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Old May 7th, 2007, 03:12 PM   #1
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What gel to use to simulate moonlight

Hi, Just a quick question! What gel would you suggest I use to put infront of a tungsten light to make it appear to be moonlight?
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Old May 7th, 2007, 04:27 PM   #2
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Moonlight is reflected sunlight, so Full CTB is usually what you would want to try. Try balancing your camera between tungsten and daylight so tungsten looks a bit amber and the CTB (color temperature blue) looks a bit blue. You could put half CTB in front of a light and balance to a white card lit by that. When you put the full CTB up, that light will look blue and ungelled tungsten will look amber.
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Old May 7th, 2007, 07:27 PM   #3
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There are many interpretations of the color of moonlight, depending on the type of project--a stylized one may use a deeper blue. It's a bit "old school" (i.e. '80's) to go super saturated blue. Half blue will generally "sell" as moonlight if you want to get the greatest output from your lights.
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Old May 7th, 2007, 08:18 PM   #4
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Thanks for your help, I will get a both a full CTB and a half CTB and work with them until I get what I'm looking for.
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Old May 10th, 2007, 04:26 PM   #5
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There are also lots of options for moonlight gels. Some people like a little more towards a "steel blue", and both Lee and Rosco actually make a "moonlight blue" gel. CTB is a great place to start, and if you want to change the look from there, you will have lots to work with.
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Old May 11th, 2007, 05:24 PM   #6
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The tradition of blue for moonlight comes from the nature of our eyes at moonlight illumination levels. The blue-sensitive cones in our eyes can see at just slightly lower illumination than the red and green hence moonlight can take on a slight blue cast to our naked sight.

I try a bit more subtle process with my moonlight resulting in a more silvery look:

on set:

o 1/2CTB on "moonlight" tungsten instruments or 1/2CTO on "moonlight" HMI's

o 1/4CTB in front of white card lit only by "moonlight" source

in post:

o with a secondary color-corrector, select "moonlight" blues and desaturate 25-50% or to taste
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