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Photon Management
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Old November 22nd, 2007, 02:54 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Jordan Orberg View Post
Hi Guys --
<clip>Here is what I'm planning on getting:

Here is the adaptor:
Err, that's the wrong one for your Omni - see my prior post...
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Old November 22nd, 2007, 10:17 AM   #17
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Hmmmmmmmmm....I can't find the VC-L4003 -- but I found this:

Is this correct?

Sorry about the mixup Jaron -- I was wondering why you were wanting me to purchase a new kit! Ha Ha! Well, with the size of the room, I've tried a couple different things and the lights are really just too bright. I'm doing interviews in a 10x10 room, and the lights just blow out my subjects. I've moved lights around, I've turned lights off, and I've tried bouncing them off of walls, and using umbrellas with no luck... I'm not much of a lighting guy, so I'm kind of looking for that easy fix...which seems to be the softbox.
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Old November 22nd, 2007, 12:12 PM   #18
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Interviews, got it. Well, the good news is that with what you have, you could easily do it without any softboxes, unless you wanted to go get one. One word of caution, however - the Omni and DP lights don't flood wide enough to cover the front panel of a standard hotlight softbox, like on designed for the photoflex starlights. You need more of the "cinedome" style box, which is quite a bit more expensive. Otherwise, you end up with either a big hotspot in the middle, and essentially defeat the purpose of the box... or you install the inner baffle, and cut your light by more than 2-stops total.

My recommendation - get some white foam core board, or white styrofoam insulation panels. Tape the edges so they dont fray all over the place. Place one light on either side of your background, bouncing into the boards, and back at the background. This should give you a nice even wash on it. Adjust distances between the lights and boards, boards and background, and the bounce angles till it looks perfectly even on your monitor when you stop way down on the lens.

For your subject, take your 3rd light, and open the barndoors as deep as you can make them. Clip some opal frost to the doors - with the doors open, the piece of frost should be about 18-20" by 20", and use wooden clothespins to attach it to the doors. If it's still too bright, add another layer. Still too bright? Add another layer. If you need some back light for separation, play with your background lights, and try and skim one slightly past its board onto the subject. With a little experimentation, you should be able to maintain an even bounce on the bg, a slight edge light on the subject, and your soft front source.
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Old November 22nd, 2007, 04:43 PM   #19
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Also, don't forget about ND. If you get the softness you like but there's too much light, clip some ND on. The quality of the light will remain the same, but the power wll be reduced.

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Old November 24th, 2007, 08:52 PM   #20
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The Lights Aren't Too "Bright"

The first thing we have to be clear about is that the lights are "blowing out" your subject not because they are too bright but because they are (a) used incorrectly or (b) your exposure is wrong or most likely (c) a combination of the above.

The apparent brightness of the image is a combination of both the intensity of the lights and the exposure settings of the camera (f-stop, use of ND and gain).

A 10x10 room is small, and will get hot, but I have personally done interviews in that size of area with an Omni and a Rifa. I bet (groan) that the room has white walls.

Try these steps:

Forget using 3 lights for the moment. Try a diffused key with a kicker/hairlight, two light setup. Position one light with soem diffusion on it above and behind subject, off to one side (so light stand is out of shot) and shining down on head and shoulders of subject. Use other Omni with umbrella as key. Now set your camera on manual and dial the exposure until the picture looks good without any blowout. It's all about the balance. Most likely the kicker will seem too bright, bring the key light in closer to subject and dial down the exposure more.

At the risk of seeming self- promoting, pick up a copy of my book Lighitng for Digital Video & Television:

Most folks find it very helpful.
John Jackman
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