This week was a visual-based week. We re-capped on light, but in a bit more detail than in the first term. We have learnt about the problems, when using light, the 4 major features of film lighting which will be explained below. We also looked at 3 Point Lighting again as well. There were 2 practicals we did this time instead of one.

First of all, we looked at light. In this lesson we talked about the potential problems with light when we use it in film sets. One of the first problems is if it is too bright or too low. It has to be adjusted to the right level in order to give the shot the right effect so that people understand why its bright in certain areas or not. Other problems were using the wrong reflector for example, which could reflect off some of the light, but without using the right surface, which in the shot , could mean something completely different. If you film the wrong day, this also could impact on the lighting. Lastly, light temperature is a crucial one, because this visually impacts the way people see it. If the auto white balance function is not activated, when you look at it, it could appear orange or blue, which is not want you want it to look like. We then went on more detail about light, which is the 4 major features of film lighting. There were 4 categories. These were, Quality, Direction, Source and Colour. The first one is the different lighting. There is Hard Light, Soft and Harsh Light. The next one Direction. This means the direction at which the light is placed, there are at least 5 of them ( which are all explained on the blog post). The next one is Source. This is where the light comes from. There are 2 types: Artificial and Natural. Artificial are man made lights like bulbs for example. Natural is the sunlight for example. The last one is colour. This has a link to white balance as well. In this category, there was apparent colour, which is the colour that everyone sees and there is Light temperature which is the temperature against a plain black background which is measured in Kelvin degrees.

After looking at those, went on about the importance of light, the qualities of light and lighting faces. The importance of light is what effect this has on the others. The qualities of light is about the 3 point lighting (linked to this we did a practical, which will be explained a bit later). Then the qualities of Light is how it is being used to tell the audience what the person is like. We looked at a few example of this. One of the examples, was side lighting, this is when half of the face is lighted up, and the other has strong shadows, this could show that that person has 2 personalities, or to look more mysterious. We also looked at Top and Bottom Lighting and what effect this has on the character. Top Lighting makes the characters look more sinister. Bottom Lighting makes distorts the faces and also makes them evil.

Onto the practical side, this time we did 2 instead on 1. The first one was based on 3 point lighting, where we had to take 8 pictures, 4 of which we used artificial light. The other 4 was with natural light. We firstly started with using artificial Lights. For our fill light, we used a reflector and we used a 2nd LED light for the backlight. The last one was taken with all 3, to show that it is nicely bright and that you can see everything clearly. We then went outside to take the same photos with the Key, Fill and Back Light, but this time, using the Sunlight as our main source, meaning that it will be the key light. Although, when looking back at the photos, we noticed that none of the photos we took outside looked different. We were not able to see the backlight. So in the end, we were not able to have the photos we wanted.

The second practical we did was linked to lighting. We had to analyse 3 photos from our favourite films. From those 3 chosen photos, we had to choose one which we would then reproduce in terms of the lighting and colour being used. This was a very interesting practical as it made us think as to where the lights could have been positioned. For my one, I chose Krennic’s photo from Star Wars Rogue One. I thought this was a basic photo which would be easy to reproduce as I had an approximate idea of where the lights were positioned. At the beginning, it was a bit of a struggle to get the lights into the right position, because it was too bright, and I wanted this shadow on my face as part of it. In the final product, I was quite pleased with it, but in some ways, I know there would be some improvement. The thing which I should improve on is to add a light on the left side so that there isn’t as much shadows. Because in the photo, there isn’t actually that much strong shadow.

Overall, it was a very interesting. I have learnt many extra things about lighting and the different ways of using it. There is a chance that I could be using those techniques for my future projects.

Peer Feedback

I liked how you started the blog post, going straight in to what the blog is about which is lighting a scene. I found your own experiences with lighting scenes interesting, yet relataible. You gave easy-to-understand explanations to the different uses of lighting with suitable images with further aid in that understanding. I liked the effort you took into explaining the four major features of lighting including the pictures you included with hard light and the other techniques of lighting as your descriptions of them really showed what was in the pictured examples beneath them. You did a good job analysing the movie scenes and your attempt on the Star Wars example was good, most of the lighting was matched and the framing was the same.

(Kyle James Alford – 31/01/2017)