Today on The Slanted Lens, we are shooting a commercial for a client called Mini Bini. They make an air freshener for your trash can that really works. To show how well it works, we are shooting a woman lying on a bed of garbage – literally lying on a bed that is covered in garbage. We will combine NorthStar LED lights on daylight balance with tungsten lights to create a dreamy look. Joel Ackerman of Ackermania Creative is the genius behind the concept today.
Since we wanted an aerial view of the woman and her garbage, I put the camera on a boom above the bed and tethered it back to the computer with a USB cable. I used Canon’s camera utilities program to make adjustments to the camera settings directly from the laptop. I set my color balance to tungsten so that the LEDs would appear blue while her face remained neutral. I was shooting at 1/50 of a second at ISO 320 and a 5.6 aperture. Focus is the biggest problem with this set up. I had my assistant magnify the image on the computer, and I focused the camera while he looked at the enlarged image and directed my movements. It was a bit scary but it worked. I also rubbed Vaseline on the edges of the lens. This will blur out the edges of the frame to make our scene look even more dreamy.
I love working with LEDs and tungsten lights on set. It shows you can get some very interesting looks when you combine those two light sources. It’s just important that you know what each of them will do and that you work with them accordingly. So I hope this was as educational for you as it was for me. So don’t be afraid to mix two light sources.
Thanks for watching. Keep those cameras rollin’ and keep on clickin’.
Don’t forget to enter our September 2014 giveaway to get a chance to win a Dynalite XP-800 Pure Sine Wave Inverter!
The Final Image
The Lighting Breakdown
Jay P Recommends for this Shoot
Stick around at the end of the video, we’re giving away an XP800.
Today on The Sliding Lens we’re shooting a commercial for a client called Minibini. They make an air freshener for your trash can that really does work. We’re going to show how well it works by shooting a woman laying in a bed of garbage. Literally laying on her bed that is covered in garbage. We want a very dreamy look as she recites her prose, laying in a bed of garbage. So we’re going to use a combination of LED’s, daylight and tungsten lights to create that dreamy look. Joel Ackerman from Ackermania Creative is the genius behind the concept today, Joel is an incredible writer and director. The staging was a bit challenging, Julene worked for several days creating garbage, you know, big chunks of oatmeal, old steak and vegetables. She’s a master at this type of thing and did a great job.
I’m going to put the camera overhead on a boom and tether it back to the computer with a USB cable. We will now look at the image and make all adjustments in camera utilities on the laptop. I have used this a lot and just find it very easy to work with this application. I will set my color balance to tungsten, even though we’re shooting with LED’s and tungsten lights. I will shoot at one fifteenth of a second and 320 ISO, an aperture of 5.6. I want a bit of depth of field so focus is going to be a big problem on this. To solve that focus problem I had my assistant magnify the image on the computer and I would focus while he is looking at the enlarged image.
Let’s take a look at our lighting, we’re working in a virtually dark room. Here’s our first image, there is no light in here. That means it’s a clean canvas we can do whatever we want. Our first light is a source four tungsten light on her face. I really do love this light because it has shutters on four sides that will allow you to cut the pool of light down to whatever shape you want. Now I added a 1-K that I’m going to bounce into the ceiling just to open up the shadows. We want smoke coming out form under the bed as part of the dream like setting. I’m going to use a Rasco 1900 smoker as our smoke source. I’m using the stage and studio smoke that will dissipate much quicker so we can set up and kind a go from shot to shot much quicker. It’s much easier to work with this, especially in a confined space. To light that smoke I will put a series of North Star Lights under the bed. Here’s our First North Star LED under the bed just above her head. Now I’m going to place another North Star just to the right under the bed. Now I added a second North Star Light on the right side. These I’m laying on the side on a sand bag as they point out away from the middle of the bed. I only have two more North Star lights, I’m going to place one of the left side of the bed, my last North Star light is coming in from camera left, it’s just a reflector on it and it’s just going to give me nice highlights on the garbage. I’m using that smaller reflector that kicks off a little more light and gives us a little more of a highlight. You know without this light this scene would seem very flat to me. It gives just the little highlights dancing around on the garbage, it’s very cool I think. My last adjustment was to rub Vaseline on the corners of the lens. We want this to be a dreamy world that she’s living in so the Vaseline will blur out the edges and make it look a little more dreamy.
Here’s her opening dialog and her lighting set up. I punched in for a close up and cut with that long shot and pick up some tight shots to the trash to cut with the opening scene. So let’s listen to her prose as she lays in a bed of garbage. – Why am I laying in this bed of garbage? Forgotten dishes and chicken carcasses, oily corn cobs, left over fish kebabs, soggy cereal, spongy material. How can I stand laying on this divine of debris, well this trash smells great.
Shooting on tungsten gave the background a nice blue look. It’s those LED’s that are shining out from underneath the bed, the daylight balance, those North Star look really blue as they come up from under the bed. But I kept her face neutral with the source four tungsten light, gives us a nice color juxtaposition between the two I thought it looked very nice and very dreamy. I love working with LED’s and tungsten lights on set, it shows you can get some interesting looks when you combine these two different light color sources. It’s just important that you know what each of them will do and then work with them accordingly. So I hope this has been as educational for you as it was for me, so don’t be afraid to mix two different light sources and keep those cameras rolling and keep on clicking.
Remember, the giveaway for September is a Dynalite XP800 battery pack that powers your strobes on location. The person who gets the closest to the number of times this XP800 will fire a 400W second power pack on fold wins. If you guessed 100 or below, you are way off, got to be a lot higher than that. Better go back and guess again.