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Tuesday, September 7, 2010

••◊ A new light in my life

I spent Labor Day weekend filming a short comedic piece for Go Gadget Comedy. This time we had Shaun in a VERY special pair of pajamas. These pictures are just random screen captures from the raw footage.

More importantly, I had a chance to try out my new daylight balanced fluorescent lights. At first I bought a pair of 9 bulb softboxes from the thelashop.com. They were completely pathetic. f/4 at 6 feet. f/1-f/1.4 at 10 feet (ISO160, 24fps). The web site claimed they were equal to an 1800W tungsten each - no frickin' way. They were actually less powerful than a typical 300W tungsten. On top of that the light bulb sockets were just plastic. It may have been high temperature plastic but I didn't want to test that the hard way. Those lights were sent back after I complained and they still charged me shipping both ways. A very poor customer experience!

Then Clarence found a light kit made by Promaster (Coollight 3 in 1) at George's Camera here in town and he combined it with three 85W fluorescent bulbs. You can sort-of see it in the top left corner of the photo above. Julio cut us a fair deal and we each bought a softbox kit. Turns out that it works reasonably well. It provides completely usable light at f/5.6 ISO640 24p at 10 feet. The lights get warm, but nothing even close to tungsten. My friend describes tungsten lights at a heat source that happens to output *some* light. The beautiful thing is that you can combine it with daylight with no problem. We did just that by moving everyone to the table next to the window. All of the above pictures were artificially lit and still look pretty close to natural daylight (for the most part). There were also a couple Adorama "Flashpoint" single bulb softboxes we used for fill and hair lights. Not bad for lighting on the cheap. The fixtures aren't Arri HMI's, but they don't come with the price tag either.

Onward to the edit.

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