Lighting…makes all the difference!

(ONE WOMAN BANDIT) – Understanding the concept of lighting is very important in shooting video and having the best live shots as a reporter.  Learn about lighting terminology here.

The most basic technique of lighting that every one man/woman band should learn about is 3 Point lighting. 

This includes:

Key Light The main light on the subject, providing most of the illumination and contrast.

Fill Light A light placed to the side of the subject to fill out shadows and balance the key light.

Back Light A light placed at the rear of a subject to light from behind.

See the following visual examples:

3 Point Lighting
3 Point Lighting
fadiarichmondshooting
Standup: I used a Lighting stand to light up the building behind me so that the police department’s name and shield can be seen

While out in the field, I use this technique a lot when lighting my own standups and live shots. I usually have two light stands with me. Since I’m often doing my live hits in the dark , I use the headlights and brights on my vehicle as the Fill Light. I use the light on the camera as my Key light and one of the light stands as my back light. In the first photo (above) and example also used another light stand to light up the building behind me so that the police department’s name and shield can be seen.

Live stand up where car crashed into apartment: I used a fill light here to brighten the unit that was damaged.
Live stand up where car crashed into apartment: I used a fill light here to brighten the unit that was damaged.

The two examples (above & below) here are live shots for the same story in which a vehicle ran into a building. The first Live hit (above) was fine and properly lighted, but in my second live shot (below), I experienced an issue in which my ‘Fill’ light not working and could not use it.  Though my Key and back light are okay here; you can see all the difference that fill light makes in lighting the scene where that car hit the building.

Second Live Stand Up: This is another live hit for the same story, notice the fill light is out. You can see all the difference that light makes in lighting the scene.
Second Live Stand Up: This is another live hit for the same story, notice the fill light is out. You can see all the difference that light makes in lighting the scene.

Screen Shot 2013-07-21 at 4.43.02 PM Screen Shot 2013-07-21 at 4.41.23 PM

During my term at CityTV Channel 3 in 2012, I shot some interviews and a cooking show using this technique; see examples above & below:

Cooking with M.F.R.D. Producer/Editor; Fadia Patteron
Cooking with M.F.R.D. Producer/Editor; Fadia Patterson

Got Questions or want to add to this post? Is there something that you would like for me to cover? Tweet me with #OneWomanBandit  @Fadia_Dame_Tele ! :-)

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2 comments

  1. Great tips! I haven’t done a lot of on-air stuff but I do a lot of stills for my blog and I use two lights. Going to incorporate a third as filler light! Thanks for sharing your pro tips. #blmgirl

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