fluorescent vs skin tone-image10-.jpg  

Fluorescent vs skin tone-image10-plan.jpg  
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Old January 29th, 2009, 08:08 PM   #29
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Today I watched DV Enlightenment by DVcreators and that should help alot, I think I was missing some basic information on lighting.
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Old March 4th, 2009, 10:27 AM   #30
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Watch this short clip and tell me what you think please.

Ok so after watching many tutorials on basic and 4 point lighting and reading all your replys on this amazing forum, I did this test/demo, can you tell me what you think?

Ok it's not perfect, there's a small greenscreen "patch" on the left of the screen I could'nt key out.

And the skin tone... God you get to a point you can't see straight and you get lost and forget what skin really looks like, so tell me if it look ok to you.

I also did a lighting plan (see JPG) notice I did'nt use any back light or hair light (I don't have them yet)

Please watch it in HD!!
YouTube - démo intro RSB II
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Fluorescent vs skin tone-light-plan-rsb-amelie.jpg  
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