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Old March 20th, 2013, 02:58 PM   #1
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Greenscreen Lightning question

Hi everyone:

Just little excited and nervous. I'm doing my first shoot alone, for a client using green screen by myself.

The shoot is in 4 days, so I thought I ask for last minute tips in insuring a smooth shoot.

The only feedback I received from the client's marketing dept. They're handling the editing chores, and just ask to get even lighting, and for it to be bright.

It's an indoor shoot, I don't know if the room is open space, or confined in a small office, and waiting on their info on that, as well as what the dimensions are for the room, and trying to get photos of the place.
The client is an independent mortgage broker, and has limited access to the facility, so it didn't workout schedule wise for me to scout the location.

I've secure a copy of the outline, so I have an idea of the length of the shoot (approx 3 to 6 min)
for a total of 4 shoots.

I have my equpment lined up and secure, (green screen kit, camera/accessories, batteries/media card, light kit.), Have the directions to the place.

Oh right, and find time to take a deep breath was on my list too. :)

Thanks everyone


Robert
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Old March 20th, 2013, 07:18 PM   #2
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Re: Greenscreen Lightning question

You want even (flat) light on the green screen and no shadows. However, you don't want too much light on the screen or you'll get more bouncing onto the back of the talent, I usually go for about a 40 IRE.

The talent should be lighted separately.

Try to keep the talent as far away from the screen as you can.
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Old March 21st, 2013, 01:42 AM   #3
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Re: Greenscreen Lightning question

Hi Paul:

The green screen is 10 x 10, in an idea situation, how far should he
be in front of the green screen.?

Most likely the talent wanted to sit behind a desk, so depending on the
configuration of the room, he may be close to the screen, in that instance
what would you suggest as how far I should place the light kits for even lighting?

The light kits I have are 2 Rifa lite 44 Pro (300W), 1 Rifa 55 Pro, and
Lowel P1-10 Pro Light Focus Flood light (250W). Would you
recommend 3 pt lighting in setting them up?

Robert
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Old March 21st, 2013, 04:43 AM   #4
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Re: Greenscreen Lightning question

While I've never used chromakey green screen (although I have a green screen backdrop and a Wescott collapsible one), the manufacturer web sites are helpful sources of information.

Since you have Lowel and Rifa lights, this is a good resource: Lighting for Green Screen on Location
Wescott: Westcott - University - Product Reviews - Backdrops

A search for "green screen lighting setup" and "green screen lighting tips" would get even more information. Also Chromakey.

The first diagram I saw said to have the talent 5-ft 6-inches from the green screen and another one said to have 10 to 15 feet but this is probably for a person standing vice sitting at a desk.

And my gut feel is there probably shouldn't be any wrinkles in the green backdrop but some backdrops like to have wrinkles.
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Old March 21st, 2013, 08:22 AM   #5
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Re: Greenscreen Lightning question

Tough to give exact distances, but I would move the screen as far back as you can and still get the composition you need when framing the shot. You want as little light as possible reflecting off the screen and onto the back of your talent or onto the set.

Also, keep in mind that when editing, a garbage mask can be placed around the talent. This helps a lot when the screen lighting is not perfect, or there is spill onto a desk, for example.

Place your two lights at approximately a 45-degree angle and dim them if you can. You want the light even, but not excessive or it will be tougher to key.

Consider bringing a laptop with Vegas on it so you can shoot a couple of test clips and see how it keys. You can also use Vegas' scopes to check the light levels and eveness.

Most keying software handles less than perfect lighting, but keeping reflected spill off the talent is important because that's the toughest thing to deal with usually.
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Old March 21st, 2013, 08:31 AM   #6
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Re: Greenscreen Lightning question

If you know the dimensions of the room, and you're providing all of the equipment, there's really no reason why you can't set up a test at your own home and simulate the real shoot. That will give you plenty of time to experiment without having any pressure.

You should bring the test footage into your computer and see what works and what doesn't. It's also helpful if you know in advance what the background image will be so that you can tailor the lighting on the talent to match the style.

I also recommend that you light the green screen with one set of lights, and the talent with a different set of lights. Trying to light the green screen and the talent with the same lights won't look very good.
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Old March 21st, 2013, 05:25 PM   #7
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Re: Greenscreen Lightning question

Doug: Thank you for the feedback. I'm in the process to secure additional light kit. I was going to go for the Keno's but it's a little outside of my budget to rent, but luckily I may be able to acquire a set of totas to handle the green screen fill, so that I can use the Rifa's to light the talent. The client hasn't gotten back to me on my request for more info on the site and will continue to press on. If not, I'll just prepare for the worse
and plan for contingency. I.e. Bring bunch garbage bags to block windows, or coax the client to shoot in a big ger room to make space for my gear, as well as no windows. BTW I enjoy your Vortex media presentation on your website, and when you were here a few yrs ago presenting out in Dedham.

