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Old January 24th, 2006, 10:22 PM   #1
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On Camera Light for Rock Show in Converted Warehouse

Hey ho,

I'm gearing up to start shooting for my public access show again. One of the first stops is in Brooklyn, in a "converted" old syrup and canning warehouse, where I'll be shooting a band with a friend of mine.

I imagine there's no actual stage area, but I haven't been to the venue yet.

I'm told there's little lighting ("just a few light bulbs").

I've read about different on-camera lights (Bescor, Frezzi, Sony, PAG light) but don't really know what kind of wattage to look for in order to get started shopping. I also want to get something that's appropriate for the compact size of my PDX10.

Ideally I'd like something dimmable since or at least with the option to cut one lamp, as I'd fear blinding the band members as I get in close...

Any light suggestions for the application?

Thanks much as always.

Kon
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Last edited by Konstantin Vilenchitz; January 25th, 2006 at 07:47 PM.
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Old January 25th, 2006, 07:08 AM   #2
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I've done nightclub work before and here's what I found. If I didn't use at least a 50W light with my PD150s the image quality was terrible. Nightclubs even real expensive hot to go clubs have notoriously bad lighting-its lit for mood not video so if it were me and it has been, I don't worry about "blinding" the band-ain't gonna happen. Frankly if I had a 100W light with me I would have used that. Big open dark space just sucks up the light.
Minimum-50W light,iris wide open, gain up and make sure you don't get stepped on while shooting ;-)
Don
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Old January 25th, 2006, 01:47 PM   #3
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Konstantin-

Are you looking for that natural, beautifully vignetted "hot spot" sorta effect, where the light drops off on the sides? I just shot an American Apparel spot on my iSight (that's right -- iSight webcam) and it looks beautiful. All I used was a clamp light with a PAR36 spot bulb and a narrow snoot-like reflector (all available through a store on Canal Street for like $15. I popped some Lee 188 (diffusion that's GREAT with skin tones) on the front with a couple of clamps and shot. It's certainly a more bulky solution, but you're just not gonna get the same quality of light with those little on-camera lights unless you drop $1000+ on a ringlight or LitePanels product. Lemme know if I can help you out...I'm a DP based in Williamsburg.

Henry

P.S. Where are you shooting?
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Old January 25th, 2006, 02:13 PM   #4
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Since you're in New York, why not pay a visit to B&H Photo? They have a nice display setup with many different kinds of lights so you can see how large they are and how they compare.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...SuperStore.jsp
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Old January 25th, 2006, 08:06 PM   #5
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Boyd, yes, I'll definitely check B&H. I don't shop for equipment anywhere else. I've never been in the market for an on-camera light so I guess I've overlooked that display previously. I'll check it out for light sizes in the context of my camera size.

Henry, you shot with your iSight? How exactly did that work? You were capturing directly to a Powerbook I guess? Out of curiosity I'd like to hear more about your technique. How did you come up with that idea? Can you post some sample footage? I'll definitely be shooting with DV cameras but I'd love to hear more.

While a beautiful light effect would be terrific, I need to start with the basics of just making sure there's enough light for the camera/s. We'll be shooting at the Syrup Room (http://thesyruproom.com/).

Don, thanks, this is the kind of club experience I'd like to hear about. I've heard different stories in regards to wattage. I'll definitely look for 50W+ :)

Any other points of view or wattage suggestions? Thanks everyone for your replies.
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Old January 26th, 2006, 12:03 PM   #6
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Konstantin-

Yes, we had to tether it to a Powerbook. We used a great program called IveZeen (or something like that) which will actually allow you to control the exposure, saturation, white balance, and even "rack focus." We recorded to NTSC DV quicktime files. I just finished a rough cut on FCP, which I then blew up to 720p in After Effects. Added a lil black diffusion with Magic Bullet, and then spat it out as a DVCPROHD 720p 23.98 at 980x720. Took that back in to FCP. It looks damn good for a 1/4" sub-DV resolution web camera! It's all in the lighting. I'll send you a copy in MPEG-4 if you gimme your email addy. I'll also be posting it here when it's done.
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Old January 26th, 2006, 12:07 PM   #7
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We shot it on the iSight because we wanted a gritty look. The treatment called for a woman to communicate with her significant other through video blogs or a web cam or whatever. What we came up with is cleaner than we expected, actually. I'm sure we'll release two versions of the cut, one that's more of a rolling one-shot and still gritty, as if it's very amateur, and then my clean version, which is more along the lines of a Calvin Klein commercial.
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