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Old December 31st, 2010, 06:02 AM   #1
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How To Do Budget Flat Newsroom Lighting?

I'm shooting a cheap web video series that's a pundit parody, basically a talking head anchorperson shot waist-to-head against a simple background.

I want this to look like, for example, the kind of flat-lit setup you have for the shows of Keith Olbermann or Anderson Cooper. To my untrained eye, these setups seem possibly require a fluorescent key, left and right fills, and a hair and/or side light, with additional lighting for the wall of the set behind. I'm planning on using 3200K lights.

After doing lots of reading on lighting (which may have confused me as much as helped), I'm thinking of using a dimmable 2x55 watt fluorescent for the key (from Coolights), but am hung up on what I should use for fills. I've read that a 2x55 is about equivalent to a 500w tungsten, so I'm thinking two 300w lamps for fills, and maybe a 150w for a hair light. For the set wall behind perhaps a few 300w softboxed tungstens (or can I use less?). Should I even mix fluorescent and tungsten?

Am I on the right track here? Will 6 lights do the job? I want the setup to be quick and dirty (and affordable), but to be an adequate (not perfect) simulation of a newsdesk set. Affordable, mid-priced brands are also good to know -- which is why I'm looking at Coolights and not Arri or Kino-Flo. I've done quite a bit of reading and research, and still can't find the exact lighting info I seek; I know how to place the lights, but not what intensity and type the lights need to be.

Any advice would be most appreciated! A thousand thanks from a hastily info-cramming lighting newbie.
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Old December 31st, 2010, 07:26 AM   #2
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No idea on your set size, but you might try a 4x55w with grid for the key, 2x55w with grid for the fill, 300w fresnel with barn doors on a dimmer for the hair light, a gelled 420w fresnel on a dimmer to wash the BG, and a couple of 150w fresnels to splash the logo.

Good Luck!
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Old December 31st, 2010, 04:41 PM   #3
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My set is very tiny! I'm shooting in a 9x17 room, using the distance as much as possible to get space between camera and subject, which may be only 10 feet -- just enough to do the job. So the shot itself might only encompass 6ft. x 4ft. -- or slightly less -- of actual space on camera.

Thanks for the advice. By "grid" you mean eggcrate, right?
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Old December 31st, 2010, 04:59 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allen White View Post
By "grid" you mean eggcrate, right?
That would be correct!
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