Paul thanks, The editing is being handled by the client's marketing dept. so my role is strictly shooting, so my role is making sure I make it easier for their dept to have great footage to work with with their editing.
Though I'm having trouble visualizing surrounding the talent with garbage bag mask?

John: Thanks, but I'm having trouble looking for the link where you reference a couple of diagrams?
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Old March 21st, 2013, 06:21 PM   #8
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Re: Greenscreen Lightning question

Robert, thanks for the compliments. Your plan sounds good, I think a couple of Totas should work very well for the green screen. If your talent is seated, keep the Totas about the same height as his/her head rather than aiming them down from the normal height of a light stand. You'll get more even coverage that way.
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Old March 21st, 2013, 10:24 PM   #9
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Re: Greenscreen Lightning question

Thanks Doug, your support really means a lot. I do have one question, When I have the tota's position by your suggestion, I'm a little concern that the heat might affect them. What options you recommend that may address it, without effecting the light placement?
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Old March 22nd, 2013, 12:23 AM   #10
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Re: Greenscreen Lightning question

Robert,
some other things that you might want to consider (but will likely have to discuss with the client):
does the client have any idea what will be used to replace the keyed-out green? For example, if it's an outdoor garden shot or the middle of a shopping mall, it may not work well if the talent is seen seated in an office/desk chair, a couch, etc.

Also, when shooting green-screen, I try to get the talent to stand, if possible. It helps with their vocal projection and breathing, i.e. you'll RARELY see someone sitting while giving a speech/presentation, singing opera, etc. Standing allows for easier breathing and better projection. (I know a lot of radio jocks do it every day). However, I majored in speech communication and have given quite a few presentations, have taught classes, and emceed trivia competitions and some local charity events, with audiences ranging in size from 3 to 450. I've learned a few things along the way, and standing (when possible) is one of them.

Take that deep breath, then relax...you can do this (just like so many others have).
Best of luck on the shoot.
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Old March 22nd, 2013, 06:13 AM   #11
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Re: Greenscreen Lightning question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Lee View Post
When I have the tota's position by your suggestion, I'm a little concern that the heat might affect them. What options you recommend that may address it, without effecting the light placement?
Robert, I mean that you should place the green screen lights at approximately the same height as the talent's head and the lens of the camera, but that doesn't mean they should be physically close to the talent. Hopefully (depending on the size of the room) they will be placed much further behind the talent and far to the sides.
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Old March 22nd, 2013, 09:15 AM   #12
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Re: Greenscreen Lightning question

Thanks Doug for the clarification,

The client did get back to me late last night and will try to get measurements of the room but assured me that the room is "big" and that the window was no bigger than a 40 inch tv. Which the garbage bag idea (fingers crossed) should do the trick. If the room is as big as he said that I'll have the space to move the lights around.

My office is a bit small, so it was a little tough when I had tried to simulate the shoot. If anything I can see what you mean when you talked about shadows (I think I was about a few feet from the screen standing), and how lighting the subject/green screen may not be ideal. Here was the video I shot this past week when I was practicing. It was a little dull, so I just turned it into a lighthearted video showing the advantages of green screening.

Here's hoping today's practice will go better.

Robert
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Old March 22nd, 2013, 09:32 AM   #13
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Re: Greenscreen Lightning question

Hey! Is that an 'NX5U' in the video at about time hack 0.11 sec?? Heh, heh! Nice work Robert!

J.
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Old March 22nd, 2013, 10:09 AM   #14
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Re: Greenscreen Lightning question

Denis:

Thanks for the encouragement and feedback. Yes the client sent me samples of
other videos they had shot. I've attached a screen capture of the video of the background they used for their videos, you can see in the image they had the talent sitting down. Of the other videos that does not use green screen, they used an office. One that was shot, I was surprise to see the window in the background, that had a slight shimmer effect, Yikes! they did added various images, and text, so I imagine any shot they can't use they hid it well fading to an image or text.. That means the audio needs to be perfect as well, they must have used a boom mike or the shotgun from the camera, but I may stick with the wireless mic to be on the safe-side to not pick up any un-intended sound.
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Greenscreen Lightning question-screen-cap.png  

Last edited by Robert Lee; March 22nd, 2013 at 10:11 AM. Reason: I forgot to attach image
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Old March 22nd, 2013, 10:12 AM   #15
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Re: Greenscreen Lightning question

Thanks James for the compliment, well I did say I'd put the camera through it's paces :)
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