Tuesday, October 9, 2012

The quest for lighting...lighting your videos on the cheap

Ok, so, you who follow this know how atrocious the lighting in my videos is. It's ok, I won't be offended.  I know.  Its horrible.  Not having any experience and just sort of doing this for my own amusement I really wasn't too worried about it.  Until now that is.  All of a sudden I feel the need to be well lit.

So, I do what every good rookie does and I google "studio lighting" "cheap studio lighting" and a whole list of other versions of the same thing.  The same thing that translates to : I am too broke to buy anything more than a tea light so show me how to do this without mortgaging a kidney.

What did I find?  Well, there are some lovely sites out there that will sell you a full studio set for the low low price of $698 but they do throw in free shipping.  What?  I said cheap, not rent payment!  So I kept searching.  I found a few other suggestions.  One of them included lanterns.  Yes, paper lanterns.  They diffuse light really well, or at least they are reported to because I sure didn't check them out.  I would love to but I'm not sure my long suffering husband wants to live in an apartment that looks like a Chinese restaurant where something went horribly, horribly wrong.

I opted for a work light.  You know, the kind used by construction workers.  They produce a heck of a lot of light.  Don't look into the light....seriously.  They also heat up to a temperature that is roughly that of the surface of the sun within a millisecond.  This is harsh light.  Currently I'm playing around with it and have found if I bounce the light of the wall opposite me it works.  Another suggestion is to place it behind a frosted shower curtain.  Make sure it isn't close enough to melt but it does diffuse the light.

My videos and photos are not beautifully lit yet but, they are a million times better and this alternative was relatively inexpensive.  The light cost about $15.

So I'm still working on this.  As with all things this is a work in progress.  I don't ever intend to be some video or photo professional. I really don't have the desire to make everything look totally professional. This is, after all, my vintage INSANITY.

Some of the bloggers and vloggers I follow suggest a daylight  bulb.  I found that didn't really work for me.  I suppose that may be because I am the same color as liquid paper. Incandescent bulbs...we just won't go there.  So far, the good old work light seems to be my best bet.  Just must remember that it is HOT.

What lighting do you use?  Do you bother at all?  Please, don't tell me you have a studio that is flooded with beautiful, natural light.  I may say bad words at you.

Lighting...the eternal quest continues...but it's gonna take a pit stop here with my work lamp.  I think I will name him Merv.


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