Lighting is the area of web video production that people struggle with more than any other area. It can be difficult to get the right balance with video lighting and much depends on choosing and using the right equipment in the first place.
Getting the lighting right means that your video will look professional and high quality and the presenter will look bright and engaging.
After all your camera depends on light – that’s essentially what it does: it absorbs light and provides an image – so you need to give it the right raw material if you want good quality images!
Here we look at the aspects of video lighting you should consider before embarking on making your web video. Choosing well will save you time and money – lighting is the single biggest upfront expense you will face, when buying your equipment.
The Classic Set Up
The classic lighting set up uses a 3-point lighting system; however, if you are just a single presenter standing in front of a simple backdrop you may get away with only 2 light points.
The first lighting type you can choose from is fluorescent lighting. This is a cool light that uses little power. If you use fluorescent lighting it’s best to cover the bulbs with a reflector and create a “soft box” by placing a piece of fire retardant fabric over the lighting system; this helps to diffuse the light from the bulbs to create a more even distribution of the lighting, which makes for a better , sharper image on the video.
This will cost around $500, but you are really providing quality light to the camera, which means you will appear sharper – and no shadows under the eyes, which can result from sharp, undiffused lighting from above.
The second type of lighting is redheads, but these are a high-end solution that professional video production companies will use. They are very hot 650-800 watt lights that provide strong, diffused and effective light, but if it is just you presenting in a small room they will be overkill; for filming a seminar in a larger room, they will be more appropriate.
LED lights have low power consumption, are very versatile and offer cool lighting for interviews, one-on-ones with the camera or filming some larger gatherings like weddings; they usually have dimmers and they can be mounted and stacked. Despite their versatility they are not expensive and will start at about $80 upwards.
Hopefully this has helped you solve one problem you will face with your web videos – what video lighting equipment to buy. Take a look at our own videos at our channel YouTube.com/theseomethod to see the results of our own video productions.