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Old September 27th, 2010, 09:26 AM   #1
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lighting a two person dialogue scene on a budget?

I was wondering how to light a standard two person dialogue scene.

The setting will either be my house or my friend's apartment. I will be shooting on a Canon EOS 7D, which i know works well in low light situations.

The question is, for additional lighting, what should I use if i have next to no budget. I do have an option to check out some lighting equipment from my college though,

any ideas?
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Old September 27th, 2010, 10:40 AM   #2
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Are you shooting singe camera? You have zero lights, grip and electric and zero budget? You had better find a location that has some good available light. Not to say that you can't end up with a nice looking scene without lighting it, but it is much more difficult. Soft diffused window light will be your friend.

If had a good budget, I would probably still try to emulate window light, it is the most motivated source in most rooms, especially if you ever will see windows.

Dan
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Old September 27th, 2010, 12:17 PM   #3
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I'm hoping to get my hands on a second 7D, but if I cant, it'll be single camera.

I was thinking of using maybe a simple china lantern above the two actors heads. I'm not sure what else i'll be able to get,

Like i said i'll be able to check out equipment from school, i'm just not sure how much
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Old September 27th, 2010, 12:33 PM   #4
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I sometimes use a single Smith-Victor with 10" reflector and a bright white 100W equivalent CFL bulb and "redirect" it for each actor. If the actors are good I'll have them deliver all their lines, breaking it up a bit for camera repositioning, then switch the light position and direction for the other.

The other approach I use is to reposition light and camera for each actor as their "turn" comes up. That's the way I worked this one:


It keeps you busy but it works.
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Old September 27th, 2010, 01:23 PM   #5
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If you are going to shoot two camera, I like your idea of a China Ball. I shot project about 3 weeks ago, four people at a table, six camera shoot like a poker game. My key light was a 30" China Ball with a 650 watt tungsten EGW bulb. You can get the entire setup at FilmTools for around $50.00. It works great except that you have to build a skirt around it so the soft light doesn't go everywhere, making your scene look too flat.

We used Duvetine to make the skirt but we needed a lot of C-stand arms and Mafer clamps, if you have no budget, not sure how you will control the light without grip tools.

Dan
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